True Confessions of a Mid-Life Cook

There's a definite correlation between my profound love of music and how and what I've taught myself to cook. My favorite music to listen to and to perform is soulful, sensual, sometimes funky and always bluesy in nature . . . and that's exactly how I cook. I like to get my hands in the food. I chop, I knead, I stir with my hands. Sometimes I wear my big rimmed cowboy hat, nightie and Old Gringo boots in kitchen, sometimes a coonskin cap when the mood strikes and sometimes just an apron and a smile. Using the freshest of ingredients, I love to bringing a new spirit to old favorites. I am so to drawn dishes seeping in both Texas and Southern tradition,with a special affinity for those authentic old jewels found in South Louisiana.
Because they, too, are so powerfully soulful?

I've discovered being a good cook is a journey and not a destination. (Yes, I stole an over-used corporate slogan and made it my own--but it's still the truth) Every time we screw up, we learn. And in part, that's what this blog is about. Cooking fearlessly. With heart, with soul -- and with some damn good music to inspire. (If your three layer chocolate cake ends up looking like a Jerry Springer rerun or you cut the tip of your thumb off while making New Year's Day gumbo, WHO CARES?Proclaim Francine Reed's "I'm a Handful" your theme song. She would like that.)
We cook because we find ourselves kinda empty if we don't.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Indians and Pilgrams and Halfmanns, Oh My!

How, How HOW (no Indian pun intended)I love cooking for Thanksgiving. I relish stirring up my great grandmother's fourth generation cranberry salad and though I already know how to make it by memory, I always find her recipe card, written in her precious shaky hand, and lay it on the countertop beside me. The same holds true for my Nana's tradtional Southern cornbread dressing - the absolute best on the planet. I always set aside a bit of dressing mixture to add oyster and sausage to it for a little side of oyster stuffing just for me.

This year, I'm bringing to the table a new and different citrus stuffing, a lemony thyme turkey, and a variety of grilled vegetables including, eggplant, squash, asparagus, corn-on-the-cob and maple syrup glazed grilled sweet potatoes. Of course, the kids demand their 'smashed' potatoes (with bock beer.)

Making the desserts has to be my favorite 'cause I love getting my hands in the dough. This year I'm making Dillon a chocolate cream pie with toasted pecans, Zach's favorite sweet potato pie with Kahlua cream, and for Bruce and Ben and Casi, a peach/apricot Amaretto cobbler.

I'm gathering friends to come over have fun in the kitchen with me tomorrow.
You'll find me at 211 Churchill if you find yourself wanting to feel some Thanksgiving kitchen love on a Tuesday afternoon.

1 comment:

Sharon daVanport said...

I know what you mean Angela. I feel like Thanksgiving isn't Thanksgiving without my mother's cornbread dressing!