Thursday, August 27, 2009

The View From My Kitchen

When my life gets stressful, overwhelming or just plain difficult, I head for the kitchen. I wish that I had inherited my mother's clean until everything sparkles gene, but alas, I did not. Instead, I cook. And cook. And bake. And then I bake some more.

In the early morning light I line ingredients up on the counters and brew myself a ginormous cup of tea. If I am feeling especially ironic, I pour my tea into this mug. I like to glare at it and say, What are you looking at? And then I laugh. It's cheaper than therapy.

Even though it has been a million degrees over here, I decided that Spicy Corn & Chicken Chowder was a brilliant idea. And it was. Fresh corn from the cob, jalapenos from my garden and crispy pieces of thick bacon easily came together in a creamy thick broth. It was even better for lunch the next day, which is the sign of a fantastic recipe. I improvised the recipe as I went along, making tons of changes, but the original recipe was from Gina Neely.

Since Christmas is only 4 months-ish away, I have been baking new cookie recipes to see if they make the cut for my cookie baking craziness. These Brown Sugar Praline Cookies absolutely are as delicious as they look. Not a cookie remained after 24 hours. The Raspberry Linzer Cookies that I posted yesterday also made the cut.

The Symphony Macadamia Nut cookies that I made were also very satisfying, but not quite special enough for Christmas. I am a Christmas Cookie snob. It's true.

Paizlee came in to the kitchen to "help" with the cookies while I was baking and repeated eleventy billion times, "Cookie? Cookie now? Now? Cookie now?" I gave her yogurt. And she was happy.

Although you technically can't eat play doh, it was made in my kitchen. I love homemade play doh specifically because it smells like my childhood. It is such a familiar, comforting smell. One day, perhaps my kids will feel the same way. It is such a fantasticly simple thing for kids to play with.

Plus, just think of all the money I will save on decorating.

And now I am heading back to my kitchen to pull the peach cobbler out of the oven and finish the Coconut Chicken Curry. Wish you were here to share it with us.


shopgirlaudi said...

Oh, my!!! Those cookies look DELICIOUS!!! May I PLEASE get the recipe for the Prailine cookies??? They look SO good:)

Patrizzia said...

I love love love your new header. That photo is amazing and I totally want one of those boxes and all those glorious bottles.

I hope your day is getting better.

Everything looks amazing!

Carmen O. said...

OMG your new header is FABULOUS! You always make me drool with your food and cookie recipes. Thanks for sharing you help make my day!!

aunt mur said...


now heading into my kitchen to pull out my raw peach cobbler and to duck and cover in the living room in case of explosion from possible gas leak from oven.

must protect the laptop, must protect the laptop. the kids will be fine, pssh, no worries.

Jessica Harrington said...


Michelle Lanning said...

Just so you know I may need to go over your house one day so you can share all the goodies you make -- mmmmm

Michelle said...

Estee, I swear you make THE BEST recipes!! They all so oh so good!! It would be so fun to spend the day cooking and baking with you.. chatting away!! Thank you, so much, for sharing!! :)

Susan said...

Hi Estee

I have to agree your header is fab and the corn chowder I have to try. I love watching the Neely's but never tried their recipes YET!! Can you email when you can and tell me the changes you made to your chowder. I love soup/chowder of any kind and my mouth watered when I saw your pic. Thanks for sharing.


Beverly said...

Oh how I would love to be your "back door" neighbor! You know, the kind of person you enjoy visiting with and are over so often that you welcome them in through the kitchen door? As long, of course, as you don't come empty handed, because these receipes and pictures leave me drooling:) I'm not sure my cooking even comes close to yours tho! Please please share some more recipies!!!!

Jane said...

oh my do I!!! I need to go on a diet just coming to your blog!!! lol!!! I always love popping in to see what you have up your sleve!!!