Bitter cold air has finally moved into our area after an uncharacteristically balmy December. The frigid temperature is tempered by the fact that the holiday rush is behind us. Santa has left the building. A breath of fresh air. A reason to sit and stay a while. Take stock of what is left in the cupboards and prepare something comforting and simple. Last night’s supper of sloooow roasted pork shoulder served with lettuce wraps and julienned veggies proves that so little effort can produce something so complex and delicious. My contribution to a family meal this past weekend is another example of such irony. This show stopper was one of the easiest desserts I have ever prepared in addition to being delicious: slightly overripe strawberries and pear on a bed of sweetened cream cheese all snuggled inside a crispy, sweet-glazed puff pastry. This got me thinking about possibilities. Chicken, broccolini and white cheese sauce; salmon, capers and a sour cream dill sauce… I am looking forward to thinking of new, simple ways to nourish my family and friends in 2016.