Thursday, June 30, 2011

Who's driving this thing?!

Well hello there!

Apologies for terrifying you
with this photo, but it's best
you learn upfront what kind
of crazy you're dealing with.
     And welcome to the first entry of The Learning Curve-the place I plan to share all my successes and misfortunes in the kitchen as I experiment with the love of my life, food.  I've got big plans for this little blog, and hopefully I'll see some repeat visitors soon! (By which I mean, once I actually post some recipes and make this thing look a little fancier than a 3rd grader's abilities could fashion.)
     But perhaps I'm jumping the gun a bit.  Really, it's quite rude of me not to introduce myself before plugging you all to become faithful followers.  So, here's a little bit more about who I am, what my goals are, and, most importantly, what kind of recipes I've got in store to share with you!

     First of all, my name is Becky, and I'm actually going to be a junior at my university this upcoming year (Fall 2011, in the event that I ever forget to come back and update this as time goes by) and am 20 years old, despite looking about 15 for the past 5 years. I study several things-I'm getting a BA (major) in Spanish, Arabic, and Anthropology with a minor in French.  As a side note, I've also studied the Chinese, Portuguese, and Korean languages at various points in the past, which should hint to you that I'm a pretty big nerd for travel and culture-the perfect excuse to try more exotic foods, no?
     I've got about a million other interests as well, a few of which I've stuck on my profile, but they don't serve too much purpose onwards!
     My interest in cooking and baking has come and go over the years. I actually remember being glued to the tv as a toddler watching cooking shows, and my mom swore I'd be a chef someday...but that time passed and my love for food stayed purely on the consumer side for a long time.  Then, one day out of the blue, in my sophomore year of high school we were asked to pick a career to research, just for kicks. What did I pick? Why, owning/working in a bakery of course!  That year I became obsessed with the Food Network and making as many delicious treats as I could manage, (usually boxed products, I should mention) and my foodie addiction blossomed.

     Enter college, 2009.  Living in a dorm. No real cookware. Stuck on a meal plan.  Eventually moving out of dorm, but no real time in which to cook.  I kid you not when I say I spent half of this last year living off of microwaved quesadillas, and the other eating boiled hotdogs.  No, really. Every. Day.  Don't get me wrong, after all that time I actually still love those foods, but, as it's summer and I have a LOT of free time this year, I thought I'd step my game up a notch.  I've been haunting food blogs and places like for about two months now, and slowly stealing and copying my mother's recipes whenever I go home.  Then, a few days ago, I decided, hey-why not try this "Recipe blog" thing myself?  I'm a smart, tech-savvy (well, sort of) 21st century girl...can't be that hard, right?
     Enter karma. Well, maybe not yet, but I'm sure she's on her way.  But until then, here are some things you can look forward to (or dread) from this blog:

  1.  My favorites of my mother's recipes. Obviously hers will always taste better, but I just can't be home to demand she slave over a hot stove for me every day, so the reality is that I may have to learn to rustle them up myself. Eek!
  2. Recipes stolen from around the internet, which I solemnly swear to link or give credit for to the best of my abilities.  Many of these will come from the ever famous Smitten Kitchen (already tried two!) or whatever I find on the aforementioned
  3.  Lots of baked goods. I can't help it, I have a HUGE sweet tooth. And I also love carbs.  So cookies, cakes, scones, etc are all just way too tempting for me to ignore. (Also tend to smother things in cheese, add extra salt, etc). However, I have been trying to eat healthier this summer, and am even finding my old childhood prejudices are melting away, opening new doors to savory delights. (God help me, I even crave TOMATOES old archenemy!) 
  4. Emoticons and smiley faces. I use them unapologetically and too often, so beware. Also, as you may have noticed, I am ungodly wordy with my writing. Whoops.
  5. I am, quite honestly, lacking in the fancy gear that many other food bloggers possess.  Not just kitchenware (though, as I have sadly discovered from one too many recipes calling for lemon zest when I have no zester, I could use some help there too), but also in things like a super-fancy camera with which to take GORGEOUS pictures of my IMPECCABLE dishes.  Yeah, the reality is, my digital camera was inherited from my grandparents and was probably born about the time I was finishing middle school.  So, you'll just have to bear with me, and trust my reviews of the food!

     Well, I think I've chewed everyone's ears off enough for now, metaphorically speaking, so that's that, and welcome to my experimental war zone known as The Learning Curve.  I encourage comments, questions, and, most definitely, any TIPS that more experienced chefs of the world would be willing to share with me!

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