Sunday, January 6, 2008

Resolutions for 2008

I don’t really have much in the way of resolutions. There’s some of the usual lose a little weight eat better score more goals bla bla bla YAWN crap that is really best not shared with others, because it is soporifically dull. They bore me more than a little (which doesn’t bode very well for them being kept).

But, more resolution-relevant to blogging, I took a look at my cookbook stack. Even more specifically, I took a look at the stack of cookbooks I've been given over the course of the last year (plus a bit; upon thinking about it, I realized I received The Herbal Kitchen and The Silver Spoon two years ago). It’s a pretty good stack. And they need to be cooked through, and considered, because I don’t have space for all of them and all the ones I already have. Which probably also means I should eyeball some of the ones I already have and consider whether I should be keeping them.
So in 2008, I will try to cook at least 15 recipes from each of these books, and then review the books in general. That’s at least 135 recipes, just from the gift books. Erk. Maybe 10? Well, somewhere between 10 and 15, which should be enough to give each one a decent chance. Although if someone proves to have recipes that are consistently blah or worse, they’re going to get an extremely pouty review, because I am a believer in 3-strikes(in a row, anyway)-and-you’re-out when trying out cookbooks.
Also? I’m learning (albeit kicking and screaming) to knit. Why would I learn to do something I don’t want to do? Well, Curly took it in her head that for Christmas, she wanted a Learn To Sew AND Knit Kit. Why? Apparently, she was under the impression that I know how to sew, and I’m some kind of role model to her or something (the kid should really pick someone more suitable). Another possible motivator is that for many holiday festivities this season, she’s been wearing a dress that my mom made for me when I was little, and saved. It’s the second dress she’s worn that my mom made for me, and she’s adored both, as I did when I had them. Even I am forced to admit that it’s pretty awesome, and I love seeing my daughter in something that I loved, and I am incredibly grateful to my mom both for making it, and also for carefully saving them. The pictures here are of her in the first dress my mom saved, which I think I wore until it was pretty much a shirt; the heart and flower decoration is what my mom embroidered on the front of the dress. And yes, since it's meant so much to me that my mom saved them on the off chance that one day I would have a little girl who would wear them, I am planning on saving them on the off-chance that one day Curly will have a little girl who might wear them.However, I am trying to kvetch here, so, really, enough with the happy happy love love stuff. Since Curly is in kindergarten, she needs help with knitting. So I’m learning to do it so I can help her. So far? Knitting does not seem to be my thing, in the same way that I discovered a couple of years ago that yoga is not really my thing. Both activities have too much zen calmness and not nearly enough smacking other people around. Although Curly did employ some smack-talking (my mom, who actually knows how to knit and sew, is currently helping her while I try desperately to get up to speed before Mom leaves town) by telling me that mine was lumpy, and maybe she should help me. Thanks, kid.
And there we have it: knitting and evaluating my over-grown cookbook stack. Exciting news, I know. I'm starting tonight with the caldo de pollo from Rick Bayless's (three out of four members of my household are under the weather; weirdly, I'm the healthy one... today). Although Mexico: One Plate At A Time was a gift from my mom last year, I've been cooking from it for quite a while. Because, erm... well, I kept "borrowing" my mom's copy. I'm pretty sure that it's one I'd like to keep, but... it's high time to revisit some of the old ones and work my way through some of the new(er).


cook eat FRET said...

i missed a few of these...
very cute pic/dress

very enterprising cooking resolution

hey - do you like that 'silver spoon' book? i got it as a gift too. it's so big and general. more of a reference kinda thing.

Meg said...

I use the Silver Spoon more as a reference than anything else. I find it vexing in that it's encyclopedic without being nerdy. It puts forth a single recipe "ta-da" and that's that. Regional differences, names and tastes aren't discussed, which I find frustrating. Overall, it lacks a voice. But, again, it's an incredibly handy encyclopedic reference for classic Italian food.