This is the last Weekend Herb Blogging of 2005, and before I talk about black-eyed peas, I want to take time to reflect on the year that is ending. Without any question, 2005 has been a great year for me. Starting Kalyn's Kitchen has expanded my life in ways I never imagined. Writing the blog has been a rewarding way for me to combine three things I'm passionate about: cooking, writing, and photography.
Saturday, December 31, 2005
Friday, December 30, 2005
For years I wanted a gluten-free recipe index category for Kalyn's Kitchen, but it seemed like a daunting task since literally hundreds of my recipes are naturally gluten free. Finally I realized that what might be helpful for gluten-free readers was an index page for dishes where I've adapted the recipe in a way that eliminated flour, breadcrumbs, or wheat products. On this page you will find mostly that type of gluten-free recipe.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 2:30 PM
The new year is coming, and for many it's a time to resolve to lose weight. Although I'm an advocate of the South Beach Diet, (at least my own version which has morphed out of my own food preferences), I'm not a low carb diet missionary, trying to recruit others into the lifestyle! I consider Kalyn's Kitchen to be a food blog, not a diet blog, and I consider the way I eat to be good food, not diet food.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 8:44 AM
Thursday, December 29, 2005
I mentioned I was having a party tonight for some of my family, and promised to share some photos of the soup. Then I realized that I already had a photo of one of the soups in my archives, so I thought I'd share it before the party. This is from my recipe archives, first posted October 6, 2005. I've made this for several occasions since and it's been a hit everywhere I've served it.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 2:31 PM
Wednesday, December 28, 2005
Happy Birthday wishes today go to my wonderful brother Rand. Since I moved away from my parents' house at age eighteen, when Rand was only four years old, who ever imagined that we would grow up to be the best of friends? Of course I can't tell you how old he is today, since then you guys could do the math and figure out my age (which I have vowed never to reveal). Let's just say that a lot of years have gone by. During that time we've shared a love of exotic food, travel, and movies. We spent time together in Hong Kong and Beijing when Rand was consulting on a television commercial there. I've visited him at his houses in Chicago and Venice Beach, and he has stayed at my house in Salt Lake City. We've had fun sharing the 80 ways we love our 80 year old dad on the family blog (Rand's idea) and eaten a lot of good Thai food together. It's great having a good friend for a brother.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 8:11 AM
Monday, December 26, 2005
Earlier in the week, I wondered whether to cancel Weekend Herb blogging due to Christmas being on the weekend. I just started my blog in April, so I hadn't blogged through the holidays and didn't know what to expect. I assumed lots of people would be busy with other things, and based on my blog stats, they were! However, I am happy to report that Weekend Herb Blogging did survive. I've decided having only three herb blogging posts means I can give you a sample of the photos in the recap, something I usually can't manage when there are a lot of posts.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 7:47 PM
Friday, December 23, 2005
At this time of the year, it's so hard to put into words that feeling of connection among men that the holiday season represents. Whatever form your personal celebration takes, the season when one year ends and another begins has meaning beyond the simple passing of the year. The holidays represent the possibility of a better tomorrow, the hope for peace on earth, and the remembrance of those who have touched our lives in the year that is ending.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 6:23 AM
This is going to be a short Weekend Herb Blogging post with no recipe because I'm busy today getting Christmas stuff ready and also I want to get my Christmas Message posted right after this. (Yes, I admit I'm bumping it up a day. I'm just like a kid waiting for Christmas about this message! I guess I just can't wait any longer to share it.)
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 6:20 AM
Thursday, December 22, 2005
It's always sad when you have to say goodbye to someone you really enjoyed having in your life. That happened to me recently when my next door neighbor Steve decided to leave Salt Lake for some new adventures in life. Steve was a great guy, charming, intelligent, and friendly, the perfect neighbor, and someone I will really miss talking to.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 9:10 AM
Wednesday, December 21, 2005
I'm still working my way through Mark Bittman's wonderful new cookbook, The Best Recipes in the World. In this book Bittman experiments with the best dishes from countries all around the world, and then presents them in a way that home cooks can duplicate. Bittman's famous "minimalist" cooking style, where he doesn't fuss, but does just enough fancy preparation to make the food memorable, really shines in a dish like this. Scallops can be a little tricky to cook at home, since they're so easily overcooked. Overcooking turns them rubbery and tasteless, so be careful. I live in Utah where it would be difficult or extremely expensive to get fresh scallops, but I used frozen scallops from Costco to make this (thawed in the refrigerator) and they were very good.
