Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Something's Cooking at Modern Creative Life!

Today I'm writing over at Modern Creative Life on Cultivating a Creative Kitchen.


As the holidays come and go and summer wears on, chances are we will be stepping into the kitchen and whipping up something easy that doesn't require a lot of heat or is so "in your head" that you barely have to look at a recipe at all. It's summertime and the living is easy. And cooking should be, too.


I love cooking. In fact, I feel like I miss it when I travel. And it doesn't much matter what -- breakfast, baking, dinner. I collect recipes like a crazy person, make them once the way they are written (usually) and then more often than not, wing it, referring back for the essentials.


And I've been doing that since I was a kid because that was the way I was taught. In fact, I barely remember my mom opening a cookbook, though she had a more than a few.


I had to up my game when I started seeing Rick. The first time he had me over to dinner I realized that I had to kick it up a notch. Man does not survive by baked goods alone. I mean, he makes stuff that looks like this.


OK, he didn't do that until last year, but when he started baking bread, he took it on the way he does his cycling. All out. Do it right. Don't stop. He's never afraid to try new things.


Rick and I cook pretty well together. But then, I like cooking in the company of others.


Two of my favorite bakes were with friends -- making macarons with Kate and a fabulous Paris Brest pastry dessert with my Corkie friend Barb. That was a long affair -- making a gougere-type wheel, then the pastry cream and assembling it. I wrote about it here.You can find the tutorial for it there. And yes, it's a supersized wheel because it represents a bicycle tire.


 I believe cooks are made, not born. We are born to eat. We learn to cook so we can eat the way we'd like to. We can be helped along the way by parents who teach us not to be afraid in the kitchen, by friends with whom we share the interest or simply because we want to learn.


In the Modern Creative Life piece, I talk about cultivating a creative kitchen. I hope you'll take a few minutes to come by and check it out!

Linking to: Let's Add Sprinkles   /   Share Your Cup  /   Pink Saturday  

32 comments:

Lynne said...

I will go check “it” out . . .
First, yes, we are born to eat and enjoy . . .
I learned from my mother, not by doing, by watching . . .
Home cooked, sitting together, sharing bread, soup, yummy prepared delights was a daily thing . . .
And always dessert . . .
My mom liked the “doing” by herself” and I don’t fall to far from the tree . . .
I would love though, creating foods together with others . . . especially if I had a bigger kitchen.
Tiny, small . . . fits one more than a team . . .
Off I go for the read . . .
(Love that round like a tire bread, best read up on that too.)

shoreacres said...

Your way of putting together cards always is so clever and cute. I love what you "cook up" in that arena, too! I smiled when I saw the photo of you decorating the birthday cake. That row of glass canisters in the background was lined up in our kitchen, too. It's fun to be reminded by things in my past by your photos!

Jean R. said...

I wish I was your neighbor. I'd love all the smells coming out of your kitchen because lord knows they've never come out of mine. How lucky you are to have found a husband who likes to bake. Mine only knew we had a kitchen because he had to walk through it to get to his beloved garage.

Lynne said...

Me again . . .
Excellent read . . .
I liked the “dump” thingy you've learned from your mom . . .
I have been asked for recipes, and I readily share.
I have books . . . many, and when I retired from “work life” the first thing I did was organize my recipes.
Two huge RED books, one for soups, main, bread, appetizers etc. The other for cakes, bars, pies, sweets . . .
BUT . . . I am a “dumper” . . . like you said,
“I think we learn to cook partly by the book and partly by our gut. I equate it to gardening . . .”
Precisely . . . I love the creativity of it, my “bests” probably cannot be found in a recipe.
One thing I regret . . . is not watching with great intent, my mom making “pasty.”
Oh my . . . my favorite and no way does mine compare!
Loved your . . . Modern Creative Life . . .
I wonder . . . if that is what I enjoy most about you . . . You take CREATIVE into everything. I love it!

Deb said...

I enjoyed this post, Jeanie. Will pop over.

Victoria Zigler said...

Great post... I read it, enjoyed it, and shared it. :)

If people didn't experiment in the kitchen, we wouldn't have half the recipes we have now.

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

My husband and I both love to cook too! We plan a meal during the day and attack it in the evenings! It usually involved meat cooked on the grill and healthy veggies....and a good bottle of wine. We love to eat! Hugs!

Iris Flavia said...

Cute black-and-white pic, Jeanie!
In my family as well as in hubby´s family it´s the men doing the cooking.
But you are right, cooks are made, not born.
I started rather very late and sadly baking is a no for me.
I blame our small kitchen, too! With so little space it´s not realy fun.

David Gascoigne said...

"We learn to cook so that we can eat the way we like to" - now there is a loaded statement. While some of us, my wife and I included love to cook, and experiment all the time, it is a statistical fact that most people barely cook at all any more. And that is more true in the United States than anywhere else. Fast food rules, eating out dominates, and pre-packed frozen food and stuff in boxes constitute what passes for home cooking. Take a careful look at shopping carts and you will see a dearth of fresh vegetables, fish, meat etc. You will see lots of bags of potato chips, nachos, pop tarts, frozen pizza, frozen entrées, bags of frozen French fries, tubs of ice cream, frozen waffles and so on. What is also appalling to me is the sheer volume of disposable plates, bags of plastic cutlery etc. that are also purchased for the home. About fifteen years ago I was birding at Cheyenne Bottoms in Kansas and I was very kindly invited to a family celebration by someone I met there. The gesture was greatly appreciated, but the fact that the meal consisted primarily of fast food chicken and every plate, cup, tumbler etc. was disposable depressed me. I wonder if a generation from now anyone will cook at home. In the meantime let me go and shred the carrots and chop the cabbage for the cole slaw we are making for lunch!

