Trinitarian Cooking

Threes. Triplets. Trios. Triptychs. Triads. Tres. Threes.

Art + design loves a good one-two-three. Emphasis on the three.

Look to photography (or any study that involves composition), and you’ll learn about the rule of thirds. Look throughout the history of art, and you’ll find the ever present triptych. The Jackson 5 knew it! Sing with me! “A-B-C, it’s easy as 1-2-3…” I could write ten pages on why threes are beautiful, but just trust me: three is good design folks.

One of the most important “threes”
in cooking
is carrot, onion

If you learn nothing else from me,
please remember this trinity.

In France, this has a fancy name.
They call it mirepoix.
You can sauté it, roast it
even eat it raw.

You come and say,
“Why, your food always tastes better than mine!”
In a week you will be calling,
telling me how your food is now sublime.

You need this simple secret; it’s been around for centuries.
It is the aromatic powers of onion, carrot and celery.

Dice ‘em, slice ‘em or pound ‘em into a puree.
Want to experiment with what’s in your fridge?
With this mixture (as your backbone), you’re on your way.

Think of this carrot-celery-onion triad like vanilla ice cream. It’s a base. Layer your heart out, and your food will still taste terrific.

Fear not! You don’t have to stick to one “form” of onion, carrot or celery. There are vegetables within each family that do the trick as well.


Try orange carrot, yellow carrot, purple carrot or carrot greens. Want creole cooking? Sub out the carrot for a bell pepper.

Check out those tasty greens! (They’re flavor? Carrot!)


Try the ever present celery stalk, celery root/celeriac, celery seeds (whole or ground), celery salt and/or celery leaves (I love celery leaves). Though flat leaf parsley tastes different, it is an interesting celery partner or stand in.


This is celeriac. Also known as celery root. Celeriac has the texture of a potato and the flavor of celery!

Here is a blend of celery leaves and flat leaf parsley. I love this with apples, in a salad or sprinkled over roasted veggies.


Try yellow/golden onion, red/purple onion, white/spanish onion, scallions/green onion, leeks, spring onions, ramps, chives, boiler onions, shallots and/or garlic.


Looking forward to chives again this spring! I love the purple buds on my table.

I’m looking forward to the variety of onions at the market!

Hopefully we’ll see those trendy midwestern ramps again this year.

Shallot we make something a bit milder?

Here was what we found in our local market this week in terms of onions. There are a lot of options! I like the stalky leek. It is perfect in every way.

Here are two example pots of different combinations. These are both a sauté: first carrots, garlic and leek… (no celery is no problem)!

The second: paper thin onions, carrots and celery sautéing in a bit of olive oil. Classic.

This was the base to a chicken noodle soup. Once the veggies were soft, we added some water, salt, pepper, a bay leaf, shredded chicken and some pasta. We turned up the heat and brought the entire pot to a boil. Once the pasta was soft, we removed the soup from the heat, and we delivered it to our friend.

If you learn nothing else from me,
please remember this trinity.

Share this simple secret; it’s been around for centuries.
It is the aromatic powers of onion, carrot and celery.

Enjoy Enjoy Enjoy!

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  • Amber

    looks so tasty!!!  Our secret is almost the same: red onion, garlic, and ginger. 

    • Katrina

      Hi Amber! Yum, that blend sounds delicious. Ginger and garlic makes me think of the East!

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