Martha Stewart had a minor gripe about bloggers in which she downplays the expertise of bloggers. She says:
“Who are these bloggers? They aren’t trained editors at Vogue magazine. They are bloggers writing recipes that aren’t tested. That aren’t necessarily very good or are copies of recipes that really good editors have created and done. Bloggers create a kind of, uh, popularity, but they are not the experts and we have to understand that."
adjective \ˈek-ˌspərt, ik-ˈ\
having or showing special skill or knowledge
because of what you have been taught or what you have experienced
I found this very interesting in light of the fact that many companies with EXPERTS STEAL the designs and recipes of individual artists and bloggers. See this link where Mimi Kirchner's work has obviously been ripped off.
In terms of recipes, I consider the expert the person who can make the recipe in the average American home with the average stove, and grocery store ingredients that aren't flown in from the far corners of the earth.
What does this has to do with dollmaking? I think you can learn a lot from people who don't claim to be experts. Hang out in doll groups and watch conversations amongst those who are still learning, the experts-in-training. They will discover things that the experts might not.
A Tried and True Soup Recipe
I think the original was from (gasp) Family Circle in an article about using canned goods. I don't do that.1/3 cup each chopped onion and red bell pepper
Caribbean Pumpkin Soup
2 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp ground cumin (or 1/2 tsp curry and 1/2 tsp cumin)
2 1/2 cups fat-free reduced sodium chicken broth OR homemade broth
1 15 oz. can 100% pure pumpkin puree OR baked squash
1 15 oz. can black beans, rinsed
1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes, drained
1/4 tsp each salt and pepper.
1. Coat a medium saucepan with nonstick spray, heat over medium heat.
2. Add onion and bell pepper and saute' about 5 minutes until veggies are tender. Stir in garlic and cumin and cook 1 minutes. Stir in broth,pumpkin puree', beans, tomatoes and saltt and pepper. Bring to a boil; reduce heat, cover and simmer 5 minutes to blend flavors.
Now here's what I do differently. I usually cook a chicken before I'm going to make this, and make stock. Or I buy an organic rotisserie chicken and make stock. But there are plenty of good canned/boxed stocks in the super market to use if you don't want to do this. I use "buttercup" squash instead of the canned pumpkin. It's got a more complex flavor to me. Microwave the squash whole for about a minute or so, and then cut in half. Be sure to scoop out seeds before baking. Usually I bake it cut side down in a 400 degree oven, but this time I microwaved the squash, cut side down on a plate (uncovered) for about 8 minutes or until it's very soft. I do this the day before I make the soup. I usually double this recipe because it's so yummy.
And I usually cook it longer than 10 minutes to blend flavors, I let it simmer on very low heat a an hour or so while I do other things in the house :-)