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Meet the Cook: prvrbs31gal

Jun
4

Post by community member:

Say hello to prvrbs31gal originally from Massachusetts, now living near Virginia Beach!


Food interests: I am attempting to eliminate most processed foods from our diet. It’s a long, slow journey but I enjoy it. .

Hobbies: Beekeeping, baking, gardening, reading, papercrafting, and cross-stitching.

Q. What are your favorite things to cook?
I am not a fancy cook and I don’t use exotic, hard-to-find ingredients. I love to make comfort food, but have recently started gardening and really enjoy cooking with the veggies and herbs I’ve grown/preserved. I also love to can.

Q. How/when did you learn to cook?
Some of my earliest memories are watching Mom can the tomatoes at the end of every summer. I come from a long line of home cooks, but I never really started cooking for myself until after college when I was living on my own. I loved to try new things, and my brother and sister-in-law still tease me about the time I made meatballs with raisins in them. (I don’t remember, nor do I deny…)

Q. Tell us about some of your cooking triumphs.
I never made chicken and dumplings until after I got married and discovered they are one of hubby’s favorite meals. After countless attempts at replicating my mother-in-law’s dumplings, I finally gave up and decided to do my own thing. I knew the recipe was a winner when my father went back for seconds. (He doesn’t usually eat carrots, celery, OR onions without complaining!)

Q. What was your most memorable cooking tragedy?
This one is easy. I was brought up with the mentality that nothing gets wasted, and leftover veggies and meat got dumped into a pot and recycled into soup. It was always good.

After I got married, I made a soup with veggies and some leftover chicken. Unfortunately, it was marinated chicken and it made the soup taste really disgusting. I was heart-broken! But nothing gets wasted, right? So I simply decided to strain out the bad-tasting broth and start over using the same veggies and the chicken (now devoid of its marinade). Hubby walked in after work as I was at the sink with the colander and just shook his head when I explained what happened. “Why didn’t you just throw it away?” he asked.

Honestly, I can’t remember if the soup that finally resulted was good or not. I just remember thinking I had a lot of work to do on the husband… How could he even THINK about throwing away a whole pot of food?

Q. Describe your kitchen. Do you love it, hate it, and why?
Mostly, I love it now that we’ve replaced the pink fake-marble laminate that was here. It’s the first kitchen that’s ever been truly mine. (As a military family, we’ve always rented, but finally bought our first house this past August.) I love the new counters and the deep sink and the new faucet. I love the WW II poster images I’ve decorated with. We added a craigslist island, but there’s still not enough storage. The thing I like the least is that the stove is on one wall with the refrigerator. The sink is on the opposite wall (with the island in between). I have cooked extensively in eight different kitchens, and this is the only one where the stove is not within arm’s reach of the sink. It’s very inconvenient. More information about the recent upgrades can be found here.

IMG_2091

Q. Is your pantry organized and are your kitchen drawers tidy? We need to know.
HAHAHAHA. My pantry is never organized, because there’s always a rush to unpack the boxes every time we move in. So stuff gets stacked on the shelves willy-nilly with no organization whatsoever. And that’s pretty much how it stays, until it’s time to move again! My drawers aren’t really organized either. But I know where everything is!

Q. Do you have any favorite family cooking traditions?
Thanksgiving wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without my Aunt Audrey’s extra special no-knead rolls and her creamed onions. (I’m the only one who eats them but that doesn’t stop me from making them.) I try to make my grandmother’s Swedish Cardamom Bread for Christmas and Easter but it doesn’t always happen. My mother-in-law has taught the girls and I how to make Kipfels, which are walnut-filled crescent cookies and have been in their family for several generations. When we live in winter climates, we always make snow cream with the first large snowfall of the year.

Q. What is the one gadget (or ten) you couldn’t do without in your kitchen?
1. My Kitchen-Aid mixer (a gift from my Aunt Audrey while I was still in high school and before I was even ‘into’ cooking).

2. My 5″ serrated knife from Henckels (I lost my original, and tried to live without it for weeks. I was miserable, and finally paid the $40 to buy a new one!) I use it all the time.

3. The scrubbers that Aunt Audrey crochets from tulle and the brown little scrapers from Pampered Chef. I use them for everything.

4. My food-processor. My original died a while ago and there was so much I couldn’t do! I usually purchase things from thrift stores, but I couldn’t wait until I found a good one, so I had to order a new one. Pure relief when it was delivered!

5. My Excalibur dehydrator. Especially now that I have the garden and can grow nearly year-round, it always seems to be running.

Q. If you had to take one food to a deserted island, what would it be?
Lasagna. Carbs, protein, and veggies… perfectly balanced meal 🙂

Q. What is your go-to comfort food?
Usually, the chicken and dumplings because I always have the ingredients on hand. (I use home-canned chicken and dehydrated veggies if I’m out of fresh, and homemade baking mix.) If Mom’s cooking, it would be pot roast, mashed potatoes, and peas. But then again, this New England girl loves nothing more than a slow-cooked BBQ beef brisket with sweet potatoes and coleslaw. It’s good to be back in the south!

A few of prvrbs31gal’s posts/recipes that’s been submitted to Farm Bell:

See all of prvrbs31gal’s recipes and/or blog posts!

prvrbs31gal blogs at Homesteading on the Homefront.

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Posted by on June 4, 2012 | Permalink  

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Comments

4 comments | RSS feed for comments of this post

  1. 6-4
    10:24
    am

    Nice to meet you!

    You know, I think the meatballs with raisins in them is a Sicilian thing. I found out last winter that my boyfriend had never seen the “Godfather” movies, so we had a movie night with all Sicilian food, including those meatballs. They were delicious!

    Here’s the link to the recipe: http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2011/02/sicilian-meatballs-in-pork-ragu-recipe.html

  2. 6-4
    5:38
    pm

    Pleased to meet you, prvrb31gal!
    Your kitchen looks like an inviting place.
    I don’t think raisins in meatballs is so strange….I do a meatloaf with raisins.. There’s salsa, toasted nuts, breadcrumbs, and spices…we like the combo of flavors.

  3. 6-5
    4:58
    pm

    I love your name! Thanks for sharing.

  4. 6-9
    11:37
    am

    What? you mean dried fruit with beef is laughable? But, but, I add currants in burgers, raisins or fine diced apricots in meatloaf. Didn’t even know it was Sicilian … just thought it was a lovely, lovely flavor combo.

    BTW, I laughed aloud with your kitchen tragedy because it struck a strong chord … and I thought I as the only one who sifted soup.

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