Monday, June 14, 2010

Beware…This Post May Make You Drool!

So over the years I have realized how much I love cooking and how much better I have gotten at it.  When I first started I called my mom to ask how to boil an egg.  I also have thrown many a dinners away because they did not turn out.  But it has always been relaxing to me, even through the disasters and now I love it. Not to gloat, ok to gloat a little, but I think I am a pretty darn good cook. I have started now making up some of my own recipes and experimenting with different foods. (Insert cheap joke: yes, I am experimenting with different foods…Terry doesn’t mind though because he participates sometimes as well.)

I have over 20 cookbooks, subscribe to 3 different food magazines for a few years, and watch tons of cooking shows so I have many recipes at my disposal that I can cook, however, I tend to not try anything too far out of my comfort zone these days for fear it won't turn out. That changed last month. For mother’s day I decided to do a fun pizza lunch for our mom. I made my own pizza dough from scratch and then made 3 delicious pizzas that didn’t contain any pizza sauce or traditional toppings. I made a margarita pizza (basil, mozzarella & tomatoes), a spicy sausage pizza with caramelized onions and feta (sweet & spicy!), and then my own creation of red onions, chicken, corn, pancetta, smoked provolone cheese, and then slices of avocado after it came out of the oven. Are you drooling, I am and that is why I didn’t post pictures of these. These three pizzas were delicious! I actually loved being creative and trying something new so I decided that one Sunday a month I am going to prepare something new and slightly out of my comfort zone.

Fast-forward to last night and the Thai food spectacular my sister and I made! I bought ingredients I have never used before like fish sauce (which stinks but in food tastes great) and did a bunch of research on authentic flavors and spices. I had so much fun using different spices out of my cupboard and buying new ones! I also very much enjoyed all the great ingredients out there that I have only seen on TV.

This was the dinner:

Chicken and veggie curry. – AMAZING. Look at it. Nuff said.

Spicy (could have been spicier) Beef with veggies and Mint. This had red peppers, onions, flank steak, mint and basil. Very good, but I left a lot of spice out just incase it was too much, but it could have been a lot spicier.

Turkey Larb - "Larb is most often made with chicken, beef, duck, turkey, pork or even fish, flavored with fish sauce, lime juice, and leaves" (we used mint). We put ours in lettuce wraps. Not spicy at all, very refreshing with all the acid from the limes and lemons.

Jasmine Rice – I think I like it better than regular rice

Naan Flatbread – I bought the mix and made it from scratch! These are wonderful and would just make them to eat plain.


Can I just say the entire dinner was amazing! I think it is so FUN and exciting to experiment with different foods and different ingredients. I knew it may not turn out and I know what I may change next time I make these dishes, but it gave us all the chance to try something new. I am going to keep doing this at least once a month, or when I feel like it, and I have to say I am really look forward to this! Anyone need a party catered?!?!?

Have you made any food out of your comfort zone? How did it turn out?


  1. VERY cool new culinary adventure you've set out on....

    naan from a box?! i've NEVER seen this. what kind of store and in what section did you find tell.

    also, i love jasmine rice and all of these dishes look amazing. good work.

    i have no culinary adventures to share, but you've inspired me.

  2. WOW! Are you going to post these recipes or what? These are also displayed beautifully in white china - very nice!

    I did try to roll sushi and it was fun, but not nearly as good as what we get at DOMO.

  3. Seriously, I need the recipe! I have so much basil growing I don't know what to do with it all. Post it on food from friends.

  4. I need to eat that chicken and veggy curry IMMEDIATELY!

    I'm with Iris, please post recipes on Food From Friends.

  5. When do you want to cook me dinner?! That bread thingie DID make me drool!

    I hate cooking. I've just never really enjoyed it. Thankfully I've been blessed with a husband who loves to cook. I'll cook and get the job done for dinners and the occassional cake or brownie mix, but you won't find me in the kitchen getting all experimental. You go girl!