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Mikey’s food resolutions for 2013

Happy New Year foodie friends! My first resolution is to post more regularly here. Beyond that, here are some of my food resolutions for 2013, and feel free to add yours in the comments or by e-mail to mikeyskitchen@gmail.com.

1. Create two new original recipes per month. Any of you that are creative types know that getting started is the most difficult part. But once you figure out your medium (meat/veggies/sauce/herbs/spices), the possibilities are endless.

2. Try four new foods I’ve never tried before. This one is tricky as I am not the kind of person who wants anything to do with foods like snails or even squid. But one new food item every three months? I think I can do that without having to try anything too far out of my comfort zone.

3. Make better use of a local specialty. In Wisconsin, that would be cheese. I have had some of the best cheddars of my life here in Madison, and yet there are so many other varieties. Maybe this will also go hand in hand with both #1 and #2.

4. Eat less junk and eat more healthy but tasty food. That means less packaged chips and crackers and more homemade beef jerky or celery with spicy hummus. It can be done.

5. Create a new column or two. The first idea I have is to re-create vintage food items that I can’t find or that no longer exist. The first of these–Buitoni’s toaster pizzas. I think I have written about these before, and I miss them dearly. But I think with some experimentation, even without an elaborate test kitchen, I can work on coming close to re-creation. Intrigued? So am I.

6. Figure out a better way to organize recipes. We have mountains of magazines and cookbooks, and it’s getting scary. I try and clip recipes, and toss magazines when I can, but it’s hard to keep up. But hey, it’s winter time in Madison, and that means it’s freaking cold outside and time for indoor projects. No excuses.

7. Watch more food TV. Not necessarily Food Network, but any of the other food related shows that are popping up on various channels. Or maybe just watch all of the episodes of Sandwich King and Best Thing I Ever Made or The Minimalist on DVR for a change.

Okay, that’s enough for now. Any more, and I won’t even try to keep said resolutions. Now let’s get cooking….

The Minimalist Mark Bittman’s favorites from his column

Mark Bittman’s “The Minimalist” column ceased publication in its New York Times home last week, but he wrapped things up by choosing his personal 25 favorite recipes from his run.

Okay, so I haven’t tried any of these per se, and some of them, like braised squid with artichokes, and Crisp Braised Duck Legs are not food you’d see me preparing too often. But most of them are intriguing–like the spaghetti with fried egg; no knead bread; curried eggplant; or stir-fried chicken with ketchup. Bittman’s work has also appeared often in mags like Men’s Health, and some of those I have tried. And I can vouge for one thing–the man is a master at recipe creation, and anything I’ve tried was usually simple to make, delicious, and with no crazy ingredients. I’m guessing that was the premise of his column too–no elaborate ingredients or instruction.

So check out the link to Bittman’s 25 faves, where you can link to each recipe to try them. I know I’m going to do the same very soon….

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