One of my favorite pastimes is to visit the library & peruse new and old cookbooks.
I think this is probably most definitely violating copyright law, but when I check out cookbooks and find recipes that I like, I'll copy them and file them in my almighty 3-ring green food binder. This binder holds recipes torn from magazines and newspapers, family recipes emailed and handwritten, takeout menus, and paper menus from restaurants we've visited and enjoyed. It's my big book of food awesomeness, and I'm always in search of items to keep it growing.
When a friend mentioned the Food52 Cookbook Club on Facebook, I figured it would be a fun way to experiment with foods I might not normally cook, and to expand my horizons beyond the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library stacks.
My mom and step-dad were up visiting for Thanksgiving and after gorging ourselves on turkey and the sites of D.C., I took them on a day-trip to Baltimore.
After a visit to my mom's favorite museum (she's a mosaic artist), we aimed for lunch at Rocket to Venus in Hampden. It was closed for lunch, but our trip up Charles St. wasn't for naught - we stumbled onto residents of 34th St. setting up their Christmas displays! This street is Christmas at its best, or worst, depending on your tolerance/interest in all things Christmas. Erin teases me for being a scrooge, but I have to admit, lights and what-not are nice at this cold and dark time of year.
After a brief walk through Hampden, we aimed for lunch at Kooper's Tavern in Fells Point. The tavern was most certainly open, with rowdy sports fans packing the bar and even spilling onto the sidewalk for fresh-shucked oysters. (My friend Gideon would have camped out right there for their Chincoteagues!) After some deliberati…