Monday, December 19, 2005
Bloggasm is a fun new blog you may have stumbled across in your web surfing. They interview bloggers, comment on blogs, and report interesting web news. Here is their mission statement:
Bloggasm seeks to interview and promote a variety of blogs from different cultural realms. We sometimes post several interviews a day. We also bring you a multitude of posts on blogs, culture, and weird news we find on our daily web wanderings.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 3:29 PM
When I started finding out that there was a whole community of food bloggers, I had no idea what an amazing bunch of people it actually was. Now an event is happening that makes me proud to be even remotely associated with such a wonderful group of people.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 1:30 PM
Sunday, December 18, 2005
Here it is the weekend before Christmas, so I wondered if any herb bloggers would still find time to participate in Weekend Herb Blogging. I was pleasantly surprised at how many people participated, and once again our herb bloggers came from all over the world.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 7:23 PM
Saturday, December 17, 2005
There's snow outside my window and I am getting my herbs from the grocery store, but no worries, I found a lovely package of fresh bay leaves at Wild Oats near my house. I was inspired to buy them when my herb blogging friend Mae asked a few weeks back what bay leaves are used for. "Soup, stew, and spagetti sauce," I muttered to myself. Turns out I was pretty much right. The leaves are not actually eaten, but are used to flavor dishes, usually things containing quite a bit of liquid.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 4:22 PM
Friday, December 16, 2005
Let me start by saying that if you came to this blog looking for low carb recipes, please forgive me and come back another day, or go to the sidebar and check out my improved recipe index, with categories! Sushi is definitely not a low carb food. Since I went on the South Beach diet nearly 18 months ago, I've been remarkably dedicated to avoiding refined carbs like sugar, white rice, potatoes, and white flour. I truly haven't found it hard to give up eating these things. In fact, the longer I go without them, the more I don't really want to eat them at all.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 6:30 AM
Thursday, December 15, 2005
This is my latest adventure in exploring the cuisines of the world through Mark Bittman's new book, The Best Recipes in the World. Once again, Bittman's book proved to be a winner, and this was a great dish which came together quickly. I used Dreamfield's pasta, which made it more South Beach Diet friendly. When I first read this recipe I wasn't sure what to think because the sausage is actually simmered in cream to cook it, although I used half and half to keep the South Beach Diet police a tiny bit happier. I also cut down the amount of butter and increased the proportion of sausage to pasta, and I could not really see why the meat needed to be simmered in cream AND butter, so I reduced the butter to one tablespoon. Increasing the sausage made sense because it came in a package with 5 links, and having more sausage meant the overall amount of carbs in the dish was lower. When I tasted it, I was even more happy that I had increased the amount of sausage. (You could use turkey sausage if you wanted to decrease the amount of fat, but if so you might need to increase the butter to two tablespoons as the original recipe called for.) Simmering the sausage slowly in the half and half created an amazing flavor and texture, much different than a sauce with sausage which is browned and then added.
