Posts Tagged ‘recipes’

I think I’ve probably said this before, but I’m saying it again. I enjoy cooking. I never really had time to fix elaborate meals but for the occasional weekend experience when I had time to devote to the project. I especially didn’t cook breakfast, usually opting for a breakfast sandwich behind the wheel of my car on the way to work.


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Meal planning is oft times challenging. Trying to come up with something for dinner for your family night after night can be a chore. I enjoy cooking but not necessarily every single day. I already fix breakfast for inn guests most mornings so a lot of times, by late afternoon, I’m not really interested in cooking again.


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police tape on doorOur local leaders advised us last week to try to stay home for just one entire week. Don’t go anywhere, including the grocery store. We were strongly encouraged to NOT go anywhere unless it was an absolute emergency. We were given a 2-day notice that law enforcement was going to be cracking down on folks just randomly out and about. I’m not really sure how they intended to actually police that, but I did my best to comply. (more…)

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So, I’ve finally bitten the proverbial bullet and hired an editor. I’m very excited about this process, although I sort of feel like a fish out of water with all of my seemingly stupid questions and need for clarification. Like anything else, it’ll get easier I’m sure.

edited pageAnd, I’m very excited to make some changes to an already strong manuscript. It just needs that last bit of umph and spit shining. Soon. Very soon, it’ll be ready to make its appearance into the world. (I hope anyway.)

But, enough about that. In my effort to bring this precious work into the world, I’m laying some groundwork to prepare it for a warm and welcoming reception. One of the things I’m thinking of doing, is building a book trailer. Well, not me, actually building it, but having one built for me. A one or two minute video clip of my story for those “visual” people.

book trailer

Personally, I like book trailers – IF – they’re not too long or too cartoonish. Recently I’ve spent some time exploring the world of book trailers. I’ve found some fun ones, some very steamy ones, some stupid ones and some good ones. I like to see the author’s perception of their own books. That’s what I find intriquing about book trailers.

Here’s a particularly good one (in my opinion anyway), that made me laugh right out loud. I’ve decided to share it here because it’s very clever especially if you close your eyes and just listen. Oh. My. Goodness. What a different experience if you don’t watch. I dare you.


Here was the blurb about that video: “A young, free-range chicken. A dominating, ravenous chef. A naughty tale of fowl play. If Fifty Shades of Grey left you hungry and lusting for more (more, more!), satisfy your culinary kink with Fifty Shades of Chicken, a titillating collection of tied-and-true recipes bound to make every meal a turn-on.”

Isn’t that fantastic? I wish I’d have thought of it.

So, here’s a question readers: What’s your opinion of book trailers? Do you enjoy them? Do you use them? Do you think I should have one ready to go when my book is ready to “be born?” Do you suddenly have a craving for chicken?

Word of the Day: Babacoote

Fun fact about me: I’ll never look at a chicken the same way again.

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, February 2016. Photos courtesy Google Images. Video courtesy of “The Recipe Club” (YouTube)

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Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

I enjoy cooking. I enjoy eating. I enjoy trying new dishes and recipes. I love reading and collecting recipes and flipping through cook books. I would love to take some cooking classes. I want to learn how to cook like a pro, flipping omelets with ease, flinging pizza dough over my head, frying up the perfect sunny side up egg. I’m excited just thinking about tying on a pristine white apron.

When I was growing up my mother prepared well-balanced, colorful meals, but painfully lacking in variety. Every week saw the same dishes set before us, spaghetti, meatloaf, tacos, the occasional casserole. These dishes were accompanied by over cooked vegetables or boring green salads with vinegar and oil for dressing. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love my mother to pieces and she never failed to have those healthy meals on the table for us each evening, for which I am eternally grateful. But, she lacked imagination or innovation or creativity of any kind when it came to cooking. Her spices of choice were salt and pepper and when she did get a little crazy and add herbs they usually consisted of dehydrated chives for the baked potatoes.

I think my husband wishes I were a little more like my mother in that regard. He’d be happy to have hamburgers or pizza (or both) every night of the week without ever seeing a vegetable or anything he can’t pronounce on the table. And don’t even say the word “fish,” when he’s around.

My poor, poor husband. I’m afraid his destiny is to endure experimental meals; meals prepared with love from the caring hands of the woman he loves. At least that’s what I keep telling him.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

After many years of experimental cooking, let me give you a tip, read everything before doing anything. The preparation instructions are just as important as the list of ingredients. On more than one occasion I have been whipping and stirring and folding in things only to discover that my delicacy must marinate or some other such process for several hours before moving on to the next step. There goes dinner for that night. And, how often have you been mixing like mad, adding dashes of this, and pinches of that, only to discover that the next ingredient is something you’re either out of, or have not idea what it is? Yes folks, that has happened to me. I’ve learned to read carefully before assembling products and gathering dishes and utensils.

While cooking is fun and eating is enjoyable, the preparation process can be tedious and downright frustrating. Here are some examples of ingredients I’ve come upon while preparing to serve an outrageously delicious meal: Amchur powder, garam masala, bulls horn peppers, ground sumac, elderflower liqueur, locatelli cheese, dry prosecco, Taleggio cheese, furikake, sharp pecorino, wattleseed, Fleur De Sel. That last one is just sea salt and why in God’s name the recipe doesn’t just say sea salt is beyond me, but what the what? I guess, “sprinkle liberally with Fleur De Sel” does sound better than “salt at will,” but really, do I need to go to the trouble of locating and purchasing glorified salt?

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

Well, if I’m anything, I’m persistent. Google is my best friend and the store manager at my local supermarket has learned to run and hide if he sees me in the store, because I have sent him on a wild goose chase on more than one occasion looking for that special ingredient for my dinner. After I discover what furikake or bulls horn peppers are, I will spend way longer than necessary trying to find them at the market. Or, special order them.

And then there’s this quandry: you locate the item, or a close equivalent if you’ve been lucky enough to find out what that substitute item might be, only to discover that it costs like $100 for a half an ounce. You only need an 1/8 of a teaspoon and you’ll probably never use it again, but should you buy it – just in case it makes or breaks the dish you’ve been longing to try? I mean will you even notice if the wattleseeds are not present?

Ah yes, the joys of cooking and experimenting with new recipes. I have an impressive collection of spices and quite an assortment of colored salts (they’re all the rage now apparently), but my pocketbook is also considerably lighter. Was it worth it? Don’t ask my husband.

How about you friends, do you enjoy experimenting in the kitchen with crazy new ingredients and recipes? What’s the most money you’ve spent on something for a recipe? What’s the weirdest ingredient you’ve come across in your cooking adventures? How often have you Googled an ingredient in a recipe? I’d love to know. Please share.

Word of the Day:  Jaup

Fun Fact About Me: I sometimes try a recipe just because I like the name of it (can you say “Pasta Ponza?”)

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, April 2015. Photos courtesy Google Images.



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