Wednesday, December 22, 2010

My Mother's Cookbook has Arrived!

After a long year of compiling, testing, typing, blogging, eating, scanning, and designing, "My Mother's Cookbook" is done!

I learned so much along the way, not only about ingredients and techniques, what I can do in the kitchen (and what I really need to work on!) but also about the world of food blogging. I have been so inspired by the many great food writers and bloggers out there—you have opened my eyes to so many interesting ways to write about cooking. I don't know where this blog will go next (other than on the shelf for a while, as I welcome my new little girl into the world), but thanks to all of you, I know anything is possible: White Fluffy Icing, Orangette, and The Wednesday Chef to name just the three that were thanked in my cookbook, but also Big Girls, Small Kitchen, Cook That Book, Foodycat and many others.

Of course, all of the credit goes to my mother for supporting me through this project, answering my frantic phone calls when I was in the middle of a recipe card trying to figure out what to do next, or why an ingredient was listed but never mentioned in the recipe, or how long something was supposed to bake in what temperature oven since those details were not listed on the card...anyway, I guess someday I will impart undecipherable recipes to my daughters and they will be equally frustrated. Or they will just pull "My Mother's Cookbook" off the shelf and everything will be perfectly clear!

Pick up a copy today at if you are interested—hard cover and soft cover versions are available—or just flip through the pages and enjoy.

Like I said, I think the blog will go on the shelf for a while...maybe it will re-emerge with a different project in 2011, maybe the cookbook will be the next selection on Oprah's Book Club. Wherever this experience takes me in the new year, I'm just proud to have a finished product sitting in the cookbook rack in my kitchen and the memories of a year spent cooking, learning, and making my mother so incredibly happy. Worth every minute!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Making My Mother Proud

Now that the cookbook is finished and I have 76 pages of wonderful recipes in readable form (NOT on recipe cards in a disorganized pile on my counter), I can show off my new skills in the neighborhood with relative ease. I typically make a little sampler of goodies for a handful of neighbors on our street; this year I chose 4 of my mother's recipes that are real holiday favorites: Cranberry Orange Relish, Poppyseed Wine Cake, Coconut Macaroons, and Cinnamon Sugar Pecans.

[You can find all of these recipes in the cookbook or here on the blog...I haven't announced the cookbook here yet because I haven't had an opportunity to show my mom the final product. I would hate for her to see the electronic version first! I did post a preview of it my Facebook page; if you are friends me with, check it out there. More to come on the cookbook early next week. ]

My mother traditionally has baking days during the holidays to create goodie baskets like these for her friends and neighbors. And she'll have dessert parties during the holidays where the amount of baking would boggle your mind. So I think she would be proud that even in my current state, I had time to devote to spreading a little holiday deliciousness just as she has been doing year after year.

I picked up some .99 baskets and 100 cellophane bags for $14.00, the jars were $10 for 16, and the ingredients all told were probably no more than $20 since most of them are common staples you have in your pantry anyway. So in the end, 8 baskets of goodies = about $50 total spent on spreading some tasty holiday cheer up and down the street.

Happy Holidays!!!