Tuesday, December 13, 2005
Sunday, December 11, 2005
The weekend is winding down, and the herb bloggers have posted, so it's time for another recap. We have some very interesting posts to report on, and once again, I am going to spotlight the location where these posts were written since it's so fun to see how international this event has become.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 7:19 PM
Old cookbooks are quite a bit like old friends. Some parts of them are a bit worn around the edges or slightly stained. There are things you love about them, things you hate about them, and things you are completely indifferent to. Sometimes you may even wonder why you are keeping them around, but then one day you need just a certain thing, and that cookbook, or friend, has just what you need.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 9:11 AM
Saturday, December 10, 2005
Lately as I go around visiting blogs, I am feeling a little like a proud parent, seeing how well the five people I tagged have spread the You Are What You Eat Meme (also called Top Ten Favorite Foods Meme) around the food blog community. It's been especially fun to see how my Weekend Herb Blogging friends have tagged some of my other blog friends. It's no fun when you get tagged and then the people you choose don't continue the meme; that has happened to me before. I think watching the meme spread when it leaves you is the most fun part of being tagged. But I do want to correct one bit of misinformation I have noticed and say that Ruth of Once Upon a Feast deserves credit for starting the meme, not me. I think it's mainly because this was such a great idea for a meme in the first place that the thing is spreading like wildfire. After all, what foodie doesn't love to talk about their favorite foods? Thanks again Ruth, for letting me be a part of getting this started.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 11:28 AM
Friday, December 09, 2005
I can hardly believe that we have now been doing Weekend Herb Blogging for ten weeks. What started as a joke has now become a full-fledged food blogging event. I am pleased week after week at how creative and informative the posts are that are submitted by food bloggers from around the world.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 6:34 AM
Wednesday, December 07, 2005
I'm not one of those bloggers who tell all the details of their life on the blog every day, but some days you just need to unload. This was one of those days. This is not my actual car, but it could have been. Yesterday afternoon there was quite a snowstorm when I was driving home from school. Last night I had to go outside and shovel the snow for the first time this season. If you're reading this from a warm climate, shoveling snow is not one of the things I like about living in Utah.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 7:24 PM
Tuesday, December 06, 2005
I know some of you who are reading this spend quite a bit of time on the internet, zipping from food blog to food blog, just looking for something to spark your interest. I must confess, I spend a fair amount of time cruising around the food blogs myself. It's fun, but sometimes it can feel a little, well, aimless. Like I'm looking for something but I don't know quite what it is. Sometimes I even worry that I might possibly be spending too much time reading the blogs.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 6:12 AM
Monday, December 05, 2005
In biology, a meme is a self-replicating organism. In the food blog world, memes are activities that start on a certain blog, and then travel from blog to blog as new people get "tagged" to participate. I was tagged by Ruth of Once Upon a Feast for this meme to share my top ten favorite foods. I approached it by thinking, if I had to choose ONLY ten foods that I was allowed to eat, what are the things I would want most? Here is what I came up with, in no particular order, except that sushi is my number one all time favorite food. (In the spirit full disclosure, let me say that these are all my own photos except the sushi and the Dreamfield's Pasta, which I found on the web on commercial sites and borrowed with no malicious intent.)
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 6:22 AM
Sunday, December 04, 2005
Another great weekend of herby blogging is coming to an end! Time to recap the great posts about plants that people came up with for Weekend Herb Blogging #9. I'm having so much fun seeing where these posts come from that I'm going to start spotlighting the locations at the starting of each recap.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 4:01 PM
I'm posting the recipe for a meatloaf I've been making for years at the request of a friend who once ate this at my house. The name "Kalyn's Best Meatloaf" was given to it by my sister Pam, who submitted it as a favorite when her school made a faculty cookbook. The amounts given make two loaves, and it's a favorite with everyone in my family. Be open-minded about the mushroom soup and the Lipton onion soup mix and give this recipe a try if you like meatloaf at all. Although I am cooking with more fresh ingredients and less packaged foods now, this recipe is one I might still use whenever I want to make really flavorful meatloaf.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 7:20 AM
Friday, December 02, 2005
WEEKEND HERB BLOGGING!
People who write food blogs feel a fair bit of pressure to keep coming up with great food, photographing it, and sharing the recipes day after day. Perhaps that's why on the weekends a number of us let our hair down and blog about something just for fun. Over at Eat Stuff, there is Weekend Cat Blogging, and at Sweetnicks, there is Weekend Dog Blogging. Here at Kalyn's Kitchen I don't have a dog or a cat, so on the weekends I write about plants. Weekend Herb Blogging is an event that started as a joke and has turned into a very fun way for bloggers to share information about interesting herbs, plants, vegetables, and flowers.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 6:45 AM
Thursday, December 01, 2005
In 2007 I updated this recipe with a better photo. At that time it wasn't possible to move a post forward without breaking the link, so that's a brand new post. I am removing the recipe from this page so it doesn't show up twice in search engine results, but you can see the newer version of Slow Roasted Asparagus at that link.
Posted by Kalyn Denny at 6:38 AM