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I made this | food edition

THE TRUTH
I’m 24 years old and I’m not wonderful at cooking. It’s not that I ruin things, I just don’t normally cook

When I travel, I cannot get enough of local restaurants and will visit them multiple times during a trip with no shame. So, when I arrived home from my most recent 2 week traveling period, I got the urge to make my own food again. 

Ashley Joanna food board

THE PINTEREST TRAP
I’ll admit it: I have fallen victim to the trap of pinning beautiful food images and never actually using the recipes. Oh, and let’s not even talk about the number of Food Network shows I’ve watched [shout out to The Kitchen, FAVE] but also have not used the recipes. Ha. 

A PLAN WAS MADE
I sat one evening with a bag of popcorn and scrolled happily through my food board on Pinterest, logging the recipes that were going to make their way to my plate this week. Then, a grocery list was made AND (you guessed it) a shopping trip was in order. 

I made this [coconut oil chocolate chip cookies, salt and vinegar broiled potatoes, turkey and quinoa stuffed bell peppers and zucchini fritters] | ashleyjoanna.com

I MADE THIS
Over the next few days I began to cook each of these dishes.

  • Coconut oil chocolate chip cookies - She’s not lying, they are seriously the best soft & chewy cookies, and I’m a cookie connoisseur. 
  • Salt & vinegar broiled fingerling potatoes - Apparently I’m a vinegar fan, so these addictive nuggets of joy were just the thing I needed.
  • Stuffed bell peppers - There are a million ways to make these, but this turkey & quinoa filling is my now go-to. 
  • Zucchini fritters - I’ve added several dashes of hot sauce & a dollop of greek yogurt to mine, KILLER. 
  • Roasted caulifower [not pictured] - I could seriously eat an entire head of this in one sitting. Also, I made mine simply just oil, salt & pepper but this Bon Appetite recipe looks killer. 

WHAT I LEARNED

  • Planning 3-4 meals that I was excited about was just the fuel I needed to actually cook
  • Having a list for the shopping trip made all the difference - on both time & money
  • Cooking for 1-2 people = leftovers, which challenged me to creatively mix + match remaining dishes for breakfast, lunch & dinner
  • I CAN COOK!

VERDICT
The whole experience was more enjoyable and so much easier than I would have thought. I’ll be making every single one of these recipes again for the reals.

Also, I’m in the market for a knife skills class to up my chopping game. That onion and I are going to be friends someday, I can feel it. 


[For the record, these pictures are not my own. I’ll get there some day, but for now it’s probably best if I leave such things to the pros]