Setting Kitchen Goals in 2013

(Image credit: Sara Kate Gillingham)

Happy New Year, everyone! It was good to have a little time off to enjoy the holiday with family and friends, but it’s always good to be back here talking about home cooking with you all, too. To start off the new year, many of us make resolutions. Maybe yours include reading more novels or running a half marathon. Perhaps you want to learn a new language or stay more organized. This year, my boyfriend and I decided to set kitchen goals together: things we wanted to learn to make and create together at the dinner table and beyond.

First on my list is something quite embarrasing. Something, as a food writer and recipe developer, I only admit to my closest friends (until now). I’m going to roast a chicken. I’ve never roasted a chicken! I think this is because I was a vegetarian for fifteen years and, while I eat meat and fish today, I don’t cook much meat at home largely because I’m simply not as good at it. So I know that roasting a chicken is simple, and I have no clue why I haven’t yet tackled it. But this month, we added it to our list.

Other small kitchen goals include learning how to make a mean mole sauce, perfecting pavlova, making marmalade, and braising more meats. My boyfriend Sam wants to bake more bread and learn to make his own cheese and beer. We have a big basement that we use largely for storage but there’s plenty of room to dabble with brewing experiment, and Sam makes a great honey wine that he’s going to start up again.

Some of our kitchen goals are simple and, realistically, we could do tonight. Others are more involved in terms of time and effort. But each encourage us to break out of our kitchen ruts, work on something that interests us, and gain support from one another throughout the way. Do you set kitchen or cooking goals? Do you have any you’d like to share this year?