Tuesday, November 22, 2005

The great thing about writing some cookbook reviews for MSNBC.com is not just that my editor there, Gael, is brilliant and manages to help turn my babbling into something coherent, but that she also sends me extra cookbooks every now and then. Because I ALWAYS love a new cookbook.

I have been busy doing some winter reviews but finally finished them and can now go back to cooking for fun, and for that I dug into some of the other cookbooks that have found their way onto my shelves.

The New England Table mainly just made me miss New England. You are so pretty, New England! But your cuisine is a little boring! However, I did make brisket in a bag and Boston baked beans for a lazy Sunday, and it was perfect put on a pair of wool socks and light a fire food. If my fireplace worked. And if it wasn't Southern California. But it was delicious nonetheless.

I was flipping through True Tuscan and decided some random bread-based gnocchi dish called, I kid you not, priest chokers (which sounds nicer in Italian, I imagine), would be a great way to use up the overgrown forest of chard from my garden. Except-- not so much. They tasted like mushy warm bread soaked in butter. Which is what they were, so at least that was assuring. Sometimes I try things just because I have no reference point for what they should taste or look like. This was not a time where that worked.

I am off to Texas for Thanksgiving and am a little relieved that my mom is doing all the cooking. I also plan on eating my weight in pecan pie.