Food Goals of 2012 & Where we are Now

The fireworks in our new city.

The fireworks in our new city.

To say that 2011 went out with a bang would be an understatement. Two months ago we found out we were moving. One and a half months later we were flying across the ocean with our most precious possessions in tow (aka. our children) and headed on a new adventure, starting from scratch, in a new land.

After living in Norway for three years we had mixed feelings. The new move meant we were going to be living much closer to family (yay!), in an english speaking country (yay!), in a city known for its great food (yay!). But, it also meant leaving behind great friends, the only home we’ve known since starting our family and this amazing view.

sunset

Anyone else hear angels singing?

We’ve left behind nature for the big city. We miss it tons but are also looking forward to this next chapter in our lives and for the many more visits that we’ll be getting from family and friends.

So let me tell you a bit about our new home.

It’s got a Starbucks on every corner (one right outside our door in fact). It’s got amazing parks like this:

It’s got amazing parks like this

Skylines like this:

Skylines like this

And, city views like this:

And, city views like this

Have you guessed yet?

We moved to New York City!

It’s scary, exhilarating and… scary. Really, honestly, you can’t compare New York and Oslo. They are totally and completely different. It’s feeling like a pretty big culture shock. It took me a bit just to get used to the fact that everyone spoke to me immediately in english and I found myself having to double check the words coming out of my mouth.

I think the only thing that hasn’t changed is the fact that I have a small kitchen. But, my oven is huge! I am so excited about that. And the new place has an awesome island that will give me tons of workspace.

Being in a new city, with every type of food ingredient available to me, plus it being the new year, has got me thinking about my food goals for the next year. They’re not really health related but more – how I’d like to grow as a cook. I’m sure they’ll morph throughout the year and new ones will be added but these are what are on my mind right now.

1. Teach Max to Cook on His Own

Max loves working with me in the kitchen so I think it’s best that I capitalize on that while I can and teach him how to start taking care of himself in the kitchen. He doesn’t have to love cooking when he grows up but I do want him to be able to know the basics so that he doesn’t have to bach it like the rest of them.

2. Find Healthy Snacks

This is on my list every year but you can never have too many healthy snacks. We most often eat fruit for snack time but I’d love to find more travelling snacks as well, since we have a new city to explore during the day and I don’t want to be tempted to eat out all the time.

3. Find More Substitutes for Store-Bought Products

This has been an ongoing goal for me and one that I find fun to conquer. I’ve got a lot of homemade versions of store-bought products already on the blog, but there’s always a new one to master and pretty much anytime I eat out I mentally break down the dish to figure out how I can recreate it at home.

4. Eat More Meatless Meals that the Whole Family will Enjoy

There are many benefits to eating the occasional meatless meal. It’s cheaper, healthier (usually) and often quicker to make. I’d love for our family to eat a meatless meal once a week but we’ll see how it goes. I’ve got a meat-loving husband and bean-hating son to contend with so it could get tricky. But I’ll be sure to share the successes with you.

5. Do More Canning

Last year I got hooked on canning. It was so much easier than I ever expected. Really, there’s nothing too intimidating about it. This year I hope to do small batches of canning all throughout the year. Because it’s fun and extremely satisfying and it makes you feel like you’re pretty much as domesticated as they get.

6. Decorate More Cakes/Cupcakes & Find the Best Basic Recipes

This one is more on the selfish side. I love decorating and baking cakes and I put it off for a long time after my son was born. But, I’d like to start fiddling with it more again. And, what better place than New York to do that right?

I’ve got a certain little girly’s first birthday coming up in a month so I’m in full brainstorming mode. We may not have many people to invite yet but there will be cake!

I’ve found my favourite chocolate party cake and vanilla frosting but I’m still on the search for the perfect vanilla cake, chocolate frosting and a plethora of other cake basics.

I’ll be sure to keep you updated on these food goals as I find recipes and techniques that help me conquer them.

Do you have any food goals this year? I’d love to hear about them. Maybe there are some that I can help you with? Just let me know, I love a good challenge. :)

P.S. Stay tuned for a new recipe coming up on Friday!