The New & the Old – 2015 Greatest Hits Postings

2015 came in just as usual then went surprisingly haywire! At my age I’d settled into a rather comfortable routine – doing pretty much just what I felt up to or felt like doing. Now I’m dividing my time between two states, my folk’s home in South Dakota and my beloved Minnesota. It’s been a huge shake-up. New places, new people, new friends!

My folks with the Wayside Inn Carrot Cake
My folks with the Wayside Inn Carrot Cake

Then this summer, Gibson had a pretty bad operation – which was lucky, because they found cancer and did a second. It’s been a long road for everyone! I pretty much neglected this blog for months, until I realized that it’s an important part of my life. At some point I slipped the rails and became not a person who blogs, but a blogger! 🙂

Gibson is recovering from his surgeries this summer - 11 and still going strong!
Gibson is recovering from his surgeries this summer – 11 and still going strong!

This year, more than any in the past, I’ve questioned if what I do as a blogger is worthwhile? There are a zillion food blogs; so many are excellent. And so many blogs that address more important topics. I sometimes feel a bit redundant, a bit superfluous. A little helpless in my ability to make any difference.

happy

I just keep speaking up, and I keep cooking. Because sometimes, all you can do is what you can do. And sometimes, there’s comfort in that. Speaking of comfort, again this year, I found many of my most visited posts are comfort food – but the big twist? Not just typical American comfort food. Included are several “Heritage” dishes ranging originally from southern Mexico to Italy to Russia.

For the first time, my post on White Sauces and What to do with them has been edged out by another post. Oven Baked Hotel Eggs. Posted just this March, it’s garnered about 60,000 views. I so hope those who have visited have tried this recipe – you won’t believe how good a simple scrambled egg can be with a little time and care!

Baked "Hotel" Eggs
Baked “Hotel” Eggs
The Runza or Bierock
The Runza or Bierock

The Runza, or Bierock as it is more traditionally known, has moved up to the number two spot! Peasant food, for sure, these buns are amazing. I took a bit of flak for my “overly complicated” and “rambling” post, but I’m holding your hand through this one, just in case your own Grandma isn’t there to do so.

Pozole - Sometimes spelled Posole, a Pork & Hominy Stew made from Slow Cooker Pulled Pork or from scratch.
Pozole – Sometimes spelled Posole, a Pork & Hominy Stew made from Slow Cooker Pulled Pork or from scratch.

Another new-comer to my blog, but not to my kitchen, Pozole (sometimes spelled Posole) is a hearty, deep rich soup from Mexico. Popular, too, throughout the Southwestern States, this recipe is a gem. The secret is in the garnishes, by the way!

These easy, healthy oatmeal pancakes, dubbed Scottish Oatcakes, languished on my blog for years with less than 100 views. Then I took a new photo and they’ve taken off. I guess that proves you DO eat with your eyes, first. Now in the number five spot, I’d urge you to make them!

Scottish Oatcakes - Oatmeal Buttermilk Pancakes
Scottish Oatcakes – Oatmeal Buttermilk Pancakes
Banana Sheet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
Banana Sheet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Banana Sheet Cake is simply a classic! A down home recipe that’s perfect for snacking or to tote along to a party, potluck or function. The recipe was from a co-worker and it was always the first to go at any food day!

Scalloped Potatoes
Scalloped Potatoes

If any single recipe has staying power on my blog, it’s got to be Scalloped Potatoes like the ones your Grandma made! Every year in the top 10, this original Betty Crocker Recipe from the 1950’s brings it home. Good comfort food, from a time when good was good, and good was good enough! Dress them up with ham and/or cheese and they’re even better.

The Sparrow Tavern’s Veggie Burger, cobbled together from a Diner’s Drive Ins and Dives episode, was published October of 2014 – a bit fussy with many components, it’s fantastic. Get in the habit of cooking up batches of longer cooking grains and freezing and you’ll maximize time and effort.

