Thursday, April 22, 2010

Our Apologies Mr. Oliver

I begin this post with an apology to the adorable Mr. Jamie Oliver.  You did a fine job writing your carbonara recipe, the egg yolk bit was in there.  Chef and I are just so brain dead from newbornitis that even in reading a recipe three times we still will manage miss something.

So, continuing with last week...the reptile saga continues.  I wish our cats actually killed and ate the creatures they brought us as gifts.  I really do.  At about 3 am in the morning last Saturday night I noticed something strange on the floor next to my bed.  I didn't have my glasses on.  It was dark. I sat there as The Sprout nursed and I stared at it wondering what the hell it was...and then it moved.  It moved like only one creature in this world...a frog.  I thought to myself that perhaps I was hallucinating, and that maybe I should just pretend like I did not see it and go back to sleep.  But then I looked down at my baby girl and thought what if this big frog hops into her co-sleeper and slimes her in the night?  What kind of mother would that make me?

I took my book light off the bedside table and illuminated the amphibian.  Its big bulging tree frog eyes beamed back at me.  It was big enough to have to carry in both hands, which I did...out the front door and hurled it off our porch, washed my hands, and went back to bed.  The following morning, post Sunday brunch we had another two reptilian run ins at home...well more like one and a half.  A segment of snake...the tail end...which was really disturbing...almost more so than an actual snake, and a large lizard.  I just love Springtime in Florida.  

I am trying to put last week behind me and forge ahead.  The Sprout is a month old already.  It is hard to believe that much time has passed...I mean where has April gone?  Chef and I were deliberating over that question recently, as well as another...

What would be considered a contemporary equivalent to The Joy of Cooking?  Not that The Joy of Cooking is any less relevant than the year 1931 when Irma Rombauer self published the tome...but  what cookbook published in recent years contains a similar broad comprehensive collection of  indispensable recipes and techniques.  We looked at our own collection of cookbooks and came up with two titles The New Basics Cookbook and The New Best Recipe.

If you don't have these at home, you should.  The New Basics Cookbook is very simple to follow, and full of basic information everyone should know when it comes to what cheeses go with what wines and what every kitchen should have as far as tools go, the different types of cuts of meats and varieties of fish and how best to prepare them, as well as lots of standard recipes.

The New Best Recipe from Cooks Illustrated is an essential go to cookbook for a great recipe. Each of the 1000 recipes is the result of a multitude of trial runs resulting in the best formula.  It is a huge book, encyclopedic, which means it wields a certain authority when splayed open on the kitchen counter, yet it is straightforward and well written.  I have just really begun to explore this big daddy cookbook and let me tell really has everything you need to know about most anything you want to cook, from how to boil a perfect egg to how to make Pad Thai.  Last week, I made banana bread, pictured above, from this book and it was pretty perfect.  Chef helped Lil' Bit whip up her first ever batch of chocolate chip cookies...and they were some of the best I have ever had. 

On another note...Happy Earth Day!  This weekend go to your farmer's market and buy some locally grown goodies to celebrate!

1 comment:

emilyalane said...

Girl, been thinking about you a lot and sending you such loving energy. I know you are a busy busy lady right now!!!
Peace and love to you and Scotty and your little flock.
Love you!