Tuesday, June 24, 2008


I grew up in a family where it was perfectly normal to discuss your lunch plans over breakfast. At lunch we would strategize dinner. Also de rigueur was dreamy recollection of the prior meal, or really any particularly good meal. Even now, I'm sure that either of my sisters or me could name any dish or side that late Nanny used to make for Christmas, even though the last Nanny Christmas was probably fifteen years ago. Since going out into the world, I've encountered that strange breed of people who view food as nothing more than fuel, and would no sooner discuss a meal than they would their last trip to the gas station. Weird.

Fast forward to the interwebs years, and surprise, surprise--I've become a big fan of over-the-top home cooking blogs. I simply love sharing other people's trials and triumphs in the kitchen. The drawback is that I don't get to eat, but on the upside, I don't have to do any dishes and these bloggers are often amazing photographers. Or they possess admirable Photoshop skills. I can't tell the difference, but whatev. If I can't be eating a great meal, the next best thing is reading about one.

Do check out Pittsburgh Needs Eated. Don't ask me about the grammar of this title, but for the love of sugarcane, will you look at this cake? Lisa the baker/cellist can call it whatever she wants as far as I'm concerned, as long as she keeps baking and taking pretty pictures of her efforts. In fact, it's a variation of her ranger cookies that I'm baking right now.

Did you go and look at French Laundry at home when I wrote about cook-through blogs? You didn't?! Go now! This nutcase intrepid lady is plowing her way through The French Laundry Cookbook, with notes on ingredients and music to cook by. Though not her day job, she is clearly an ace in the kitchen, unfazed by multi-day recipes calling for distilling oils through cheesecloth, making ice cream and sawing apart (really) a pig's head.

For staggering and unapologetic amounts of dairy, check out The Pioneer Woman Cooks. This coronary inducing ditty is just the tip of the milkberg. I can't say I've made any of Ree's recipes but I'm fascinated by ranch life and the never-ending parade of calf nuts--which they don't eat, as far as I can tell, but feed to the dogs.

Speaking of balls, I also like In Praise of Sardines. One, Brett posted all those pictures of the organ-meat fest which is sort of right on, use the whole animal but also kind of blerg. Second, Brett is owner of soon-to-open SF restaurant Contigo. I'll assume this is why he hasn't posted in almost a month and be forgiving. He has made me kind of intrigued about sardines, as has Jennifer from Last Night's Dinner but I'm still a little afraid. Those eyeballs, gah.

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