Just like that, a year came and went and my little blog is celebrating another birthday. 2! It’s been 2 years since I started arming myself with the camera upon entering the kitchen. 2 years of using my blog as a reason to spurge on figs at the grocery store. 2 years of sharing words, pictures, and recipes.
Let’s use this milestone as an excuse to take an afternoon coffee and cake break (like I need an excuse…) and spend a moment looking back on some of the best recipes and my favorite posts of the year. Thank you for being here!
I love to travel and I love bringing home cooking ideas. A few of my favorite posts of the last year were inspired by place.
I wrote about escaping the rain in Paris and spending an afternoon in a cozy creperie, eating a Galette Complète. I remembered when I dared to eat chicken liver for the first time and shared a slightly different take on the traditional crostini toscani with my Chicken & Mushroom Pate. And I talked about Blitva, the garlicky sautéed chard and potatoes I had over and over in Croatia that I can never seem to get enough of.
One of my resolutions for the year was to cook more from other people’s recipes and teach myself a few new techniques.
I reconnected with my favorite Marcella Hazan cookbook and made, among other things, a delicious Calamari & Artichoke Soup, I was totally tickled when my boss gave me his recipe for Parisian Gnocchi to share with you, and I loved playing with a new ice cream making method with my Ginger & Rhubarb Swirled Ice Cream.
We had another long, hard winter so I came up with lots of new cold weather comfort dinners to carry me through like Baked Pasta with Pumpkin, Caramelized Onions & Chèvre, Polenta Bake with Italian Sausage & Lacinato Kale, and Mushroom, Leek & Artichoke Stuffed Shells.
There were at least a few drool-worthy dinners like Pancetta-Wrapped Pork Tenderloin with Date Jam, Red Wine Braised Duck Legs, Coriander, Fennel & Mint Lamb Meatballs, and Cider Braised Ribs with Cannellini Beans.
I was bit by a major baking bug this past year.
I went more cuckoo than usual at Christmas and came up with at least 3 recipes that are bound to become annual staples: Cranberry-Orange Quick Bread, Pistachio, Orange & Honey Florentines, and White Chocolate, Espresso & Hazelnut Pinwheel Cookies.
Looking back, I’m feeling…full. Though I’ve had some ups and downs with strawberryplum this year, I really love having an ongoing creative project and plan to keep it up, even if the posts aren’t as frequent as they were in the beginning. It’s so much fun to have a visual and written record and be able to dig through archives and cook a recipe I posted a year or 2 ago. Thank you for stopping by and thanks for letting me be a part of your life!
What will year 3 bring? Well, the recipe for the apple cake pictured at the top is definitely not something I can keep to myself–stay tuned!