A Trip Out West, American Home Cooking By Bill & Cheryl Jamison, & A Charming Montana Bookstore

Oh, am I sooo glad I am home if for anything more than just being able to blog again! I tried to access my blog while on a 9 day trek across the Western & Northern US, but alas I was unable to have contact with you guys. I was seriously going through some major withdrawals! We arrived home late last night and I couldn’t wait to get my latest blog up for you guys, and to tell you about our fantastic trip!

We left Wisconsin on Friday afternoon and headed straight to Wall, South Dakota, only stopping for gas along the way and then finally finding the cheapest hole in the wall hotel that accepted pets. The plus side was we got a good night’s sleep, and only paid $35 for it. Wall is home of Wall Drug, a glorified tourist trap that we had visited once before and not been very impressed with. Perhaps it was touring it in the beginning of March, I’m not sure…but it is a sight to see and it perfectly emulates an old Western town.

 

 

Wall, South Dakota March 2012

From Wall, we headed to Sheridan, WY where we stopped to eat at one of their best local restaurants: Wyoming Rib & Chop House. On this trip we were so lucky to have tried so many amazing restaurants and to try local foods. If in the area of Sheridan, I strongly suggest eating here, the food is incredible. They do also have other restaurants across the country, so check them out. You’ll seriously have the best ribs & steak of your life. Of all the places, Wyoming Rib & Chop House & J Gilbert’s in Kansas City beat out their competition by far.

In Thompson Falls, Montana, Travis spied this gorgeous book shop, Bearly Read Books & More off the side of the road and asked if I wanted to go, knowing full well how much I LOVE bookstores. This one did not disappoint. Owned and operated by a Minnesota native, it is small and cozy with a collection of antique teddy bears and other notable antiques throughout. I made my way to the back of the store where I found a kitchen, fully operational and stocked with cookbooks galore. It is here that I found my most recent literary gem and most prized possession: American Home Cooking: by Cheryl Alters Jamison & Bill Jamison, a husband & wife foodie team. I later found out that the couple has written numerous other books, and won multiple awards including several James Beard awards, which are highly coveted amongst food writers, chefs, etc. The owner had the most adorable italian greyhound, and the fattest & most adorable cat I had ever seen and she granted me permission to photograph them all…photos coming tomorrow!

Things to do int Thompson Falls, Montana

 

Owner with Italian greyhound and fat cat

 

The book though, has inspired me to use it as inspiration for this blog and I have come up with a plan for using some of the recipes as fodder for my own creations. I love American food, the majority of the time my food that I cook is very American-ized, unless it’ s Italian…I think you guys are going to love this new direction. Very homey foods, and some very surprising ones! If you are an avid cook, or you know one I would strongly suggest this book as a gift. It is so much more than just a cook book. It has so much interesting information and you can get it for a whopping $10 shipped on Amazon, which in my opinion is an exceptional deal!

Best Cookbooks!
In Helper, Utah we ate at a fantastic restaurant called Balance Rock Eatery & Pub, locally owned by a wonderful family man. He even came out and chatted us up while we enjoyed our meal, asking a lot of questions and filling us in on the local history. He also invited us to view the building, which was beautiful and incredibly historic, featuring beautiful local art and artists.  Helper is also home to the Devil’s Gates, a rock formation which was recently modified to accommodate widening the highway through it.

 

 

Restaurants in Helper, Utah

 

 

 

Balance Rock Eatery & Pub, Helper, Utah

In Vernal, Utah we visited the Dinosaur National Monument which is simply incredible. For kids, and dinosaur lovers alike, I strongly recommend this place. It is so incredibly surreal to see all these dinosaur fossils perfectly preserved in an approximately 50′  x 20′ high rock embankment. You can also view the rest of the park and see more live fossils, fossilized tracks of real dinosaurs, hieroglyphs, and an old cabin belonging to local residents. The whole thing is locked down like Fort Knox too, making it seem as though you’re entering into a modern day Jurassic Park. It’s truly incredible and comes highly recommended!

