Cooking Up A Blog Idea - Swampy's Kitchen Blog at - 276409

Swampy's Kitchen

Cooking Up A Blog Idea 
May 31, 2012 8:01 am 
Updated: Jun. 7, 2012 8:35 pm
Much like the culinary rut I found myself in at the beginning of the year, I am now finding myself to be stuck in a literary rut as well. I have a whole bunch of ideas for blogs and other things running around in my head. The only problem is that those ideas have absolutely no sense of direction and can’t seem to find their way down from my brain to my fingertips. The fact that I am hunt & peck typist makes it even harder to comprehend since there are only two fingertips my ideas have to find.
Now I wanted to write a blog about a beautifully successful dish I made recently but…..that hasn’t exactly happened. The only thing that I really made this month, other than scrambled eggs, pancakes & the occasional reservation or takeout order, was a bean salad that was colorful and somewhat tasty but certainly not worthy of several paragraphs of hyperbole so that meant that idea got swept into the discard bin.
So I thought about writing about a kitchen disaster because when it comes to writing about screw-ups, I have more than a few to share and those always generate a lot of comments & mirth but…..I did that last blog when I talked about cutting off a chunk of my finger on Mother’s Day so that idea got swept into the discard bin too.
Then I thought, why don’t I ask a food related question because those types of blogs, if you can call asking a question without a backstory a blog, always generate a lot of interest and comments but…..I couldn’t think of a question that I haven’t seen asked once, if not twice already. So into the discard bin went my third idea.
Not to be discouraged, I thought about writing a blog about relationships because people always want to talk about their relationship problems so I could pretty much guarantee a lot of comments but…..this is a food blog and unless we are talking about the unhealthy relationship I have with Edy’s Slow Churned Key Lime Frozen Yogurt (half the calories & half the fat), then I have nothing to offer in this area as I have been happily married for almost 18 years and out of the dating pool for over 20 years. Another idea bites the dust.
Then I thought about doing a nasty restaurant review because the last restaurant I went to in New York City was nothing but pretty food on small plates for astronomical prices but….the New York Times reaffirmed their 4 Star Rating just last week so my complaints would just look like an empty bottle of Angostura Bitters so that idea met the same fate as those that came before it.
But then mentioning the Angostura Bitters made me think about writing a blog about Summer Cocktails and other assorted Boat Drinks of varying flavors & potency but….then I remembered I quit drinking 24 years ago when there were only 2 flavors of vodka – good & bad – so I’m not exactly the expert on that subject like I was in the past so that idea got poured down the drain with the warm six pack of Dry beer I found in the basement. Or was it Ice beer ? I quit drinking so long ago I can’t remember which beer came after everyone was making & selling Gold beer.
So like an anxious cook flipping through a cookbook of last resort, I have come up empty and can’t think of a single thing to write. Come back next time when I throw more pasta at the ceiling to see if it sticks.
May 31, 2012 8:19 am
Any recs for restaurants in NYC that you *do* enjoy? We will be there next week and always love recs.
May 31, 2012 8:21 am
So, a blog is like a quilt. Some patterns have flowers, some have rings, some have cabins, some have neckties, and some have no patterns, and we call them crazy quilts. Thing is, they are still quilts, and they will still keep you warm on a chilly evening! So, your blog is a crazy quilt--no pattern (theme), but something useful nonetheless (still a vehicle to express yourself and entertain your readers)! I liked it, and I get it!
May 31, 2012 8:22 am
Hi TwoSweetPickles - it really depends on what you are looking for. I can certainly try to steer you in the right direction
May 31, 2012 8:22 am
For not having any ideas on what to blog on you did what you intended, I think, to have a blog about not having anything to blog about?
May 31, 2012 8:24 am
Thanks Bibi....and speaking of quilts, I think we are going to need a new one next fall. I'm really getting tired of the one we have on the bed now. Have a great day.
May 31, 2012 8:25 am
Hi ibbz - somethimes the pasta does stick when you throw it at the wall. Thanks & have a great day.
May 31, 2012 8:51 am
Doug-there are times that I have no clue what I am going to blog about. I like all your family antics you have blogged about in the past. Sleep on it,your brain will come up with something-as long as you don't write about cooking cow brains-I'll like reading it.
May 31, 2012 8:51 am
Hahaha! I know exactly what you mean. I understood it PERFECTLY! I don't worry too much about pasta sticking to the wall. I know that's how you're supposed to tell if it's "done". . .but I like the "chew" test better. Now, I DO know that pot pie flicked from the end of your fork, WILL stick to the ceiling. Ask me how I know this!
May 31, 2012 8:57 am
Hi Lela - school is almost out and the kids will soon take over the kitchen - not sure if I should be scared or not but either way, I will write about it. Have a great day.
May 31, 2012 8:59 am
Hello LadySparkle and how do you know that pot pie flicked at the end of your fork WILL stick to the ceiling ? Enquiring minds want to know....
May 31, 2012 9:01 am
My kids have always like my pot pie. But one night youngest DD just didn't want to eat it. . .so. . .yeah, there it was. . .on the ceiling.
May 31, 2012 9:03 am
I comprehend what you are saying. I also agree with Oscar Wilde when he says, "I love talking about nothing. It is the only thing I know anything about." Ponder on... your next great blog is just below the surface. :)
May 31, 2012 9:03 am
