Hello and welcome!
I’m Mollie. I’m a self-taught home cook living in lovely Seattle, Washington. Home is a cozy yellow house in a hilly Seattle neighborhood with an over-stocked, green-tiled kitchen that I love. Home is also two busy, clever, rambunctious little kiddos that I spend my days ferrying about and trying to fuel with nourishing, wholesome food. Oh, and there’s a husband roaming around, too. I’m trained as a global health researcher, and was a full-time academic type until 2011, when I had my first kid. I finished my PhD about 18 months later, and have stayed home (mostly) full time since then. My second bub arrived in 2014.
Things I have learned: turns out when you are home full time, have two kids and a perpetually famished husband, you have some obligation to feed them. It also turns out that I get very bored eating the same things week in and week out, even if my kids would gleefully eat black bean tacos every night until the end of time. It also turns out that if you are good at following instructions, there’s no reason you can’t be good at cooking. It also ALSO turns out that most days by 4:30PM (or, ok, fine, 3:30PM, depending on the day), I’m ready to let the kids play lego/read books/pinch each other and go hide out in the kitchen because “I need to make dinner”.
Put it all together, and I have graduated from the bowls of plain lentils topped with Tabasco that I was eating when I first left college. I meal plan! I bulk shop! I gather inspiration from cookbooks (from all the cookbooks, I love cookbooks, I want to own all the cookbooks) and make changes to suit me and my family! I can cook! [I could – I should note – always bake, because really, that is all about following instructions, and if nothing else, I am excellent at following instructions.]
What will you find on Long Stitch Kitchen?
I’ve been mostly ovo-lacto vegetarian since I moved away from home at 17, though these days I very occasionally will cook and eat seafood. I grew up in New England, went mostly vegan during college, then moved to Switzerland for three years and reintroduced dairy, then moved to Thailand for nearly four years and reintroduced a bit of seafood. Since being in Seattle for more than ten years (no need to do that math, thanks), I’ve returned to my mostly ovo-lacto-veg ways. My husband will eat anything, as will my younger kiddo, but my older kiddo is mostly vegetarian (though she likes crunchy bacon). I don’t cook much meat or seafood, but every once in a while, I’ll source it well, and try. To be clear: it’s very difficult to cook meat well when you won’t eat it, haven’t eaten it in 20 years, and never liked it even when you did.
So you’ll mostly find vegetarian recipes here. You’ll find a lot of staples, because I get inordinate delight out of figuring out how to make something that I used to buy in the grocery store. My greatest delight comes from my discovery that I can make better bread at home than anything I’ve ever had from a store or, even, a bakery – so you will find a whole section on the joys of sourdough. You’ll find a whole lot of appliance love: my counters are jam-packed with clever devices, and I evangelize to anyone will listen how much easier they make cooking. I love my Instant Pot so much that there is a whole section on how to use her.
I spend a bit of time most Sundays perusing my library of cookbooks for inspiration for the week ahead. I put together a meal plan, which I deviate from wildly during the week, but seems like a useful thing to put out for the taking.
Why Long Stitch Kitchen?
When working on a sewing project, which I’ve been known to do from time to time, the “first draft” is often stitched with comparatively long stitches, which are easier to pull out when you are ready to do the real thing. Those long-stitched rough drafts give room to correct errors and make some improvisational, sometimes off-the-cuff, changes that improve the final product. This is pretty much how I cook. Nothing’s perfect, the next time I make something it’s usually better than the last, and you can always rip the recipe apart to try again if it’s a total fail. Good luck and happy long stitching!