 

 

 

 

 

On our way to Kansas City, we needed a break so Travis pulled off the highway into Quinter, Kansas and we happened upon Ray’s Pharmacy & Q-store, one of the very few operating old fashioned soda stands in the US. When you walk in to the pharmacy, off to the right you’ll see the most beautiful 31′ soda bar that you have ever seen. All lovingly restored and brought back to life by Ray & his family. This is another spot that comes highly recommended by both of us. One old fashioned soda here and you’ll be wondering how you can ever go back to mass produced soda again!

Our trip was beautiful, wonderful, and so full of wild American beauty. Getting off the highway and enjoying some of these hidden gems is the very best part of our journey. We truly feel that we’ve seen some of the most beautiful parts of America, parts many people will never see, just by exploring off the beaten path. I urge you to try it the next time you’re on vacation, or planning one. Sure, it’s great to go to sandy beaches with hot temperatures and blue, blue oceans and seas, or to travel abroad…but there is something to be said about traveling your own country and learning about the beauty that makes up our little slice of home.

 

 

(To view reviews on this trip, please visit my Trip Advisor account where you can read all my reviews on this trip and many others, including local restaurants.)

Sinful Chocolate Hershey’s Kiss Mini Cupcakes! | Sin & Soul Food Blog

Rich & Fudgy, Moist Chocolate Cake Recipe

 

Sinful. Soulful. These cupcakes are the epitome of Sin & Soul. When I ate my first one, I nearly died. 3 more later, and I was trying to come up with ways to keep myself out of the kitchen. Then T came home and it was trying to come up with ways to stop him from shoving 3 in his mouth at one time. They are THAT good. Most definitely one of the best chocolate cake recipes I have ever made, possibly the recipe that’s going to have me putting Weight Watcher’s on speed dial.

Filled with a half hershey’s kiss, topped with homemade chocolate ganache, and topped again with the other half of a hershey’s kiss and these are a chocolate lovers dream.

But beware! If you’re like me, you’re going to find yourself eating the whole batch by yourself.

Begin your cake by making the chocolate ganache. It needs a lot of time in the refrigerator to set up. Mine sat for 4 hours, it can sit for longer. The longer you allow it to sit, the more it will firm and set up. You want this to be piping consistency.

In order to make the ganache you’ll need a double boiler…but secret. I don’t have a double boiler, and to be honest you really do not need a double boiler if you know how to do this right. I’m going to teach you how. First, you’ll need a large saucepan and a bowl that fits into the saucepan well. Fill the saucepan with about 2 inches of water and then place the bowl on top of the pan. Bring the water to a simmer. Only. Don’t let the water boil.

 

Substitution or Solution for a double boiler

Your water should look like the photo below. Teeny tiny, baby bubbles. If it starts to boil, reduce the heat.

 

What water should look like for double boiling

 

Once the water reaches that boiling point, add your chopped chocolate to the bowl and proceed to melt.

 

 

 

 

 

Mmmmm…Are you drooling yet? I’m not ashamed to say I am…and I already ate a half a dozen of these…mmmmhmmmm. Once your chocolate reaches this point, add your heavy cream to the mix.

 

 

Homemade Chocolate Ganache for piping

 

Hey! I already warned you that this wasn’t exactly low calorie…but it’s sooo worth it. Promise. After the cream is added, briskly whisk until it all combines and becomes creamy. The chocolate at this point can be poured on cake or ice cream, whatever. But, for this recipe I wanted thick chocolate ganache that I could pipe. For that, the ganache needs to go in the refrigerator for 4 hours or more in order to set up properly. I know, waiting isn’t my strong suit either.

In the meantime though, to keep your mind off the deliciousness in the fridge, you can start your cake. For the cake, you’re going to have a ton of left over batter. You can cut it in half, or you could make the whole thing and give as treats to friends and neighbors. Believe me when I say your neighbors will love you for this. You might even have them fighting to clear the last of the winter snow from your driveway, or help you bring your groceries in. I made the whole thing and made a delicious cake with it.

 

The star of this show is sour cream. It makes a rich and moist cake so much  more than just milk could. After you combine all your dry ingredients in a large bowl, you want to bring together the wet ingredients in a separate bowl. Once the wet ingredients are thoroughly combined, you can pour them into the dry with the exception of the hot water. That will be the last ingredient added after all the wet and dry have been thoroughly combined, by mixing for 2-3 minutes.