Doug, do you know how many blogs I have started and discarded? Ideas abound but often fail to bloom. Sometimes it comes easy sometimes it doesn't. Ask Jerry Seinfeld - sometimes 'nothing' turns out to be something big.
May 31, 2012 9:04 am
LOL LadySparkle - My kids haven't flung my food across the kitchen or onto the walls yet but it's only a matter of time.
May 31, 2012 9:05 am
Hi Shearone - I think I do know what I want to write about next but it's going to require pictures & notes and that may be more than I am willing to do....Have a great day
May 31, 2012 9:07 am
Hi BN - Jerry certainly turned a whole lot of nothing into a whole lot of $omething. I can only dream. Looking forward to your next discarded blog.
May 31, 2012 9:23 am
She is the most creative problem solver I know. Also, not food related, but DD related. . .little tiny bottles of fingernail polish are bottomless. You can paint soooo many things with it! (In my home there is a fine line between artistry and destruction. . .oh wait, is there a line?)
May 31, 2012 9:49 am
Doug, with GB celebrating the Queens Diamond Jubilee and the Olympics quickly approaching you must be busy planning special foods, from across the pond, for your family.
May 31, 2012 9:52 am
"One creates from nothing. If you try to create from something you're just changing something. So in order to create something you first have to be able to create nothing. " -- Werner Erhard I have nothing more to say.
May 31, 2012 9:57 am
Doesn't matter...we're opening to anything. Don't want extremely touristy places or $200 a plate meals. In between, anything goes.
May 31, 2012 9:58 am
Luckily LS, my daughters never expressed themselves artistically with fingernail polish but they did discover that you can make it snow inside with Baby Powder.
May 31, 2012 10:03 am
Hi Marie C. - haven't planned anything yet to honor the Olympics but I have time. Is serving crusty old bread the wrong way to celebrate the Queen ? (JK !)
May 31, 2012 10:24 am
It would be ok with me.
May 31, 2012 10:26 am
Hi b.d. - no need to say more as the something you said was a lot more than nothing. Thanks and have a great day.
May 31, 2012 10:45 am
Let me think about a couple of places downtown & midtown for you TwoSweetPickles.
May 31, 2012 11:58 am
I know what you mean, Doug. I'm not really a regular blogger at this point, but I simply cannot force the issue of topics when I do want to blog. The ideas come to me as they see fit, usually in the most inopportune moments, and I have to spend the time formulating them in my head while hoping I can keep them there long enough to make it to the computer to put it in writing! The ones in my head now may be suggesting a "North vs South" approach to food. What should be the same dish can bear only the slightest resemblance sometimes. Maybe the noodle will stick at some point. Happy blogging to you! : )
May 31, 2012 12:09 pm
Good afternoon wisweetp - I like that blog idea - same dish but entirely different depending on the region of the country you are in. I look forward to it. I guess I would be in trouble if I had to write for a living. I know the blogs I have ben required to write here have all come out wooden at best. Have a great day.
May 31, 2012 12:34 pm
Don't go to a lot of effort. I just thought you might have a few off the top of your head.
May 31, 2012 12:46 pm
You are givin Jerry Seinfeld a run for his money....." a blog about nothing"...Do you remember that episode. Very successful for him and you too. Keep on.
May 31, 2012 12:46 pm
Doug, I love reading your blogs. You're always good for a laugh!
May 31, 2012 2:02 pm
I generally don't eat in nyc other than in the dives around my office TwoSweetPickles but I do know of a few good places. I just have to remember their names.
May 31, 2012 2:03 pm
I like BD. Weld's comment. Good to see you Doug! Love reading your blogs too!
May 31, 2012 5:15 pm
Hi covergirl and thank you very much - I think Jerry was better at nothing than anyone else. Have a great night.
May 31, 2012 5:15 pm
Hi Paula & thanks. I try. Have a great night.
May 31, 2012 5:16 pm
Hi luv2cook - great to see you too - bd did have a great comment. Have a great night.
May 31, 2012 8:20 pm may seem like nothing, but you hook us every time :) BTW You should be like me.....I have about 5 blogs in various stages of completion. ADD????????
May 31, 2012 9:54 pm
Doug, hoping you understand my dry sense of humor. As for mauigirl I could do a whole blog on her. She is one remarkable woman!
Jun. 1, 2012 3:13 am
Morning Julie & thanks - I could fill a book with all the Chapter One's I have written over the years. It is fun to try and make something out of nothing.
Jun. 1, 2012 3:14 am
The dryer the better bd and as for Julie, that's a blog I would read & I have only had the pleasure of talking to her on the phone.
Jun. 2, 2012 11:33 am
I've never found a blog about nothing so interesting! That is just the thing with writing - when done well, the most mundane details are exciting. When done poorly, the most exciting story can't hold one's attention. This was great!
Jun. 2, 2012 4:08 pm
Good evening and thank you CHEFJULIE1 - sometimes I like to have fun and this time in worked. Come back next time when I go down in flames ! Have a great night
Jun. 3, 2012 6:52 pm
Doug, I'm coming up without a thought to comment on your blog about nothing. So, to keep it short, I'll not make a comment if, you don't mind. Of course, if you insist, I will try harder so that you feel validated with your writing. Sorry. I just can't come up with a comment.
Jun. 4, 2012 4:31 am
Good morning Mike. No comment needed my friend but my ego does appreciate you dropping in. Have a great day.
Jun. 5, 2012 1:19 pm
Finally, someone who shares my addiction to Edy's Key Lime frozen yogurt! For a blog about nothing, I was entertained. Thank you for giving me a smile on a dreaded Monday.
Jun. 6, 2012 6:44 pm
Good evening teleiri - it's just about the perfect ice cream - I love the chunks of shortbread crust too. Thanks for stopping in.
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Doug Matthews

