Oct 22, 2009

i'm getting so bad at keeping this up. and to think, in two days it will be this blog's 6 year anniversary. can you believe it? it's so crazy. i've never done anything semi-consistently for 6 years. except be with craig. and be in elementary school. well, and live in chicago. but that's about it.

i am sort of laying low until i finish school, then i'll have lots more to share, lots more to do. and i think i'll reinvent this space. new colors, new template, new format. recipes to share, more photos. video? who knows. i think i've lost the meaning behind doing this, and i want to get it back.

in the meantime i'm planning a knock out thanksgiving menu, special canned christmas goodies, and trying to make the most of the last week or so of my 20's. i'm not sure how i feel about that right now. getting older. i contemplate that every year, but now i have a new number to get used to. three. oh.

xoxo. thanks for reading.

Oct 1, 2009

even though i've left the world of full time employment i find myself with less time to think about this blog and other blogs and websites i used to be so on top of. i guess it's because i'm out more - perusing farmers markets and visiting friends and cooking. (i even made a souffle for the first time the other day!) but i'm not parked in front of my machine for 8-10 hours a day. which is good for me right now. i've really honestly never been happier. i am so lucky to have the resources and the time to spend pursuing what i love - food and cooking. spending time with people who feel the same way. making (a little) money off of it. my good friend joel and i are starting a catering business. www.bermanpaige.com. frightening and exhilarating and we'll see where it goes. in the meantime i'm trying to soak in everything. and make connections and enjoy this time in my life when i'm able to take the time to do it.

also, i'm turning 30 in less than a month. i've known it has been coming, and i'm actually really excited. as much as i've enjoyed 29, 30 is only bound to be better. i'm not one of those people who reminisces about their early 20's as the best years of their lives. i didn't know who i was or what i wanted out of life then. in my 20's i married the love of my life, moved to a new city, started my culinary path by experimenting with dinner every night, which was all wonderful. but things have only gotten better since then, and i see them only growing from here on out. so 30, come on in. i have changed so much in the past year, this truly will be a new decade for me. i can't wait.

today was probably the most domestic day i have ever had. i did some laundry, tidied up the house, then trekked to the farmers market to do some shopping. honeycrisp apples, cranberry beans, heirloom tomatoes, pretzel rolls. met the husband for lunch - hannah's bretzel! came home and canned. canned a lot of jars of tomato based deliciousness. i've been intrigued by the idea for a long time, but have shied away from it (shied - doesn't that word look strange? i guess i've just never thought about how it was spelled, never typed it here, it's a funny word) for fear of botulism and exploding glass jars and who knows what. so i've been dabbling. i tried some watermelon rind pickles a few weeks back, and with my mother returning an empty jar with proclamations of "the best watermelon rind pickles ever" my confidence grew. pickled beets and onions were next - i had a few pounds of beets lying around that needed somewhere to live. i just ate one and...they're kind of great. i've been planning a massive tomato canning adventure and today was the day to make it happen. fresh farmers market heirlooms, you have met your match with me and my le creuset, my ball jars and my citric acid. boom! three pint jars of quartered homegrown tomatoes. nine eight-ounce jars of sweet and spicy tomato catsup (thank you, st john, for the beautiful recipe) and three pint jars of yellow heirloom puree, to give us some vibrancy to our winter menu. i'm ordering a pressure cooker/canner for lower acid vegetables and meats, and can't wait to try out some more recipes. i am looking forward to stocking our pantry with jars of farmers market finds. a few more weeks to go and we'll be in winter mode. i like to be prepared.

and now i'm preparing a dinner of cider glazed pork loin, braised cranberry beans, leeks and tiny sweet baby tomatoes with a simple green salad with some sort of vinaigrette that i have yet to decide on. life is good and i can't wait to see where it goes from here.