Sparrow Tavern's Veggie Burger
Sparrow Tavern’s Veggie Burger
O;d-fashioned Split Pea Soup
O;d-fashioned Split Pea Soup

A new-comer to the top 10 spot is an old-fashioned recipe I first published in the spring of 2012 – Split Pea Soup. This has a few twists from Cook’s Illustrated that coax out so much flavor from this old standby. I’m glad to see visitors viewing this dark horse!

Russell's Cream of Broccoli
Russell’s Cream of Broccoli

There’s quite a bit of controversy over this soup, Russell’s Cream of Broccoli, both on my site and on the original published recipe in Epicurious. I love it just as it – a delicate, creamy soup, not thick or gloppy, with a “raft” of melted cheddar across the top. Dip in through the cheddar into the soup and pull up a marvelous spoonful. Heaven!

In spot number 10 is Healthy Italian Wedding Soup – it has the most marvelous Chicken Meatballs with Ricotta, flavored with a fennel/coriander spice rub I stole from Michael Chiarello. It’s a new family favorite and I usually make a huge batch of meatballs and use part for the soup and part for another meal or two (or freeze some.)

Italian Wedding Soup with Chicken & Ricotta Meatballs.
Italian Wedding Soup with Chicken & Ricotta Meatballs.

A number of recipes were edged out this year! Check out The New &
The Old – 2014 Greatest Hits & 2013 Greatest Hits.

Of course, if all I ever showed you were my top recipes, you might not ever see some of my absolute favorites on this blog. This year, I’d like to feature this adapted Thai Curry Chicken – fast, easy and fantastic, I could seriously eat this all the time. In 2015, this recipe had a total of 37 views, and only 86 views since I first published it in January 2014.  Certainly an underdog, but I’d like to give it this year’s “Best Personality” Award!

Thai Chicken Curry
Thai Chicken Curry

So while I keep working on finding and developing recipes that reflect the better trends in nutrition and still keep the budget under control, what this year has taught me is that sometimes simple comfort takes precedence over everything else, and while exciting and new is good, so is the old. As I say every year, like that old Girl Scout song:

Make new friends, but keep the old, one is silver, but the other gold…”

Happy New Years Everyone! And may you have many more new memories this year to cherish along with the old…

______________________________________

You know I’ll be bringing this to our Throwback Thursday #20 Link Party, hosted by Quinn of Dad What’s for Dinner, Meaghan of 4 Sons are Us, Alli of Tornadough, and Moi! That’s right – me! Click over to our Throwback Thursday post for rules and more info or just click on the blue leapfrog, below, to view all the posts or enter your own!

I’ll also be linking up with Angie of Fiesta Friday, her 101st consecutive party! Her co-hosts this week are Juhls of the Not so Creative Cook and Mr. Fitz of Cooking with Mr. Fitz. I can’t wait to see what those two come up with!!

20 thoughts on “The New & the Old – 2015 Greatest Hits Postings”

  1. You’re right, there are millions of food blogs out there. But for me it boils down to the connections we make in our own little corner of the blogging universe. We have such a lovely supportive group here, and that’s what makes a difference for me. All the best for an awesome 2016!

    1. Same to you Julianna, and you’re so right about that! I think food bloggers are probably one of the best type of bloggers, anyway! We already know how to give, share and create. We already know how to read and know the people in our lives – their preferences, likes and dislikes and know how to cater to them. It only stands to reason that they’d give as generously of their time and energy while blogging as they’ve always done with cooking. 🙂

      Finding other bloggers here on wordpress and beyond, and especially through Fiesta Friday, Angie’s link party, was an unexpected bonus that surprised me when I started blogging.

      Happy New Years!

