Tuesday, January 3, 2012

looking back on the tastes of 2011

My family is on the mend from a stomach bug so there won't be much food blogging for the next little while. I can't imagine even stepping foot inside the grocery store, let alone cooking anything. Besides, I never did much say good-bye to 2011 and hello to a New Year on here, so I thought I'd reflect on my most memorable food discoveries of this past year. This list was devised to include new food and flavour combinations I discovered in 2011, food trends I jumped on, cooking and baking life to-do's checked off and recipes we continually go back to enjoy (and probably will for years to come).
1. First up is the Warm Quinoa and Spinach Salad. I love this salad and reworked it based on a version  I ordered at the Rivoli for dinner in the summer. Their version now has me substituting mesclun mix for spinach and goat cheese for feta. Add parsley and a little bit of finely diced red pepper if there is any lying around.

2. Cobb Salad, a to-do that I wish I'd only discovered sooner. I should also note that this is the year I went nuts-o for blue cheese.
3. Eggs with/on Pasta. Whether it's a carbonara or a poached egg over spring vegetables on pasta, I just love how this now completes a day making it possible to eat eggs for any meal. 

4. Fritters. They started with banana, then we got hooked on corn. But fritters can be made with so many different ingredients including zucchini and chopped herbs. Sweet or savoury they are an excuse to eat a pancake as a side.

5. Bacon Jam, a decadent treat that is a versatile condiment anyone who eats meat can't resist.

6. Chocolate-Mint Chip Ice Cream Sandwiches are the best and easiest tasty treat. I've even simplified it in recent months to scooping Chocolate-Mint Chip Ice Cream with Oreo Thinsation Cookies and making sandwiches from two Oatmeal Bear Paw Cookies with Vanilla Ice Cream. 

7. Chocolate/Raspberry Pavlova - is a revelation. One of the best desserts I've ever eaten... and I made it!

8. Whoopie Pies, trendy but fun. I love them because they up the cake to frosting ratio, which works for me.

My food to-do list for 2012 is to make a show stopping Croque Monsieur, cook through Everyday Food Light and blog much more about kid's recipes based on this wonderful cookbook Aunt Katie gave called C is for Cooking.
I've flipped through it and it sounds great for making kid-friendly food and involving them in the kitchen.

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