An Experiment in Kitchen Experimenting

Mr. B and I love to cook. And we love to try new things. That being said, we tend to get into kitchen ruts: grilled chicken, grilled pork chops, grilled burgers, grilled fish, sautéed veggies, quinoa/pasta. So, basically: protein, vegetable, grain. Add a glass of wine/beer/milk/water, and you have our traditional dinner.

Now, I used to cook — a lot. All sorts of delicious things, trying new recipes all the time. But then Mr. B and I got married, and we worked opposite shifts. So I fell out of the habit. Because it was kind of a pain cooking two separate dinners — or making a dinner that tasted good at 5:30 and at 11:30.

Lately, though, we’ve been feeling antsy to get back in the cooking habit — especially now that we have an awesome new kitchen! And there are a lot of things we’ve been wanting to try. (Just recently, Mr. B even made beef bourguignon!) Being the super-fun person that I am, I wanted to add another level of excitement to our goal to cook more for each other.

Enter playing cards. I figure: 52 cards in a deck, 52 weeks in a year. It’s like a sign.

So, Mr. B and I each got a deck of cards, and we spent one evening writing on the back of each card either one ingredient we wanted to use, one recipe we wanted to make or one type of cuisine we wanted to cook. Then, each week we’d draw a card from the other person’s deck. That would give us two meals each week that we’d be “forced” to try something new.

Cards and Sharpies

Sharpies — of all colors — are a must for this project.

The first week, Mr. B drew my “Gwumpkie” card, and I drew his “goat milk” card. Now, Gwumpkie isn’t exactly a “new” recipe — we used to eat it all the time when I was growing up. But I can’t remember the last time I’ve had it. And Mr. B? Well, he’s never had it. And, goat’s milk? Well, I think we’ve only ever had the “cheesed” variety.

I emailed Mom for her Gwumpkie (casserole) recipe. So that was an easy one. Goat’s milk, though? The options were limitless! I knew I wanted it to be something savory, though — not a dessert. A Google search led me to many, many options. I clicked and scrolled around until I found a recipe that caught my eye: Savory Goat Cheese Soufflé.

I wish I could say I came up with the recipe, but I didn’t. Honestly, I wouldn’t have known where to start. And we didn’t take any liberties with the recipe, either, since neither of us had ever eaten a soufflé before, much less baked one.

Souffle ingredients

Everything’s ready for a soufflé experiment at Casa B!

Cooking with someone else is not always an easy thing to do — tripping over each other in the kitchen, getting in each other’s way, making a mess. But, Mr. B and I do alright. For the most part, we make a pretty good team. (Though, he’s learned not to get in my way when I’m stirring — that creates a … “situation.” Right, Rosebud?)

I’ve always put soufflés up on some sort of foodie pedestal — something I’d never be able to make. I mean, they’re so hard! But, to be honest, this recipe was pretty easy. Steps were easy to follow, with pictures! And we didn’t mess it up in the least! In fact, it came out looking pretty darn good — and smelling even better!

Finished Souffle

The finished product — looked, smelled and tasted delicious!

The recipe suggested serving the soufflé with turkey, fish or chicken. Or, even, by itself with a salad. Mr. B and I opted for shrimp, sautéed with a kale, leek, bell pepper and garlic. I’m really glad we served it with something rather than making it the main feature — it was just too light to be filling. But, it did taste absolutely delicious. And, it was super-duper fancy — especially for a rainy, boring Tuesday night.

Wine and Mr. B

Good food deserves good company and good wine.

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