i cant seem to stop cooking. last week i got myself all riled up wanting to make rice. so i dug through four cookbooks until i finally settled on a recipe for rice pilaf in a vegetarian cookbook that the mister and i got as a wedding present. the hubby, who is typically blase about the process of choosing what's for dinner, saw the picture and requested that i double the recipe. the ingredient list should have been fair warning that i was in over my head, but the mister's enthusiasm was contagious. so we went to the grocery store and circled the aisles like hawks, on the look-out for cumin seeds and green cardamon pods. no luck. so we stopped by a wee produce store that often has some of the more exotic spices available in the unground format. we found a little baggy only about 1/4 full of cumin seeds and suitably inexpensive. perfecto. and then we found the cardamon pods. a bursting full bag of cardamon seeds. did i mention that the recipe only called for eight pods? this baggy had somewhere upwards of five hundred! and it cost a small fortune. the mister and i looked at each other thinking the same thought...is it really stealing if we just take eight little pods? umm...YES! we are NOT going to jail for eight cardamon pods. just when i was gathering up my gumption to ask the clerk if we could buy eight pods, the mister dropped the baggy. cardamon pods scattered in every direction. the desire to scoop up eight and disappear was overwhelming, but once again my conscience inserted itself into the chaos and said "no, no, and NO." okay fine. so now instead of merely asking the clerk if we can buy eight pods, i have to inform her that my darling husband dumped a bag of the blasted beasties on the floor. interestingly, by this point my shame had flown the coop, and i gamely asked her if we could buy the pods singly. she looked at me as if i had just asked her to lick the floor and replied simply, "no." do i need to tell you that our rice pilaf was free of cardamon pods? we finally headed home, cooked up the rice with only a few major hiccups, and enjoyed the lovely delicacy. and let me tell you, it was lovely.

of course, hunting through my cookbooks embedded the cooking bug in my brain and exposed me to a whole host of recipes i wanted to try. so last sunday i continued my rice obsession and cooked up some stir fry. found an absolutely scrumptious stir fry sauce recipe. the food turned out delectable...this mister is not a huge fan. so sad. but not to worry...i also made noodle kugel. absolutely no relation between the two dishes. in fact the thought of eating both in the same sitting makes me want to vomit. sadly, the noodle kugel did not turn out as well as i had hoped and not surprisingly, the hubster requested that i not make this again. so essentially, we have a refrigerator full of not-so-yummy delicacies. great.

despite last weekend's kitchen failures, i was not daunted. yesterday i came to the conclusion that i absolutely HAD to make cinnamon rolls. so i did. we now have about five pounds of sugary, buttery, gooey wonderfulness hanging out in our fridge. as if that wasnt enough for one evening, i also decided that i wanted to make bread. sure sure. no problem. so i searched for "easy bread recipe" and found this recipe. turns out it is the brainchild of a new york baker, who's "minimalist bread" was featured in this ny times article. took 24 hours, but i officially made the most amazing loaf of bread i have ever produced (see the picture...yes, yes, that is the one that i made!!!). clearly, i have joined the masses who think that this recipe is miraculous. and as if creating cinnamon rolls and a beautiful boule were not enough, i also made red pepper risotto and fried chicken. somebody stop me. i need a twelve step program, because i am addicted to cooking.

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