Culinary bucket list 2013
Are you a list person? I am. It helps me feel in control of things and a great sense of satisfaction when I’ve ticked items off. I use a lovely online device called Workflowy. Shamelessly stealing this idea from Charmian Christie, I’m making a list of culinary stuff that I’d like to do this year. Inspired by Amanda of Glamorous Glutton and Tracy of Shutterbean I’m going to keep a beautiful notebook too; here’s how (will appeal to the neat freak).
Places I’d like to visit:
- There’s a fish restaurant in Sharjah where they only serve the best of the catch of the day, grilled on charcoal. I think it’s called Sanobar.
- I’m hankering after another food tour of old Dubai from Frying Pan Adventures. Ready for another taste bud awakening.
- And on that note, I need to visit the momo place in Bur Dubai so I can compare to the ones I ate in Kathmandu.
- Georgia – the one where Tbilisi is the capital (rather than the Atlanta one). See why here and here.
Things to learn/blog more about:
- Finding out exactly what my Vitamix can do.
- Custard. Yes, the quest for custard perfection continues.
- Emirati cuisine. I’ve got a great book to help me do it and a lovely friend who I hope will give me advice when I need it.
- My most visited post of 2012 was one I wrote in 2011 A jar of sunshine – home-made lemon curd which includes 10 uses for the yellow stuff. I’m planning more of this kind of thing.
- Bread. My baking journey of the last few years continues. I hope you’ll join me.
- Sour dough – long-term readers may notice that this resolution is not a new one.
- Perfecting pastry is another long-term goal. This is a great place to start.
- Sri-Lankan food. I had a great lesson in 2012 (to be written about) and it would make KP so happy.
- Wine. Any excuse to taste different wines to stop my WSET knowledge from fading. It’s a challenging but inexhaustible topic to write about.
- My new iphone – for learning about, not blogging about, that is. Already loving Snapseed app for images. Thanks to David Griffen’s tips. Plus do you want to know some secrets?
Ingredients to use more often:
- Sumac – this lemony, bright red spice shouldn’t just be reserved for fattoush
- Fish – my teens won’t eat it so I cook it less often than I’d like. Learning about the different fish available here in the UAE is an ongoing voyage of discovery.
- Bzar – Emirati spice mix (the garam masala of the Gulf)
- Pomegranate molasses – the new ‘in’ ingredient that people are scouring London for since publication of the latest Ottolenghi book (see below). In every supermarket here and infinitely versatile. I might even try making my own.
- Vegetables – ok, I know…but with food bills going up all the time, and meat increasingly expensive it makes sense to focus on the leafy stuff. Plus with a teen who has been vegetarian since the age of 7 it means I only have to cook once.
Recipes to try:
- Bourbon pear bread and butter pudding – swoon
- Sweet potato and pomegranate salad
- Autumn risotto – in fact make more risotto full stop
- Polish apple cake – to remind me of my Auntie Eva’s cooking
- Parsnip and apple breakfast cake – a different variation from a beautiful blog (and lovely blogger)
- Sausages – with some help from Francine please
- Baked beans with rum – oh yes! (found this meatball recipe there too)
- Slow roast shoulder of lamb with pomegranate molasses
- Pistachio torrone
Cookbook and culinary reading list:
Books on my shelf that I’m going to explore in more detail in 2013:
- Jerusalem – Yotam Ottolenghi
- Sherbert and Spice – Mary Isin; I’ve been sent this Complete Story of Turkish Sweets and Desserts to review. It’s going to take some concentrated reading.
- Sugar Salt Smoke – Diana Henry; I’ve pots, jars and bottles all over my kitchen due to this book. Much more to explore in 2013.
- Mediterranean Clay Pot Cooking: Traditional and Modern Recipes to Savor and Share – Paula Wolfert; 2013 is the year I brave Satwa and find some clay pots
- Short and Sweet – Dan Lepard; my ‘go to’ baking tome with get more use this year. The bread recipes alone are sublime.
Blogs to visit:
- The blogs listed to the right in the side bar are just some that I visit regularly and there are so many talented bloggers out there. I’m going to make sure I visit the ones that make me smile (or laugh out loud) a bit more in 2013:
- Dinner in 1972 – a new discovery recommended by….
- …Jen of Silver Screen Suppers who cooks from old film star’s recipes. Vincent Price’s goulash anyone?
- Shabby chic – based in the Cotswolds (where I’m from)…sigh
- Glamorous Glutton – written by Amanda of the oh so stylish notebook fame (see above)
And some personal ones:
- Hoard cheerful things for black dog days
- Resist the urge of the inbox (love this infographic)
- Banish fear of failing demons for greater productivity
Would love to know what you’ll be cooking up this year….