Oh, and when I have a few spare minutes, address 85 Christmas cards.
Clearly I don't have enough to do. Why not a Cookbook Challenge too?
Now, before you decide this is the blog of someone who is certifiably insane, and remove me from your blog reader forever, hear my explanation for this decision.
We have to eat. In fact, we have a kitchen full of stuff that we have to eat in the next couple of weeks. That means I have to come up with creative, yet simple, ways to use up half-empty containers of this and that, at a time when I'm not going to have enough time or brain space to think very long about anything food-related.
Not convinced yet? I wasn't either. How was I going to randomly select a cookbook that made this job easier—and was small enough to pack for the part of the month I'd be doing Challenge cooking in Boston?
Turns out I didn't: Miss B did. I was cleaning up the living room the other night and found that she'd pulled a cookbook off the shelf and left it on the floor—one I'd never seen her look at before.
Yes, the cookbook that spawned a Food Network empire, and a bajillion chowhounds with violent opinions (pro or con). Rachael Ray hasn't really been exported, so I've had very little exposure to her, and when I picked this cookbook up about six years ago, I didn't know much about her. Obviously I've heard a bit more now, but not enough to have taken a side yet. So I'm just going to try some recipes, and see what I think then.
As always, I'd be happy to have some company for the ride. What have you got on your cookbook shelf that needs a second look?
A quick refresher on how the Cookbook Challenge works:
1. Count up the number of cookbooks you have. (Include magazines, clipping binders, electronic folders—whatever you've got that you want to explore further.)
2. When you've got a total, pick a number between one and that number. (Better yet, if you can, have someone else do it for you, to ensure that it's really random.)
3. Count through your cookbooks until you get to that number, and pull out the randomly selected cookbook, magazine, folder, etc. (You could also pull names out of a hat if you want to really get serious, but this is quicker.)
4. Commit to cooking at least one new recipe from that resource in the next month. Five, if you want to really challenge yourself.
5. Tell about what you discovered—send me an email, post about it yourself, comment here (I'll report back on what I found). Did you discover a new favorite? Or is this cookbook just a pretty face with nothing in it you can see yourself cooking?
So what do you think? I bet we've all got a busy month ahead of us…but someone has to make dinner if we're going to get through it without going bonkers or broke.