Saturday, January 1, 2011

23 Things I Want to Make in 2011

Why 23, you ask?  If you're nerdy like me, you'd know that the New Year (010111) is 23 in binary.

So, here are 23 things (in no particular order) that I'd like to make this year.  That's almost 2 things each month from this list.  Whether or not I'll be able to achieve them all this year we shall see.  But, I figure by blogging about it right here, right now, I'd be held a little more accountable. 

Some of these items I've had bookmarked on my Google Reader for years but have just been too initimidated by the method or just plain short on time.  Others I want to make for personal reasons and don't even have a recipe in mind yet. 

Please feel free to share your favorite recipe of the items listed below and then come along with me as we work our way through 2011...hopefully with these delicious foods making their appearance in my blog!

Starters
  1. Crab Cakes - This is one treat that I enjoy ordering at restaurants. Time to tackel this one at home despite my fear of cooking seafood and frying things...especially when I have more recipes bookmarked than can be counted in one hand. One of these is sure to be a winner, right?
  2. French Onion Soup (made on 3/29/11) - Inspired by my trip to Paris last year and a love for carmelized onions, soup, and gruyere cheese. I'll most likely make this for my brother as he's a major fan, too.
  3. Butternut Squash Soup (made on 9/21/11) - I hate cutting squash...the skin is SO HARD even after I do the soften it in the microwave trick. Combine that with the fact that this particular squash is so very curvily shaped and I plain fear for my fingers. (Yeah, I don't have the best knife skills...). But, my friend Rebecca recently told me I can buy butternut squash frozen and precut from Trader Joe's so perhaps I'll finally make it this year because I do love me some butternut squash.
  4. Clam Chowder (in a Bread Bowl) - Hm this just might be two recipe ambitions rolled into one but hey, who's counting?  I've always wanted to make a hot cup of New England Style chowda served in a breadbowl like at the infamous Boudin. [[insert perfect transition into next category...oh yeah!]]
Breads
  1. French Baguette - I could have lived on this stuff when we visited France.  And, it'd be a wonderful complement to all the soups that I make.  
  2. Donuts - Because donuts make the world go round and they don't actually contain calories.  Or, if they do, you might as well savor every FRESH donuty bite.  I eat donuts maybe once or twice a year so might as well make it count.  And yes, I spell them "donuts" and not "doughnuts".  Laziness and love for Dunkin', I suppose!
  3. Bagels (made on 2/6/11) - I've made yeasted breads before so this should be no biggie, right?  Just boil before baking...and I've done that with homemade soft pretzel bites before :).  There's nothing more delicious at breakfast than a Bruegger's Everything Bagel or Panera's Asiago Cheese Bagel with Sundried Tomato Cream Cheese.  Oh and Panera's Cinnamon Crunch Bagels are also devilishly good, too.
Mains
  1. Quiche (made on 1/3/11) - Why? Because I love quiche. It's delicious and I have way too many quiche recipes bookmarked to have not made one yet. I'm out of excuses.
  2. Homemade Pasta (made on 12/18/11) - This is the one thing on this list that I'm probably most scared of making. Maybe Santa or the Birthday Fairy will buy me a pasta attachment for my Kitchen Aid to help ease my fears and push this dream along?  Otherwise, any tips for a homemade pasta making novice?!
  3. Pesto - Seems easy enough but just have never tried it since Chris is not a fan.
  4. Wonton Mein - My family makes *the* most delicious wontons that float in a soupy broth with delicate egg noodles. I must learn from them (documenting their every move since surely no recipe exists!) then share the deliciousness with you.
  5. Xiao Long Bao (Soup Dumplings) - Have you ever gone to Joe's Shanghai in New York? Or, better yet, REAL Shanghai? They are *famous* for these things. One bite and you'll go gaga over them, too.  Watch out for the juicy explosion of juice as you bite into them...literally! My siblings like to call them "Juicy Buns".
  6. Singapore Mei Fun (Curry Noodles) (made on 2/12/11) - One of my favorite dishes that my mom makes. I polished off a good serving of this at Christmas this year. If I don't learn how to make this I'll regret it for the rest of my life.
  7. Ratatouille - Ever since I saw the Disney movie Ratatouille I have wanted to make this.  Why?  Because I'm a sucker for all things Disney. 
  8. Jambalaya (made on 3/17/11) - I love spicy food so why not?
  9. Chicken Marsala (Stuffed version made on 2/21/11) - My favorite thing to order at Bravo! Cucina Italian I'd *love* to replicate this classic dish at home. Now to invest in some good Marsala Wine...
  10. Prime Rib (Roast beef made on 10/21/11...pretty much the safe difference!) - Each major holiday or family gathering that passes I dream of making a perfectly crusted, medium roasted prime rib with a side of well seasoned aus jus. Yes, please.

Desserts and Sweets
  1. Peanut Butter Crisscross Cookies (made on 1/23/11) - With peanut butter being Chris' favorite ingredient and this being one of my favorite childhood cookies, I wonder why I have never made these.
  2. Samoas (made on 6/26/11) - My favorite Girl Scout cookie. I hate the texture of coconut but the fact that it's enrobed in caramel and chocolate makes it a-ok to me in this instance.
  3. Lemon Bars - I love lemon lately but I think the fact that this recipe usually has a bazillion egg yolks in it has deterred me from making it in the past. I mean, what the heck am I supposed to do with all the whites afterward?!
  4. Pie from Scratch - Fresh Strawberry Pie (made on 5/29/11 and 11/1/11)- Really it's more about the crust here than anything but hey, if I'm going to make a pie crust, might as well fill it with something too, right? :)
  5. Fudge - I'll admit that after 2009's epic fudge fail I've been too intimidated to try making any fudge recipes since. But, since then I've also invested in a handy-dandy candy thermometer so with this tool in hand I'm hoping for success when I'm ready to try again!
  6. Funnel Cake - So fanciful, so delicious. And...every kitchen *should* own a funnel, right? (Note to self: go buy a funnel...)
Okay, add them up since blogger wouldn't let me continue numbering in the different sections: 4 + 3 + 6 + 10 = 23.  Check!  There we have it, 23 (ambitious) recipes to make in 2011!

3 comments:

Brenda Fuentes said...

For the egg whites, you can make Divinity (our family makes a Peanut Butter version that is heavenly), Coconut Macroons, or Amaretti cookies.

Christine said...

Thanks for the suggestions, Brenda! I've never heard of Divinity so I Googled it and frankly it looks well...divine :). I'm sure we'd love a PB version even more. Do you have a favorite recipe? I've never tried making macaroons yet either but hope to sometime. I hear they're tricky!

thoughtfulplate said...

I love bread, too, but too lazy to bake one from scratch. :P

There's a no knead bread recipe that's very popular amongst the blogsphere, but I think I still prefer the old-fashion kinds.

+1 on the the of egg whites for meringue and macarons. I think you cah also freeze them too.