Navel Gazing…

Yesterday I did a bit of blog/plugin/PHP hackery… as I wanted a sort of a recipe index for this site. (At the same time I created a food pairing index.) What this exercise revealed is that I really haven’t published enough recipes. So – for 2014 I think I want to focus more on the cooking and, to a lesser extent, food/beer pairing… I actually have an additional 10 recipe entries in draft stage (mostly incomplete due to lack of time). I’ve been writing up my foodie notes online for years now, pre-beeriness, and it has always been simply because doing so is great fun. Devising the Saison Char Sui(ish) Pork Belly recipe recently reminded me of my “roots”, as such.

Goal: for every non-foodie entry I write I MUST write TWO foodie entries.
Additional: for every non-recipe foodie entry I must write two recipe entries.

I do still want to record other experiences… and in 2013 there were some huge highlights such as doing the full-week bar training course at GBBF in August. Trip & event reports are great fun to write too, such as my recent Fremantle & Swan Valley write-ups. However I want to avoid “politics” posts… aka “blather” or “verbal diarrhoea“… there’s enough of it out there as it is, and it really isn’t particularly useful. I think I’ll avoid things like “The Session” too… while they’re sort of fun they’re also a off-topic for the most part.

A new thing that arose in 2013 was homebrew… I’m still not entirely sure where I stand with homebrew. So far I’ve had “acceptable” success with all but one beer out of five being quite pleasant… and the “one” bad one being “not all that bad” (it has an acetic flavour that I dislike, yet have found in other much-lauded beers).  It has an affinity with cooking, but is my heart really in it? I tend to leave most brews in primary or secondary far longer than I ought to… mainly because bottling is such a bloody chore. So will 2013 be the beginning and the END of homebrew for me? Or will I continue as I have… or will I move on to “proper” full-mash brewing? I really haven’t a clue at the moment. Oh, and I’d better bottle these damn stouts this week. Ho hum!

Not entirely on-topic but I do also want to get more cycling events in this year. I did a handful last year… but not enough. A painful highlight was the doing the London Revolution with Windsor & Eton folk… over 180 miles in two days… recovery took two months. Damn right knee. But it was excellent fun regardless. This year I have ALREADY embarked on a training plan that should lead me to a more successful London Revolution in 2014 – and hopefully have me looking a little less of a horrid tub of lard in my Republika jersey. There seems to be quite an intersection between cycling & the brewing world… especially mountain biking. Off-road is my personal preference and it has been far too long since I did some good singletrack on the hardtail. I’d love to do some MTB (meet-the-brewer) MTBing (mountainbiking) in 2014. It’d be a blast. This is also part of a general fitness goal… the last few years have been unkind as a result of self-neglect: too much beer, not enough exercise.

In 2014 I might even play with video a bit more… or perhaps the world doesn’t need to be subjected to such a horror. I’d need to clean the kitchen properly first anyway.

What do you think?