Thursday, June 6, 2013

Random Plans

Where does the time go? It eludes me. It confounds me. I had plans to begin a 2013 bucket list for foodie's like me back in January. Recipes I've always wanted to make or remake if my first attempt was a total flop. And wouldn't you know, the New Year slipped by before I could boil water. It's June for crying out loud. However, I will not be defeated, nor give up and wait for yet another year to roll around. So here is my 2013 list. Fingers crossed.

Bucket List ~ Foodie Style

1  ~ Crème Brûlée
2  ~ Mozzarella
3  ~ Confit
4  ~ Sausage
5  ~ Hollandaise 
6  ~ Redfish Court-Bouillon
7  ~ Tamales
8  ~ Gyoza
9  ~ Pasta
10 ~ Cake Decorating

There are more items I could add to this list, but this is sufficient to keep me busy for the time being. I only hope I can put my shoulder-to-the-wheel long enough to finish by the end of 2013. The list is a bit odd, even to me. It's random for sure. I do have reasons for each thing, though. 

For example, I want to make Crème Brûlée because, number one, I love it. It's easy enough with so few uncomplicated ingredients, but so decadent I wouldn't want to make it very often. It's usually a guilty pleasure I order at a restaurant for dessert. The other reason I want to make this, I want an excuse to buy one of those little kitchen propane torches. Such a sucker for kitchen toys, I am. 

To me making Mozzarella must yield rewards somewhat like making homemade French bread. It demands hands-on involvement, which I find almost Zen-like. I love tactile interaction with food. Stretching and working with the cheese, well I know I'll get a kick out of that. 

The Confit technique of preserving I've wanted to try for a long time, however I'll wait for cooler weather, which will be a while given my zip code. Duck Confit is a a favored ingredient in Cassoulet, another dish I didn't add to my list, but I have good intentions of making it if I actually get around to the Confit first. It's definitely on the back burner.

Sausage. I have actually made sausage, but a very long time ago. The link variety and it was really tasty, but it wasn't the prettiest package I ever saw. This time around I'll probably make pan sausage while mostly experimenting with spice combinations etc.

There is nothing I love more than a steamed veggie such as cauliflower, asparagus or even good ole broccoli with a velvety ribbon of Hollandaise ladled over the top. It elevates the dish from 'oh that again' to 'is company coming'. Sometimes tricky, this sauce, but I'll be doing that soon while Summer's bounty is here.

My son, as I've said many times before, is a great cook. He's mentioned to me how he would love to make a Court-Bouillon with Catfish, which is typically the fish used in Louisiana for this stew. But I want to procure a salt-water fish and some big ole 6-8 count shrimp, then call him to cook with me. In the cooler weather another bucket list recipe is Redfish Court-Bouillon with my Matthew.

Several years ago a very good friend and co-worker was given a priceless collection of recipes written by local ladies. Some were actually handwritten and most of the women who penned the recipes are now cooking in heaven. However, they left a part of themselves for others to enjoy by saving their recipes. That to me is more than special. My friend brought this assortment of heirloom recipes to me to check out. In it was a recipe for Tamales. My mother was a friend of the lady who wrote the recipe and her reputation in the kitchen was excellent. I'm going to use her recipe.

The Horn Player and I love Japanese food, always finding the Sushi restaurants in any city we visit. Gyoza is also one of our favorite appetizers. Perfect little package to get the palate set for the other delights from the Japanese chef's. That food is a beyond delicious; it's that umami thing, I suppose.

I've made Pasta in the past, and even though it tasted okay, I want to try that again. Different shapes and kinds if time allows and I'm up to the task. On the surface it looks like a pretty simple process, but it is also one of those things where the old adage, practice makes perfect, certainly applies. Plus, you guessed it, I would love to have a pasta roller machine. Not one for my KitchenAid mixer, but one of those hand crank models.

One cake is all I ask, just one perfectly beautiful cake. My friend Sally and I gave Cake Decorating a shot when my son was a tyke and I wish I had a video of that day. Murphy's Law kicked in and we literally laughed until we were in tears at the comedy of errors. I may ask her to come over the day I decide to try that again. If for no other reason than to redeem ourselves. The cake we baked and decorated for Matt that day actually didn't look too, too bad and it was really tasty. It was also a task neither one of us ever attempted again.

So, there you have it. I need to get busy very soon it appears. Wish me luck and keep up with my progress. Leave me a comment if you'd like to list random recipes you've always wanted to make. I would love to hear your ideas.

My favorite object in our kitchen is where each recipe begins


  1. Maybe we can make some sausage while you're visiting :)