One blog that I enjoyed reading was French Laundry At Home, in which Carol Blymire cooked her way through renowned chef Thomas Keller’s The French Laundry Cookbook. Many of the dishes were incredibly complex, and I derived a lot of vicarious pleasure by reading about Carol’s experiences.
When Thomas Keller came out with Ad Hoc, a book based on his more casual restaurant, I immediately bought it and enjoyed the pictures and idea of the recipes in it. And then I shelved the book.
I pulled the book out yesterday and started flipping through it again. The recipes really are doable – and they got me thinking. I’ve been feeling like I’m in a rut when it comes to cooking. I find myself making the same things over and over again, and while part of that is due to a lack of time, it’s also partly because I’m a little afraid of trying something new, ruining dinner, and finding myself all stressed out about feeding the kids.
So . . . I thought of something that would make cooking fun for me again: Cooking my way through Ad Hoc. Although the recipes aren’t too complicated, they are still a little intimidating, in that I feel obligated to acquire the best ingredients possible. But at least I live in Los Angeles, where I can get hold of anything with some searching. This may get a little expensive, but it’ll still be cheaper than going out to eat. I plan to do my experimenting on Fridays or Saturdays, when I don’t have to worry about getting the kids fed and into bed by a certain hour. And I’m hoping that stretching and even going beyond my comfort zone with these recipes will make me a better cook. Plus, I know my husband and I will enjoy the food – and with a little luck, the kids will too.
I’ll post about the recipes I’m trying, and hopefully my photography skills will improve as well!