Well hi! I’m glad you’re here. I’m Jen, an American expat currently living in New Brunswick with my Canadian husband. I enjoy cooking, and this is where I blog about my constant quest for new recipes that are actually worth the time and effort.

I spend quite a bit of time each week figuring out what to eat.  I love to try new things, but I also hate ending up with a fridge full of half-used produce at the end of the week.   So, each weekend I spend a couple of hours combing through food blogs (and my own recipe stash), lining up a menu that will actually use up all the ingredients on my grocery list.  (Or pretty close anyway.)

A quick caveat:  this is just my own personal shopping list, and I’m not a professional chef or nutritionist or anything.  But I do my best to pick recipes that share a lot of ingredients, while being different enough to keep you from getting bored.  It’s not an exact science, and I still sometimes end the week with a handful of parsley or half an avocado that didn’t quite make it. But it’s a fun challenge and I enjoy it, so if you want to offload your weekly menu planning to me and cook along, feel free! I publish my shopping list and recipes for the upcoming week each Sunday, so if those recipes look good to you, you’ll know exactly what you need to get. (Fair warning: a huge jar of garlic is a prerequisite for pretty much everything.)

Each recipe I review here also gets rated according to how delicious it was, and how much work it took to make. (For more details on the rating system, see the FAQ.)  It can be a huge challenge for busy people to cook tasty meals from scratch on the regular, especially if you’re only cooking for 1 or 2 people.  I can’t guarantee that you’ll like all the same things I like, or have the same idea of what qualifies as a lot of work in the kitchen.  But my hope is that by taking care of the planning step and sharing my test of each recipe, I can make cooking a little more approachable for folks who would like to do more of it.

I’m a software developer by day, working on a React-based data visualization dashboard for a cybersecurity company. In my off time I enjoy knitting, spinning, yoga, hiking, and gardening. My husband and I moved from downtown Seattle to rural New Brunswick in 2017, and for the first time in a long time I have space for real garden beds. So as the produce from the garden starts to be available for cooking, you’ll probably see some gardening tips here too.