0929 This and That

I’ll return to our regularly scheduled programming tomorrow, but for today, I thought I’d touch on a few things outside the normal scope of this project.  Oh, and we had macaroni and cheese tonight – Annie’s, the stuff with the “sharp cheddar” cheese powder.  Shane also sauteed a couple of sausages, which were the best thing about the meal.  Neither of us liked the “cheese”, despite normally liking Annie’s.

First: Crock Pots.  It seems to be the season to buy one, inherit one, or remember that you have one and wonder what to do with it.  We each brought a crock pot to the relationship, though neither of us used ours all that regularly.  We now have one, and it is brought out very infrequently, but when we do use it, it’s awesome.  I’ve previously blogged about using ours for chili and pulled pork – I also use it to soak and then cook garbanzo beans for hummus.  Whenever I’m asked what to do with a crockpot (or slow cooker – same thing), I point people to A Year of Slow Cooking, which is exactly what it sounds like: one family’s attempt to use their slow cooker(s) every day for a year.  That project ended a year or two ago, but she hasn’t stopped posting recipes, and has also written a slow cooker cookbook.  If you have a crockpot or are considering getting one, I highly recommend her site.

Second: Kitchen Aspirations.  Not Derby Pie posted a list of her New Year’s Resolutions – food and other cooking-related aspirations that she wants to tackle in the next year.  I think this is a great idea, and I’m kicking around my own list.  Among other things, it will include learning to bake other kinds of bread – I can make a mean sandwich loaf, but I dream of baguettes and sourdoughs.  Perhaps a 12 months, 24 loaves project is in order for next year?  Stay tuned!  I’d also love to hear your kitchen or food aspirations in the comments!

Third: This Blog.  Nine months down, three to go on my Kitchen Diaries project.  There are many things I’ve enjoyed about it, not the least of which has been all the great conversations I’ve had with you about what you’re cooking, including the very random encounter at the Homegrown Festival with someone who recognized me from this site (hello!).  I’m sure I won’t stop blogging about what we’re cooking and eating after December 31, but it certainly won’t be as often.

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