I think I picked the worst month to be a food blogger. I'm eating Ritz crackers out of the sleeve and hanging out with Elijah. I don't have anything glamorous pictures of baking triumphs. I haven't baked at all. I haven't made a cake in AGES. I don't feel like I'm trying anything new. But there are so many fun things to do, and so few nights with nothing on the calendar. I'm just going to have to be cool with that, and pull together some culinary inspiration next week. I swear it.
Deb has been talking about our food phobias, what we're afraid to cook. Here are my thoughts:
1. I have had the same recipe for croissants, written out in pink ink on notebook paper from a magazine or cookbook sometime during college. If you count out the predicted amount of time for each step and add it all up, these should take approximately 13 hours. So if you wanted to have hot croissants with breakfast, you would have to start them at 8 pm the previous night and set alarms for every three hours to stretch, apply butter, fold, stretch, more butter, more folding. I know another option would be to just start them early in the morning and eat them with dinner, but I've just never summoned the nerve.
2. Shrimp and I used to be best friends. If you had asked me my favorite food when I was approximately 8, I would have said shrimp. But after learning the proper way to clean and devein those suckers, I was over it. I am happy to have the option of those handy frozen, pre-peeled, pre-deveined fellas, but honestly, I don't think I'm ever really going to embrace shrimp the way I did when I was young.
3. I'm intimidated by pie crusts. I believe the one from the apple crumb pies from Thanksgiving was ok, but honestly, since I incinerated one of them and the other got eaten up, maybe I didn't even try it. Everyday Food said it was their Best Piecrust Ever, but who knows? I don't feel comfortable handling dough like that, and maybe it's just going to be permanently too hot in my kitchen to ever really accomplish an ingredient that requires ice water.
4. And the same goes for yeast dough. The dinner rolls from last Thanksgiving turned out amazing, I will say. But most of the time, something goes so wrong. I don't know what. The most recent pizza dough was the best example; simply nothing happened. Do I kill the yeast? Is my yeast poor quality? Do I not let it rise long enough, or too long? I know I have accomplished some basic things with yeast in the past, but it is a dark and scary path I haven't yet gotten the gumption to trespass.
5. Walnuts. Only because I used to be allergic to them. I still avoid recipes that call for them, even though I can eat them now, happily. It will be a permanent block in my brain.
I think maybe two years ago I would have listed a plethora of foreign foods that I have most recently embraced. Thai food and Indian food, especially. So that's something, right? Here's to overcoming fears, one cooking adventure at a time...
P.S. Elijah thinks all remote controls are Wiis. I think we'd better go for a walk.