I love New Year. For me, and for my family, it has ALWAYS been about New Year. We were never too keen on Christmas, Mum was more than likely working Christmas day, or either the night shift before/after and to be honest, Christmas was not a happy time full of fond memories for us. But New Year...that's another matter. My sister's birthday is New Year's Eve so it was always special and important to us, but as the years have gone by, to me, it has become increasingly more poignant.
As a child, New Year meant...staying up all night, (well, as late as you could) having a house full of people, (my sister's friends, relatives and neighbours) and eating cocktail sausages and generic party food until you could no longer move. However, as an adult, it means sharing a very special day with my sister, (whether it be in person, or on the phone) showing those I love, just how much I love them AND....fresh starts, new dreams and positive hopes.
Now, I am not one for 'summing up the year gone by', infact, I can't stand it. So, for me, this blog post is all about what I want to do in 2012 and what it means to me.
There is no denying it, 2012 is going to be immense. I will hand in my dissertation in the not too distant future, I will finish my final teaching practice ever, I will graduate as a Primary School teacher, I will move out and find my first ever non student property, I will apply for jobs, attend interviews, get a job (fingers crossed) and teach my first term as a Newly Qualified Teacher. These are some of the most stressful things you can do (besides get married and have a child!!) yet the only feeling I am experiencing at the moment is an excited itch to get this year well under way. BRING IT ON!! I know it is going to be tough, hard work and well, financially exhausting but I am just sooo ready to move on and make a fresh start.
In terms of foodie things, there are a few things I would like to attempt/achieve this year:
1. I have not made Choux pastry since I was about 16. I completely messed it up and ruined a perfectly decent pan last time. I would love to try it again...and perfect it!!
2. I would love to cook a 3 course meal from start to finish. I have done this before, but always depended on some element of shop bought product. This time, I want to do it on my own.
3. I would like to find and start using a good quality butcher. Many of my friends have started doing this lately and it turns out, that if you do get to know your butcher, you can always be guaranteed a bargain.
4. I would like to cook a fresh joint of meat. Whenever I cook a roast, I always use a frozen cheap joint. I would love to try and do it on my own without burning it/making anyone poorly/making it taste bland.
6. I would love to successfully ice something...cake, biscuits, cupcakes, cookies...ANYTHING (!!!) without getting the icing everywhere and nowhere/bursting the icing bag/having the icing set in the bag/making icing the consistency of water.
7. I have never made a meringue based dessert - I would like to change this, this year.
8. I would like to try a macaron. Shockingly, I have never had one. Shop bought, or home made.
9. Generally, I would like to try more adventurous foods. I will try to do this at every opportunity I can.
10. At some point this year I would like to indulge in some fine tasting cheese and wine in somewhere other than my living room...France, Greece or Italy..not fussy!!
Steffie Jay's Bakes would like to wish all of her friends, family and followers a very Happy New Year!!
Bon Appetit dans 2012!!