I can’t believe it’s been a whole year already.
It’s kind of strange to think about, considering that this blog is the first consistent written account of my life that I’ve ever kept. Ever.
This time last September I was going into my last stretch finishing up a BA, getting tutorials on how to use WordPress from Miriam, fumbling around with my camera and lighting in my teeny-tiny kitchenette (actually, I’m still doing that), and posting my first recipe: pumpkin cinnamon spice cookies (behold the terrible photos)!
Now it’s 110+ recipes, 365 days, and 86,000+ page views later. Whew!
Part of me definitely thought that I could never really stick with any one thing for very long, but…
I’ve gained an invaluable amount of experience through it all — blogging has developed my creativity, knowledge, experience, discipline, and determination.
Of course, the remarkable encouragement I’ve had from friends, family, and fellow bloggers has kept me determined, too.
The amount of effort and planning I put into each recipe means a lot to me — it’s always my hope that how much I care about food, particularly sweet foods, shines through in my posts. And even though I love everything I make, it’s only natural to have a few favourites…
So here are my top five recipes from the last year — after the jump!
1) Chai Cookies
This is my run-away hit — over half of my traffic is just from people visiting this recipe! It’s an awesome little shortbread-like cookie, bursting with chai spices. I’ve had people e-mail me and say that they’ve doubled (even tripled!) the amount of spice and that makes the cookie even better.
Use raw walnuts (not toasted) for a good cake with a delicate, nutty sweetness — throw in a nice golden rum with notes of spices and caramel, and you’ve a cake that’s unbelievable. The sour cherry glaze is icing on the cake (literally!), but the walnut rum bundt is good on its own.
I’m in love with chestnut, but this is the recipe that will make everyone else fall in love with chestnut, too. It’s sweet, tangy, creamy, earthy and perfect. Oh, man — I could use some right now!
November, it strikes — the mad chili cravings! Maybe it’s the relentless coastal rains, maybe it’s the earning for a little spice on a cold day, but this chili warms from the toes up. Secret ingredients? Coffee and cocoa and cinnamon. Eat it with applewood smoked cheddar and beer bread!
5 – Tie) Strawberry Lassi Muffins
Another surprise hit that was featured on Must Have Cute. This muffin recipe was inspired by the Indian yogurt drink by the same name — it has rose water, honey, cardamom, and creamy ricotta cheese in it. The roasted strawberries chunks could easily be exchanged for roasted mango chunks and it would be just as delicious.
5 – Tie) Honey Beer Spice Cake
Okay, okay — so a top five recipes list should only have five recipes in it, but I couldn’t decide between this honey beer spice cake or strawberry lassi muffins.
For this cake, definitely use a dark honey ale. It’s a moist treat loaded with warm, sweet spices and topped with rich, tangy cream cheese icing. An extra layer of complexity gets added when you sprinkle salted nuts on top!
Thanks again to those of you who’ve been with me this last year of Angry Cherry — for all of it or any part of it — your comments and feedback have meant so much.
I’m looking forward to another delicious year! Yum!