(Important notice: If you have not had a chance to vote at The Best of Blogs, where Kalyn's Kitchen is in the finals for Best Cooking/Recipe Blog, please do it. Here is the link for The Best of Blogs Voting. I know I said I would not beg for votes, but I am willing to ask nicely. Please vote. It is very close, and the Vegan blog is currently in first place.)
Now, on to this interesting meme. My good friend Ilva is the one who makes us all wish we lived in Tuscany, with the beautiful photographs on her blog, Lucullian Delights. A week ago she tagged me for a meme on My Five Food Challenges for 2006 and I have been terribly slow getting it done. I hope she will forgive me, because the last week was really crazy for me.
But actually, I have been working on it. I work on things in my head long before I put them down on paper. In my fourth grade classroom we write on Wednesday mornings. For two hours I have parents who come and help edit the papers. (Thank you parents!) In that two hour period the kids write a first draft, get it edited, and then write a final product. I bind their finished projects together into "books" so they can read each other's work. My kids produce amazing things, and I think it's because I present the project to them the day before and ask them to be thinking about what they are going to write the next day. So, after giving it much thought, here are my five food challenges for 2006. (All photos borrowed from the web with no malicious intent!)
COOK WITH TOFU
I like tofu, and have eaten it in restaurants (although to be honest, mainly when someone else ordered it). I know it's healthy, low carb, and can be delicious and this year I'm going to cook it at home.
LEARN TO MAKE TIROPITA
Tiropita is a Greek type of cheese pie, made of filo dough with feta cheese in the middle. It's not as high in carbs as you might think because the filo is so thin, but probably the South Beach Diet police wouldn't approve. Long before I ever heard of the South Beach Diet I ate this in Athens, wandering through the Plaka (outside market) with one in my hand. It's one of the most heavenly things I've ever eaten. I have some Greek friends who could help me learn to make this (Georgette? Nick? Mary?) and this year I'm going to try.
COOK MORE LAMBLamb is expensive compared to other meats, but it's not really so expensive that I can't buy it more often than I do, and it's simply my favorite red meat. I really only have one lamb dish that I've made frequently, Armenian Lamb Stew. (Note to self: must blog about Armenian Lamb Stew.) I have tons and tons of cookbooks with recipes for lamb, so it's mostly habit that prevents me from buying it a bit more.
COOK MORE INDIAN FOOD
It's not that I haven't ever cooked Indian food, it's more like I haven't ever cooked real Indian food. I go around and visit all the Indian food blogs, and see so many amazing looking dishes I want to try. And Salt Lake really does have an excellent Indian market called India Unlimited, where I could probably get advice as well as ingredients. I do love Indian food when I have it in restaurants, but for some reason I'm a little intimidated about cooking it much at home.
COOK MORE SEAFOOD
I do cook seafood, but not nearly as much as I would like. I tend to cook it in the summer, when you can throw some salmon on the grill, and there are a lot of seafood dishes I've never tried. Living in the completely land-locked state of Utah is no excuse. There are plenty of places to get good seafood here. One thing I pledge to try making is Asian seafood soups like Tom Yaam Goomg amd Tamarind Shrimp Broth. Both of those are favorite dishes of mine to order in a restaurant.
So, those are My Five Food Challenges for 2006. Now I get to pick five people to continue the meme:
1. Crazy Gaijin from Cooking in Japan
2. Squeezeweasel from Gastronomy Domine
3. Paz from The Cooking Adventures of Chef Paz
4. Mumu from A Curious Mix
5. Nupur from One Hot Stove