NEW PROJECT: Cooking with Ina

Ina and I go way back to my NYC days. Whenever I'd be sick or working from home, I always had The Barefoot Contessa on TV (which was followed by Giada, a one-two punch!). Then, after having my son and was in those early newborn days, I always counted on Ina to bring me out of the depths of the new mom zombie-land. As I started to become a more avid cook, her original cookbooks were some of my go-tos.


Ina's new cookbook "Modern Comfort Food" contains 95 new or reimagined recipes. The title, alone, has me excited. This is what I love to cook! Good for the soul, good for the tummies.


A dear friend told me I NEEDED to try out the "Ultimate Beef Stew" from this book, and encouraged me to buy it for myself (turns out I need to be more blatant about what gifts I want for Christmas). And then, this friend came up with a brilliant idea for me to "Julie and Julia" the book. Now, if you haven't seen the movie, "Julie and Julia," I highly encourage it. It is based on the true story of Julie Powell who decides to cook her way through Julia Child's cookbook "Mastering the Art of French Cooking," an anthology of 524 recipes, in 365 days.


My plan is similar, but not quite as much of an undertaking. I am going to cook my way through Ina's entire cookbook, with a couple exceptions due to allergies in my household, and write about each recipe. Here's the plan:


93 out of the 95 recipes will be tackled.


Anytime a recipe calls for "seafood stock," I will be replacing it with 50:50 chicken stock/water (hubby is allergic to bivalves)


Two recipes that won't be cooked are:

  1. White Chocolate Toffee (due to cashews AND pistachios - two of the three nuts my son is allergic to)

  2. Shellfish and Chorizo Stew (no way getting around this one with my hubby's allergy)

One recipe that will be modified is:

  1. Salted Pistachio Meringues - I will replace the pistachios with pepitas.

I will ask one of our friends to use their grill for the Grilled Oysters with Lemon Dill Butter (I LOVE oysters) in order to avoid any allergy issues at our house.


Many of the recipes can be paired to form one meal, but I will write separate posts about each component


I am being kind to myself and giving myself until the end of 2021 to complete this mission - but my ultimate goal is to be finished in 6 months.

What do you think? Is there anything particular you'd like me to include in each write-up? I will definitely mention how much work is involved in each recipe, as well as what the ratings are from kids and adults. Anything else?


Lastly...what should I call this new project? Give me some ideas. DM me on Instagram @lollioftheday or write me a quick email at lauren@lollioftheday.com.


I can't wait to get started!





Hi, thanks for stopping by!

Food, puzzles, family, friends, music, dance...these are a few of my favorite things (not necessarily in that order!). Cooking has always been a large part of who I am. 

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