The Devil’s in the Details

I once owned a book called “When a Loose Cannon Flogs a Dead Horse there is the Devil to Pay”. It’s a book about popular phrases born out of nautical terminology. On a wooden ship, the “devil” is the name of the longest seam in the hull. This seam (where the planks come together) was generally caulked with oakum and then sealed with “pay” (or pitch). No sailor wanted to be the one to pay the devil, because the job was incredibly grueling. It’s been years since I have worked on a ship, and I don’t associate the word ‘devil’ with caulking or manual labor anymore. When I think of the word “devil” I think about eggs.

Deviled eggs remind me of Easter with the extended family. It’s funny really, that we all gather to consume copious amounts of deviled foods on the day when we are supposed to be observing something “Godly”. Easter is a fusion holiday, where traditional Pagan celebrations of spring meet Christian celebrations of Christ’s resurrection. The mating of the two holidays has resulted, appropriately, in the annual appearance of our favorite fertility symbols: the fluffy-white, candy-carrying bunny, and the Easter egg. I’m not Wiccan, Christian, nor am I particularly fond of greeting card holiday, but who doesn’t love bunnies and candy? Why would anyone in their right mind deny themselves the opportunity to attend any celebration which features the decadent deviled egg?

While preparing these recipes, I got to wondering. Where does the phrase “the devil’s in the details” come from?

According to highly reliable Internet sources (because everyone knows that the Internet doesn’t lie) the statement was originally spoken as “God is in the details”. It was about the virtues of patience and being meticulous and thorough. These are qualities that I simply don’t possess in the kitchen. I love food too much to decorate with it. Every moment spent primping causes a low land flood in my salivary glands, and a crackling drought in my rumbling tummy. Pretty plating is agony for me, and most of the time I simply can’t be bothered. I get why the name changed to “the devils in the details” because details are often, in my opinion, a form of torture (I am sure Martha Stewart would disagree).

Here are a few versions of the appropriately named “deviled eggs”. I have not provided recipes, because these are purely meant to be inspirational (and I think they are pretty self explanatory). If you would like a specific recipe, leave a comment or send me an email and I will be happy to send it to you!

To hard-boil the eggs, cover eggs with water and bring to a boil. Boil for 1 min, then turn off heat, cover, and let sit for 10-12 min. Rinse with cold water and allow to cool before peeling.


You may notice that I have not used all the ingredients I have pictured here. Stay tuned for more “devil’s in the details” in the near future…


Wasabi and pickled ginger deviled eggs with scallion-pickled ginger garnish

(if you are a detail-oriented person, roll the pickled ginger into a rose shape and use the scallions as leaves)


Carrot and parsley deviled eggs with lemon zest

Christina’s favorites


Bacon and chive deviled eggs

mmmmmm bacon…


Western omellette style deviled eggs

Ham, spring onions, red peppers, green peppers..


Pictured together, six in a row, the little devils 😉

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Cauliflower Roots Kiss Winter Goodbye

Cauliflower Roots Kiss Winter Goodbye Recipe

They weren’t the only voices of my childhood, but they were the ones that snowed the hardest and never melted.

Too small.

Afraid of the ball.

No endurance.


“YOU are a MINIMILIST, that’s what you are!” he said.

“Mr. B, isn’t that an art movement?” I replied. I was in 9th grade and still a total smart-ass.

“Yes, but it applies to YOU” my bearded teacher boomed, while staring at me through glasses the color of pond water. They magnified the heavy bags which flopped under his eyes like the chops of a basset hound.

Naturally, I responded with an outward defensiveness and an inner rearrangement from self-pity to apathy. I have since learned that river of apathy is long and winding, and filled with buttery shores that simply refuse to give refuge to a soul for long. 

Like I said, those weren’t the only voices, just the ones I chose as my mantra. I was too afraid to try something and fail. Too afraid to find out that I wasn’t really an underachiever, but instead a total incompetent. What an absolute waste of time and energy.

It’s never too late.

Every day, more and more people are waking up to realize their true potential. With a resounding pound, awakened hearts fracture icy illusions. The subsequent circulating blood melts the snowy words which were used to build towers of misconception.

It’s time to kiss winter goodbye.

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Winter Quinoa-Tabouli (with Asparagus)

I am heading over to Bachman’s today to give a cooking demonstration (yes, Bachman’s….the flower shop).

The event is sponsored by the Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation, and is in honor of heart health awareness. There will be herb gardening demonstrations as well as cooking, so I am planning to make a few dishes using loads of fresh herbs. Here’s the recipe for one of them:

Winter Quinoa-Tabouli with Asparagus

You will need:

1 bunch asparagus

4-5 cloves garlic

1 bunch basil (or to taste)

a few sprigs thyme

a very small bunch of arugula (or to taste)

1 cup quinoa, rinsed and drained

2 cups water

3 Tbsp olive oil

1 cup rehydrated sundried tomatoes

2 tsp white wine vinegar

fresh ground pepper and lemon zest

Place quinoa and water in a saucepan, bring to a boil and let simmer for 15 min. Spread quinoa out in a bowl or on a cookie sheet to cool.

Slice asparagus into small rounds. Pan fry in 1 Tbsp olive oil with the garlic (minced) (add a pinch of salt).

Chop herbs and sundried tomatoes.

Dress the salad with herbs, sundried tomatoes, olive oil, white wine vinegar, lemon zest, pepper, and asparagus.


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