 

Chocolate Ganache for piping

 

Once the hot water has been added and mixed until smooth, you can pour it into your prepared pans. For me, I used a 24 count mini cupcake pan and then made a large cake with the rest of the batter. For the mini cupcakes, 1 T. of batter into the liners worked perfectly. After the batter is in the liners, add a half of a Hershey’s Kiss to the top of the batter. Don’t let it sink! Just put it right on top. Also, when you cut the kisses, be careful and cut right from the center in order to maintain the integrity of the kiss. Use a very sharp knife and cut slowly. Careful for the precious digits!

 

Mini Hershey Kiss Chocolate Cupcakes

 

Bake for approximately 7 minutes for mini cupcakes and 15-20 minutes for a full cake. However, make sure you watch your cake. When it has doubled in size, it is typically ready to be checked for doneness. If it is cracking in the top, it is also done. Once the cakes are done, pull them from the oven and let it cool. Once your cake has cooled, add your ganache and the other half of your Hershey’s kiss and be prepared to wow everyone in site. These little guys are packed with delicious chocolate flavor. Sinful & Soulful.

 

Moist & Rich Fudgy Chocolate Cupcakes

 

I hope a lot of you try this recipe. You are going to love it, I promise!

 

Fudgy Chocolate Cake

Ingredients

  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 3/4 cup flour
  • 3/4 cups cocoa
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 1 cup boiling water

Directions

Step 1
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Prepare baking pans.
Step 2
In a large mixing bowl, combine first 6 ingredients and mix very well. Make a well in the bowl and set aside.
Step 3
In a separate medium bowl, combine sour cream and milk and mix well until there are no lumps. Add the remaining wet ingredients with the exception of the hot water and mix well.
Step 4
Pour wet ingredients into dry and mix for 2-3 minutes or until there are no dry lumps. Be sure to scrape the bottom of the bowl. Pour the boiling water into the bowl and mix well, about 1 minute.
Step 5
Pour batter into prepared pans and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Chocolate Ganache Frosting for Piping

Ingredients

  • 12oz bittersweet chocolate (or whatever chocolate you prefer)
  • 1 cup Heavy Whipping Cream

Directions

Step 1
Using a double boiler, or a bowl placed over a pot, bring approximately 2 inches of water to a simmer.
Step 2
Chop chocolate into fine chunks. Add to bowl over simmering water and melt.
Step 3
Once chocolate has melted, remove from heat and pour whipping cream into mixture. Briskly whisk until the cream has thoroughly combined with the chocolate leaving no traces of white or marbling.
Step 4
Cover bowl and refrigerate for 4 or more hours.
Step 5
Pipe or frost cakes when set, and serve.

Julia Child Homemade White Bread, Chocolate Surprises, & Simple Cinnamon Rolls | Sin & Soul Food Blog

 

Julia Child's Homemade White Bread Recipe

 

Yep. You just read that title correctly. Triple whammy today. I like to do things in 3’s.
To be honest though, I really only have one bread pan. Then I started making the Chocolate Surprises, and realized I didn’t want THAT many of them so I started making Cinnamon Rolls with the remainder of the dough. Makes sense, right?

 

I also figured that since I had abandoned you for what seemed like forever that you deserved a good post today. No worries though, I have lots of plans up my sleeve. Zuppa Toscana, Homemade chicken pot pies, and a DIY craft are all in store, so stay tuned over the next week. Lots of deliciousness to come. If you haven’t already added me to your RSS feed, please do! I would love to  know I am not just talking to myself here. I’d do this anyway, because it’s enjoyable and it is a good record of all the delicious food I make.

 

 

Let’s face it, sometimes people in your own home take for granted the delicious food you make and all you do for them, so this blog is a great way for me to see that what I am doing is pretty awesome, whether I get credit for it or not. :)

I love making homemade bread. The repetitive processes and the smell of a house in the midst of bread baking is simply incredible. I remember my mom making bread when I was a kid, and sneaking into the kitchen to watch her, kneading the dough. The kitchen was usually off limits when mom was cooking, but for some reason when she made bread she would let me in there with her. Watching her was like magic, it was also good bonding time because she would talk to me and tell me what she was doing and why. Bread making days were happy days in my house.

