About the Labels

January 24, 2015 | By

Quirky Cookery labels – What do they mean?

Before I get too knee-deep in this blog, I thought I should outline what my labels mean. Do you really care? Nah, probably not, but I actually put quite a bit of thought into them, so you’re going to skim this and pretend you care. :P

When I started Quirky Jessi, I really had no plan. Over the years, I kept the labels/tags relatively vague so that I have a fair bit of them, but they’re so general that sometimes a post falls into several at once…or none at all. And to top it off, they don’t really ‘mean’ much of anything.

So for Quirky Cookery, I knew I wanted to have some pretty tight labels to help keep things organized. So many cooking sites have 50 million tags so that every post is tagged with 20 tags each. One recipe may fit into the categories of “dinner,” “vegetarian,” “ethnic,” “Mexican,” “easy,” “cheap,” “dairy-free,” “diabetes-friendly,” “organic,” “healthy,” etc, etc.

I don’t want to be every other cooking site, though. And I certainly don’t want to juggle all those tags when most people just honestly don’t care. If you’re looking for Mexican recipes, google “Mexican recipe.” If you want food that simply ‘looks’ like a Mexican flag, then now we’re talking.

Anyway, for the time being at least, I wanted to have some very specific, yet loose labels. Things people might actually want to click, but not insanely detailed so that every post ends up fitting a ton. With a bit of help from my friends, this is what I came with how ever many months ago. I almost forgot what each was meant to contain!

Cravings and curiosities – Whether it’s food or kitchen products, these are things I’m curious about. A recipe I think would be fun to try out, but I haven’t actually tried it yet? A kitchen accessory I’m drooling over? A new food that I’m curious how it’d be? All goes here.

Culinary detours – Stories mostly, I figure. When the kids say something so hilarious that I can’t resist posting it here, or when I make a goofy mistake like burning my belly button repeatedly, I want a place to put them.

Gadgets and gizmos – Self-explanatory really. I run across a lot of quirky gadgets and the best (read: strangest) ones will end up here.

Images – Yeah, so it’s vague, general, and it doesn’t have an interesting name at all. What’s it to you? I ran out of ideas, ok? And I know I’ll be posting random pictures that won’t fit anywhere in the rest of these categories. Leave me alone! Or suggest a quirkier name.

Lookalikes – Lookalikes are when a food is really one thing, but looks like it’s something else. So a cake that really looks like it’s spaghetti and meatballs, or a chicken bacon wrap that’s shaped like a whale.

OAMC – Stands for “Once a month cooking.” While I don’t do it just once a month, I ‘do’ tend to cook a whole bunch at once to put meals in the freezer. This frees up a lot of time for me and allows me to play with my food a bit more on some other days. I have a lot of fun shopping just once a month (minus the occasional trip for fresh produce, bread, and milk), and even more fun taking pictures of how much I cook at once.

Other sites – I love to link to other people. Everyone seems to have so many amazing ideas and they deserve as much linky love as possible.

Quirky creations
 – These are my own creations. Here will be silly, quirky, and/or messed up dishes that I’ve made myself.

Recipes – Duh. Recipes here. These will likely be mostly ones I’ve tried (or am going to try shortly), but that aren’t necessarily “quirky.”

Reviews – Do I need to explain this one?

Tips – Or this one? These are boring. Shhh. Tips will be listed in italics, usually at the end of posts.

So there you have it. Now you know what they all mean. Or what they’re supposed to mean. We’ll consider this my cheat sheet for the next time I forget how to label one of my own posts, ok? ;)

Disclosure: All labels are mine and I’ll change them whenever I feel like, so this list could easily multiply like flour seems to all over my table, counter, feet, and hair. In 5 years if I’m still writing here and forget that once upon a time, I wrote this post, I cannot be held liable for these being completely outdated and false. It’s not my fault. And you shouldn’t care, so shush it and go click a link instead. 

Read more: http://www.quirkycookery.com/2010/01/quirky-cookery-labels-what-do-they-mean.html#ixzz10TkFN6BL

Store prepped veggies in bags (Bulk OAMC tips)

Store prepared carrots in an empty tortilla bag to save money

One of the most important parts of doing "once a month cooking" is the prep work. Even if you don’t do all of the cooking on one day, you’ll want to do as much of the prep work at one time as possible. This way, even if you need to stop early, you have still shaved off tons of time for later in the week or month.

The above is an example of peeling a whole bunch of carrots at once. I ran out of time and couldn’t go ahead and slice/dice/chunk them for various recipes. I was also making enchiladas for dinner and had just emptied a tortilla. Instead of throwing it out, it was an easy, reusable way to store the whole, peeled carrots, until I was ready to come back to them again.

Later in the week, I likely sliced some of these for the kids’ lunches, diced some for soups, and polished off the last for snacks. Chances are, I had a similar bag of celery right alongside it in the fridge, too.

Pepperoni pockets – Which shape is best?

 photo Canada2011-2012576.jpg


I clearly love cooking. I love being in the kitchen. I love trying out new recipes. I love creating new dishes or weird food art.

What I don’t love is doing it every single day.

I burn out really fast if I have to  cook every day. Even if I’m just doing simple dinners every day or fixing my own lunch, I get lazy crazy fast if I do it too many days in a row. Then I don’t want to cook at all and I especially have no interest in playing with my food either because I want to get right back out of the kitchen as soon as possible.

So instead, I end up cooking a whole bunch at once and tossing half of it in the freezer or repurposing the ingredients for several dishes at one time. I used to do more of what the internet blogging world calls “once a month cooking” but I find it more realistic to simply do it when I have the chance…whether that’s once a month or every couple weeks or even just doubling up recipes when I’m cooking on one of those mundane “pasta for dinner…again” nights.

Below is an example of buying pepperoni and turning it into several different pizza pockets. My lighting was really bad in that kitchen, so I know some of it doesn’t look very appetizing, but every variation was delicious.

Most of the ingredients were the same… pepperoni, peppers, cheese, sauce, homemade dough…. but they were in different combinations and presentations. The braided wraps were great for dinner and midnight snacks because I could cut off whatever size I felt like. And the little “pork bun” style pockets were more perfect for tossing in a lunch bag for an easy packed lunch. The ones near the end where the pepperoni isn’t cut were a bit more similar to “pigs in a blanket” with a very strong pepperoni flavor compared to the rest.

Most of these variations also would’ve been great examples of when I fry my pepperoni first. Any of them that are chopped and mixed with other ingredients would’ve been de-grease-ified a little bit first because otherwise, the filling ends up with pockets of nasty orange-ness that I’m just not too thrilled with eating.

Homemade pizza dough for pizza pocketsPunching down the homemade pizza dough for calzones Fry pepperoni first to remove some of the grease Filling recipe for pizza calzones Chopped pepperoni, cheese, peppers, etc, for pizza pockets How to make pepperoni, pepper, and cheese pizza pockets Fill pizza dough braids with pepperoni and pizza fillings How to braid pizza dough How to braid dough for pizza wraps Flattened homemade pizza dough circles to make pork bun style pockets Lots of different ways to use the same pizza toppings in pockets instead Personalized pizzas with pepperoni and cheese Why are my pork bun pizzas exploding out the side??
(Oops!) Big bubble in pizza dough
Pepperoni and cheese pigs in a blanket  Pizza braids, calzones, pockets, personalized pizza pans