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Did you learn how to cook anything new this year? Anna Hezel, senior editor at <a href="">Taste</a> (one of my favorite breakout food publications of the last couple years) asked this on Twitter <a href="">last week</a> and like a Muppet to the ABCs, I couldn&rsquo;t resist jumping in. I&rsquo;m glad I did. I always wish I had more time to cook all the things I want to cook (my To Cook list is still thousands deep), wish I could share more recipes more often here, but this caused me to look back at the new recipes here in 2018 and feel a murmur of pride. Look at all we did! I learned to make <a href="">falafel</a>, and that it&rsquo;s shockingly easy! I got to make <a href="">Pad Thai</a> I crave the most at home. We got <a href="">cacio e pepe</a> just about foolproof at home, just when I was convinced I never would. I learned about <a href="">melting potatoes</a>. We made the <a href="">sheet pan sandwiches of my dreams</a> and they&rsquo;re vegan too. We had a real talk about the InstantPot and got some <a href="">delicious short ribs</a> out of it. I learned to make <a href="">the best apple pie I&rsquo;ve ever had</a>. I made a completely bonkers <a href="">layered mocha cheesecake</a> late in the day on my husband&rsquo;s birthday, and last week we <a href="">mashed up baklava and babka</a>, just because we could. I look at all of this and I am so excited about the year we&rsquo;ve had, many of these things I had barely dreamed up yet this time last year, and I hope next year is even <a href="">better</a>.

And now, a brief moment of sap: Getting to hang out here, indulging my culinary whims, and having a cheering and encouragement squad had been one of great surprises and delights of my so-called adult life. Who knew what I’d do when I grew up? Certainly not me. I bumbled along, I tried things I hated, I tried things I didn’t hate but felt no passion for, and one day I landed here and, to my surprise, am rarely asked to leave. I am so thankful you are here and since I am not tired of cooking, I hope you never get tired of reading.

So tell me: Did you learn how to cook anything new this year?

Meanwhile, here are your Smitten Kitchen favorites from this year:
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