Now I get to bring that happiness into my own home. Pups were wondering what the heck was going on and kept coming in, sniffing, walking out. Coming back, laying on the rug, and just watching mumma. So silly boys, sometimes I wish I knew what was going through their heads.

The first step to making bread, is good yeast. Don’t use something you’ve had in the cupboard forever. Use as fresh as possible. Also, make sure you have enough flour in the house. This recipe requires 7 cups of flour, which is about a half of the normal size bag. You don’t want to get started on this and then realize you don’t have enough flour. Anyway, mix the yeast with water and sugar. Mix it well, until it forms frothy bubbles.

 

Like so. Now let it sit for 5 minutes. Make sure to time it, don’t be like me and think ahhhh…it’s probably done. Nope. Time it.

 

 

Once the 5 minutes has elapsed, pour the yeast mixture, the remainder of water and 3.5 cups flour into your mixing bowl with your dough hook and combine. Once it has fully combined add the rest of your flour.

 

What does a dough hook look like?

 

Mix until well combined.

 

 

Don’t forget this next step. I did. It’s okay, and it still makes good (fat free-ish) bread, but without the butter it just doesn’t have the tenderness, and the richness. I could have kicked myself when I realized I forgot. We all make mistakes right? I also suppose if you want your bread to have less calories/fat you could choose this route too…but now I am going to have to overcompensate and add a full tablespoon of butter to each slice of bread I eat. I’m probably not kidding.

 

 

 

When your bread is done, it should have good elasticity. Check it by pulling, it should look like the picture above.

 

Oh, and for those of you who didn’t believe I was a messy cook? Ummm…yeah, here you go. :) Explosion.

 

 

Once all your butter has been added, turn out on to a floured surface and form a ball with your dough.

 

 

Pretty.

 

Next, butter a large bowl. I just washed my mixer bowl and buttered it. See what I mean, by fat free”-ish”? Uh-huh.

 

 

Place your bread round in the bowl, cover with plastic wrap and go do something else for 45 minutes. 15 of my 45 was spent cleaning my kitchen.

 

Punch your bread down, divide in half and form 2 loafs. Or, if you’re like me…proceed to make fattening and delicious sweet things.

 

 

 

For my chocolate surprises, I just cut small squares of dough, formed a pocket and put a Hershey’s kiss on the inside. Seal it well, and leave to raise for 45 minutes more. (The bread loaf too.) For the cinnamon rolls, I combined 1/4C. brown sugar with 2 T. butter and 1T. cinnamon and slathered on the dough. Roll it up, pinch the sides and leave to raise for 45.  Preheat the oven to 375.

 

 

Once the 45 minutes has elapsed, slice the cinnamon roll, and put everything in the oven for recommended time or until golden brown. Pull everything out of the oven, and add icing to the cinnamon rolls, or caramel sauce. Whatever you choose. I left mine plain.

 

 

I got my Julia Child recipe from my Art of French Cooking cookbooks, you can find the recipe HERE. Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

Great Recipe Storage Idea! | Sin & Soul Food Blog

 

Recipe storage was a huge issue for me for a long time! Especially when it came to recipes I would print off the internet. I would find a great recipe, really love it, not have a place to put it and just throw it in my kitchen drawer with my cookbooks. Well, it’d get lost. Of course it would, I mean…what did I think would possibly happen? Inevitably, it would always be the best recipes too. Adding to that, I am a messy little cook in the kitchen. I get flour everywhere, and my kitchen looks like a bomb exploded by the time I’m done. That means food stuff all over my books and recipes, and just a MESS!  That’s when I came up with this idea.

 

A binder. You know, the ones kids keep their school work and all necessary papers in? Get plastic sheet protectors, slide your recipe in and VOILA! mess free and stress free. I originally had just a plain jane binder that I used…but this past Christmas my lovely mother got me a new binder from Pepper Pot that is made with Paula Deen in mind and it is perfect for me! Bright and cheery, and so nice!

 

 

The one thing that worries me is finding the incredible quality sheet protector replacements that come with this binder once I fill all the ones that were included. I’m going to get in touch with the company and see if they will sell replacements alone, if I find anything out I will let you guys know because these protectors are seriously the best I have ever seen.

