Courage in the Kitchen: Spring into Action!

Spring signals change, so I purposely am posting this as my
“Spring Fling Thing.”

After 13 years of posting more than 350 recipes, I have started posting “Cooking by the Strings of Your Apron” recipes, because I believe that we all need the freedom to improvise more. What this means is that I may not have exact measurements and I may suggest substitute items.

What this also means is “courage in the kitchen,” that is, not being afraid to use an ingredient that is NOT in the recipe, either because you have the item handy or the one in my recipe is not on your “like” list and you need to swap it for something that is. (This is especially helpful for any food allergies.)

For example, I have previously posted “kitchari,” an Indian stew that I learned about from my first Ayurvedic health professional. It is basically made from yellow split mung beans and rice, with vegetables of your choosing. It’s a great dish for using whatever veggies you like. I usually add carrots for color and cauliflower for texture, but then I add whatever I have purchased that week in season– string beans, broccoli, dark greens, English peas, etc. And I often use barley or quinoa or wild rice instead of regular rice. Thus, each time I make, the dish is not exactly the same, but still tasty and not boring.

So, in the future, many of my recipes will give you different choices. Have the courage to make substitutions when you want to make the recipe, but not exactly as I have posted it, even with my additional choices. Use what YOU like. If you don’t like broccoli, try asparagus. If onions upset your stomach, try shallots which are milder. You are the cook; I just make suggestions.

I will use a picture of an apron for recipes that are in this category of “Cooking by the Strings of Your Apron.”


P.S. After I had already put this posting together, I was in a Pier 1 store and went in while my husband was next door at Best Buy. I spotted this pillow high up on the shelves with other pillows and thought it would make a nice photo for the first day of spring, which is today!

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