Thursday, July 8, 2010

Big Accomplishment

Over two years ago, for Christmas, Chad gave me a cookbook: Barefoot Contessa Family Style. I thought I would cook through it so I could learn a lot and become a better cook. This was long before anyone had ever heard of Julie and Julia, so don't think I'm just a big copy cat.
Well, two and a half years later, I'm done! Tonight, I cooked the last of 79 recipes! Now, if you're not familiar with the Barefoot Contessa, she does write easy, four-ingredient recipes that take 30 minutes to do. They're usually complicated, full of ingredients (often expensive), and take lots of cook time. So, I think this is quite an accomplishment. Chad has enjoyed it as well. The kids...well, they don't really care.
I've learned SO much cooking through this cookbook. I've learned what annis, fennel, rutabagas, stilton, endives, wheatberries, brioche, and tabbouleh are. (Many times throughout this endeavor, I had to ask the grocers what the heck something was and where to find it). And I've created many amazing dishes, such as buffalo wings, herb-roasted lamb, rosemary polenta, corn pudding, roasted winter vegetables, rum raisin rice pudding, and homemade cheesecake.
Here are recipes to some of my favorites, available online for you to print and try yourself:
curried chicken salad (the first time Chad tasted this, he said, "Oh, Hope, I think I'm falling in love with you all over again)
chicken stew with biscuits (this one is so amazing because it calls for 2 sticks of butter!)
linguine with shrimp scampi (this one is really easy)
baked "chips" (even my kids like this one)
raspberry cheesecake (OMG! This is TRULY incredible!)
Happy cooking, friends!


Jackie said...

I love this post Hope! Maybe I can ask for the book for my birthday so Paul can "fall in love with me all over again!"

michellep said...

Yay! Congratulations! That is a BIG accomplishment, and I'm honored I got to partake of some of those fabulous dishes! You are amazing my friend :)

Rena said...

Yay! You are fabulous! I have 5 of her 6 cookbooks and I've yet to cook my way through them. You've inspired me!