 

On top of the awesome protectors, there is also a measurement chart, and substitutions list, which comes in handy greatly. There are also menu dividers and a notes section for special notes. This thing is awesome !

 

Moral of the story though? You don’t need a fancy binder like this one. You can easily make your own and customize it for yourself. Add your own papers, your own substitutions and notes, whatever you want. It’s easy, it’s cheap, and no more wondering what happened to that favorite recipe you printed off with the intention to cook. Easy peazy, lemon squeezy.

 

 

Food Is Love | Sin & Soul Food Blog

In my About Me page, I talk all about the fact that if I LOVE you, or in the very least just really like you a lot…I cook for you. If I go crazy and make a 4 course meal with a fancy dessert and all the little touches, you are one of the most important people in my life and this is how I say it without actually saying the words. They say men are the non-verbal species, they show their love in what they DO for you…but I think women are very similar in that respect.

When we love you, we cook for you, we clean for you, we do your laundry, rub your shoulders, take care of you when you’re sick, and on occasion we’ll do the chores that are “Yours,” without being asked to, and without asking for praise. Of course we need to be told more often how much we are loved instead of just shown…we’re not up on the non-verbal cues, but give a woman enough love and there isn’t a limit on how much she will do for you, give to you, or sacrifice for you. We are, in our very nature…sacrificial. Even when we don’t want to be, and especially when we have to be. For goodness sakes, nothing says sacrifice like carrying a child for 9 months. But when we know that sacrifice is for the greater good, we do it. No complaints.

This Valentine’s Day, instead of getting your wife/girlfriend something you think she wants…give her something that shows you KNOW the sacrifices she makes and you love her for it. Diamonds are nice, going out to eat is nice, these things are sure to make her feel special. But put some thought into it. Make her a meal at home…it’s not hard, it doesn’t need to be fancy. Throw some rose petals in a scented bath, light some candles, and leave the room to her. Tell her to relax. Add a new book and some magazines so she can read while she relaxes. Have your kids make something special for mom, do some research on crafts. They are all over the internet now-a-days, complete with tutorials and templates. Ask their teachers for some suggestions. Really THINK. Women appreciate these little things more than the diamonds, the flowers, the meal at a fancy restaurant. WHY do they appreciate them more? Because they really say I LOVE YOU, I *SEE* YOU.

And remember, food really IS love. <3

 

I love you I see you

Candied Lemon Slices & Lemon Cupcakes

TUESDAY, JANUARY 3, 2012

So, I’ve meant to have another blog post up wayyy prior to today, but unfortunately we have been so busy and our main computer with Photoshop on it is shared between myself and my boytoy, T. When I do get a chance to use it, it’s mainly used for working on clients’ photos and managing my blog. Obviously not this blog, and yes…I spend a lot of time “Pinteresting.” Funny, how in such a short period of time, Pinterest can develop it’s own verb. I am officially addicted! I kid you not. And if you find me on Pinterest, you’ll see why and probably develop your very own addiction. Don’t worry…we can start a support group.

Anyway, I have pictures all finished and ready to upload for my amazing Bacon Macaroni & Cheese, and I will be sure to get that uploaded tomorrow sometime. The boy helped me with a couple of the photos, simply because I really needed three arms and I wasn’t about to risk 3rd degree burns just over being stubborn. Believe me, I tried!
In my process of coming up with more blog fodder, I came up with a recipe I will be trying to develop very soon. Wait for it….Lemon Cupcakes with either Blueberry or Lemon filling, and candied lemon slices. I’ve even considered going with chocolate filling…mmmm. Maybe this is where I will head.

This Limoncello Meyer Lemon Cupcake photo came from www.52kitchenadventures.com
The recipe is included on the page, but originally came from Tartelette. Beautiful photography from the blogger, I was mesmerized. There were a lot of lemon cupcake recipes to choose from and I chose this one because of the very nice photographs. I also found a great recipe for candied lemon slices, but I will share that when I actually make them and have my own photos to share.
During my research tonight, I also ran across the cutest video EVER:
It’s You’re My Honeybunch “The Original Cuppycake Song,” sung by a 3 year old and it is just too adorable! I hope you enjoy. Since we’re on the subject of cupcakes once again, what are your favorite cupcakes and do you have a favorite recipe.

