At The Table With...Stacy Ladenburger of Delightful Crumb
Today we're all about Stacy Ladenburger, the 26-year-old Oakland-based blogger behind Delightful Crumb. This thoughtful writer and editor takes a simple and graceful approach to blogging. Her posts use food as a launchpad for long — and sometimes difficult — conversations. You'll find no muss and fuss at Delightful Crumb (despite the name, Stacy's food is very clean), but you will experience her stories, which run deep with emotion but avoid drama. This is a blog best enjoyed slowly, with attention paid to Stacy's words and recipes. Though Delightful Crumb seems effortless, it's certainly not simple — and that's a great thing.
Read on to get to know Stacy!
What is your all-time favorite book?
Nicole Krauss' History of Love. It's a beautiful, soulful book with wonderful characters.
What meal do you love to cook?
Currently, I'm really into the meze-style dinner. It's perfect for summer, when the produce speaks for itself. A good bottle of red wine is crucial. Then, I keep a few things supremely simple — maybe a delicious cheese, a good loaf of bread, fresh figs torn in half, a plate of perfect heirloom tomatoes. I'll add to that one or two more complex elements, like an elaborate salad, ricotta toasts, baked feta with herbs, an interesting pilaf or my current favorite vegetable preparation, which consists of slicing cucumber or zucchini with a julienne slicer to make "pasta." My favorite things to bake are simple cakes and fruit galettes, so I'd close the meal with one of those.
I also love making soup. With autumn fast approaching, I'll surely be moving in that direction soon!
What is your favorite food scene from a book?
I adore Molly Wizenberg and every story she tells in A Homemade Life. I especially love her reflections on her single-lady days, when she was figuring things out, building a life, licking cheese off her knives so as not to waste a bit. These stories remind me of my own single-lady days after college, which were so formative and challenging and lovely.
Coffee or tea?
What is the last book you abandoned?
I'm sorry to say that there were two, at once: Malcolm Gladwell's What The Dog Saw and Lisa Abend's The Sorcerer's Apprentices, which is about a season at Ferran Adrià's elBulli. The library demanded I return them — and this, of course, is why I shouldn't read more than one book at a time!
Which author would you most like to meet for dinner, and what would you eat?
David Sedaris. We'd choose a French restaurant, and since he lived in Paris for a while, I'd let him order. He would encourage me not to take myself so seriously, and then we would eat several desserts.
Where do you go to find new recipes? New reads?
I really love cookbooks. Whenever I buy a new one, I really dive in, making recipe upon recipe until I'm tired or have been distracted by something new. For my own recipes, seasonal produce and other folks' ideas on the Internet provide endless inspiration.
As for new books, I'm always attune to titles mentioned on NPR and my favorite podcasts, and I turn to friends for suggestions as well.
Tell us about your blog—what inspires it? Why do you blog? What are your favorite aspects of it?
On Delightful Crumb, I tell stories about food and life alongside recipes featuring whole foods and seasonal ingredients. As the name suggests, baked goods make up a hearty portion of what you'll find on my site. I am particularly fond of a good quick bread or cake made with whatever fruit is in season. Inspiration comes from everyday life, travel, meals out on the town and the farmers market.
The thing that drew me to food blogs in the first place is what keeps me here — it's a platform to communicate about life in all its fullness, with food as the common denominator, the starting place for any story. I love having a space to honestly explore both the joys and the challenges of life — I'm of the opinion that we hide far too much of the hard stuff. For me, writing has always been an attempt to let people know they're not alone, no matter where they are or what they face.
I've also met such lovely people through my blog—this has been the unexpected gift.
What are your favorite blogs?