Sunday, December 02, 2007

Finally...What's Next

I'm so sorry... I fully intended to write about my plans for after Mondays with Maida two weeks ago. But between Thanksgiving and being rather lazy, it just didn't happen. Part of the problem may be that I'm not feeling quite ready to get started on it, so let's consider this just a little sneak peek to tide you over until the "official" announcement - OK?

I've been thinking for several months that I'd like to examine American regional cuisine by looking at one state at a time and trying to figure out what foods are typical of each state. I started looking around some on-line and reading a little and quickly came to the conclusion that in order to get a grasp on the nature of a particular state's cuisine, I would also have to learn something of its agriculture and history. Throw in there an interest in food festivals, state fairs, and a wish to include food blogs, and you might begin to see my problem... maybe scope creep?

I obviously still need to sort out some details, but here's the general plan... I will focus on one state per month starting first with the states where I have lived and then moving on to those I have visited and finally on to those that are completely new to me. I'm calling the project "State by State" (and if you're familiar with Anne Lamott's Bird by Bird, you'll know why). I plan to end each month with a post that is sort of a reference for the state, including a directory of food blogs based in that particular state, books I used, etc.

I'm going to start in February with Maryland. After that will come Massachusetts, North Carolina, Vermont, and New York. After that? We'll see :)

Between now and then I'm going to enjoy the Christmas season and I'm planning to take Zarah up on her invitation to "join the madness" as she calls it. I won't be posting daily as she is, but I would like to do a few seasonal posts. Then in January I hope to finally do a little redecorating around here: switch to a new Blogger template so I can take full advantage of tags, etc., and get a new look.

So that's what's coming - guess I'd better get busy :)


santos. said...

ooh. maybe when you're done with the 50 you'll consider a couple of unincorporated territories and a commonwealth or two? ha! by the time the 50 roll out, you'll be wanting to switch to a craft blog, maybe... :)

zarah's inspired me to blog more as well. like you, maybe not every day, but hopefully more than once a month!

Cathy said...

Hi Santos! Definitely!! Though I'm calling it state by state, I would very much like to include Guam! I've even been thinking about including crafts somehow or other... but that probably is straying a little too far :)

Nupur said...

That is so so exciting!! I barely feel like I know this country and it would be wonderful to learn about it "state by state"! Go Cathy!

Anonymous said...


How exciting! I can't wait.


Anonymous said...

When you first mentioned this State by State idea, I thought it was a great idea. I agree with the worries over scope creep. There are so many interesting things about each state, it would be easy to get carried away. Whatever you do with the idea, have fun with it!

Cathy said...

Hi Nupur! In terms of our culinary heritage, I'm feeling like I barely feel like I know this country, so I'm looking forward to learning about it too!

Hi Lisa! Thanks - glad you'll be tuning in :)

Hi Mari! Thanks - I think it will be fun. Probably best that I just get started and see where it takes me. I've been thinking about it so long - time to start putting some words down!

reid said...


This sounds like a great idea. We can learn along with you. :)

If you need any reference materials from the 50th, I will happily send some over to you. Just let me know about a month ahead of time so I can get some things together for you.

Did you ever get to read the book I sent a while back? What did you think?

Cathy said...

Hi Reid! I think all I need to do when it comes to Hawaii is send everyone over to your blog :) I haven't read it cover to cover, but did read at it and I think it's going to be the perfect reference for this project! Thank you again!

Cerebrum said...

This is an awesome idea Cathy - can't wait to see the posts! And happy you're joining the madness - it gets so lonely on planet looney :)

Anonymous said...

There is a great cookbook called It's All American Food by David Rosengarten. It doesn't go state-by-state, but it has lots of great regional and "ethnic" American recipes. It might be fun to take a look at.

Unknown said...

Sounds like fun! This will be interesting. I vote for doing a Southern or Western state soon, too!

Cathy said...

Hi Zarah! Judging by the comments I've seen on Santos' blog, looks like you're going to have some company - though I haven't seen anyone else but you brave enough to commit to a daily post!

Hi Amber! Thanks so much for the recommendation - I will definitely check it out!

Hi Claire! North Carolina, home of my alma mater, will be third in the rotation - so there'll be a taste of the south before too long! I've also visited a couple of southwestern states, so they'll turn up before too long as well :)