In the 2009 movie, “Julie and Julia”,  Julie Powell challenges herself to cook through Julia Child’s first book “Mastering the Art of French Cooking“.  She successfully completes her challenge: 524 recipes and 365 days later. Recreating that challenge seems like it would be so fun, so delicious, and yet so impossible for a busy mom (which I am not) or someone who already has a lot of other hobbies (which I do). Since the whole idea is such a great way to try new foods and learn how to be a better cook I still wanted to come up with a similar challenge. Cooking through the alphabet seemed like the perfect challenge and a great way to try all the foods we are introducing this year in our Eating Through the Alphabet (F.U.N.) curriculum.

I missed week one–asparagus. Luckily, during week two, we had a foot of snow. Two snow days provided plenty of time to watch a movie and borrow and modify Julie Powell’s idea. Week two was Brussels sprouts, which I had never eaten. Oh, I’ve cooked them but I wasn’t about to eat them! Until now. And, boy, are they delicious!  Apparently no matter how you cook them, they’re super easy to make.

C was the letter for week three of the curriculum. Since week three fell right on the heels of Thanksgiving, cranberries made into cranberry sauce was the perfect choice. I had never tasted homemade cranberry sauce before and certainly never made it.  Cranberries are very tart and therefore most recipes are very high in sugar. However, a quick internet search turns up a few lower sugar recipes and, as it turns out, most cranberry sauce recipes are also pretty easy to make!
Wish me luck as I venture into unknown territory with dates! Also, peek at the recipe below if you are interested in trying Brussels sprouts for yourself…you don’t even have to cook them!

Raw Brussels Sprout Salad

From ChopChop Magazine



  • 3 cups Brussels sprouts, stem ends cut off and thinly sliced
  • 1 small apple, cored, quartered, and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup toasted, chopped walnuts or almonds
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons vinegar (any kind is fine)
  • 2 teaspoons dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper


  1. Put everything in the bowl and toss well.
  2. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, and up to overnight.

Stay tuned for more of Kim’s Cooking Through the Alphabet Challenge!


2 thoughts on “Cooking Through the Alphabet

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