May 31, 2009

Show And Tell: Fun With Cooking

Musings of A Beautiful Mess

Lemon Bars....from SCRATCH!


I've been in this fun place where I actually WANT to try to cook/bake things I've never cooked/baked before. I am actually have a lot of fun, too! Usually when I try a new recipe, I freak out because I'm afraid it's going to taste horrible and nobody will want to eat it. Then, I'll be cranky and pissed off because not only did I waste money, but I wasted time and effort.

I got out my trusty cookbooks and marked a bunch of recipes to try, that I've never tried before. So far, every single one of them have turned out YUMMY! I can't take ALL the credit for them because Celia said she would help me if I had any questions. Silly woman gave me her email address and told me she doesn't mind when I email her and ask her cooking questions. She said she LOVES to answer my questions. I don't know how many times she has rolled her eyes at my question because she's been so kind and so gracious when answering my emails. THANK YOU CELIA, YOU ROCK!

The lemon bars pictured at the top were a HUGE hit! So much so that they disappeared very quickly and I was asked "when are you making another batch?" That one was added to the "keeper" list.
Crab cakes...from scratch

The crab cakes were really good. I thought they were a bit bland, but I was going for REALLY spicy. My dad and Husband really liked them. I might need to adjust the recipe a bit and add more breadcrumbs so the bits of crab will actually STAY in the cake. This one is on the "keeper" list, as well *YAY*


Chicken pot pie....from scratch-ish

This one is chicken pot pie. I was REALLY scared to try this one because I had NEVER done ANYTHING like this before. I didn't make my own pie crusts, but I did make my own chicken stock and used that instead of canned. Celia and In Due Time both helped me with this when I had a few questions about the stock. Thanks ladies! The chicken pot pie was SO delicious! Everyone had seconds and I've been asked to make it again! SCORE! Another keeper!

There will be lots and lots of experimenting and many more questions AND more pictures. I will admit when I've failed at something, so it won't ALWAYS be rainbows and sunshine!

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Head on over to Mel's and see what the rest of the class is showing.

35 friends have commented:

Cassandra on May 31, 2009 at 12:51 PM said...

Pie crust from scratch requires A LOT of special tricks to do well, so it sounds like you were wise to use packaged crusts for your first pot pie.

Enjoy the cooking and the eating!

Phoebe on May 31, 2009 at 1:30 PM said...

Wow, looks like you've mastered some difficult recipes in a short time, especially the chicken pot pie! I know when I'm feeling better by when I want to start cooking again. If I'm not cooking, you know something is wrong with me. Anything that has to do with food, I'm interested in, so keep it coming!!

Brenna on May 31, 2009 at 1:44 PM said...

Those look delish! I'm a sucker for tangy sweets like the lemon bars--DH made me a batch from scratch for my birthday once and I was in heaven! I also love lime bars and key lime pie. Mmmmm.

kate on May 31, 2009 at 2:10 PM said...

Yummmmm. I'll take one each of all the things you pictured, but especially the lemon bars! Oh, how I love lemon!

And pie crust sucks. I have one recipe that isn't a total pain in the ass (and also doesn't come out too terribly- a vegan oil crust), but I still prefer to just buy the frozen ones. In most cases, they are as good as homemade (or in the case of my homemade, they are better than!).

My name is Andy. on May 31, 2009 at 3:03 PM said...

We love lemon bars here, do you have a recipe to share, or better yet, can you Fedex me some?

Kristin on May 31, 2009 at 5:28 PM said...

Great pics and yummy recipes. Feel free to add me to the consultant list.

Lavender Luz on May 31, 2009 at 5:34 PM said...

Me want lemon bars.

Do we live close? Haven't you always wanted to live in Denver?

Parenthood For Me on May 31, 2009 at 5:57 PM said...

Good for you! I am not a cook. I could probably do better if I wanted, but my husband is the chef. But I know how it feels to make something and when it turns out good thinking, I can do this! Thanks for commenting on my blog. This loss is not profound like that of losing your mom. It was more scary and sad for my father. I don't know why it hit me so hard- an eye opener, I guess.

Liv on May 31, 2009 at 6:27 PM said...

Hey we're going to have to change your name to Beautiful Mess Crocker...or Beautiful Betty...or Betty Mess Crocker... oh dear - now it's getting just silly!

I love your keepers. They look fantastic. Great job and what a great resource you have in your email buddy.

becomingwhole on May 31, 2009 at 6:33 PM said...

lemon bars...my favorite (well, one of my favorites...there are so many!). Ditto on the FedExing thought...

WiseGuy on May 31, 2009 at 6:40 PM said...

LOLOL...I eat better than I cook!

Love the fact that you are so interested in cooking and can do things from scratch and be good at it.

Okay, time for stupid question: Chicken pot pie - is that a dessert or a main dish? Is it sweet?

