Beans and Grains: The Cookbook Challenge

Deep in the dog days of summer, I have completely lost my motivation and inspiration when it comes to beans and grains. While there are endless possibilities for cooking beans and grains, I seem to be stuck in a rut.

Just a few of my cookbooks

As it happens,  I am the proud owner of dozens of cookbooks. Surely, someplace in all that referece material exist some new ideas!

I am going to start my own personal Cookbook Challenge.  I will choose three of four of my most-used cookbooks. From each book I’ll choose several bean and grain recipes to prepare. I own a lot of really obscure cookbooks (Example – “Authentic Recipes From Indonesia“). For the challenge, I will use cookbooks that I think are good general reference cookbooks and books that are more mainstream.

I very rarely follow a recipe as it is written. I almost always make changes. That’s not because I think I am smarter than the cookbook author. It’s because I know my own tastes. I always leave out the meat, I usually make things spicier and I generally reduce the amount of fat.

But in the Cookbook Challenge, I will follow the recipe exactly as written, with the following exceptions (Husband knew that there would be some exceptions!):

  1. If the recipe calls for canned beans, I reserve the right to cook my own.
  2. Unless it would significantly change the outcome, I will probably cut some recipes in half, as Husband and I rarely want to eat 8 servings of anything.
  3. If there is an ingredient that I can’t reasonably find, I will make appropriate substitutions.

Because I don’t eat meat, I will only choose recipes that don’t require meat meat or eggs. I’m off the eggs right now.

I’ll make frequent posts about the foods that I am preparing. When it’s all over, I hope I will have some fresh ideas in my bean and grain repertoire!

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