If you woke up this morning on the floor, covered in confetti and silly string (trust me. It happens. No judgment. And if you need help cleaning it now that it has been stepped on and is indelibly stuck to your pretty new kitchen tiles or hardwood floors. My advice is to get a butter knife, get on your knees, and get scraping. Experience, it makes you wiser.) In someone else’s apartment. Or house. Or car. Or. Sidewalk.
And you have no idea who you are, what your name is, and where you parked your car. Then you most certainly have no idea what year it is.
So I shall tell you.
2011 baby YEAH. Said in my most Austin Powers-like voice.
Which also, not so coincidentally, means that it is the SECOND birthday of Eats Well With Others! Yes, it’s true. Two years ago today, my resolution was to start a blog. And I did. And it has grown into something so much more than I could have ever expected it to. Such that I am constantly amazed. Every day. That this is something I created.
In the past year, I have grown a lot as a chef and baker. I have started to create some of my own recipes, baked all my own bread, entered numerous recipe contests (and won a few thanks to all of YOU!), learned how to make my own pasta, and was even featured on the POM website! I was also offered some amazing opportunities, including being invited to attend a POM-sponsored dinner at 11 Madison Park and developing a great relationship with the wonderful folks over at Marxfoods!
When it all comes down to it, though, none of this would be possible without all of you. You guys are my inspiration. You are what keeps me coming back for more. So thank you for being there when I need you and for picking me up when I feel down. I have made so many amazing friends through the blogosphere and you all have made this experience so so precious.
So before I delve into my top 10 posts of 2010, it’s time for resolutions! So you already know about my resolution to regain my rock star body in 2011 but that’s a neurotic-Joanne resolution and not an Eats Well With Others resolution. Last year, my resolution was to bake all my own bread and not buy a single loaf…and I stuck to it! And I am happy to say that never again will another loaf of Pepperidge Farm or Arnold’s enter this house. Amen.
This year, since I want to really push myself creatively, my goal is to create at least two recipes each month. From scratch. From the depths of my imagination. Who knows what I have stored back there? I’m a little afraid. And excited. You should be too.
Alright, I hope you all have a fabulous New Year’s Day and here’s to a wonderful and delicious 2011!
Now. Onto the top 10!
These keftedes with Greek cinnamon-scented tomato sauce were the first recipe I made from Michael Symon’s Live to Cook. (And thus began my love affair with my bald. Adorable. Tragically and thoroughly imaginary husband.) Since then, I’ve served this tomato sauce quite a few times at quite a few venues and it’s always met with moans and sighs.
Tofu is always a semi-controversial dish but this braised tofu in caramel sauce that I made for Regional Recipes: VIETNAM will convert any non-tofu lovers. I’m sure of it. The sweet-and-salty sauce is so incredibly addictive that you won’t even realize you’re eating soy!
This zucchini-sausage pizza surprised me on a whole lot of levels because it is so simple. And yet, so fantastic. I will definitely be making it again once summer squash are back in season.
I love bread in just about any form, but these pretzel rolls were my favorite yeasted recipe from this year. They taste exactly like the pretzels you can get at the mall and in their next incarnation I am SO rolling them in cinnamon sugar. Heaven help me.
I am NOT a fan of raw summer squash and so the fact that I ate the ENTIRE batch of this zucchini crudo in one day is a testament to how delicious it is. Another winner from Live to Cook, I’m pretty sure I could eat this every day for at least a month and not tire of it. Maybe THAT should be my new diet plan…
This fig and ricotta pizza with a maple-balsamic reduction was one that I developed after eating something similar at Au Bon Pain. But you know, why pay for a dish that you can make even BETTER at home?
Oh these caramel macchiato cupcakes. They render me speechless. They were a part of my caffeine-infused Project Food Blog dinner party and were, by far, the best cupcakes that I made this year. And I made a LOT of cupcakes.
I am SO proud of this Thai winter squash and sweet potato pot pie because it is one of the first and most successful Eats Well With Others originals. And it’s delicious. Make it and warm your soul.
These pumpkin ravioli with sage and roasted hazelnuts were definitely some of the prettiest things I made this year. The filling is a non traditional pumpkin-balsamic vinegar-parmesan cheese mixture which pairs wonderful with the anisettes sprinkled on top and the browned butter sauce that they are drowning in. Glorious.
Last but not least, is this beef and beer chili, a recipe that every man, woman and child should know and love and cherish. And it has Guinness in it. So you already know it’s a winner.
Alright, go have a cup of coffee and nurse that hangover! I’ll be back on Monday with a delicious and nutritious recipe to kick off 2011’s return to health!