If you know me “in real life” you know that the husband and I are fantastic cooks. Yes, I’ll say it emphatically because we are. It wasn’t always that way and there’s a special story behind it.
This is the recipe that started it all and here is the layout I made to capture it.
How did I know then that this one recipe would be the beginning of something that would define who we are? That we would embark on crazy things like corning our own beef for St. Patrick’s Day, making our own gnocchi, or learning how to make sauces?
How could I possibly have known that? I didn’t. I’m just a hoarder and save everything. I was going through my box of keepsakes from my last year in college and there it was, I had saved the recipe. I tended to save everything back then. I have the boxes in the closet to prove it.
I was thrilled to make this layout. There was only one problem – no pictures. How to make this page interesting?
The answer – head to the grocery store.
I decided to get pictures of ingredients that were important to the story. Who takes pictures now for an event that happened 7 years ago? Me. Who is the weirdo at Whole Foods taking pictures of shallots? Me.
Ready for the story? Here is the text on the page. It’s quite a long story, but it still makes me smile:
“This is the first recipe Bill and I ever cooked together. We were celebrating our four-month anniversary and didn’t want to go out. We both couldn’t cook but figured we should be able to follow a recipe. We searched for “easy” recipes on FoodNetwork.com and picked out this one. We headed to the College Avenue Safeway to buy everything. We didn’t even know what a shallot was. We almost left the store without it until I asked someone. We went home and followed the recipe very carefully. It was a “30-minute meal” that took us much longer than thirty minutes to make. Served alongside a box of rice-a-roni, the dish was delicious. I’ve always wondered if we would have kept cooking if the dish had turned out badly. It turned out so well that we decided to keep looking for recipes and the rest is history. We’ve made some changes to this recipe over the years but it is still one of our favorites.”
I know you were wondering: the recipe is Tuscan Chicken by Rachael Ray. We now prefer to use chicken stock instead of the called-for beef stock. No, we don’t eat rice-a-roni anymore. I make a really good risotto to serve with it instead.
Anyone want to come over for dinner?
Check out my other layouts here!