Jeanette - Off The Cuff

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My name is Jeanette, and I was born in Sweden, but unlike the famous Muppet, I am not a professional Swedish Chef. I actually went to school for art, design, and photography. Beyond that, I worked as a freelance indie-rock critic for several magazines in the late 90s and early 2000s. I even took a crack at running a PR company for a while. However, cooking has always been in my DNA--my dad's brother was a chef and culinary arts instructor, my dad's father was a pastry chef, and my mom's mother was a caterer, and at the age of 92, she published a cookbook of traditional Finnish breads and pastries. Everyone else in my family loves to cook, too, and we're not afraid to experiment. Usually I end up inventing dishes (with or without outside inspiration) with whatever I have on hand, hence "Off the Cuff." I might make very Scandinavian dishes (meatballs, and salmon with dill-potatoes) or ethnic like Thai, Japanese, Mexican, Italian or Spanish. By the way, you can put bell peppers in almost all cuisine! (Drop me a line, at o f f t h e c u f f c o o k i n g "at" g m a i l followed by the dot-com. :)

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Birthday Month Giveaway!

July is my birth-month, and I started this blog three years ago (technically in June on another server, but then I transferred it to Blogger in July of 2010).  So in honor of those two events, I'm going to give away one of my favorite ever kitchen gadgets, which is the remarkable "cheese-plane."  

Cheese and I are good friends.  I pretty much love them all, except blue cheese / Gorgonzola which I cannot eat due to a mold allergy, but you will nearly always find at least two varieties of cheese in my fridge at any given time.  Sometimes there are four or five kinds of cheese all at once.  It's like a cheese party in there.

Yesterday, I watched this slightly ridiculous -but humorous- video on Wimp about how to slice cheese with a wire-roller style cheese slicer.  Really, take a minute to watch this, because it's great, and you'll feel so enlightened.  However, I have to say that wire-style cheese slicers do nothing but frustrate me.  They're awkward to hold and use, plus they only make really thick slices of cheese.  The cheese plane, by comparison, creates pleasantly thin slices of cheese that are more delicate and release more flavor, in my opinion.

Not to mention that you can convince yourself that it's okay to eat 15 slices of cheese in one sitting; they're so thin that you get the satisfaction of repeated slicing, and stuffing them in your mouth over and over, whereas with a big, thick slice, you've kind of maxed out after one. 

The other amazing thing that you can do with a cheese plane is make paper-thin slices of potato, cucumber, or other firm veggies.  I always use my cheese plane when I make Swedish quick-pickled cucumbers, for instance.

So in honor of the fantastic invention of the cheese plane, and in honor of my birthday and the 3-year anniversary of my blog, these are the terms of this giveway, and how you can participate:

Comb through my archives (which can be found on the left-hand column of the page, below the list of "my favorite things" and my "top recipes").  Expand the years/ months, by clicking on the arrows, and find a blog entry that is closest to your own birthday.  To enter, leave me a comment with a thought or question pertaining to that recipe, and also send me an email to offthecuffcooking (at) with your name, address, and please tell me which recipe / date you left a comment on so I can verify it.  If you only leave me a comment but forget the email with your details, you are not entered in the contest. You have to also send the email to make it official.
If you don't have an online ID that allows you to leave a comment, please still send me an email, and tell me what recipe you would have commented on that was closest to your own birthday, and what your comment or question would be, plus also enter the name and address part in your email. 

At the end of July, I will randomly draw a number from the total number of entries, and select a winner! Good luck! I will also do my best to reply to all the questions and comments!

And please share this contest with your friends!

{Insert some sort of legal disclaimer-- I'm not liable if you slice your finger with the cheese plane or gain 40 pounds after eating your weight in cheese, which I have been in danger of doing a few times myself... OXO does not have anything to do with this giveaway, and they are not sponsoring me, nor do I know anyone at OXO. I just like their cheese plane. It does a good job.  If you are someone who wins a lot of sweepstakes, you are responsible for your own taxes, etc.  I can't think of any other legalese things to insert here, so beyond that, you're on yer own, people.}


  1. Ha ha. I absolutely love it. Happy birthday month, and here's to a shot at a rocking cheese plane.

    Your fellow ABBA lover,

    1. Christa! You didn't follow the directions-- Ha ha ha... you have to find a blog entry from my archives that is closest to your own birthday and then leave a comment on that one, and send me an email w/ your address & which blog post you left a comment on!

      Maybe I need to edit my instructions ...? :)