My Cookbooks: Part 1

I thought it’d be fun to do a small post about my modest collection of cookbooks! The past summer, I really started collecting them. Then, in the fall, my parents shipped this collection from California to Chicago. The package never came. USPS lost all of them.

Since then, I’ve been rebuilding. Some new, some old. New ventures and replacements.

The saddest part was losing my dad’s original copy of The Moosewood Cookbook from the 70s. That one I’m still looking for; I want to find a 70s copy at a used bookstore to replace it.

I spend most of my recipe-hunting time online, through blogs, Pinterest and Tastespotting. The variety available online is astounding. You can literally type in any combination of ingredients and find something, somewhere. Most of my ideas come from inside my own head, and then I search to see how other people have executed that idea. But that doesn’t guarantee the recipe has been tested, or will even taste good! I’ve had several cooking fails from recipes online (usually from larger publications, rather than personal blogs), due to poorly written or poorly tested information.

Cookbooks, though? You can put a litte more stock in them. They’ve got a reputation to uphold. Their authors have (hopefully) had time and money to test them, and have only included the best of the best. Not everything will turn out great, but there’s certainly a much higher success rate with cookbooks than recipes online, in my opinion!

Below are three of my most commonly used cookbooks! In the another post at a later date, I will dive into the more obscure cookbooks I have.
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Enchiladas Suizas

Enchiladas Suizas

Mexican food. I crave it.

But so many of the Mexican restaurants around here just don’t cut it. There’s one in particular, well-known by college students for their Margarita specials, that I dread going to with friends because it means a $12 plate of sub-par enchiladas suizas (my favorite) next to a sad pile of rice and brown blob of refried beans.

Give me better Mexican food! For $7 in California, I can get amazing enchiladas suizas with the best rice and beans you’ve ever had.

Don’t tolerate bad Mexican food!

Make your own.

Enchiladas Suizas

Enchiladas Suizas

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Video Project with ·ly media

This past weekend I worked with Shivani, Edwin, and Emily from ·ly media to create a beautiful video, and I can’t even begin to tell you how much fun I had! I was so impressed all day by both their professionalism and excitement about the project. I only brought chocolate and spatulas; they brought so much creativity!

The entire process was eye-opening, fascinating, and most of all, entertaining. But my favorite part of the shoot was when we were all finished. Sitting around the kitchen table, digging into the cake straight off of the pan, and drinking cold milk together. Enjoying something we had all created together. That moment sums up everything I love about cooking: incredibly personal moments with great people, anchored by a shared experience of flavors. Simp-ly wonderful.

Stay tuned for the finished project!

For the Week (2.25.13)

For the Week

This is Sevi. Have we talked about Sevi? Probably not, because I’m not with her most of the year. She’s my Dad’s dog, but to anyone that knows me, I just call her My Dog. Sorry, Dad.

Sevi and I are tight. When I’m in Chicago, I chat with her on the phone (she usually stays quiet), and we have the occasional Skype date. I demand that my Dad send me pictures every few days. Whenever I am at my parents’ house, she is by my side. It’s all slumber parties and girls’ nights. Gotta love a Golden.

There’s not much else to say about Sevi right now, except that I miss her and wanted to share a picture of her on this week’s link post!

Sevi

Speaking of the links, it’s been over 3 weeks since I’ve done one of these, so sorry about that! Last weekend I got so excited about the recipe that I was posting that I forgot all about links. That extra week helped me find a variety of interesting things, so there should be something for everyone. Usually I’m scrambling to find enough stuff, but not this time. Just kidding… I’m totally on top of my stuff all the time…

Please, if you click any link out of all of these, let it be the first one. I promise you will appreciate it. You need a giggle break. This is my giggle break. I ran around my apartment reenacting it. You will appreciate that statement only if you click it. Thank you.

  • Please just click THIS. No seriously. If you only click one link, let it be this one.
  • Chicago friends: The best places to laugh!
  • A more or less convenient “hack” for making pasta
  • Slang and Facebook’s graph search
  • Do you take baths?
  • Hiring is basically dating now
  • Would you want to wear these clothes?
  • The only way to improve Rob Delaney’s tweets

Read or watched anything else lately that deserves an honorable mention? Let me know in the comments!

Coconut Curry Risotto

Coconut Curry Risotto

Well, I made another risotto. I couldn’t get tender, creamy rice off my mind after I cooked Parmesan risotto earlier this week. There’s something special about Arborio rice that sets it apart from every other Italian rice and pasta. What’s even better is that it lends itself to so many international flavors, like this Thai Coconut Curry Risotto here. I imagine you could incorporate Mexican, African, Indian, or other Asian flavors very easily as well.

Speaking of Asia… I am going to Asia in less than a month! My mom and I are taking a trip to celebrate my early graduation from college. We also just like traveling together. We’re going to see Japan, a tidbit of South Korea, and China. The part I’m most excited about? THE FOOD! If you’ve ever been to Asia, PLEASE let me know what foods you’d recommend. Apparently I’ve promised to eat a bug. So… we’ll see how that goes.

Back to the curry risotto. Can I keep telling you how awesome it is? Do you need more proof? Well, it’s dairy-free, gluten-free, and it’s vegetarian/vegan if you swap out the chicken broth for veggie. So all you special diet peeps, this is the one for you.

Coconut Curry Risotto

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