On my to-do list yesterday was to write my top-10 post for 2009. Not on my to-do list yesterday was dealing with an icky half-hangover, half-sinus headache and general crankiness, but it happened anyway. 2009 was an odd year for me blog-wise. I had days when I wondered why I bothered, and still other days when I happily wrote two or three posts at a time. What’s interesting about the most-read posts in 2009 is that several of them were from 2008. In a weird way, that makes me happy. It’s good knowing that at least some of these posts aren’t written, read by a handful of folks, and then never seen again. And here they are:
10. How Green is Your Burger? (2009) - Austin has had a crop of restaurants pop up who’ve committed to using sustainably-produced product and environmentally conscious materials and methods. This includes, now, a few fast-food type places. Elevation burger is, in my opinion, the better of the burger options. Better still is the relatively new pizza joint up in Round Rock, Promise Pizza.
9. Beans, Beans, the Musical Fruit (2009) - With all my charcuterie projects, it’s good for us to go vegetarian in our eating habits every so often. Hearty and healthful, beans are often a cornerstone of these meals. Included in this post are links to two very flavorful recipes.
8. Blood Orange Marmalade (2009) - This was my stab at preserving winter and early spring goodness so I could enjoy it year round. Blood oranges make a somewhat sweeter, less bitter marmalade, but that didn’t stop me from slathering it on biscuits and rolling it into sticky buns.
7. Happy Pigs Make Happy Bacon (2009) - We made bacon. Yeah. We picked up a big, fat pork belly from a local farm that treats their animals humanely, Richardson Farms, and proceeded to follow the steps laid out in Ruhlman and Polcyn’s Charcuterie. We haven’t bought bacon from a store since discovering the superior product that can be made at home.
6. Bacon Brownies (2008) - I didn’t realize there was a bacon craze when I made these lovely brownies, but boy howdy, was there ever. This post continues to draw lots of visitors. I included these in this year’s holiday cookie plate. Everyone loved them. The only criticism: not enough bacon.
5. Chocolate Mousse Pie (2008) - This is an excellent version of this pie. A simple graham cracker crust is filled with Julia Child’s version of chocolate mousse and served chilled with whipped cream.
4. Indian Comfort Food (2009) - Thanks to Chaya Rao and her wonderful Indian cooking class, Saag Paneer has become a regular menu item in our house. If you find yourself with a surplus of spinach this winter, this is the recipe to make.
3. Homemade Duck Prosciutto (2008) - A refrigerated version of the method for curing duck breast appeared in an old issue of Cooking Light. This was my gateway into the charcuterie world.
2. Bacon Bourbon Blondies (2009) - After enjoying several maple-bacon meet-ups, I thought this would be an interesting departure from the bacon brownies I normally would make. For my part, I prefer these over the brownies, but Sean disagrees. My advice: try both and decide for yourself!
1. Southern Style Cornbread Dressing (2008) - Over the years, I’ve watched Sean’s mother made this cornbread dressing numerous times. Through three generations, there’s never been a recipe. Included herein is my best stab at a method for both the savory southern cornbread and the simple dressing made with it. It must be close, because Sean insists that I make it every thanksgiving.