Because I adore her...

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Is there anyone you want to aspire to be?

Someone you dream and hope and yearn to become- and know that, even though you will not come close to being as great, as talented, as fabulous- you still have this insane desire to try?  And though for some it is heroic, spiritual, political, or iconic figures- mine is none of these, necessarily.

For me, that someone is Ina Garten.

She is my hero.  Heroine?  Whatever.

I want to be her.

Is it weird that I sometimes ask my husband to pretend his name is Jeffrey and ask for chicken every Friday night?  Or swoon over every little concoction I make for fake cameras?  Or perm his hair into little gray ringlets and wear loafers?

Okay- so maybe I don't go that far.  Ahem.

But really- I just love Ina.  There is something about her that is simple, yet elegant; Parisian, but non-fussy.  She is eloquent, but down-to-earth.  She reminds me of a comforting great aunt whom you don't want to disappoint and who will always be there to teach, yet correct you.

I admire this type.

So anyway- I really don't have a whole lot to share or say, except that I have a fascination with all things Barefoot Contessa.  These are my lovelies (they have top-seating on my bookshelf):

  


And really- I just want them all:


I mean- who wouldn't want to make stuff that
looks THIS AMAZING:

Like Ina's ultra creamy-and-buttery Mac n' Cheese:


Oh brunch, how I adore thee.
Especially when it involves Ina's Smoked Salmon Frittata:


And her absolutely insane Turkey Lasagna.  Oh. me. oh. my.
Yes, please.


A Saturday morning treat: Banana and Sour Cream Pancakes.


Lemon yogurt cake, a go-to for many gatherings 
I have found myself invited to:


Or this summery mixed berry cheesecake:



Or how about Ina's sinfully divine (oxymoron?) peanut butter 
chocolate cupcakes that one blogger re-created:


So many delectable things to choose from.
And the thing I love?  It's all simple & pure ingredients,
things you can find locally,
and relatively easy to prepare-
yet nothing in the recipe is pre-made, a la Sandra Lee.  
Don't get me started on her.

I think the moment I fell in love with Ina was when
on one of her BC episodes she said, and-I-quote,
"I don't understand why some people create tablescapes,
what IS a tablescape anyway and who in the world
has time to coordinate dishes with placemats?!"  

I about wet myself.

Okay- sorry- if you don't watch the Food Network
you probably have no clue what I'm talking about.
If you do- you are likely laughing just as hard as I did!

Anyway.  Moving on.

This Sunday I plan to make Ina's Chicken Stew
with Biscuits- it seems like a very Sunday-esque
meal indeed.  Comfort food.  Lazy Sunday evening.
Maybe a dessert or heaping mound of rolls on-the-side.
Yes, this is definitely in the weekly meal plan:
(I love how this blogger made the biscuits into little
hearts- cutsie and clever!)


And OH, if I could sit upon this couch, Ina's couch, and discuss all
things culinary and French with her.  I would peruse her bookshelves
and pick her brain about things like the origination of herbs de provence
and mirepoix- who decided the latter was a base for all sauces and soups?
And why does the dice of Frenchie veggies need to be uniform?
What purpose does this serve?
And what is your favorite Parisian bistro?
And how do you grow all those lovely flowers and veggies?
And why in the world did you work on foreign energy policy
at the White House- what made you shift to the culinary world?
And how do you form a recipe?
And, and, and....
I have so many questions.


Or if I could dine in her new kitchen.  
Oh my- that would be my dream.
I would wander around the room in awe, 
and touch each tool with fascination,
and probably drool on everything.
Sorry, Ina.


This is where I would stand, 
watching her work.
Asking questions along the way
and tasting as we go.
I may-or-may-not have put little bowls of citrus
fruit in my own kitchen too...maybe.
Maybe.
I'll never tell.

And I may-or-may-not own reams of parchment paper,
just to say, "line the pan with parchment."
And I may-or-may-not have said little kitchy phrases while cooking
like, "How bad can that be?"  or "Jeffrey just loves it!"  
Possibly.


And for some reason I just want to blow up
this photo and stick it on my kitchen wall,
just to pretend like she's in the kitchen cooking with me,
sharing a good East Hampton story or telling me where
to find the freshest seafood:


Yes, I like Ina.
Is this creepy?

I promise, it's just a "like" thing.
Nothing more.
But, Ina, if you are reading-
I'm available for apprenticeship anytime.

Just sayin'.





3 comments:

Anonymous said...

You have nothing to apologize for... Ina is a total fox. I LOVE her show!!!
:) Kristy

Kirsten's Cooking said...

Abbie-
You're the first person I'll suspect if something happens to Barbara, her assistant! Yes, I know her name, does that make me obsessed, too? :)

My faves are her cheesecake, coleslaw with blue cheese, and roasted tomatoes, to name a few! I've never made a flop using her recipes!

She is so pleasant-natured...and I love how she and Jeffrey have such a loving relationship!

Matt, Rebekah, and Micah said...

Have you tried her chocolate cake?! oh my, Matt LOVES. IT.
By the way, I can't even look at covers of Semi-Homeade without dry heaving. Her outfit matches her curtains!
Gag.

But I loved this entry! Thank you Cyber friend.

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