I'm still getting my energy (and my cooking jones) back after the whole Hamthrax World Tour '09, so today's entry is a fun survey from over at Whoa Wren.
(To be clear, I am not sick--at least, not really. My best friend most likely has H1N1, as 85% of new flu cases in Austin right now are that strain, but the CDC's backed up six months so there's no way to be 100% sure. I had a fever and am still feeling puny, but am not seriously ailing, and I stayed home until I'd been feverless for 24 hours as per my doctor's instructions. Even if what I had wasn't the flu--and it could have been a zillion things as I spent 10 hours in the ER Sunday night--we felt it was best just to treat it like it was in terms of contagion. But I'm fine, don't worry, and my BFF is doing much better.)
1. Favorite non-dairy milk?
Still Almond Breeze vanilla, although I tend to buy Silk a lot too.
2. What are the top 3 dishes/recipes you are planning to cook?
Tamales, veg pot roast, and the raspberry swirl Limoncello pound cake from Urban Vegan.
3. Topping of choice for popcorn?
4. Most disastrous recipe/meal failure?
Oh, there have been many. Actually most of the time my foodfails don't turn out bad so much as flavorless; there was the Rice of Blah a while back that I never could bring myself to finish; it was much, much better with a lot of salt and a quick pan-fry, but it still didn't blow my skirt up. It didn't even intrigue me enough to try again and see what I could do to improve it. As I've said, I don't really like rice despite my many attempts to force myself.
5. Favorite pickled item?
You know, not every vegetable should be pickled. Honestly, people. Cucumbers were good enough for my grandma and they are just fine with me.
Actually my grandmother pickled okra and a lot of other scary things, but she also drank a lot of vodka, so I don't hold it against her.
6. How do you organize your recipes?
Oy. "Organize" is kind of a misnomer for what I do. Right now my system is more a series of borderline-OCD behaviors, and it goes a little somethin' like this:
- Buy a cookbook or magazine and devour it, flagging intriguing recipes with Post-it page markers. Leave cookbooks in stack on coffee table for about one month.
- After Owen has knocked the books off the table six to eight times, go back through books and write down the recipes, page numbers, and book title in a spiral notebook divided up by recipe type so that next time I'm looking for, say, a tasty cake idea, I can go to "Cake" and find all the recipes I thought sounded good instead of going back through every single book.
- If a recipe comes from a magazine, cut it out and paste on cardstock that is three-hole punched to fit in the Book of Feasts, my big blue binder of "tried and true" recipes that I use all the time; the back is devoted to magazine clippings, e-books I printed out, et cetera.
- If the recipe turns out great, make a page for it on the computer, print it out, and place in a page protector in the Book of Feasts. Then scratch off of "to try" notebook. Lastly, find original recipe in book and write notes, in pencil, about how it turned out and what I changed, so that next time I'm reading through all my books because I'm just sure I have another tofu marinade in there somewhere, I'll know I already tried the Carrot and Parsnip-Crusted Tofu with Kelp and Rhubarb Marinade from page 23 of Vegan? No Fucking Way!
Trash and garbage disposal, but I've been saving my veggie leavings to throw in S1ren's compost pile, if I ever remember to give them to her. Right now I have a giant freezer bag for my various castoff bits.
8. If you were stranded on an island and could only bring 3 foods...what would they be (don't worry about how you'll cook them)?
Potatoes, garlic, and tofu. Those three things would probably combine best with whatever else I found on the island that was edible.
9. Fondest food memory from your childhood?
Sitting on my grandmother's porch with her and my mom, snapping the tips off green beans fresh from the garden.
10. Favorite vegan ice cream?
11. Most loved kitchen appliance?
Appliance...hmm. Probably my spice grinder. It's not quite as punk as banging the shit out of spices with a hammer, but it's far easier on the ears.
12. Spice/herb you would die without?
Salt. And cumin.
13. Cookbook you have owned for the longest time?
Regular cookbook: the Southern Living Cookbook
Vegetarian cookbook: the Enchanted Broccoli Forest
Vegan cookbook: Vegan with a Vengeance
14. Favorite flavor of jam/jelly?
15. Favorite vegan recipe to serve to an omni friend?
Any sort of dessert. My wee mocha pies are one of my favorites, as are the tiramisu cupcakes from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World. Best question ever: "Are you sure these are vegan?"
16. Seitan, tofu, or tempeh?
17. Favorite meal to cook (or time of day to cook)?
Dessert at midnight. Naked.
18. What is sitting on top of your refrigerator?
A basket of dish towels, several bottles of liquor, and a cat who knows better but it seems cannot be stopped.
19. Name 3 items in your freezer without looking.
Frozen broccoli, a Celebration Roast, and a bag of compost leavings for S1ren.
20. What's on your grocery list?
At the moment: cat food (both crunchy and gooshy), sorbet, flour, bananas (anyone else ever feel like that word is *never* finished?), Honeycrisp apples (my favorite kind).
21. Favorite grocery store?
The Whole Foods flagship here in Austin, definitely, but I do most of my shopping at Central Market as it's cheaper and closer. WF is more like an amusement park than a grocery store, really.
22. Name a recipe you'd love to veganize, but haven't yet.
My veggie lasagna. It involves three kinds of cheese, and while I'm convinced the tofu ricotta recipes I've found would work just fine, I'm still too chickenshit to try all the vegan "melty" cheeses. Thinking perhaps a different topping would be a nice alternative.
23. Food blog you read the most. Or maybe the top 3?
and Fat-Free Vegan Kitchen, although I've discovered quite a few new ones thanks to this year's MoFo.
24. Favorite vegan candy/chocolate?
Chocolove's Cherries & Almonds in Dark Chocolate. Yumyumyum.
25. Most extravagant food item purchased lately?
I guess the Celebration Roast I have in my freezer. Those things are freaking expensive...but sooooo tasty.
26. Ingredients you are scared to work with?
Anything involving sea vegetables.