Friday, October 24, 2008

EVERYDAY FOOD...a.k.a "Martha, Martha, Martha!!"

Perhaps it started because a pint-sized magazine was missing from my life. (TV Guide how I miss you so!!! I hardly know you now that the evil ones have blown you up to magazine size, and turned you into US Magazine!!)

Whatever the reason, from the first issue of Everyday Food I bought, I've been drawn into this little gem. I have probably 20 or so from the past 3-4 years, and find that I am more apt to pick this up each month than Mar-Mar's large format Living, which I tend to look through, dream about 'someday' attempting projects (like stripping antique furniture...putting together that photo album-scrapbook of vintage family shots....or making Beef Wellington--which, by the way, I vow to do one day)...but Living always ends on the coffee table.

Everyday Food, on the other hand, ends up in my KITCHEN. I always find myself flipping through saying "I'll totally make that"...."ooh, that looks good!"...."fold that page down..." I'm not afraid of attempting the Beef Wellingtons and Yorkshire puddings of the world, but really, if I am to attempt new recipes during the week, I need them to be work-week friendly....and I am never let down with Everyday Food (EF from now on). I continue to review all my old issues when I'm looking for something easy and solid. The recipes are home-made, but they cut some corners to be weekday realistic (i.e. go ahead, and use--gasp!--jarred spaghetti sauce in lasagna....jarred salsa on tacos....etc.)

I guess you can say Martha Stewart Living plays the Grace Kelly, to Everyday Food's Katherine Hepburn. One is the more soft-focus, elegant, can do, say, cook and wear altogether lovely and refined and a level that few operate on (and don't get me wrong, I love Grace Kelly...and to this day want every single piece of wardrobe from Rear Window!) But then you have the more fun, frivolous, yet everyday working gal, who cuts to the chase, in a no- nonsense, get-it-done fashion. Is still classic, and genuine, yet still attainable, and someone you think you can hang out with, well, quite frankly "Everyday." (And there is no right or wrong here--they both got Cary Grant, right?!)

Last week, I whipped up the spinach-prosciutto lasagna start to finish in under an hour (not incl. the day-long thawing of the frozen spinach) It called for jarred spaghetti sauce, and "no-boil' lasagna noodles, which I am all for when it comes to quick but home-made. Two Saturdays ago, I did the chicken tacos---which called for chicken thighs to chill out seasoned in a crockpot (oops, or are they "slow-cookers" these days?) for 4 hrs--GREAT for a weekend dinner....oh, and the same weekend, I made up a huge vat of her minestrone soup, and the slow-cooker pot roast the following Monday---ALL recipes from the same (current) issue!!

This past weekend, I delved into some back-issues and found an easy Coq au Vin recipe from one of the 2007 issues I was amazing! It was a cold, windy Oct night and we had a great meal!!

So, those who perhaps pass by it thinking you have heard enough about Martha,Martha, Martha! I urge you to push aside your inner Jan Brady and get over it. Give i ta try...each issue gives you a "Freeze it", "weeknights", "weekend", "lunch box", and even "dinner-for-one" recipe....and dessert!
(I have not even touched the 5,6 and 7th recipe I want to do from the current issue: all dark chocolate recipes!)

As I did the week of 4 recipes: tacos, minestrone, pot roast and lasagna, I did not think about blogging until I hit the lasagna...(when Dear Husband said, "so, tell this lasagna considered "cooking" or "baking?"--will it be on your blog?) But as I was working on the 5th EF recipe in 1.5 weeks, I decided to grab a photo of it: I give you my Coq au Vin!!


Cathy said...

Okay, okay! I mean, I can already hear David saying "do we really need another magazine subscription?" but you've sold me on EF. I like the lack of food snobbery that you describe. Because, sure, I love slow roasted heirloom tomato sauce as much as the next person, but ya know, Prego ain't so bad either. The Jan Brady picture -- a classic! Sounds like you've been a busy cook!

Jess said...

I'm also a fan of EF. I've subscribed for about 4 years and I don't think I've ever made a bad recipe out of it (some we've liked better than others, but no outright failures). We loved the spinach-prosciutto lasagna and the slow-cooker pork from the last issue. I also have the EF cookbook - Great Food Fast - and it's a great one. It's organized seasonally, which I like.

Matt said...

Oh, you are such a kindred spirit. I love Everyday Food and everything else Martha does. I also think your analogy with Grace Kelly and Katharine Hepburn is brilliant (I just watched Rear Window a few weeks ago. The woman was a flawless beauty).

And as for Katharine Hepburn... I have so many of her movies and have always admired her no-nonsense spirit...

And as for Jan Brady in the wig... well, the picture alone is worth a thousand words. Thanks for making me laugh!