Today is January 13th, 2015 which means that it’s been exactly one year since I sent my first post out into the blogosphere. When I started this little food blog of mine I had only one goal in mind, and that was to keep myself busy during the long Kansas winter. Never in my wildest imagination did I think that 12 months later, after moving to sunny Texas, I would still be chugging along and enjoying myself immensely! Writing this blog has taught me so much about cooking, food styling, and photography, but above all, it’s taught me how to laugh at myself. You see, not every recipe I think up is a winner, in fact, many recipes are complete disasters. I’m not kidding, there were some awful things that came out of my kitchen this year. Typically a year in review is supposed to highlight the best and the worst, but when I was writing this post I realized that you guys already get to see the best on a regular basis (those are the recipes that actually make it onto the blog each week). Instead, I thought you would appreciate seeing the worst; the recipes that end up on the cutting room (or kitchen) floor, so to speak. Because really, what’s more fun than fails?
The first example just happens to be my inaugural post, Classic Chicken Noodle Soup. Originally I thought it would be cool to make my own egg noodles like my grandmother used to do, but I was wrong. Where my grandmother expertly kneaded and rolled out her dough to form soft, tender noodles, my quick and easy version turned out like tiny wool socks instead. Thinking they’d become softer and more flavorful in the broth, I threw them in anyway. And guess what? They tasted like tiny damp wool socks.
Exhibit B: One of my most popular posts this year, Salted Caramel & Chocolate Blondies, started out as a molten disaster burned to the bottom of my oven (twice!) before I finally found the right size pan and ended up with a killer recipe. (By the way, don’t think that I didn’t eat this mess with a spoon before tossing it out. Because I did.)
Some of you may remember that over the summer I whipped up a delicious batch of Chocolate Martinis. What you didn’t know is that this post was originally supposed to feature two drinks; kind of an opposites attract / yin & yang / black & white sort of thing. Although the chocolate martini turned out great, its evil sidekick, the not-so-pretty-and-way-too-sweet-white-chocolate-martini, was almost undrinkable. But I photographed it anyway.
Although I was able to salvage a few of these recipes, not every story this year had a happy ending. There were many dishes that were so bad they were destined for the inside of my trashcan right off the bat. Yet despite their obvious shortcomings and my unwavering optimism (read desperation), I somehow I convinced myself that a few of these were actually edible, only to be corrected by my family, and so I photographed them (poorly), and was forever left with the cold, hard evidence of my culinary failures. Take this horrific-looking pasta made with homemade orecchiette shells which took 4 hours to craft and 5 seconds to toss. I can’t remember exactly what was in it, only that it was crunchy and soggy all at the same time.
Or what about this beauty? Over the summer my garden produced an overabundance of banana peppers, so I thought, “Hey, how awesome would it be to stuff a few and toss them on the grill?!” The answer is, not awesome.
This moldy bowl was the zesty sugar topping that I sprinkled on a batch of key lime cookies which will henceforth be referred to as The World’s Worst Cookie. My daughter even threw hers away and she’ll eat anything that has sugar on it.
In any event, despite these kitchen catastrophies this year has brought me moments of great joy, some hard knocks to my ego, and an education I couldn’t get from any school. Thank you all for sticking with me and I hope you continue to visit!