Saturday, November 14, 2009

Cookbooks and Culinary Aspirations

I have only been cooking for a couple of years--becoming serious about getting back to the basics and learning to cook healthier meals for my family only in about the last year. When I was growing up, my mother--who by the way was a very good cook but, who hated doing it--never really wanted any of us kids underfoot while she was preparing meals. She worked full time outside the home at a very stressful job and by the time she walked in the door in the evenings she just didn't have any patience left to teach me or my siblings how to cook. And heck, we were happy being outside riding horses and running wild so we never really complained either.

I have gotten better but when I first started cooking--or attempting to cook-- I was terrified. I mean, all that boiling water and popping oil. And don't get me started on trying to learn how to time everything out so that the vegetables are ready at the same time as the main entree instead of either cooked to mush or still hard enough to crack tooth. Luckily for me, I got my hands on some great cookbooks and found the world of blogs and stumbled upon youtube which have been my saviors--literally. Practice has helped a lot and I am actually pretty darn comfortable in the kitchen these days.

A couple cookbooks that I always have within easy reach are pictured above, namely: The Taste of Home Cookbook--I love the magazine, too, and The Better Homes And Gardens New Cookbook. I do have some others but these are my favorites.

And I have to mention a website that has been absolutely a godsend to me and my limited culinary abilities. It is called Chickens in the Road and the author of this amazing blog is Suzanne McMinn. Because of this awesome gal I am now making my son homemade pepperoni pizza completely from scratch. And baking bread from scratch. And cooking beans...yes, from scratch. And the list goes on. But, Chickens in the Road is not just a cooking blog. It is so much more than that, too. It is all about her and her family, and the scary dirt road she has to drive on to get to her beautiful Stringtown Farm in which she has to ford two sometimes flooded rivers. It is about her adorable farm animals--oh, you have to meet Clover the Goat. She is just so down to earth and friendly. Trust me, if you have not had the pleasure of visiting Suzanne's blog you are in for a treat.

So, are there any other culinarily limited women out there? Am I the only one? Do you have a favorite cooking blog or recipe blog that you would like to share? How about cookbooks? I'd love some new ideas.


  1. I have the very same BHG oldie from the 60s that was my mom's. It is my go-to cookbook. The pages are brown with age and I just love it!

  2. I have the same BHG book as well, 2 of them actually. I have my mothers from the 60's and I also have a more recent 12th edition from a couple of years ago.

    My fav foodie blogs at the moment are these two:

    They are both divine cooks and very friendly gals...and I highly recommend them!

  3. Thanks for the foodie blog info, Bella, I love checking out new ones.

  4. Unfortunately, I make primarily Weight Watchers recipes...and while they're good, they're not GREAT.

    And even more unfortunate, I don't have a natural talent in the kitchen. I admire women so much who do.


  5. Hi Boo, yes, I've done the Weight Watchers before, too. And...I have to agree with you...good but not quite great, LOL. And believe me, there was no natural talent here either. It has just been practice...and more practice.


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