March Cookbook Challenge

People will be writing think pieces for the rest of my life on what Covid and lockdown changed in our world. Something small, and honestly not that important compared to what so many lost, that I’ve noticed is that it really changed my love for cooking.

I used to love to cook and just food in general. While it was work to meal plan, I enjoyed thinking about what my family would eat the following week and play around with new ingredients or techniques. I remember the beginning of lock down and how for a few months there we were all experimenting with cuisines we missed or bread we had always wanted to learn how to make. We got creative with whatever we could find at the grocery store or whatever random ingredients they subbed in for us at grocery pickup.

But somewhere along the way I got burned out. It was exhausting to keep a pulse on what supply chain issues meant I couldn’t find pantry staples. Around this time my youngest son also had some health issues and I had to keep detailed notes of how many calories he consumed and find ways to get more calories in him. Go ahead and add in soaring inflation and I think we can all agree these past couple of years have sucked the joy of cooking out of a lot of our kitchens.

Recently I’ve had my kitchen remodeled and it’s a dream to work in. I have found myself wanting to bake, wanting to meal prep, just wanting to be in the space. I decided that I would try something for the month of March to challenge myself back into loving cooking again. Feeding my family is definitely a love language and I decided to wander the library cookbook aisle and see if anything stood out to me to try.

I landed on The Modern Proper: Simple Dinners For Every Day by Holly Erickson and Natalie Mortimer. They have a blog that someone had recommended that I decided to check out and when I saw the book on the shelf, I took some time to look through.

At first glance it looks like delicious food, most within my family’s comfort zone of eating, that you can actually make on weeknights. It has the usual chapters, vegetarian, meats, soups etc, but also has a section just on eggs and one solely for meatballs. I thought it looked different enough to keep me interested in cooking but easy enough to actually use. The photographs are lovely and the layout is crisp and modern.

So for the month of March I’ll be cooking mostly from this book! I’ll share every Monday what I made the past week and how it was. I may also dip into their blog a bit too and share some favorite recipes I find there. At the end of the month we can do a deep dive review and see if this cookbook is worth adding to our home kitchen libraries. And if not, maybe we at least find some go to recipes that get us excited about cooking again.

Want to join me? Check and see if your library has this book, or any cook book you’ve been wanting to try!, and pick some recipes you want to use throughout the week. I’d love to hear your favorites.

2 thoughts on “March Cookbook Challenge”

  1. I just picked up Melissa Clarke’s Dinner in One (meals in 1 pan/dish) from the library to try out a few dishes, I love it when they have tips for swapping ingredients or what you can easily prep ahead. Really enjoyed Alison Roman’s Nothing Fancy too (her salmon recipes are amazing). Looking fwd to hearing more about this book and what you make!


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