Cooking with natural colors

Additives make dishes vibrant

Additives make dishes vibrant

October 07, 2007|By TIFFANY ARNOLD

Bob "Bones" Higgins, 61, of Hagerstown, and his wife Lynley, 42, have worked out an arrangement when it comes to running their household.

Bob cooks. "I do everything else," Lynley Higgins said.

That's the way it's been for the seven years of their marriage, and there are no complaints from Bob, Lynley or any their four children. Especially when Bob Higgins makes chili and potato salad.

"I like to color mine up," Bob Higgins said of his chili. "The beans change up the color."

He uses a combination of red kidneys, white beans and black beans in his chili, with a base of ground beef or turkey and some basics - diced tomatoes and seasonings of chili powder, cumin, salt and ground pepper.

He even likes his potato salad to have some color. He dices and adds red, green and yellow peppers for color and texture.


"I think it makes it more appetizing," he said. "If it doesn't look attractive, they're not going to be drawn to it."

He also adds celery seed to potato salad. Celery seed has a celery-like flavor and aroma.

To keep from overloading the meal with heavy comfort foods, Bob Higgins also serves sliced, raw veggies as a side.

The Higginses recently sat with The Herald-Mail just before dinner time to talk about chili, other favorite foods and cooking in general.

Q: Is there any wiggle room in this recipe? If someone wanted to change or add something, where would it make sense to do it?

Bob Higgins: The spices. I can heat it up, or tone it down, depending on who I'm cooking it for.

Q: What about for the potato salad?

B.H.: One thing I use is celery seed. It gives it a little more flavor. The celery itself, it just makes it crunchy, but it doesn't do much for the taste.

Q: So what are some foods you like?

B.H.: Crab cakes, steak, oysters, blue cheese -

Lynley Higgins: Liver and onions!

B.H.: Yes, liver and onions. I love them, but they can't stand them.

L.H.: He's the only one in the house who likes liver and onions - and blue cheese! I can't stand the smell.

Q: You don't eat those together, do you? Liver and onions with blue cheese? That actually sounds kind of gross.

B.H.: No. [Laughing]

L.H.: He ain't pregnant. [Laughing]

Q: So, what would a mom meal be like?

L.H.: Might be meatloaf. I can do steamers. I love frozen stuff.

B.H.: That ain't cookin', hon. [They both laugh.]

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