IF Optimist, then... on May 31, 2009 at 7:05 PM said...

I LOVE lemon bars. Everything looks great. Cooking has always been a way for me to relax. I hope you had fun.

GeekByMarriage on May 31, 2009 at 7:35 PM said...

Yummmmmm

BTW

I would never prank you, Dani! That would be awful. I'll just call you at 2am drunk.

A Mom in Jacksonville, FL on May 31, 2009 at 7:36 PM said...

WOW! Everything looks delicious! You rock!

(I just emailed Geek for blog advice, thanks for the connection!)

FET Accompli on May 31, 2009 at 7:54 PM said...

Yummy - it all looks so delicious! Can't believe you made the stock from scratch! I did that once and it took a while... That chicken pot pie looks so good!

Jaymee on May 31, 2009 at 8:14 PM said...

thanks a lot for the twenty pounds i just gained by reading this post. YUMMY!!!!!!! i wish i had time to really get in the kitchen.

Emmy on May 31, 2009 at 9:46 PM said...

Those all look great! Hooray for trying new things and being successful!

JJ on May 31, 2009 at 10:07 PM said...

I looooove lemon squares--and yours sure look YUMMY!

Jenn on June 1, 2009 at 4:51 AM said...

Lemon bars......oohh.....how I wish I had known you were baking these. I would have asked you to make an extra batch to send to me.

It would have been the perfect gift to give to my mom for her birthday - she adores lemon bars!
She also adores reading your comments on my blog!!!!!

I don't bake often though I really should do it more.
Keep up the great work my dear!

HUGS

Coffeegrl on June 1, 2009 at 5:54 AM said...

Yum!! I love lemon bars and pot pies. I've got recipes for several pot pies - some use crust from scratch some don't. Delicious any way you cut it!

Sheliza on June 1, 2009 at 7:57 AM said...

OMG!! WOW! I am so impressed. What amazing goodies you've whipped up you rockin momma!

SS on June 1, 2009 at 8:17 AM said...

great work! You've actually got me hungry with those pics, which is an amazing feat given the round the clock nausea I'm experiencing.

natalie on June 1, 2009 at 8:23 AM said...

Awesome job! Everything looks delicious! :)

JamieD on June 1, 2009 at 8:31 AM said...

Mmmm . . . I think I gain weight just reading your blog!!

I would also be very intimidated by making chicken pot pie from scratch. The pie crust alone is scary enough but making your own chicken stock?!?! Maybe someday . . .

Deathstar on June 1, 2009 at 8:42 AM said...

I love all those foods! I would eat them all very gladly. Your family is so lucky!

Marie on June 1, 2009 at 8:55 AM said...

Oh man, too close to lunch to see that. So pretty and yummy looking!!

You just made me eat a butterfinger. I hope you are happy it was the only thing within arms reach.

alicia on June 1, 2009 at 10:02 AM said...

ahh why do you do this to me!! now I am soo hungry and the baby is crying and I can't eat anything :( booo!

eve on June 1, 2009 at 11:57 AM said...

I'm impressed! Good for you miss Betty Crocker!!!!

Sunny on June 1, 2009 at 12:12 PM said...

Wow, look at you!! I am very impressed. When can I come over for dinner? ;)

I am a passable cook, but I am yet to find the love for it. Now baking desserts are another story...

MAK-now on June 1, 2009 at 5:17 PM said...

OMG, you are sooo domestic!! There's no way I can ever let hubby see this or I'll be in the doghouse for not trying out new & exciting recipes. hee hee! Seriously, the lemon bars looked scrumptious! Care to share the recipe?

seussgirl on June 1, 2009 at 5:38 PM said...

I love baking and cooking; I've been missing it and am feeling the need to stock my freezer this week! I'm desperately looking for some new recipes to freeze. Maybe I'll give pot pie a try. :)
Congrats on such yummy results!

Mugsy on June 1, 2009 at 8:29 PM said...

yum yum yum Lemon Bars...let's not tell my husband that you are apparently a lemon bar goddess; he'll expect me to take classes.

Sunny on June 1, 2009 at 9:42 PM said...

Re: your comment on my blog... no, I did not sew the baby carrier cover. I paid someone else to do it. LOL I just slide it on when DH wants to use it.

I am not that talented.

Celia on June 2, 2009 at 5:27 AM said...

Many kisses to you too.

If you like the Davinci Code, try Katherine Neville's The Eight.

If you have questions this week leave em on my blog because I can't get into my email.

Mel on June 2, 2009 at 2:28 PM said...

Mmmmmmm! Drooling! All extras can be forwarded to me at 912 Riversedge Drive...only kidding! But seriously, those treats look AMAZING! The one and only time I made a crust from scratch I accidentally mixed-up the SALT and the SUGAR quantities. I'm sure you can just about imagine how that tasted. Ugh! :)

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