Because I am a complete and total Yankee, I really didn’t know a thing about grits until Alex and I took a trip to Savannah and Charleston earlier this year. But when I tried them, I fell hard. I found them in a small puddle beneath the most saucy, delicious chicken dish in a large-rimmed shallow bowl, shredded Brussels tangled around them and then the next day loaded with cheese and chives adjacent to my eggs. They seemed to be open and ready for anything put before them–on so many levels, exactly what I needed.
Sunday night, along with roasted stuffed onions and that apple tart for dessert, I made Martha Stewart’s Silky Braised Chicken with Wild Mushrooms and Pearl Onions for my family when they came over for dinner. But if you want to know if it was any good, you’ll have a hard time getting a straight answer. I thought it was dry and could barely eat three bites of it. Everyone else didn’t mind, and even called it delicious. Then again, they may have just been polite.
Alex has been narrowing his eyes at my ever-growing periodicals stack lately, and I don’t blame him. How did someone whose life so fully revolves around the Web end up with so many subscriptions to print magazines? Hint: I am only paying for one of them. Hint: Most of them are available ink-free on the Web.
Today, I have failed you as a food blogger. I’m not proud. I cooked and cooked, we and our loved ones ate like kings, there was not a single recipe that shouldn’t be archived and returned to and yet, in the whirl of things we forgot to pick up the camera. (Hangs head in shame.) You get no photographic evidence of the shredded hash browns, chive biscuits, egregious amount of thick-cut maple-cured bacon, baked almond-orange French toast, insanely spicy bloody marys, plain yogurt I flavored myself with real vanilla and just a pinch of sugar. You’re just going to have to trust me that it was grand.
Though it’s still and gusting the kind of evil, icy winds outside that make you grunt as they hit your face and sometimes (er like last night when I accidentally left the window open and spent most of the night under sixteen blankets cursing these landlords who were being cheap! with our heat! Ok, Einstein.) I swear, I will never get warm again, when I began to make a shopping list for yet another thick, hearty, rib-sticking meal on Sunday (Julia Child’s beef bourguignon, if you must know), I just couldn’t do it. Winter has really just begun and I began to feel like I’m caving without even trying to cope. This hibernation, it must stop.
Come on, be honest. Is there anything better than a homemade quiche? I could eat it with a pile of baby greens for dinner every night of the week. Or lunch, brunch or a post-gym snack. Is there anything more versatile? Oddly enough, I didn’t have a proper quiche pan until yesterday, when a trip to my beloved Bowery Kitchen Supply put me face-to-face with one for ten bucks. (Alex’s favorite kitchen name, ever, is Fluted Removable-Bottom Tart Pan, followed by Reamer. What, you didn’t know I was married to a twelve-year-old?) I was actually there to get my knives sharpened (mwa-ha-ha, it sounds so sinister, right?) and to look at pasta-makers (this excitement for later, but yes, I can barely contain myself, too), and within 2.5 seconds, I knew we were having quiche for dinner.
A couple months ago, I briefly mentioned making a wild mushroom soup from Gourmet magazine that was, you know, good, but also, eh. But shame on me, really, because last year we found the perfect, best-ever, fail-proof, tastiest recipe so why did I fall for the shiny new thing? Isn’t that the point of all this trial-and-error, anyway? I’m always trying to catalogue Recipes That Work, also called Recipes to Share you know, the ones that you try and you think “This is it. This is everything I have ever wanted from a [insert beloved grub here],” even if yes, I know, most people probably do not share my fanaticism about beloved grub. Lemon cake? Done. Banana bread? Found that too. Easy-peasy rustic loaf? Yup, and hooray for that. Chocolate cookies so good, it may bring tears to your eyes? That’s for tomorrow, because I am a tease, and also because I think about them again, I might eat five. Best-ever mushroom soup? I will never doubt you again.