Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Food Goals: Review Of 2013 And What's Next For 2014

When I started this blog last January, I decided to write down some of my food goals for 2013.  I typically make standard New Year's resolutions and I try to stick by them (with actually decent success), but these are even more fun since I get to do some experimenting in the kitchen.   

Here's a review of how I did last year and my goals for this year. 

Review Of My 2013 Food Goals

I accomplished a good number of my goals and I'm pretty happy with what I ended up doing.  I had a great time in the kitchen and tried a lot of new recipes.  
  • Try cooking with new foods like fennel, parsnips, rutabaga, turnips.
    I really liked fennel with green beans and roasted a bundle of parsnips in with some other veggies. Didn't try rutabaga or turnips though. 
  • Try out my new pressure cooker, got one for Christmas along with a couple of cookbooks.
    My first pressure cooker meal was  chicken cacciatore.  I also made beef brisket and another beef dish that I didn't document since I was busy cooking for guests. 
  • Make a whole beef tenderloin.
    I tackled a tenderloin in the last couple days of the year, so glad I did.
  • Buy more local fruits, veggies, meat, and eggs.
    We went to the farmers' market pretty much every single weekend we were in town.
  • Toast oats for oatmeal. Make tea-infused oatmeal.  Make grapefruit oatmeal.
    I didn't get around to toasting oats to make oatmeal, but I did make tea-infused oatmeal and grapefruit oatmeal
  • Make chicken livers because they're high in iron.
    I'm scared of chicken livers because my mom tried to feed me cow liver during my childhood and I never liked the tasteBut I do like duck liver pate, so I have high hopes for a chicken liver spread.
  • Make some store-bought items at home (only made two of these)
    • potato chips
    • quick pickles
    • mayo
    • buttermilk dressing
    • vanilla extract
    • Veggie burgers
    • corn tortillas
    • pita bread
    • maybe hamburger buns
    • marshmallows
I also tackled home canning by making ancho-jalapeno lime jellywine jelly, and pear butter. They weren't on my goal list but I'm quite proud of them.

Looking Forward To 2014

Here are some of my food goals 2014.  I've got a lot of things I really want to try, but these are the grander, more large-scale goals, not a standard recipes or dishes I want to try. I also transferred over everything that I didn't get done last year since I still want to do them. 
  • cook a whole fish
  • make a flavored mustard
  • make homemade baked beans in the pressure cooker or slow cooker
  • Cranberry curd
  • Make meatballs completely from scratch, starting with chopping the meat at home
  • Hand pies
  • Oatmeal smoothie
  • Rice Krispie- and nut-crusted french toast
  • tackle my fear of savory oatmeal (with a soft-cooked egg on top!)
  • make the Cook's Illustrated beef picadillo recipe 
  • make pate a choux, the pastry dough for cream puffs, eclairs, gougeres
  • make a nut butter - sunflower, almond, hemp
  • Make some store-bought items at home -
    • quick pickles
    • mayo
    • buttermilk dressing
    • Veggie burgers
    • corn tortillas
    • pita bread
    • hamburger buns
    • marshmallows
I also re-organized my online bookmarks and found that I've got 54 porridge recipes.  54!  Some are inspiration for the savory oatmeal that I'm hoping to conquer, a lot of the others are different flavor variations or non-oat porridges I want to try. 

I also want to go out for breakfast with our Breakfast Club group.  We're slowly tackling a list of breakfast places around Madison, mostly "greasy spoon" type places.

Wanna Chat?

I turned off the 'leave a comment' feature, so if you want to share what you're thinking about this or anything else, drop me an email at jhk1013 (at) It's so much more cozy than a comment, plus we can have a real conversation!