Dinner for Brian (Literally)

I’ve been in the fortunate circumstance of accommodating my absolute favorite ginger-haired brother for the summer. Outside of affording me the opportunity to actually perform what is the namesake of this blog (cooking dinner for that wonderful Brian, himself), the summer with my brother was a joyful, important experience that’s made me question further the subtitle above. Should I continue cooking from a Chicago (cough, gasp, Evanston) kitchen, or should I finally pursue that oft-wondered ideal of moving to the city from which I left, the state which houses this person himself? I think I have the answer in mind, (and I think many of whoever reads this knows, too), but I’ll segue unglamorously to a humble blog update instead.

I’ve certainly been cooking since last December, and I can’t pinpoint an exact reason why it so abruptly went undocumented. I have saved emails of food photos, recipes jotted in small notebooks, and words never-ending their stream throughout my head. Maybe I was frustrated by the bad lighting of winter. Or maybe I succumbed to that unenjoyable yet praised lifestyle of the “too busy.” It definitely felt like the latter, but what excuse is there to drop enjoyed hobbies? Anyways, I’m not sure how much of what went unwritten I’ll share now, but I do intend to pick up again this semi-daily and/or semi-weekly practice.

I do know that what I made this summer, most often dinners, but occasionally a breakfast or two, was delicious and very much enjoyed by my favorite recipe tester, Brian. He’s not overwhelmingly picky, so I can’t be sure that his endorsement qualifies these recipes as truly outstanding in any way, but now being able to definitively say these meals were raved about by not just myself but two people, I feel ever more confident in sharing. A lot of what I cooked was more meat-heavy than my standard fare, and I think I’m exhausting Trader Joe’s supply of boneless, skinless chicken thighs (seriously so good), but the novelty of new ingredients was more inspiring, really, and brought out a slew of untried but perfectly savory dinners. A few things worth noting and repeating: soft boiled eggs (forever, in everything), coconut-brothed curries, wilted greens, and mashed potatoes. Yes, mashed potatoes. Love them as they should be loved.

I’ll hopefully be back again soon with some of these recipes in print and picture. And to be transparent, I’m actually doing (omg) Whole 30 this month, for kicks really, so expect to see recipes which align with those dietary restrictions for a bit (but restrictions be damned; the food is good).

Goodbye to my brother and roommate, but hello, again, to the food which you inspire! (My dachshunds miss you).