All posts by Sandy Oliver

Sandy Oliver

About Sandy Oliver

Sandy Oliver Sandy is a freelance food writer with the column Taste Buds appearing weekly since 2006 in the Bangor Daily News, and regular columns in Maine Boats, Homes, and Harbors magazine and The Working Waterfront. Besides freelance food writing, she is a pioneering food historian beginning her work in 1971 at Mystic Seaport Museum, where she developed a fireplace cooking program in an 1830s house. After moving to Maine in 1988, Sandy wrote, Saltwater Foodways: New Englanders and Their Foods at Sea and Ashore in the 19th Century published in 1995. She is the author of The Food of Colonial and Federal America published in fall of 2005, and Giving Thanks: Thanksgiving History and Recipes from Pilgrims to Pumpkin Pie which she co-authored with Kathleen Curtin. She often speaks to historical organizations and food professional groups around the country, organizes historical dinners, and conducts classes and workshops in food history and in sustainable gardening and cooking. Sandy lives on Islesboro, an island in Penobscot where she gardens, preserves, cooks and teaches sustainable lifeways.

A Chili for Vegans and Carnivores

Back when this household was vegetarian, my poor mother-in-law struggled to figure out what to cook for us. “I don’t know what you fellas eat,” she’d say. It didn’t seem to help when we’d say, “Anything except meat.” In those days, the late ‘70s and early ‘80s, vegetables were strictly a side, and of course […]

Lemony and Light Ricotta Pie

When Jan Rhenow in Harrington wrote me to say that she had enjoyed an Italian Cheese Pie she’d been served but the recipe for which the maker wouldn’t share, the first question I had was, “Was it sweet or savory?” Turns out that it was sweet and, as I suspected, made with ricotta. So we […]

Sugar Cookie Morphs into Pecan Cookie

What a handy thing to have a serviceable recipe for cookies quickly made. Friends of mine in Yarmouth, Carrie and Ben Yardley, developed variations on a basic, freezeable sugar cookie dough that gives them almond, vanilla, lemon poppy, orange and pecan cookies merely by the addition of extract, rinds, nuts and seeds. I test-drove the […]

Rice is Nice

Boiled rice in the fridge is a life-saver sometimes. It re-warms and quickly gets along so well with a lot of different foods. For a fast meal, you can load it up with leftover bits of meat or shellfish, cooked or uncooked vegetables, add beans, add onions, garlic, scallions, grated ginger, top it with cheese […]