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MY COOKBOOK CHALLENGE

Home Forums OVER THE BACK FENCE ALS Challenge Series MY COOKBOOK CHALLENGE

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  • #255852
    diannedianne
    Participant

    As Miss Oprah would say, the universe will send you little whispers in your ear, if you don’t listen, it will speck it to you, if you still don’t listen then it shouts at you louder and louder until it hits you over the head with a brick,

    Well the universe has been talking to me again, and this time I’m listening…

    The cookbook challenge

    A few weeks back now I was looking at all my cookbooks I have tucked away in the cupboard. I have a slight obsession with books and cook books in particular, so I have a lot, but I tend to bring them home, look through them for a couple of days then they get put away in that cupboard, not actually making anything out of them. Well as I put away my newly purchased books I had found to add to the collection I started thinking “I really should make some of theses”. But that was as far as I got.

    Now at the same time, I had been looking in our local video shop for a movie I had been wonting to watch for a while now, “Julie & Julia”. I had seen a add for it and thought it looked like something I would like, a movie about two ladies who love to cook, but that was as far as I knew. So after looking for weeks I hadn’t been able to find it (although I must say I only look on Tuesday as it is $2 day) I was about to stop looking, when there it was, so I grabbed it and home I went. So that night, after the kids were in bed on went the DVD, well I can tell you it was not what I thought it was, but it was wonderful and just the kick I needed.

    This is what it says on the back of the DVD……

    “A culinary legend provides a frustrated office worker with a new recipe for life . The true stories of how Julia Child’s life and cookbook inspired fledgling writer Julie Powell to whip up 524 recipes in 365 days ans introduce a new generation to the magic of French cooking.”

    So basicly Julie is lost in her life but loves to cook and loves Julia Child’s, so to give herself a purpose in life, at least for a year anyway, she starts up a blog and challenges herself to cook every recipe in her Julia Child’s French cookbook. And by the end of the year she has a major following, a sense of completion and ends up with her dream job as a writer, and a book deal, which became the movie.

    Well I’m not that brave, there is no way I could be cooking up cows trotter as she did, but it has got me setting a mini challenge to myself, Too pick a cookbook out of the collection and make as many as I can. This doesn’t have a time limit and I’m not doing all recipes because I have fussy eaters, but I will try to do as many as I can within our taste buds and budget will alough.

    So here I am, with my cookbook of choice, (which I must say was picked by the universe as well. The last couple of days I have been wonting Chinese so rather buy take away I decided to make sweet and sour chicken (didn’t have any pork) and fried rice.) So off to find a recipe for sweet and sour and pulled out “ Grandma’s quick and thrifty cookbook” so in that moment the book selection was made.

    So last night was Sweet and sour pork/chicken.

    One down only roughly 200 to go.

    And YES by the way, it was yummy and will be added into the everyday folder.

    Any one else up for picking a cookbook and working there way throught??

    #509590
    BlueWrenBlueWren
    Member

    That IS a challenge Dianne. :clap: :clap: I think my own universe has reached shout stage about decluttering, so while I sort and chuck I will think about you cooking. I think you and your family are going to enjoy your challenge. :tup:

    #509591
    starrubystarruby
    Member

    Oh Diane I was reading your post and thought “this could be me writing this” !

    So I’m up for a challenge.

    Off to find which cook book the universe will choose for me 😛

    Sandra

    #509592
    karyn26karyn26
    Member

    Oh good on you.

    I too take out recipe books and then they go away again.

    Enjoy your cooking journey and keep us posted.

    #509593
    BobbeeBobbee
    Member

    :wave:

    What a wonderful idea. :clap: :clap: :clap:

    I won’t join the challenge but this will be a thread I keep check on. Mind you it will get the taste buds flowing, that pic of your sweet and sour looks yum and very professional. :tup:

    Bobbs :hug:

    #509594
    froot_loopzfroot_loopz
    Member

    I dont really own any recipe books, besides the ones that are in the bookcase to sell when I can be bothered selling books on the net again

    I buy the cooking magazines, and hardly every cook anything out of them.

    I generally get most of my recipes off the net now

    cooking to me is a chore, probably from working in kitchens for the last 26 years not something I enjoy

    But I will look at this thread with some interest, maybe get some inspiration to try new things :tup:

    #509595
    FozzieFozzie
    Member

    froot_loopz post=325963 wrote: I dont really own any recipe books, besides the ones that are in the bookcase to sell when I can be bothered selling books on the net again

    I buy the cooking magazines, and hardly every cook anything out of them.

    I generally get most of my recipes off the net now

    I’m the same!! I’ve got all these magazines and I’ve barely cooked anything. My cookbooks don’t really strike my interest as being all round cookbooks like the one above.

    But after thinking about this thread, and having gotten a freebie Good Taste mag, I was thinking about perhaps going through my mags, pulling maybe 5-10 recipes out of each and working my way through them.

    I’ve also set myself a challenge to eat one vego and one egg based meal a week, in the interests of expanding taste buds and cutting costs.

    So… new personal challenge! To go through each magazine over the weekend, collect at least 5 recipes from each, rip them out and put into a folder. I’ll incorporate at least one recipe per week. (remembering that cooking only for me, means that leftovers are eaten the next night, so sometimes a meal will last several nights!!).

