Archive for January, 2013

Week 4

Sunday: Boyfriend birthday again!

The actual birthday dinner made, of course, at home. Yes, I’m kinda domestic sometimes. And yes, that’s how I became an incredible cook.

Halibut makes every picture look good.

Halibut makes every picture look good.

Special dinner includes seasoned roasted potatoes and bell peppers topped with halibut filets. And by filets, I mean steaks. And by steaks, I mean cut from a halibut caught by my friend’s mom in ALASKA. Thanks, Dr. Franklin! Not pictured, also consumed: Birthday white russians.



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Week 3

Barely made it this week, guys. By which I mean, every week I do this I look back and am stunned at how few meals I actually get out of all the time I spend in the kitchen. Week 3!


Yeah, so I watch a lot of sports and eat a lot of chili in the winter. What do you want from me? This is Michigan!

This is not the same recipe as last Sunday. This one was made by Skipper!

This is not the same recipe as last Sunday. This one was made by Skipper!

Featured is this week’s sport-watching chili, including a couple pounds of venison in addition to ground beef. Seriously delicious—both large slow cookers were completely gone by the end of the first half. Not pictured, also consumed: Bud Light. Yep. That’s how American I am. Deal with it.

Notes: Go, Pats! I can’t decide who my favorite Michigan alum on the Patriots is… I mean, Brady is the obvious choice, but Zoltan played while I was in school, and he’s much Romanianer.


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Week 2

Well, here we are. Week two. I realized midweek (OK, Monday) that I need to add another category of meals: mooched. Mooching is an activity that I perfected in undergrad, and apparently I’m still really good at it, because THREE TIMES this week I ate food made by someone else… for free. As it turns out, I’m a straight-up mooch even as an adult, so that category will be considered separately from store-bought from now on.

Now, then. I know you thought I wouldn’t make it this far, but… here are the results of week #2!

Sunday: Chili!

This looks like a reasonable serving size... which is why I had two.

This looks like a reasonable serving size… which is why I had two.

I consider my former roommate and very good friend the main reason I didn’t learn to cook until late in life, because he was already really good at it when I moved into his apartment. This is his excellent chili, not as spicy as normal, but still delicious. Includes lots of tomatoes, beans, ground beef, spices, and a little cheese added on top. Not pictured, also consumed: Another bowl (damn right!), 2 PBRs, and a couple glasses of water.

Notes: Chili is excellent Sunday food. Especially in the Midwest, when even a warm Sunday in January runs about 45 degrees. And ESPECIALLY when football is on TV!


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Week 1

Before the pictures (I know, all you care about is looking at food, but it’s JUST TOO BAD), I would like to describe the benefits and disadvantages of this weekly project, so you know what I have to work with as well as what I’m up against. No secrets between me and you guys.


  • I cook for two. Living with someone means you can’t just eat cereal for dinner, because that person will (1) think you’re a child, and (2) be hungry if they don’t want cereal for dinner. This encourages me to make what I will call food, as opposed to the less nutritious (but often easier to prepare) “food.”
  • As a scientist, I am forced to admit the possibility that knowingly partaking of an “experiment” of any sort, even if it’s of my own doing and no one will know if I’m lying, will likely encourage me to make food (healthy food, even) more often than I otherwise would. This is called “the Hawthorne effect” in the world of epidemiology. You’re welcome.


  • I have class from 2 to 5:30 on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and workouts from midnight to 2 a.m. on those same days. This means making actual food will be constrained by time. I am guessing Tuesdays and Thursdays will involve lots of leftover pictures.
  • I am lazy. I’m hoping the balance will be tipped in favor of making real food by impecuniousness.

Predictions (per week, average over the year)

3 homemade dinners per week

2 nights of leftovers per week

2 nights of food I didn’t make per week

Now, then. On to what you fervently pine for… the results of week #1!


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2013, An Idea

So I had an idea at dinner tonight. It stemmed in part from the fact that I brought a lot of leftovers to school during the fall, and my classmates would always ask where I’d gotten takeout from. (In Ann Arbor the takeout containers are somehow exactly the same from the two places I usually go, and they’re—supposedly—microwave- and dishwasher-safe, so I use them a lot.) I realized I cook a lot more these days, and I try to be healthy about it, so I wanted to see if I could keep track of an entire year of dinners. So this is how I’m going to do it:

1) Take a picture every night of whatever I eat for dinner, whether I make it or buy it. They will not be super fancy presentation pictures, because hey, I’m trying to eat dinner. (Although I hope most of them are more exciting than the example below).

Curry Risotto—whoa, it's vegan!

Curry Risotto—whoa, it’s vegan!


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