Writer, cooking teacher, television host, and author of an award-winning book, Amelia Saltsman is passionate about getting everyone into the kitchen.

Strawberries are back in season! And that means it's time to make these lovely, simple Strawberry Shortcakes -- perhaps the most perfect spring dessert ever.


Farmers’ Market Tour Santa Monica, CA
Wednesday, June 10, 2015
Santa Monica Farmers’ Market Tour with Amelia

And the Winner Is….

Cherry tomatoes Thanks to all who leapt with gusto into the contest for a copy of Deborah Madison’s Vegetable Literacy! You named over 30 different favorite vegetables and specific varieties, but it’s clear I ran this giveaway in the summer because tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, and corn were at the top of your list. Further proof that people who eat by the season live in the moment.

Before I announce the randomly selected lucky recipient of Deborah’s newest master work, I’ve got to share a few highlights from your enticing descriptions and cooking ideas. Grill master Dave sears thick slabs of oxheart tomatoes as you would a tuna steak, fast and rare. I can hear the sizzle of Paul LoNigro’s cauliflower …

5 Tips for Summer Entertaining

5 tips for summer entertaining I’m about to share five of my favorite tips for easy entertaining, hoping they will entice you to purchase The Santa Monica Farmers’ Market Summer Entertaining E-Book, where you’ll find lots more great ways to simplify your summer food life. So let’s just call this post what it is: a shameless book promotion. But one that comes at the perfect moment to start you on a carefree season of outdoor cooking and eating.

Summer Entertaining E-book Amelia Saltsman

I kicked off the season last weekend with …

How to Avoid Tomatoes

Creamsicle Salad It’s one thing for home cooks to swear allegiance to local/seasonal and try to convince stubborn family members who insist on tomatoes in their salad no matter what. But it’s quite another thing when you’re a farmer or restaurateur looking to make a sale. Can you count on your customers being as fully committed to the cause or to be as patient with harvest delays as you are? How far can you push the seasonal envelope without alienating or losing customers?

Nothing draws a line in the “seasonal” sand like the tomato. We’re still a ways away from its true season, but the expectation for year-round tomatoes is so ingrained that chefs and farmers worry that even a temporary absence on …

Campania: Lemons, Tomatoes, Zucchini, and Eggplant

Vertical-Lemon-Orchard First, let me just say I was too busy eating, drinking and living la dolce vita to post from Italy. Seriously, what was I thinking! I’m back, and here’s some of what I found in late June in Campania (Amalfi Coast and Naples; I didn’t make it inland—see la dolce vita above).

Lemons. If there’s one defining fruit for this area, this is it, specifically the IGP-protected sfusato amalfitano variety. Often grown in steeply terraced orchards clinging to vertiginous cliff sides, these lemons are intensely aromatic and although acidic, are somehow subtler than our everyday Eureka and Lisbon varieties.

They show up everywhere and in everything. My husband and I especially dedicated ourselves to acquiring deep knowledge of granita …

What’s in Season in Campania?

Campania market I’m not quite sure. I’m getting ready for a trip to southern Italy, which means a lot of armchair food travel. Seriously a lot, like to the point of such visual and verbal surfeit that I feel like I’ve already eaten my way through Campania and Rome.

I’ve repeatedly daydreamed my way through Fred Plotkin’s Italy for the Gourmet Traveller, which I consider the bible for such things. Also David Downie’s exhaustive Food Wine Rome; Elizabeth Minchilli’s elegant blog; and whatever little electronic alleyways I stumble upon, such as Amy Sherman’s 9 Best Things to Eat in Campania. …