Saturday, January 2, 2010

So this is the new year

Hello and welcome to yet another food blog! Here's how it started:

My husband, Edwin, and I moved to western North Carolina in June 2008 after we finished graduate school at UNC-Chapel Hill. We're both librarians. It's adorable (and not uncommon: library school has fostered many a romance, including my marriage and 2 more weddings). Who knew cataloging could kindle such sparks?

So. Edwin and I moved to Cherokee county (where Cherokee, NC, along with its casinos, is not actually located) to be professionals. He's the branch manager of a small town library, and I'm the Youth Services Librarian for the region. We moved, along with our cat and masters degrees, to a house in the woods. Though we owned plenty of kitchen supplies, they hadn't been used for much more than tacos from a box mix and spaghetti with jar sauce.

I didn't cook. At all. Why would I need to? Having lived in the Raleigh/Durham area all my life, I was surrounded by good restaurants (not to mention the 2 year stint sharing an apartment with my sister in which she cooked all my meals). When we moved to Andrews, though, the food chain sort of morphed. Instead of a nearby buy one roll-get one roll free sushi restaurant, we had a trout farm. While I was used to Whole Foods hot bars, we found Elsie's Restaurant, which didn't exactly have the variety of organic goodies I hoped for. It quickly became obvious that one of us needed to learn to cook. Fast.

Let me be very clear about something before I go on. I hated cooking. I hated the grocery store. I hated chopping. Doing anything other than boiling something made me nervous.

But we needed to eat. You can only have so many Old El Paso taco mix meals in a month, and Amy's frozen meals are expensive (and high in sodium). So I learned. Slowly. I spilled a lot of food on the floor, burned my arm, and cut myself more than I'd like to admit. As I got going, though, I began to enjoy the process. My first cooking love? Marinades. Who knew that tossing* together some simple ingredients and giving some meat a little soak could produce such results?

*I don't actually toss. I measure. Everything. Always. I can't guess at anything.

The first time I roasted a chicken I thought I might vomit during the prep. I'm sorry, but sticking my hand up a slick bird and pulling out the innards is terrifying. And gross. I chanted a little as I pulled: "This is for my family. My family. It's for my family." And I got through it.

It still grosses me out, though. Don't think it's not gross. It is.

But the chicken! The finished chicken! I was talking to my friend Ashley as it cooked, and I felt so proud when I told her what I was making for dinner. Over the months, I made countless meals for my husband and me, and once I made some friends in Andrews, I made meals for them, too.

2009 brought my first cooking resolution: to make at least one new recipe a week. And I actually did it. It was the first resolution I saw through to the end. I even made Thanksgiving dinner for my in-laws (and I didn't have to pull anything out of the bird! The butcher did it for me!).

So this year's resolution? To make a cooking blog.

I'll update at least once a week, and I'll tell you about how I spilled a beautifully chopped onion (learn how here) on the floor right before we had company or how Edwin had to give my nose a milk bath after a fight I had with a jalepeƱo. I won't be as entertaining as Ree Drummond or as charming as Julie from Julie and Julia, but I'll satisfy my friend Emmel's pestering (she really wanted me to start a blog).

I hope you like it. I made it.

1 comment:

  1. Love it!!!!!!! Maybe you can have an entry where you teach me to cook something. Or you can teach simple cooking techniques and I'll be your protege. What do you think? I feel that I need to be a part of your blog bc I have nothing to blog about!