  2. Okay Mollie. I am going to be a little sappy. I only really started blogging in March of 2015. One of the first people I met online was you, Back then it was really hard to figure out your actual name!!! LOL You were one of the first bloggers to help me figure out some of the intricacies of this weird world of food blogging. You were very gracious with your time through emails. You really showed me that food blogging is a community (with the emphasis on community) and what that means. To me it means supporting and helping each other in the community without expecting anything in return. You have always been very gracious and supportive and THEN you disappeared. To be honest with you I was kinda of shocked and worried what had happened. Really I know nothing about this person, but here I was concerned. But thankfully, for all of us you came back to the food blogging community. So Thank You for being a great friend and food blogger. I appreciate all you have done to help me and I am so glad I met you and now we partners in our own Link Party. Cheers to you Ms Frugal Hausfrau :))))

    1. Hey, Quinn, you were a little sappy, and made me tear up just a hair! 🙂 Thank you! And thanks, too, for missing me. I learned something from you, too – to use my name! LOL! And then for goodness sakes, a photo – you guys asked for a photo OMG when I threw in with you on Throwback Thursday! So now, the mystique is over; I’m thoroughly publicly outed, and I can say “Yeah, that’s me!” Although I do wish I’d picked a better blog name, lol!

      I still remember one of the first posts I saw from you – Caramel Brownie Bar Delights! I still haven’t made them…but I will! I thought, “Wow, here’s a Dad that’s got it going on”, and then I thought “Gee, I wish I would have thought of them!!” haha! Seriously, you’re doing a fantastic job with your blog, and you better expect I’ll be coming to you for help in the future!! 🙂

  3. Given the additonal working hours I have this 2016 (my boss announced that by the end of last year), I’ve thought of not blogging for a while, to stop my ‘meet new bloggers’ series because I can’t keep up in a weekly basis now and even completely stop the ‘tricky Tuesdays’ series, too. I’ve shared my thoughts to my cousin and she said to continue everything I am enjoying to do as she knows (as my #1 fan, she claims) that I am inspiring other people and making people smile. So now, I am (again), thinking on how to manage my blogging time. I love my blog and I love you and everyone, too, Mollie… so I’ll keep hangin’. I love your blog and I would say keep up what you are doing.

    Great shares, by the way. Continues healing to Gibson, too. Have a lovely time at the party and happy FF101! 🙂 xx

    1. Thank you Jhuls for your lovely thoughts and kindness! And after being gone for awhile, I hafta say I think it is important to make sure to carve out something for yourself! Your cousin is wise and you’re lucky to have her!! 🙂

      Happy 101, too!! 🙂

  4. There are a ton of food blogs out there! I can understand the feeling of redundancy; there are only so many recipes and variations out there. The reason I read yours is because it inspires me to get in the kitchen and cook good food. As long as the blog still inspires you, I hope you’ll continue!

    From this list, I’ve made the following this year: banana sheet cake, baked “hotel” eggs and the Scottish oat cakes. However, my favorite recipe of yours is still the bomb baked potato wedges. I make them whenever dinner might be questionable to my guys to make sure they’re happy!

    1. LOL! Thanks, Heather! You hit on the crux, I think, of why I like to cook – I love making people happy; it makes me happy. Guess I’m just a suck-up, lol! But I never think my cooking is good unless I get little happy noises from people…

      I do love those Bomb Baked Potato wedges, too! I haven’t made them for awhile and somehow we have a ton of potatoes, here, at the folks!

      Happy New Year’s, Heather, and thanks for all your visits! Hope Hubby and Baby are doing well, too!

  5. Love that lovely smiling pic of Gibson, I hope he continues to heal well 🙂 and I know what you mean about our blogs, there are so many blogs and so many food blogs, you wonder if the world really still needs yours?? But then, it’s also a personal story and a connection, and hey, no one cooks like you do, we are all unique, so why not share what we do, hey? As long as someone seems to like it, we might as well keep talking and sharing 🙂

    1. Thanks, but It’s always a bit surprising to me when I see the totals at the end of the year! The most viewed recipes never seems to correlate with what I think they “should” be, but whadda I know??

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