In case you aren’t aware, I love to cook. I can’t say that I have always had this love but from about my sophomore year of college, I have grown to love food and thus cooking. Before marriage, I would make all of my co-workers happy because I was always trying recipes out and being single, there was always extras that I would bring to work. Of course, there were items that came out delicious and others that found their way quickly into the trash. Whether good, bad, or ugly, my passion for cooking only deepened and with the fresh farmer’s markets in DC and then my own garden, let’s just say my family never knows what they might get for dinner.
My hubby is from North Carolina and I grew up in NJ. He from a large family that farmed me from a small family that had a garden. He never having fresh herbs me with a mom that loved to cook and was always trying something different. Needless to say, when our worlds collided he would always joke that I have a tendency to be more Martha (Stewart) than Betty (Crocker). I have kept him full and happy for 8+ years now and he indulges me and my more intricate meals especially when balanced with some simpler goodies. He is still a kind of meat and potatoes guy but he is finally starting to branch out. Our kids on the other hand are culinary adventurers and follow my rule of you must eat something 3x before you can tell me that you don’t like it.
A few weeks ago, I joked about my mid-life crisis and a desire to try out for The Next Food Network Star. I have watched the show from the beginning and just like armchair quarterbacks, I think I can do it. Of course, I will watch HGTV and after watching someone build a shed, feel I can go and do that also. 😉
After talking to myself about this, while I think I can do it, I also think I should seek to expand my culinary knowledge. Being that I am not a chef and I am self-taught, I felt inspired to just learn more about cooking. Don’t worry, I am not going to cook all of the recipes in a famous chef’s book and blog about it being that has already been done. 🙂 I will share about my culinary journey.
Whew – that seemed to have been a mouthful. Right now, I have zucchini and squash coming out of every orifice on my body. My hubby laughs because he only likes them fried hard, it’s the southerner in him. Of course, I put zucchini in our pasta salads, baked pastas and a host of other ways. One of my faves since I was a little girl is zucchini bread. This recipe makes 2 loaves so I always freeze one and there isn’t much better in the morning than a slice with some coffee.
2 cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
2 cups grated zucchini
3 teaspoons vanilla
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
3 teaspoons cinnamon
pinch of nutmeg
Preheat oven to 350 degrees, oil and lightly flour 2 bread loaf pans.
1. In a large bowl, combine salt, baking soda, baking powder, flour, cinnamon, and nutmeg, set aside.
2. Mix eggs, sugar, oil and vanilla with mixer.
3. Gradually add flour mixture to egg mixture just until incorporated – batter will be thick.
4. Add grated zucchini and mix by hand until just blended.
5. Split mixture between pans and bake for 50-60 minutes or until tester comes out clean.