We have discovered cooking shows on tv. Which means we've also been trying out lots of different kinds of recipes that Nana never made. Some turn out okay, some are duds, but all are learning experiences.
A few weeks ago we saw a chef on Bravo's "Top Chef" make "Bacon-wrapped Shrimp", Bacon-Wrapped Shrimp with Grilled Corn & White Cheddar Cheese Grits. The Hater loved the idea of shrimp and bacon; I loved the idea of anything served with grits. So Monday we got everything together and came up with a big mess... a big tasty mess. I'm not a shrimp person, but my piece was really good. The Hater was excited that we had left-overs.
We've also been cooking with our new tajine after we saw someone cook with one on the Food Network. I don't remember the chef or the show, but the premise is that he goes around the world and eats awful things that would make Americans cringe. He eats some wild stuff, most of which we would never intentionally recreate in the kitchen. But on one episode he ate some kind of organ stew out of a tajine, but talked about how you could cook regular food in one, too. We had never seen one before and were intrigued-- so much so that The Hater picked one out for his birthday. We've probably cooked with it 4 or 5 times since then, and each time has been a success with easy clean-up. Last night we had another easy tajine dinner -- and The Hater has taken its leftovers to work.
We do not claim to be foodies. Serious chefs would die if they knew that we paired everything with whichever box of wine is open (or The Beast if we've recently had beer dogs). But we are so proud to have a kitchen where we can both work at the same time, and we like cooking for our friends. In my world that's more important than the most refined palate, at least on the days that we don't nuke a frozen pizza.