Thursday, March 3, 2011

March Must Make List

This time last year, I had never actually read a food blog. Honest. I had looked at a few blog posts similar to this (click here), after doing a search for 'how to make goat milk soap' when I was literally in the MIDDLE of making soap for the first time in my crock-pot. I thought it looked 'weird' and I was convinced it was all going horribly wrong (it wasn't). But as far as following and reading food blogs, and despite friends telling me about The Pioneer Woman and Wandering Chopsticks, I was slow to discover the world of food blogs. Living in a three-teens-and-one-computer-household may have had something to do with it. Once I did though, my reaction was, 'THAT looks really fun.' I fumbled my way through the technical aspects of setting up a blog with help from my more tech savvy teens, though it was months before I figured out how to post comments and add links -and six months before I discovered what the STATS tab was (yes, I really am that pathetic). Despite my inadequate computer and writing skills, it IS fun and it allows me to indulge my obsession with food. I've found so many inspiring recipes posted on blogs and I want to share the recipes I've recently added to my 'Must Make List.'

This Lemon Stacked Monkey Bread at Reebecki Supergirl looks absolutely heavenly, but when I proposed baking it, I got the death glare from my 'I'm trying to eat healthy' seventeen-year-old. My husband jokes I should write a cookbook titled 'My Mom Is Trying To Make Me Fat!' I have put off baking this until she leaves for the weekend or something. Oh my gosh, it looks so delicious! I'm sure it's truly amazing because this recipe keeps popping up on blogs with almost the same frequency that the Homemade Nutella recipe does.

The Red Enchilada Sauce I mentioned yesterday, posted by dandelion on Knit & Nosh, is destined to become a staple in my kitchen and my canning repertoire. I can't wait to make Lamb Red Enchiladas with this homemade red sauce.

I am seriously excited about this recipe for Pear Vanilla Jam that was posted on Food in Jars awhile back. Thinking about this jam almost makes me swoon (and I am NOT the swooning type!). I REALLY almost swooned when I saw the price for a single vanilla bean at my local store was $16 (I kid you not). Luckily, I found I had one stashed vanilla bean in my spice drawer, but unluckily, my 'I'm trying to eat healthy' seventeen-year-old ate the pears I'd bought for this -and I simply can't tell my kid to not eat fruit! I'll just keep buying pears in ever increasing numbers until I find myself with enough ripe pears for jam making. And I'm hoarding that stashed vanilla bean for this jam.

My son and husband spotted this Irish Cream Chocolate Mousse Cake in the recent issue of Bon Appetit and immediately wanted to know when we would be eating this cake. Soon, I promised. I think even Little Miss 'I'm trying to eat healthy' might be tempted to eat a piece of this cake. Speaking of cake, I have been wanting to make Coconut Cupcakes like these at Simply Recipes but I keep getting side railed. I had planned to make these for my spinning guild's February meeting, but on the day of the meeting a pulled back muscle had me flat on the couch. Maybe next month. I also printed a copy of these Lamb Shanks in Guiness with Country Vegetables while I was at the Bon Appetit site, thinking these and the requested cake would make a great St. Patrick's Day (or some other festive day) meal. I also have a recipe for Lamb Shanks with White Beans and Sun-Dried Tomatoes put up on Ravelry by NanaChickens that I really want to make, but I'm not sure how many lamb shanks we still have in the freezer. It will be a tough choice if I can only make one of these recipes.

I am very fond of turnips (unlike the rest of my family) and I simply adore risotto, so when I spotted a risotto and turnips post at Dispatches From Whitcomb Street I followed the link to epicurious and am patiently waiting for spring turnips (that haven't been planted yet) to make this Risotto With Turnips and Bacon recipe. Am I the only one who thinks this sounds really, really good? Am I the only one who collects recipes for foods they haven't grown yet? -Or are hoping to make six months from now?

I recently read the book, Spoon Fed -How Eight Cooks Saved My Life by Kim Severson, which was a very good read. If I had a top 10 reads for the year list, this book would definitely be on it. Surprisingly, one of the eight women she included was Rachel Ray, and Kim describes eating a dish of Rachel's that sounds really good. She didn't include the recipe, but I found Rachel's recipe for Pasta with Pumpkin and Sausage on her official site as well as on several other sites, which I take as a good sign of it's tastiness and appeal.

If you have never checked out Pranee's Thai Kitchen yet, I encourage you to do so. Her photos are lovely and communicate the flavor and appeal of Thailand. My husband and I both love Thai foods, and our pear-eating 'I'm trying to eat healthy' teen does too. I was very excited awhile back by Pranee's Thai Lime-Green Chili Jam recipe, and more recently by her Phad Bee Htun post. The Stir-fried Thin Rice Vermicelli with Pork and Choy Sum recipe looks absolutely scrumptious. She says it was her favorite noodle dish when growing up, and I think that is the ultimate endorsement. I hope to make all these recipes this month -and I think I'll start with Pranee's noodle dish tomorrow night. What's on your must make list?


  1. Hey Girl! the soap looks so cool, we need to have a sister's weekend & make soap, and knit, and eat!! I double dog dare you to make the Irish Creme Chocolate Creme Mousse Cake... and I'm checking out the other links!! BTW your blog is awesome. You are awesome!! Tell 'I'm trying to eat healthy' teen to lighten up & enjoy some sugar :)It's good for the soul!!

  2. Shelly -A sister's soap, knit, and eat weekend sounds like a great idea! And I am so going to make that cake, but I suspect you might beat me to it! Don't tell anyone, but I found the remnants of 'I'm trying to eat healthy's' midnight snack of a waffle with PB and banana slices all covered with chocolate syrup, so she's not gone too militant on the issue! Thanks for your love and support -you've made my day!

  3. When I first moved to Fairbanks I had a similar problem finding Vanilla Beans. One in a McCormick spice jar was $17.99. I now order from
    You can buy as little as one bean and they are super affordable. They usually ship them in an envelope, so shipping is cheap too. I know I sound like an infomercial, but I love the quality, the beans are so plump.

  4. Nicole -Thanks for the vanilla bean sounce information. I just used my last stashed bean to make a half batch of the Pear Vanilla Jam and I'll order some from them asap. Thanks!