photo courtesy of Goldilocks Finds Manhattan
I just love peeking into other people’s kitchens, see how they chop and dice and scurry about. This time my voyeurism has a very particular angle: to see how they cope with a Week of Eating In. And what I’ve seen from other folks doing that, at the blogs The Eaten Path, No Recipes, Relish Austin, Goldilocks Finds Manhattan and eating-sf, makes me want to come pounding at their door.
When I asked these five other food bloggers to take the Week of Eating In challenge with me, I had a pretty good idea that they’d each have interesting tips and recipes to share. Not only that, but through their food, and thoughts, and in one case so far, failure (don’t take that the wrong way, James) I’ve come to understand the meaning of eating in so much more. And I’m totally inspired by what they’ve put on their plates.
Here’s a quick look at who they are, and what they’ve been up to this week, as we cross into the home stretch:
At Relish Austin, working mom Addie has recreated the Parisian treat, croissants, in her Austin, Texas apartment. Though she spent a whole Saturday doing it, the way they turned out makes a compelling case against one major reason for eating out: to enjoy a delicacy, crafted with a certain skill and artistry that’s seldom found in the home kitchen. Plus, she made a whole rack of them, at what could not have cost too much more than the average $3 price of just one from a bonafide bakery. She goes on to make shrimp and grits with her toddler, weighing the pros and cons of both going out to eat and cooking at home with grabby, antsy kids around. And while cooking may not be for everyone (like the young Julian, who seems more intent on disturbing Addie’s mis en place than pitching in), once the beautiful meal is set on the table, it’s family time for everyone.
At Goldilocks Finds Manhattan, Ulla has been making a lot of tasty meat! And lemon pistachio linguine (pictured at top), the kind of dish that’s probably oh so simple to prepare, but takes just a few touches of know-how to make its few ingredients really soar. My kind of food. She also reflects on bonding with family over food, and since her family operates a livestock farm, touts adventurous cooks as a farmer’s allies: “It’s easy to sell rib eye but beef shin?” Check out all her tips on how to cook it, cooks and would-be small family farm allies! (They don’t look like the dog’s dinner that’s for sure.)
In San Francisco, Kasey of eating-sf has found a new place for matzo ball soup: in front of the TV, watching the Olympics, staying in from the cold and rain. Sounds way too cozy for words. She also gives tips on easy and easier ways to make chicken stock, good to note this time of year, and shows how seasonal eating in the dead of winter doesn’t have to be boring with this tahini butternut squash and chickpea salad.
Onto the menfolk, Marc at No Recipes shows us how to make a spice-crusted roast lamb with mint sauce in forty minutes, start to finish. This meal is the definition of date caliber eating, only Marc had simply made it because he’d been slammed with work, exhausted, and the hunk of grass-fed lamb in his fridge seemed to beg to be eaten each time he opened it. His vibrant mint sauce is far from the conventional version, too. No Recipes is about the philosophy of cooking creatively rather than following instructions word-for-word, and here Marc proves you can do it deliciously on a busy weeknight.
James at The Eaten Path has chosen to take (or eat) a path of his own this week. Alright, I won’t come down on him too hard, after all, he’s always game for eating anything, it seems from his blog, and that includes eating everything in for a week. But with every intention set on continuing his fast, on Day Four, while waiting for a bus in Brooklyn, James got struck with a very New York City-centric disease: the uncontrollable lust for “an edible token of whatever neighborhood I happen to be in.” So, he ate a babka. And through photos and prose about the excellence of this particular bakery’s babkas, it’s clear that he enjoyed it more fully than anything I’ve probably eaten this week. Maybe anything I’ve eaten. And that’s saying something… for eating out.