    I’ll keep you all updated!! 🙂

    #509596
    mudhenmudhen
    Member

    What a great challenge! This reminds me of when my husband and I were first married, and quite financially challenged. I’d been given a recipe book as a wedding shower gift from a friend of my parents, “The Harrowsmith Cookbook”. It was a collection that had been put together by the Canadian simple living magazine Harrowsmith. They had readers send in favourite tried and true recipes that they sorted and chose a selection from, then tested each one on the magazine staff over a period of time before they got the final tick. They are all cook from scratch recipes, no tinned tomato soup or packet cake mix recipes included. I cooked my way through almost every chicken recipe in there, as it was such a cheap meal, and along the way learned what our tastes were and weren’t. I now have volumes 1 and 2, and while we’ve tried lots of recipes, no where near them all. Perhaps I’ll revisit them, especially with summer coming, and be a bit more adventurous with our salads.

    Did you know that from a publishing industry point of view, a cookbook is considered to be successful if the majority of people who buy it cook 2 (TWO!) recipes out of it. There must be millions of recipe books sitting on bookshelves that have never even been used once!

    #509597
    RobyneRobyne
    Member

    I’m the same I have a 6′ book case and 3 shelves are dedicated to cook books. Plus I have a shelf in the kitchen with only biscuit books on it.

    My favourite would have to be Jamie at Home at the present. I also like the Nigella book I had given me for Christmas a couple of years ago

    I do collect those cook books schools and hospitals have people make up for them. I have several of them including a couple my sons schools they went to.

    My most prized cook book was one my sister gave me that she had given to her from our great Auntie and it belonged to her mother our great grandmother our fathers grandmother

    It tells you have to make soap with the fat from a killed pig that they always called the little gentleman. How to cook rabbit and hare. its a reall 1800s cook book. I have wrapped it up in acid proof paper to preserve its life.

    #509598
    KasaliaKasalia
    Member

    Dianne, Ever since I saw that movie last year I have wanted to cook a cookbook as well, but by the time dinner comes I just throw something together, which always turns out nice but I think I will take up the challange and start with say a cookbook special on the weekend. Dont know if I can keep it up every night. 🙂

    Like Blue Wren I am in a huge decluttering mode,as well as repainting,remodelling,and sewing, I need something to get me through it all. 🙂

    So I will go and look at my cookbooks,and see what jumps out at me. :whistle:

    How are we going to work this, just post a picture whenever or set a day to do it.

    #509599
    diannedianne
    Participant

    :jawdrop: oh my gosh, what have I started :laugh:

    like I said Im not going to be on a time line or a have to do it every day type of thing like the movie, this just wouldnt work in with our life. The once a week thing might work thought :tup: :whistle: I had kind of thought this was going to just be amore of just a record for me too keep me on track, but if some others are going to do it too :tup: :clap: :tup: :clap: yay!!

    I won’t join the challenge but this will be a thread I keep check on. Mind you it will get the taste buds flowing, that pic of your sweet and sour looks yum and very professional.

    hehe, yer mine didnt look anything like that one, and I realized only when at the last stages of cooking I didnt have enough corn flour :whistle: so my sauce was very thin but the taste was great :laugh:

    I buy the cooking magazines, and hardly every cook anything out of them.

    I generally get most of my recipes off the net now

    Oh thats me aswell, I have boxes of mags and folders, and folders of riped out and printed out reciepes too. actully I did try a tiny experiment of this chalanage with a mag a couple of months back. I pulled one out and tried I think 3 recipes out of it, and now the choc caramal self saucing pudding is now a favorit :tup: so you could do a mag, and cookbook or that pile/folder of printed out stuff. :tup: :tup:

    I’ve also set myself a challenge to eat one vego and one egg based meal a week, in the interests of expanding taste buds and cutting costs.

    hey Fossie, this book has a hole section for eggs, in fact my next one was going to be a egg and bacon pie :tup: shall let you know how it goes.

    #509600
    BelBel
    Member

    I am cookbook obsessed as well. I’ve been feeling really guilty lately that I don’t use many of them. My ‘Mix & Bake’ by Belinda Jeffery gets a good work-out at least once a fortnight, but that’s the only regular. I’m gonna pick one of mine and give it a go! The other good thing about cooking from a recipe, I find, is that you can plan your meals for the week and order/buy only the ingredients you need for those meals. It saves waste and keeps me more disciplines when shopping.

    #509601
    diannedianne
    Participant

    yay, bels in. I have been trying to menu plan of late, it helps me to know what I am cooking as opossed to what on earth shall I cook tonight. :laugh: so this will help to work in a new thing and to make sure I have the right ingredents so I dont have to make another trip to the shop. Another one of the chalanges I wont to make for myself (on the side) is to be able to use as much as possible ingredents from the garden or that I have preped myself, so instead of a can of tomatoes I would use a jar I have prossed or cooked up myself :tup:

    #509602
    Judi BJudi B
    Keymaster

    I have too many cook books, my Dad worked with books and magazines DH worked with Dad so my book collection goes back decades.

    I’m not even going to try this, but will watch and see how others go.

    We eat lots of stir fry so I can cook with what is in the garden served up with rice or noodles that is about the limit of my menu planning.

    #509603
    Forest RavenForest Raven
    Member

    Count me in for the challenge…though I’m not sure if it counts as a challenge for me, I often use a cookbook to guide me, unless I’m in a rush and need to knock something up quick from memory and available ingredients!

    I’ve actually just finished three months of recipe testing (finished about a month ago) where I cooked something like 52 recipes from scratch that were gluten free and vegan (for the US blogger Manifest Vegan). Some quite time consuming! And I learned alot about combining flavours as well as alternative ways of doing things, so I feel I can be a bit more experimental and gourmet in the kitchen now, instead of holding onto the very last words of those recipes in my books!

    I’ve planned to make my own curry paste today…bought the ingredients…but the interest is slipping…need to garden. We’ll see hey?

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