Home Town
Princeton, New Jersey, USA
Living In
Mendham, New Jersey, USA

Member Since
Mar. 2000

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About Me
My mother decided early on that her sons would never have to rely on someone to feed them so we all learned to cook at an early age. I really started to branch out when I moved out west to Denver, SF & Dallas. Combine that with extended business travel to Louisiana & my growing love of spices and you get a real mix of flavors.
My favorite things to cook
Love to make cajun food with my favorites being crawfish pie, alligator stew & alligator chili - I go nuts on Super Bowl Sunday
My favorite family cooking traditions
We didn't have a lot of traditions per se but you could count on pancakes or waffles on sundays - dad making scrambled eggs twice a year on christmas morning & mother's day - veal parmagiana on christmas eve, Thanksgiving with Grandma Matthews and any menu of your choice on your birthday. We weren't a spicy family so I learned a lot of good strong basics in the kitchen from Mom that I have carried over into my cooking today.
My cooking triumphs
I love to experiment with variations of dishes I try around the country. My biggest success is here on allrecipes where I had 2 recipes published in the same cookbook - Southwestern Turkey Soup & Curried Carrot Soup. I think my corn muffins are a great starting point and my alligator chili has become a much requested Super Bowl favorite.
My cooking tragedies
There have been a few times in the past where I tossed everything and took everyone to a restaurant instead. I'm not too proud to say my cooking is awful when it really is.
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