I’m stealing someone else’s blog. Blatantly. With no shame.
But we’re friends so it’s okay. Right? Right?….
My friend Katie recently posted her cooking bucket list for 2013 on her blog (look a link – so it’s not really stealing!) and I am going to copy her and do the same. It’s a good way to remind myself what I’m trying to accomplish beyond the basic principle of do not order take out unless extremely fatigued and/or sick and perhaps near death.
So here it is, my cooking bucket list for 2013:
1. Master a roast (or two) – every single dish that I miss of my Dad’s cooking involves an incredibly well cooked piece of meat – namely his prime rib and roast beef. He didn’t cook them as often as other things and I was always thrilled when they showed up at the dinner table. Had I been smarter I would have watched him/paid attention to how something so stupidly delicious came to be, but of course, I was completely unaware of how good I had it. LE SIGH. So now it’s up to me to recreate from memory, with the help of varying recipes I find that resemble what I remember of his classic French cooking. By the end of the 2013, I want to be able to cook a prime rib and roast beef as seemingly effortlessly as my father. Standard go to recipes that once you do them enough it’s like second nature and they always taste delicious. First step, I have to buy a roaster…pretty important first step I’d say. Also, I need to expect to fail quite a few times before getting it even remotely close to being right. I might not get it right until Christmas of next year, but I’m okay with that and I think I’m up for the challenge!
2. Experiment with Spanish cooking – namely with paella, Chicken with Piquillos, and bocadillos. It’s so easy for me to only focus on French cooking since it’s where my heart lives but I love Spanish cooking too. Love it. And, given that my many summers in France were near the basque region I actually realize now that there was a profound Spanish influence to the food we ate growing up because of where my grandparents lived in France. So it’s time to try my hand at something different, but still wonderfully familiar. And of course, it’s important to note that there’s a GREAT Spanish shop and restaurant in Soho that I used to frequent when I worked down there called Despana and it has every Spanish ingredient one could possibly need to give the dish you’re making real authentic flavor. And, I feel like, since it’s there I should take advantage of it, right? It’s also an excuse to go by and get a bocadillo. Because – Oh. My.God.
3. Create a signature fish dish or two – I LOVE fish. Love it to the point of I could eat it almost every night and not tire of it at all, and the side benefit is that a fish based diet can be really healthy. So the goal is to create and/or find one or two fish dishes that I can make my own and keep on hand as go to weekly recipes. I’ve experimented quite a bit with fish this year but no recipe I’ve found has stood the test of time in my kitchen. The only thing I make with any kind of consistency is my couscous salad with scallops (skinny bitch FAVE) and I need more than that. I should have a standard three fish dishes to pull from at least.
4. Create/find and master a handful of super healthy but still super tasty dinner recipes – this is a big challenge. I love butter. Like a lot. Like if I worked on a farm and had a choice of jobs I’d probably make the butter. Because, it’s BUTTER. It brings nothing but joy people (okay – AND cellulite). This, of course, causes some problems in the “healthy” department. And while I refuse to give up my profound butter beliefs (PROFOUND), it would be wise to have three to four healthy weekly options to balance out the nights when I a melt a pound of butter all over whatever protein I’ve chosen for the evening. So this is the year of a healthy balance. One night quinoa and veggies, one night a stick of butter. Totally logical, no?
5.To learn how to make the five mother sauces – basic and super important to one’s cooking skills are the five mother sauces. From these all great things in the sauce family can be made, and by this time next year I want to have made and mastered all five. This is a big goal as it will be very easy for me to just make them once, pat myself on the back, and claim mission accomplished – when really – first efforts don’t count. It’s the continued effort and the ease that comes after making them MANY MANY times. But I think I can do it. And I’m hoping that writing it down as a cooking goal this year will hold me accountable in actually mastering these sauces.
So there you have it. If I was as ambitious as my friend Katie I would also list my fitness goals for 2013 but they can really be summed up with gurlllll don’t get fat and bitch put down that cheese. So as long as I stick with those I should do okay.