Hello, I’m Nikki.
I’m a full-time food blogger and mother of two. I live with my family among the quiet farms and picturesque fields of Northwest New Jersey. My eldest, Gigi, is a budding foodie. She enjoys the process of preparing a meal as much as she enjoys eating it. My youngest, Nino, is a work in progress – he likes approximately five foods and he’s determined to stick to that. He also has a peanut allergy so you won’t find any recipes here that contain peanuts or peanut oil.
Everything I know and love about cooking I learned in my grandmother’s tiny Italian-Irish kitchen, just minutes outside of New York City. In my family, we celebrated everything with food. Some of my earliest memories are centered around my grandmother’s table adorned with meals made by her hands. “Made with love,” she would say. Laughter and conversation tapered long into the evening at her table. Family and friends never left without a full belly and their own sacred plates of leftovers to take home – she always made twice as much as was necessary. I inherited that trait.
About the Site
Chasing the Seasons was created as a way to catalog family favorite recipes. However, I didn’t realize how much I would come to love the whole process of creating a food blog! I decided that I also wanted to inspire and influence the home cook to think seasonally and to use locally sourced and farm-fresh ingredients as often as possible, even if one doesn’t live in, or near, the countryside (see below). Since moving from the hustle and bustle of life in urban New Jersey over a decade ago, I have developed a sincere appreciation for local agriculture and the foods that emerge with each season – they are gifts to be carefully chosen, prepared and savored. There’s reverence and honor in the turning of the seasons. These ingredients are temporary and when they are gone we bid them farewell – at least until next year. In this quiet space on the internet we will chase the seasons, cooking and tasting our way through the months.
About Northwest New Jersey
Here in Northwest New Jersey we experience each season in all its majesty – both in temperature and in harvest.
Just a few minutes in any direction will lead to a working farm with its quaint market and most prized harvest proudly on display. As a family, we plan our meals around what we find at the farm market – it has become a way of life.
In the winter, when the fields are snow-covered, we tuck-in in for the long, deep cold. We braise our locally raised meats in red wine and simmer our pots of broth on the stove top for hours.
Support Local Agriculture – Even in the City!
Farm Fresh. Farm-to-Table. Earth-to-Table. Farm-to-Fork. These are terms you’ve likely heard. Here’s why it’s so important to choose local. Supporting local agriculture means that you are choosing foods with less pesticides. It will taste better and be healthier for you. In fact, many small, local farms actually implement organic methods. If you’re not sure, ask your local farmer – they are usually very happy to share their practices with their customers.
If you are a city-dweller you can still choose locally sourced produce, and support local agriculture, by frequenting the Farmers’ Markets in your area and by shopping the local produce section, when in season, at your favorite supermarket.
Buying locally sourced food means you are supporting your community and aiding to preserve open space for farms and fresh local food to thrive in the future. For those other ingredients that must be store-bought, please choose well. Buying organic ingredients will provide you with far less pesticides and chemicals.
I love connecting with fellow foodies. Don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions, comments or feedback. I’d love to hear from you!
Sorry – I have to write it this way to avoid spambots!