Chicken & Dumpling Soup | Food Blog

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 31, 2011

Brrrr….it is COLD out there! I live in Wisconsin, and even though we aren’t hitting record lows (we’re probably hitting record highs, in all honesty!) it is still pretty darn cold out there. Checking the temperature outside just now, we’re at 35 degrees which makes me feel like a baby for even complaining about how cold it is. But in my defense, it is still awfully gloomy. Which makes a great day for soup! Not just any soup though! A slightly smoky, rich & flavorful, dense & slightly creamy soup, with light & fluffy but slightly chewy inside; dumplings. Yep, that sounds perfect.

Except, I made it last night and today we ate leftovers. Don’t you fret your pretty little face though, I’m still going to share. Which brings me to my next thing. I’m a pretty good photographer. I spend a lot of time behind the camera. But food photography never ceases to successfully evade me. I’m not a food photographer as much as I may try to be. I’m working on it though! And I am going to master it, part of having a good blog is having GOOD pictures. I’ll get there, just be patient with me.

This recipe is slightly my own concoction, as mentioned earlier I am a fly by the seat of my pants type of girl when I’m in the kitchen. Little bit of this, little bit of that. I hardly ever write it down, and my boy: Travis, is always after me to “Write the stuff down!” I’m working on it. But for now, I’m slightly imperfect, but that will have to do. Hopefully you find the imperfections charming and endearing. (Yes, you’re allowed to laugh.)

So, I started this recipe with my Dutch oven. I like the flavors I get from it, and I have been using this thing non-stop since receiving it a couple of years ago. I want it to have that perfect flavor everyone raves about: seasoning. You don’t have to use one, you can use a plain old stock pot if you prefer.

Chicken Soup:2 cans low sodium Chicken Broth (Swanson)
1 can Cream of Chicken soup (I used Campbell’s)
left-over Rotisserie Chicken – I had about a half of one left.
roughly chopped
(include the gelatinous stuff.)
2 C. water
3 large carrots, sliced
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
fresh green beans, cut
Rubbed sage to taste (no more than 1 t.)
Poultry Seasoning to taste (no more than 1 t.)
salt & fresh ground black pepper to taste
In your pan, combine the broth, soup, and water. Stir until well combined over medium-high heat. If it starts to boil, turn it down to medium. If needed, add more than the recommended 2 C. of water. Once soup starts to simmer, add chicken, carrots, and onion. Save the green bean until the last few minutes of cooking so they still have some bite left to them. Also save the seasonings until last. Cook until onion is clear, and carrot is tender to the bite. Add green beans, and seasonings.
Dumplings (From Better Homes & Gardens New Cookbook)
1 C. flour
1 T. fresh or 1/2 T. dried parsley
2 t. baking powder
1/4t. salt
1/4 t. dried oregano
1 beaten egg
1/4 c. milk or half & half (I used half & half)
2 T. cooking oil
Combine all dry ingredients in a medium bowl and mix well. Make a well in the dry bowl. Combine wet ingredients in a small bowl. Pour wet into dry, stir until just combined. Don’t over-stir. The BHG Cookbook says to make 6 dumplings. I made a bunch of small, teaspoon size ones. Use your discretion, either way works perfectly. Make sure you are adding the dumplings to simmering liquid.
Serve soup in bowls with sprigs of fresh parsley as garnish, or chives.

I hope you enjoy this soup recipe! It’s New Year’s Eve, let’s say good-bye to 2011 and Hello! to 2012. Thanks for tuning in to my food blog this year, I’ll see you guys again next year. Stay safe, & happy! Now go get your Midnight Kiss!

Erica Bauermeister School of Essential Ingredients & Molly Wizenberg A Homemade Life | Food Blog

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 28, 2011

 

Thankfully there are not enough followers here yet to pick at me about the fact that it’s taken me almost 2 years to write another blog post. Yep, this baby started in March of 2010 and here it is the end of December 2011 and I am just now thinking about my food blog I started and whatever happened to that, anyway?

Well, at least I am coming back to it I suppose. Ha.

