Something happened in 2010 – maybe it was the mortgage, maybe it was the market…okay fine, mostly it had to do with moving out of Casa del Yeo – but I cooked more in my life this year than I ever had in the past, and relished every minute of it!
We finally nailed homemade pizza this year!
My tendency to organize everything, it turns out, fits perfectly with meal planning, so besides getting great meals, I know I am reaping satisfaction from the start of the very process itself – bookmarking recipes, learning what is in season, developing shopping lists, and ensuring a speedy turnover of produce.
We cooked more seasonally this year, and weren’t afraid to buy unfamiliar produce – like pea tendrils
This is not to say I’ve given up eating out by any means (though I know the balance of our food budget shifted this year) – I still enjoy trying new restaurants, and revisiting old favourites, but there’s nothing like preparing and enjoying a home-cooked meal with a loved one at the end of the day.
Curried lentil soup – one of many soups I made this year
Anyway – thanks for bearing with me this year, as I continue to seek great eats in Edmonton – both outside our home and in our own kitchen!
Here are some of the other highlights for me in 2010:
- The most exciting thing for Mack and I this year was buying our first condo. A well-designed kitchen was a deal breaker, and though it may not be very large, I love the kitchen!
The spread at a housewarming party for friends
- It was important to both of us that the condo be located downtown; the fact that it happens to be right where the City Market is situated only made everything easier. It also enabled me to write a weekly update of the market this year.
Doesn’t the summer seem forever ago? (photo from week 5)
- We were also able to get out to visit a few farms this year, including Riverbend Gardens and Bles Wold Dairy. I know it isn’t for everyone – but I do like seeing where my food comes from.
Janelle Herbert (and her two children) of Riverbend Gardens in their never-ending squash patch
With cows at the Bles Wold Dairy
- There’s also nothing like farm-to-table meals, and in 2010, we had not one, but two such glorious meals at Madison’s Grill.
A duck and goose trio at a Farmers’ Market Dinner in January
Wine at the 2010 PMA International Wine Makers Dinner in April, where we learned the true brilliance that wine and food pairings can be
- That wasn’t the end of sumptuous multicourse meals – I can’t forget the off-menu extravaganza courtesy of Chef Tony Le at Lux, or the Chef Judy Wu’s wonderful showcase at the Wild Tangerine.
Espresso shortrib with truffled bacon cream corn at Lux
Jasmine tea smoked duck breast at the Alberta Backstage Culinary Dinner
- Not all of my favourites this year were necessarily fancy, however. I’m still dreaming about the hot dog sliders at Delux, and can’t wait to go back for the xiao long bao at Shanghai 456.
Made with Nathan’s Famous hot dogs!
Soup dumplings at Shanghai 456
- Sometimes though, food tastes best after a long day’s work – it certainly felt like that when Maria and I were finally able to relax and have a bite at the Wild Boar and Beer BBQ we organized in August.
Maria and I
- Another fun Slow Food Edmonton event this year was the first ever Grilled Cheese Olympics.
The People’s Choice winner, made with goat cheese, brie, prosciutto, sundried tomatoes, served with a tomato compote
- I was fortunate enough to be asked to act as a judge myself – at Heritage Days in August, and at the MoCupcakes Challenge in November.
Mack loved this perk of being a judge – the keys to a golf cart!
Linda’s winning Stud Muffins
- Mack and I did do some travelling this year – we visited San Francisco in September (I have yet to blog about it). It was my first time visiting a winery, and it’s a no brainer to say what was Mack’s favourite moment – meeting Chef Hubert Keller!
With our favourite Top Chef Master
I’m looking forward to what 2011 has in store for us already!