About Me


Hello and thanks for stopping by! I've had this blog for a little over three years now, but I only just realized that Blogger allows you to have little page tabs dedicated to any topic my heart should desire. Clearly, this confession not only betrays my gross lack of tech-savvy, but should also make us all ooh and ahh in amazement that I manage to blog at all. *bows* On a more serious note, however, I felt it was high time I did a proper "about me" page.
My name is Katy (yes, my google ID is Junsui, which is perhaps confusing because I am not Japanese. I did, however, live there for a year and there is a story behind my blog alias. While working at a high school, I joined the calligraphy club to spend more time with my students and also to learn more Japanese; since all Japanese calligraphy must be signed with a stamp bearing your name--each and every Japanese has one; it's necessary for all official documents--and my name was written in the foreign alphabet, the calligraphy instructor and I came up with a real Japanese name for me: Junsui. Like Kathryn, it means purity.)  and I live in Berkeley, CA, where I recently earned a Ph.D. in Russian Literature, and will also, after many, many years of being a student, finally embark on a new and non-academic adventure in the coming months. You'll just have to stay tuned to see where opportunity will take me...I promise that, even if I'm no longer writing a dissertation and thinking about all things Slavic, literature will still figure heavily on this blog. I've always been a reader and I don't expect the new direction my life takes to change this simple truth.


  Although I come from a family in which food was always important--and it was always good--I didn't start cooking, truly cooking, until graduate school. I baked muffins and cupcakes for my classes, especially for the days when I had presentations, and I also cooked as a way of relaxing in the evenings. Surprisingly, I found that I liked it, so I started doing it more. By the time I passed my qualifying exams, it seemed only right that I should start a food blog to chronicle my adventures in the kitchen--my adventures both with dining and Dostoevsky (Dostoevsky was the reason I got into Slavic studies to begin with and, even though my work didn't focus on him, you might say he's one of the leading men in my literary life). 


And then the Greek, my sidekick and sous chef extraordinaire, came along and, both because of and through him, long Greek words and foods started making their way onto the menu--seriously, even my grandma now makes baklava. So, really, on this blog, you get a mix of Mediterranean flavors, family recipes from the heart of southwestern Pennsylvania, simple Californian cooking and whatever just happens to strike my fancy either on our various travels or in cookbooks and cooking magazines. While baking originally stole my heart, I also like playing with savory flavors. I've recently become interested in Persian cooking, started making my own pasta and am currently foreseeing a glorious future in which I bake a lot of bread. Most importantly, I will never say no to ice cream.

As a final note, the above picture of me was taken on the beautiful island of Milos a few summers ago. I just want to point out two things: Firstly, I do not normally look this glamorous; secondly, I do not normally drink Coca-Cola. Although you would never know it thanks to the fact that I become more photogenic with a fever, in this picture I had just left the small island health center, where the doctor had recommended that I drink Coca-Cola to settle my stomach. The nurse also suggested that I buy a hat. As you can see, I followed their orders to the letter.

P.S. About the ads on my blog, I decided to join up with Blogher not for the money (at this point, I have made about $80 off this blog), but for the network. It's nice to be connected to different blogs, to see the opportunities out there and to be exposed to people who do this as a living. After all, who knows what's next?

If you want to contact me about a recipe or with any questions, you can reach me at diningwithdusty@gmail.com. I look forward to hearing from you!

13 comments:

  1. Only great things are in store for you, dear girl. Onward and upward. And Coke in a can is the best stomach medicine around.

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    1. Thanks, Jess! Onward and upward, indeed! For all of us.

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  2. Hi katy! My name is Dylan and I work at Panera bread in lil ol' Mansfield Ohio where I actually happened to meet your aunt kathy! She's such a nice lady we got to talking about the fact that I love culinary and cooking and such and she told me about this blog of her nieces that I must read! So here I am! It looks great just by the pictures so excited to start reading through all of it!! Best wishes and as julia child always said "Bon Appetite!"

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  3. Hi, Dylan and thanks for writing! What a small world that you should have met my Aunt Kathy; I agree that it's definitely a small world!

    Hope you enjoy the blog and thanks so much for stopping by!

    Best wishes to you, too, and sending lots of Julia Child good culinary vibes your way! :)

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  4. Hello!

    I just saw your blog on the FB page about the Mediterranean food, and Dostoevsky, of course, attracted my attention:)
    I was born and raised in Serbia and Russian literature has a special place in my heart:) My daughter is a senior at Berkeley, majoring in Slavic Studies, History and Human Rights (Russian is her foreign language of choice:) She has many Russian friends and a Ukrainian boyfriend:) She is also one of the editors of "Troika". Ronelle Alexander is her advisor and she has taken every one of her classes.
    It was a great pleasure to meet you and your blog! I am looking forward to reading more:) Best luck with your studies:)

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  5. Lana, hello! Thank you so much for stopping by and for commenting! What a small world (как сказал Толстой, мир тесен!)! I'm sure I must have met your daughter, at least in passing (I attended the "Troika" launch party last year)!

    And I'm so glad to hear that you like what you've seen here; it's always nice to meet a reader!

    Best wishes and perhaps I'll even meet you at the Slavic graduation reception this year since I'll most likely be graduating!

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  6. Hi Katya,

    Thanks for sharing your blog with me.

    Sending you a link to the book I mentioned today, Book of Tofu: http://books.google.com/books?id=7rmfYjEYyu8C&pg=PA317&lpg=PA317&dq=book+of+tofu+anthropology&source=bl&ots=b3Z_9ZyuDp&sig=aXIxyIm6_8XM7rLWMSMuVwL6vBw&hl=en&sa=X&ei=uWSbUMyQIMXciQKl0YDABQ&ved=0CFoQ6AEwBg#v=onepage&q=book%20of%20tofu%20anthropology&f=false

    It was published in the 80s when tofu was first becoming a 'thing' in the US. It contains little gems of insight into Japanese country/rural life. Great illustrations too.

    Lisa

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    1. Lisa, thanks so much for the tip! I'll have to look this book up or maybe get it out of the library. And I always like a cookbook with illustrations. :)

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  7. Hi Katy,

    I am not exactly sure how I found your blog but I am certainly glad I did. Can you tell me what kind of Camera you use to shoot with?

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  8. Hi Pippylou9! I'm also glad you found my blog; it's always nice when people stop by and leave a comment. I'm always happy to know that people are reading!

    As for the camera I use, it's a Canon Rebel T3 with an 18-55mm lens. I haven't even had it for a year, but I really love this camera. It took some getting used to, though; in the past, I had only used a point and shoot.

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  9. Hi, Katy/Junsui! Well, thanks to BlogHer, I clicked on a "more from" link and ended up on your parsley juice page. I think I love your blog already. Looking forward to reading more!

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  10. Hi, Lisa!! Thanks so much for stopping by and for your sweet comment! Glad you enjoy my blog! And, should you be inspired to try the parsley juice, I hope you like it!

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    1. I am definitely trying it...I was actually disappointed that I didn't have any leftover parsley in the refrigerator! Looks great. :)

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