Anyway, I am still in love with the movie Julie & Julia. I’ve watched it several thousand more times since my Redbox rental way back when and I also own it. I can see it sitting in it’s honorary place amongst my other semi-alphabetized DVD’s. In fact, just writing this blog post makes me think that maybe I should watch it again.
Also since my last blog post, I came across a couple other food novels that left me absolutely breathless. Personally, I don’t feel as though there are enough cooking related literary masterpieces out there. Nora Roberts, one of my guiltless pleasures and mindless reading mecca’s has dedicated several of her books to cooking related plots and I can’t say how much I appreciate it. Anyway, one of the books was also based off of a blog, some of you may have heard of it and if you haven’t, Thankfully there are not enough followers here yet to pick at me about the fact that it’s taken me almost 2 years to write another blog post. Yep, this baby started in March of 2010 and here it is the end of December 2011 and I am just now thinking about my food blog I started and whatever happened to that, anyway?Well, at least I am coming back to it I suppose. Ha.

Anyway, I am still in love with the movie Julie & Julia. I’ve watched it several thousand more times since my Redbox rental way back when and I also own it. I can see it sitting in it’s honorary place amongst my other semi-alphabetized DVD’s. In fact, just writing this blog post makes me think that maybe I should watch it again.
Also since my last blog post, I came across a couple other food novels that left me absolutely breathless. Personally, I don’t feel as though there are enough cooking related literary masterpieces out there. Nora Roberts, one of my guiltless pleasures and mindless reading mecca’s has dedicated several of her books to cooking related plots and I can’t say how much I appreciate it. Anyway, one of the books was also based off of a blog, some of you may have heard of it and if you haven’t, I highly recommend you wander on over to Orangette and take a peek. Molly Wizenberg, the creator and author of A Homemade Life: Stories & Recipes From My Kitchen Table, successfully wrote one of the most important books of my lifetime. I’m not kidding! It is so beautifully written and at moments, incredibly bittersweet. I highly recommend both it, and the Orangette blog.
The second book was by Erica Bauermeister. The School of Essential Ingredients is a short novel, but a beautiful read. On top of it, Erica is such a down to earth person, only proven by her Facebook page that it seems she personally keeps up with and also answers fans. (Nora Roberts does too, by the way.) For both Molly & Erica’s books, I was compelled to write them personal notes of thank you and gratitude, which I don’t feel compelled to do very often. A book really has to move me in order to do that…but I did and I was incredibly surprised when I received personal responses from both of them. I’m quite sure I will be a loyal fan & stalker forever, now.
Anyway, this blog post has gotten a little long and I had intended to share a recipe for Peanut Butter cupcakes but I think we’ll save that for tomorrow. And yes, Travis…I know you’re reading. I WILL do the blog post tomorrow. :)
So, what are your favorite food related books? I’m still looking for more, and need all the help I can get!

Welcome to Sin & Soul Food Blog | Sin & Soul Food Blog

MONDAY, MARCH 8, 2010

I will admit, I am a copycat…I recently watched Julie & Julia and the movie got me thinking that I should have my own food blog. I am constantly creating my own recipes and cooking up a storm in the kitchen. I thoroughly love to create food to fuel the people I love. To create an amazing meal is my way of saying “I love you.” I also enjoy photography and I feel this will be an excellent way for me to share my photos and recipes with those of you who are interested.My approach: I am all over the place. My interest in food runs the gamut, but there is one thing that is for sure…I really enjoy using fresh ingredients, and organic whenever I can get my hands on it. I love soulful, sinful things. The richer, the better.I had to laugh while watching Julie and Julia, when Julie…while writing her blog spoke of butter. I love butter, so much so that my boyfriend picks on me and thinks it is hilarious. No butter imitations for this girl. What blasphemy!!! The more butter the better! Popcorn is really only an accompaniment to my butter. Well, not quite. But in all seriousness, I do love the stuff.

I enjoy making easy, simple recipes that will take 30 minutes. But there are times I will spend hours upon hours in the kitchen, preparing the perfect loaf of bread or the most gorgeous cheesecake. Creamy and decadent. Hopefully this blog will be a way to share my recipes as well as my attempts at the recipes of great chefs whom I admire.

So, here’s to Sin & Soul. My new baby. May she grow to be a place that you all will love to come and visit. If you try a recipe, please leave a comment! I will love to hear from you.

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