Turning Points: Paring Down

The noted chef tells how moving to a smaller home required a new recipe

For more than 50 years I had been amassing cooking things at my house in Cambridge, Mass. It was packed with hundreds of books, pots, pans, knives and every kind of implement. I also had a full array in the kitchen of our Santa Barbara, Calif., apartment, where my husband Paul and I spent our winters.

Before Paul died, in 1994, we'd agreed we'd eventually end up at Casa Dorinda, the lovely retirement community in Santa Barbara where I live now. Paul had been in a nursing home for five years before he died, so my transition from our dual...

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