Recipe Roundup: Cookies, Shells and Stew

The latest issue of GOOP out this week highlights a top-10 list of favorite food bloggers. Thanks, Gwyneth! I’d already loaded my Google Reader with blogs of food writers and home cooks I found through word of mouth — they share their recipes, entertain me with their witticisms and give me inspiration for trying new foods or improving on my standards. After reading the GOOP list, I’ve tripled my blog reading list … which is going to reflect well on work productivity, I’m sure.

I’ve relied heavily on my regular food bloggers this week for ideas, so I need to highly recommend some new dishes to add to your repertoire.

On Monday, my coworker brought in these. Seriously, the best cookies I’ve ever tasted. And it’s comforting to know other people worship Nutella like I do.

Last night I got home from class early and decided that I needed to cook an extravagant meal instead of reheating leftovers. Ever since Pioneer Woman posted this earlier in the week, I’ve been preoccupied. So, yep, I made stuffed shells at 10:00 p.m. And they are delicious. I used my own marinara sauce, skipped the meat and actually piped in the ricotta mixture using a large Ziploc bag, snipped at one corner. I think that saved major prep time.

I realized recently that I don’t know how to, and therefore don’t, cook many classic Southern dishes at home. I remember going to a community/church picnic many, many years ago, where they served Brunswick Stew. It was amazing. We stopped at Smithfield’s BBQ on the way back from the beach last weekend, and I saw Brunswick Stew on their menu. That’s inspired me to at least attempt my own version.

Here’s the funny thing. I consulted all of my Southern cookbooks — Paula Dean, Charleston Receipts, Savannah Style, Savannah Seasons — and nary a one contains a Brunswick Stew recipe. Too lowbrow for the Junior League set? I’ve done some research to get a basic framework for the stew, but I’ll have to experiment and throw my own spin on it, in between bouts of furious finance studying this weekend.

I’ll let you know next week how that goes.

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