Tuesday, April 10, 2012

So Midwestern, So in the Kitchen: I can't stop

Lately, I can't get enough kitchen time. There's never enough time or enough ingredients to try all of the recipes that I want to try.

The kitchen is soothing and quiet and my hands are so dirty that I can't obsessively check email/text messages/Facebook/Twitter every 17 seconds like I do every other waking minute of the day. And, when I’m done, I have something to show for myself. “Look!” I say to myself, because there’s usually nobody around, “Look at what I made!”

Then I take a picture – when I remember to, anyway – and then I wait a little while and then I blog much the same statement.

Look, you guys! Look at what I made!

I’ve actually been relying a lot on old favorites. After Aunt Annette was released from the hospital, I brought over a pan of spinach manicotti. Last Friday, a few very, very, very ripe bananas found their way into Banana Crumb Muffins – which are crazy easy to make and, oh, YUM. I love them. It’s the dusting of magical crumble on the top. I used the thick, soft sugar cookies recipe to make the cookies that Lucy and I decorated for St. Patrick’s Day; and then I emailed the recipe out to my hockey teammates who couldn’t stop raving about them. I made mini quinoa cups because they are so easy and delightful and perfect for lunch; I also made a few quinoa salads based on a few that have been posted at Iowa Girl Eats. (I am quinoa’s number one fangirl.)

And I took pictures of none of it because I am lazy.

Also because Liz has the worst lighting in her kitchen. It is seriously awful. Her light fixtures are gorgeous but the room is so dim. It drives me insane.

On the topic of bad pictures: don’t judge this recipe for Artichoke, Sun-Dried Tomato and Goat Cheese Pasta by this shitty-ass picture. Just make it, okay? It seriously might be the perfect pasta. It is so easy. And it tastes like it is complicated and fancy. Plus it has goat cheese. Like I said: the perfect pasta. I’ve already made it twice.

I had high hopes for this Tomato and Feta Quinoa recipe that I found via Pinterest. It’s such an easy recipe, filled with pantry staples. I thought it would be one of those recipes that I could make late on a Sunday night when I have no fresh groceries and I’m totally unprepared for the week ahead. I wanted it to be delicious. It was not delicious.

I still like the idea of it, though, so I might play around with the recipe to make it more palatable. Maybe fresh roasted tomatoes would make the difference. Or a few more vegetables. Or making it during a week when my aunt isn't hospitalized and I have an appetite.

Meg and I tackled a recipe that I’ve have wanted to try for months and months: soft pretzels! We made cinnamon pretzels and we made salt pretzels and they were totally tasty and a little bit fussy to make but sort of fun, too. I can see myself bringing them to a Super Bowl party or something of the like.

Just as we were finishing up the pretzels, Emma came over and she was like “you guys, where is the cheese dip?” and so we made cheese dip to go along with it. Typical Faturday afternoon with my sister and my cousin.

During the week that Aunt Annette was in the hospital, I needed to bring a snack to a hockey team gathering. I visited her in the hospital that afternoon. As I drove home from the hospital, I tried to talk myself out of bringing anything. But I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t show up without something – legitimate excuse or not. I ran to the grocery store and picked up cherry tomatoes, fresh mozzarella and basil. Drizzled with a little balsamic vinegar. Called it a day. Caprese salad on a toothpick, bitches: easiest appetizer ever. Most tasty appetizer ever. And it totally makes you look fancier and more put together than you already are.

My teammates were like “ooooh! What is this?” and “this is actually quite good,” which makes me think that they’ve never had caprese salad before which makes me think that they were born in a barn.

If I let this post get any longer, you all will think that I was born in a barn. Wipe the drool off of your chin, girls and boys. More food blabber tomorrow.

Maybe if you're really lucky I'll throw in some mindless rambling about boys, too.

I really don't thank you enough for reading, do I? Thank you for reading. And for your patience.


k said...

A couple of years ago we took a family vacation to the grand canyon. My brother's friend happened to work at one of the nicer park restaurants so she had reserved us a table with an amazing view and brought us a couple of complimentary appetizers, one of which was a caprese salad. Turns out that the rest of my family had never tried this deliciousness before. I was shocked! Maybe your teammates are from central NY like my family :)

Do you have any ideas of ideas for an "american" meal? My roommate has dinner parties and he is requesting I be in charge of one and make some food from home. First thing I thought of was mac 'n cheese but one of the guests is lactose intolerant. It can't have too crazy of ingredients because stuff can be hard to find here.

MK said...

Yum. Food post. Miss my kitchen. Living vicariously through yours. Yay.

A said...

Good challenge, K! What if you just did, like, traditional 4th of July food? Hamburgers, potato salad and/or pasta salad and maybe an apple pie?

Is chicken pot pie American? Or maybe just a huge-ass pot of chili?

Hmmm. I'll keep thinking about this and email if I think of something really great. :)

MK, you poor traveling wizard, I like reading about your travels but I hope you get back to your kitchen soon!

Kari said...

Love your food posts -- now I have a few more recipes to try! Thanks!

Blog Template by Delicious Design Studio