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Ireland in Lockdown…Again

Ireland is on lockdown again, this time for 6 weeks until early December. The schools are open, but there was no “trick or treating” this year. Sacrificing Halloween to save Christmas is the logic we’re hearing.

Although the kids didn’t dress up in costumes this year, Joe carved a scary jack o’lantern and […]

Sad to See Old Traditions Die: The Austin Hot Sauce Contest

30 years ago, I founded the Austin Hot Sauce Contest. I served as head judge for 26 years. Covid cancelled this year’s party, ending a tradition.

Here’s an intro I wrote for the Austin Chronicle in the late 1990s explaining the origins of the Hot Sauce Contest;

We called it […]

Chili, Oysters and Our Irish Cottage on Pouldoody Bay

As the fall semester begins, our Irish adventure continues. I am writing about cooking in Ireland for and getting together with Ten Speed Press for a Chili Cookbook promotion. For 2 weeks in September, from 9/3 to 9/14, the ebook version of The Chili Cookbook will be on sale for $1.99 at […]