2010 Recipe Review

As I skimmed through my Google Reader today looking for recipes, I realized that almost every blog I follow has done some type of recap for 2010. Since I learned a lot more about blogging and recipes in 2010 than 2009, I figured it was a good idea to hop on the 2010 recap train.

I tried really hard to just pick 10 of my favorite recipes from this year, but I couldn’t. Many of these recipes have been made multiple times and I just couldn’t choose between them. So I ended up with the following recipes in no particular order.

Quick & Easy Lasagna
As a kid I wasn’t a big fan of lasagna. Once I realized that you could substitute cottage cheese for ricotta, lasagna became one of my favorite foods. The best part about this recipe is that its so quick to make and can easily be changed to use spinach, mushrooms or anything else that you’d like.

Shrimp Bisque

 One of my favorite recipes! I was hesitant the first time I made this because of the strange color that is created when you add half and half to tomato sauce. I’m glad I continued on with the recipe because its delicious and perfect for any time of the year.

 Mushroom Mac & Cheese
 The cheese powder/sauce in boxed mac and cheese has always been strange to me. Cheese shouldn’t look like that and should never be that color. For years I refused to get anywhere near the boxed stuff and the thought never crossed my mind to make my own, until I stumbled upon this recipe on Annie’s Eats. Creamy, cheesy, and really filling!

Maryland Crab Soup
As a Maryland resident, I felt it was just wrong to not share a recipe for our famous crab soup. Sure, every place you go will have a different recipe and sometimes a different flavor, but I felt it was my duty to express my love for Old Bay.

Bacon Wrapped Pork Tenderloin with Red Wine, Cherry & Rosemary Sauce 
Yes, its a complete mouthful of a recipe but its so easy to make and so tasty! For a long time Tom had asked me to stop making pork chops and come up with something else. Days later this recipe appeared in my Google Reader and I knew I just had to make it. If I couldn’t win by preparing this, I’d give up on making pork entirely. I think you know the result.

Shrimp & Asparagus Risotto
If you know anything about me, you know my love of risotto. Once I mastered a delicious risotto base, I became somewhat obsessed with finding new ingredients to add. Another reason I include so many risotto recipes on here is because I want people to get over the fear that risotto is hard to make. Its not!

Mango Habanero Chicken Sandwiches
I’ll never forget the random night where Tom and I decided to order sandwiches from Domino’s. They were the only pizza place we had found that delivered, but I don’t like Domino’s pizza. Tom mentioned that they also had sandwiches now. As soon as I looked at the menu, I knew I had to try it. And then, as soon as I had my first bite of the sandwich, I had to recreate it.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Cupcakes
I never liked cheesecake all that much until I had it in a cupcake size. I also never liked pumpkin. Well, two things changed this year. I began to like both and I made this amazing recipe.

Crockpot Spaghetti & Meatballs
I never ate a lot of meatballs when I was growing up. My mom would just make a meat sauce to add to spaghetti and we’d eat it that way. I came across this recipe online, pretty soon after receiving my crock pot and I knew I needed to try it out right away. I love being able to come home and have dinner waiting for me. 🙂

Parmesan Herb Chicken Tenders
Would you believe me if I said that I didn’t really like chicken tenders? I’ve never been a big fan of breaded foods. They always ended up kind of mushy and mushy is just not a texture I like in my food. I got tired of making the same things over and over again with chicken so I decided to try these out. I am SO GLAD I did. Its like a grown up chicken tender with great flavor and they are great with honey mustard dipping sauce, BBQ dipping sauce or on top a garden salad with Ranch dressing.

Shrimp Scampi

I became a lot more comfortable cooking with shrimp this year and I owe it to this recipe. Its quick and easy to make, doesn’t include a ton of ingredients and is delicious!

Cinnamon Rolls
Just another one of those recipes that I never thought to make on my own. I really need to move away from all of the prepackaged foods we still use start making my own. These weren’t the typical Cinnabon type cinnamon rolls but they were still really tasty and super easy to make.

Ham & Cheese Pretzel Bites
Another recipe I hesitated to make just because of the word “pretzel”. I had tried making pretzels before and lets just say they didn’t turn out well. However, these turned out great! They do take a bit of time to prep, and I had no idea it would make 30 or more of them, but as an appetizer for a party, they would work out perfectly.

Ultimate French Onion Soup
It’s been about 2 weeks since I made this soup and I still think about it. I used up all of the good adjectives while describing it in the post, so I’ll just let you click on that. I definitely plan on making this again soon!  

Overall 2010 Recap
I created my blog towards the end of 2009. It started off as just a place to post things, recipes, thoughts, stories, whatever. As I started cooking more and more and people began to tell me they were interested in my recipes, I made the decision to change up the blog to become focused on cooking.

Although I’m still not posting as much as I’d like to, I think I’ve included a lot of good recipes during this year and I can’t wait to add more recipes in 2011. I’m rather proud of myself for finally mastering the art of using yeast. I’m thrilled at the new and fancy kitchen gadgets I get to use and I’ve completely fallen in love with my Kitchenaid Mixer. I have named her Betty and she is my best friend in the kitchen.

For 2011, I hope you all have extra time to experiment in the kitchen, find a new recipe that you absolutely love, and become more confident in something cooking/baking related. Have a safe and happy new year!

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