The always inspiring Heidi Swanson of 101cookbooks.com wrote a post last week about writing a blog for a dozen years and the importance of having a voice and a point of view. She muses about how she could do more video work or more this or that that others suggest she might do but that what she really wants to do is write recipes and take beautiful photos.
For years I posted a recipe once a week and then as my business shifted and I got busier I posted less and less often in part because, unlike most other blogs I love and follow who post recipes, I rarely had the perfect, tested-multiple-times, beautifully-photographed-step-by-step recipe to post, so I didn’t post at all. Well my business (and life’s mission) is not called Cook With What You Have for nothing. And cooking-with-what-you-have everyday to make simple, nourishing food for those you love is often messy and rarely terribly prescriptive. So, I’ve decided to post much more often again and if it’s four different salads in a row that all turned out deliciously but just used what I happened to need to use up then so be it. I won’t be posting them to suggest that you exactly emulate what I did or that it was the best thing I’ve made in months, but maybe it will inspire us all to look around our kitchens and gardens and use our imagination and have a meal of this and that and feel satisfied.
Roasted Root Vegetables and Garlic
Case in point. . . I needed to clean out my refrigerator before the next CSA share arrived and found a bunch of small parsnips and carrots and half a celery root. I scrubbed and trimmed everything and tossed them on a baking sheet with some oil and salt and a head’s worth of garlic cloves and roasted all until browning and fragrant.
I ate some of this goodness for lunch, standing at the counter before heading out the door for a meeting. The rest was reheated in plenty of vegetable broth (inspired by a post of Heidi Swanson’s many years ago!) with a bit fresh sage and thyme and then pureed and eaten for dinner with a bit of olive oil and plenty of black pepper. It was too dark by that time to take a photo of the soup and it was tastier than it was pretty so use your imagination.
8 thoughts on “Imperfection”
Emily Cooper says:
I love your blog, Katherine, and I use it a lot more than any of those spiffy perfect-recipe, staged-photo sites. There’s nothing wrong with a complicated food blog on a lazy weekend, but you can inspire me to cook a good meal when I get home, tired, after a long day at work. That’s so much more valuable to me because there are far more work days than lazy weekends anyway! 🙂
Thank you Emily! I’m so glad it’s useful.
I, for one, will love looking forward to more of your ‘imperfect’ recipes!
Kathleen Bauer says:
Yes, please, post more! And forget about perfect pictures. It’s real food cooked in a real kitchen (by a real person, no less!).
julie glasgow says:
I have recently returned from preparing butternut squash for the Election night supper crowd in Middleport, NY . The butternut squash seems to possess many attributes that go unnoticed by many. Rows of stainless steel tubs filled with mashed squash were a beautiful sight.
My husband and I flew to Atlanta, GA from Buffalo. While the hotel in Atlanta, I enjoyed a pickle plate that contained liberal amounts of okra and boy of boy was I thrilled! All foods had a wonderful taste, but I noticed that those in Midtown Atlanta seemed to like sweetness. I am more of a sour dill sort of girl!
Thank you for your latest article, it loaded my jet lagged brain with renewed energy for my trip to Hillsdale Farmers’ Market. J
Keep ’em coming! Every fall, I eagerly return to your delicata / carrot hash w egg… happy to trade some photo tips for more recipes!
Yes, we all benefit from that trade:)! Thanks Andrea!
This is what I subscribed to your blog for. So glad to see it’s back