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

You are bring out and opening up my summer cookbook memories, Jeanie! To this day, I love to cook, but the heat dissuades me from doing the kind of cooking I did when yes, I WAS YOUNGER and more ambitious in the kitchen! These days, it's fast, cool and delish!

Have a great fourth!

Jeanne Washburn said...

A delightful post...can't smell the wonderful cooking but the love certainly shines through. :)

Sami said...

I enjoy cooking too which I learned from my Mother and grandmother and prefer to eat something home-made, unless we go out for dinner of course than I'll eat something that I won't usually cook, but not fast food!
Rick is an accomplished baker, that bread looks amazing.

eileeninmd said...

Hello,

I love to cook and eat! I wish I could be a better baker. Rick's bread looks wonderful, everything looks delicious. Great post, I will go and check out your writing post. Enjoy your day and week ahead!

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Oh Jeanie, I just saw your generous comment on my blog post! Thank you my dear! My desire is to dazzle, YES. Some think I'm too ambitious, some think I go overboard with my dream to reach people and say, "Just create for yourself." Of course, we must love what we make, but if we want to reach others, we must find a way to connect. I'm happy that you were able to "feel" that photo of the tree in winter, that the words resonated. This is why I do what I do.

Wishing you a memorable fourth of July as we amble through yet another path through summer and find ourselves again in the bewitching grasp of autumn!

William Kendall said...

My mother loved to cook. Admittedly, I'm not the sort who does much of it.

Nancy Burns said...

What a great post....and I agree cooking connects people.
Cooking is a great part of my memories with my mother (...must teach you how to bake an apple pie, my sister and my childhood friend Kathy.
We were always watching Julia Child and even Australian cook Graham Kerr...do you remember him? Thanks for the lovely images in this post...!

Judy at GoldCountryCottage said...

Jeanie, sad story. My mom didn't teach me anything about cooking, she liked to be in the kitchen by herself. I didn't teach my daughter anything about cooking, I like to be in the kitchen by myself. Now, my daughter married an excellent cook, so she doesn't have to!..Sad but true. I do like to cook but I get nervous if someone is there because I talk too much and I can't do two things at one time..Happy 4th dear friend..xxoJudy

Pam Jackson said...

A cooker I am not, a baker I am. I really dislike cooking and tend to not do it if I can get out of it! Baking on the other hand I enjoy. Taught myself last yr to make bread and I love it. Course I go with the simple ways of doing it, my fave is Rosemary Bread. You are lucky to have Rick and his cooking/baking skills.

Joyful said...

I enjoyed hearing about your cooking journey. I've always fantasized about cooking though I never cooked too creatively growing up. My mom was a good cook and never really encouraged me to join her. She didn't teach me either as I just kind of took it up on my own experimenting mostly with baking as a teenager. I'm not a great cook now but am quite passable. I don't seem to have the patience for anything that takes time and finesse :-) I admire those like Rick who do it wholeheartedly.

BB said...

Oh, that all looks delicious. We used to make sushi when we lived in MD all the time, but we haven't made it in years. We order it when the kids visit. They love it.

That pic of you when you were a little girl is adorable.

Sorry for not commenting for so long. I have barely been on line lately. Hope you have a wonderful Fourth!

Joanne Huffman said...

Yum!

La Table De Nana said...

I think I used to like cooking w/ friends and my daughters but it was so rarely..
I am just used to being on my own in the kitchen..lol and I don't cook well with Jacques..we are polar opposites in the kitchen..he makes pizza and BBQ now..:)
We never wallpared well together either.He's an engineer..I don't have that gene:)
Love to bake love to cook..:)

La Table De Nana said...

PS went to read..LOVE those pics of you!!

Marilyn Miller said...

Wow! Everything looks good. I especially love seeing Rick making sushi. I haven't done that yet this summer, but it is something I like to do when it is a hot day. Loved all your cards too.

My name is Erika. said...

I am catching up Jeanie. I actually read this and your article on the evening of the 3rd, but before I could comment my daughter and boyfriend showed up as they were coming for the 4th. First of all, it was a great article, and I enjoy reading about food. Rick's bread is amazing, and I think like anything, it is good to have someone to bring the best out in you and get you step up a bit. You are lucky Rick loves to cook and that your styles are so different. That way there you get all kinds of various yummy things to eat. Hope today is the baby day! Hugs-Erika

AnnMarie aka Vintage Junkie aka NaNa said...

Love your story on your love of cooking. I LOVE to bake, I LIKE to cook and I do not miss either one while on vacation! Going to check out the post!

Tristan Robin Blakeman said...

What a great post - I am envious by any and all ability to cook and bake. I grew up in a home where the mother and father didn't cook and we spent (easily) 75% of our meals in a restaurant. Consequently, I didn't learn - and now that I like the idea of being able to do it, I'm too lazy to start! So I just watch those who do/can/are willing and enjoy the experience vicariously.
Are those first images of a collage that you've made from vintage graphics and fabrics and buttons? It looks like maybe one piece that you've cropped into quarters(?).
I want to try your 'tire!'
Now - I'm off to read your article!

peggy gatto said...

Love the food and the art!

Jackie Mc Guinness said...

First time visiting you and I love your blog!

Lisa from Lisa's Yarns said...

I think cooks are made and not born, too! I was encouraged to find out that Julia Child learned to cook when she was in her 30s!

Katie Mansfield said...

Congratulations. How fun. Your sushi making looks amazing.

Jann Olson said...

I love cooking too. Although, I rarely do food posts. :) Growing up I was very busy and involved with school activities, so I rarely cooked. But I took it on happily once I got married. When we travel I get tired of eating out as well and look forward to a home cooked meal. I loved your sweet images. Hopping over to check out the guest post. Thanks for sharing with SYC.
hugs,
Jann

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