In the Kitchen: 2012 Food Bucket List

homemade bagels

One thing I love about food preparation is that there is always going to be something new that you’ve never tried before. It’s never boring, and the possibilities of what you can create are endless.

In an effort to avoid falling into a food rut, I like to challenge myself to experiment frequently with new recipes and techniques. Sometimes this requires me to step outside of my comfort zone as a non-professional cook, but I tend to pick up valuable skills by doing so, and the experience alone is usually worth a potentially failed dish or two. I’ve discovered how to make bread, yogurt, marshmallows, bagels, pasta, mayonnaise and so many other awesome things that I never in a million years would have thought I could make from scratch.

This year I’ve put together a list of things I’d like to try before the year ends. I’m trying to keep the list short and manageable, which will increase my chances of completing each recipe. But even if I don’t get around to all of them, this gives me a starting point for motivation! Here it is, my 2012 Food Bucket List:

  1. vanilla sugar – I’ve already started this, we’ll see how it comes out in a week!  Done!
  2. homemade english muffins
  3. cinnamon raisin bagels – I’ve only mastered the plain bagel, time to expand my horizons
  4. tofu – I just want to prepare it in a dish, since I’ve never cooked with it before Done!
  5. homemade pop tarts
  6. ranch dressing Done!
  7. homemade pitas
  8. challah bread
  9. vanilla extract
  10. baked falafel Done!
  11. General Tso’s chicken from scratch
  12. noodle kugel
  13. blueberry pie
  14. homemade crackers – Like a butter or cheddar cracker
  15. homemade ricotta cheese
  16. homemade cream cheese
  17. savory shortbread – I once ate a smoked onion shortbread cookie, and I’ve been obsessed ever since
  18. homemade fruit leather
  19. chocolate syrup from scratch
  20. jelly – grape?
  21. homemade graham crackers
  22. won tons – Won ton soup is my Chinese takeout order go-to
  23. meringue – …and then a lemon meringue pie, naturally!
  24. egg nog
  25. carrot cake – my all time favorite dessert that I’ve never personally prepared
  26. galette
  27. cheese straws
  28. soft pretzels
  29. polenta – I actually just want to try it, since I’ve never eaten it before
  30. bloody marys – my all time favorite alcoholic drink that I’ve never personally prepared
  31. matzo ball soup
  32. poached eggs – I’ve tried this in the past, wholly unsuccessfully
  33. milk pie
  34. sprouts – I’d like to grow our own
  35. homemade cheddar biscuits – I have a food crush on the Red Lobster Cheddar Bay biscuits and determined to replicate them in my oven
  36. yeasted coffee cake
  37. homemade liqueur – maybe amaretto or irish cream
  38. sourdough bread
  39. homemade tootsie rolls
  40. french macarons – I’ve never even eaten one before, but they intrigue me nonetheless! I suppose my plan should be eat first, make later.

Okay, so maybe I said “small and manageable”, but once I began typing I started to remember a gazillion other things that I wanted to make. Oh well, like I mentioned before, even if I don’t accomplish them all it gets me motivated to try. Wish me luck! And if you have any tried and true recipes for any of the things I’ve listed above, please do share!

What’s on your bucket list of foods to eat or make? Share with us in the comments section below!

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17 responses to “In the Kitchen: 2012 Food Bucket List

  1. You MUST, repeat, must! Use the recipe I posted on my blog for Blueberry Pie. Its from Cooks Magazine and it was PERFECT. Anything from Cooks magazine is a surefire hit! They go into the chemistry of it all to make it PERFECT!
    http://honestlyani.blogspot.com/2011/07/blueberry-pie.html

  2. LOVE this list! I need to make one of my own ASAP… (and I may or may not write some on there that I’ve recently tried just have something checked off. It’s all about motivation 😉

    Lovely photo, too!

    • Go for it! I contemplated leaving off the vanilla sugar since I started it pre-blog post, but it made me feel like I’m already making a dent 😉

      And thanks, it’s my first “I did something from scratch all by myself, woot!” photo, I had to dig it out from my 2009 archives (aka I was too lazy today to take a relevant picture for this post, hehe). It’s an oldie but goodie!

  3. Love your list!!! I usually include foods on my resolution list but I think I didn’t this year. Good time to enumerate now!
    Here’s mine:
    •Homemade chèvre
    •Granola bars
    •Oven Jerky
    •Lime curd
    •Homemade cottage cheese
    •Earl Grey madelines
    •Iced Chai tea (in hot weather)
    •Frog legs
    •Panna cotta
    •Coconut cream pie
    •Latin corn on the cob (seasoned with lime juice, butter and minced cilantro)
    •Oysters broiled on the half shell
    •Borcht
    •Whipped cauliflower
    •Monkey bread
    •Garlic hummus
    •Pita bread
    •Goat curry
    •Green cattail seed heads with butter
    •Cucumber cups stuffed ham or chicken salad
    •Oven roasted apricots

  4. wow! i’ve never made bagels, but they are on my list as well! This look great!

  5. Pingback: Monday Menu Plan: 1/16-1/22 | Ginger(ly) Homemaking

  6. Great bucket list!! A wonderful idea for the new year! Hope that you can cross off #28 soon 😉 — Good luck!

  7. I love this idea of a food bucket list! I’ve got so much to learn. Do you mind if I do this on my blog?

  8. I love this idea! I haven’t thought about what I would want to make this year, but I think I’m going to have to. Thanks for the inspiration 🙂

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