(I started this post about a week ago and never finished!!)
So I haven't blogged a lot lately, but I have been cooking a lot! With Hans back at work, the brunt of the food preparation and decision has landed on me, something that hasn't happened in years. Because of this, I'm remembering that I don't just bake, I actually enjoy cooking, too, and am good at it!
Watching Food Network doesn't hurt either. Take this morning, for instance - while I'm cleaning the downstairs, I have Chopped on in the background. For their appetizer round, the secret ingredients were boudain blanc, chanterelle mushrooms, baby artichokes and orange marmalade. All of the contestants were lamenting how they have no idea what they could possibly do with this combination, but in my mind, I had it figured out!
See, boudain blanc is sausage. A very mild, almost flavorless sausage. Perfect for using as a blank (ha!) canvas. So, to start out, I would cut the sausage into medallions and then sautee with shallots, sliced and blanched baby artichokes and the mushrooms. While that's sauteeing, I would take the orange marmalade, some fresh smashed garlic and a bit of white wine. Combine them, then reduce to a glaze. Toss with the sauteed sausage and veggies, plate with a cilantro garnish. Boom! Instant awesome!
Of course, it's all well and good for me to sit back in my recliner and play armchair chef. That's easy - in my imagination it all works out perfectly! The judges would fawn over how incredible I am, and I would walk away with the prize.
In practice, though, about 1/3 of the time, my experiments are misses. Hell, sometimes the "tried and true" recipes I get from places I trust don't always work out (I'm looking at you, Paula Deen's peach cobbler!!!). But you never know until you try them,, right?
So I'm back. And I plan to blog a lot more, especially now that I have my big, bad, awesome camera!