Maeve’s 6 Week Cooking Challenge

Greetings from a Baltimore kitchen! I have decided after a long hiatus from blogging that I am ready to jump back in–more enthused than ever. I hope you are ready and willing to jump in too. Everything is better with company. I have decided to write a cookbook. Yes, a cookbook! From now on, I will share everything I do each day with you. Did I mention I only have six weeks? Well, I do. Less, in fact, if I count a printing week. Even LESS if I consider the amount of time it will take to put the physical book together. I better get cooking then, right?

My credit card has been getting a workout. I’ve been to the grocery store almost every day, buying the vegetables, fruits, etc. that I need for all of my recipes. Much of this is due to poor planning. I will be home after a trip to Giant, unloading my many items, and suddenly get an idea for oaty tahini cookies or another oddity. Inspiration in hand, I will get back in the car and go wherever I need to go to get whatever I neglected to buy before. Poor planning feels unnatural. I love to plan. I plan everything. This may be a side effect of my promise to myself to include some spontaneity in my life this year…even just a little. Balance is everything.

After too many trips to the grocery store, I came home and said “NEVER AGAIN.” I sat down, right then and there, and planned everything I was to make the following week. This proved perfect, as only one trip to the store was needed to buy everything I was looking for. This not only added more hours to my day, but decreased the environmental impact of my countless drives back and forth to Giant or Whole Foods.

I managed to escape Giant with a weeks worth supply of goods for baking and cooking with only $125 spent. Though, of course, money is money, the amount of food I am making each week is quite extensive, so I am happy to have spent less than $200 on this project so far. Multiply $200 x 6 weeks ( 5, really) and that is still a LOT of money. However, I am also using everything I can–carrot tops for pesto, pickled cucumber ends for garnish–and composting whatever isn’t salvageable.

I’m really excited about this project and can’t wait to share all of successes and failings with you. I will include as many photos as my cookie-dough covered hands will allow, in the hope of conveying some sense of reason to my many food flops and, I hope, triumphs.

Thank you and Bon Appétit! Let’s cook.