Saturday, April 28, 2012
Let's list some creative areas I could consider.
Art: Can't draw, can't paint. Though I am good at painting windows and trims in our house.
Music: Love the music but I'm not sure where to go with that. I use to play the flute and loved it. Kind of play the piano and I could definitely work on that.
Photography: I have really found this is an area I enjoy immensely. It's what really got me into the food blog as I had recently purchased a new camera and needed subjects to photograph. Why not food I thought? Perhaps I need to go out of the kitchen more and explore the world around me with camera in hand.
Writing: I do have plans to write a novel someday when I'm retired. One of my brothers and I have discussed a basic premise for an historical novel loosely based on a family event and have considered being co-authors. We'd better start doing our research! I tried my hand at poetry for a time. I re-read some of it now and then and I literally cringe. Enough said.
So there you have it. As I look over this list I'm thinking I'd better stick to this blog for the time being!
Now, about this cake. Isn't it the gaudiest looking cake you've ever seen? Perfect for a kids birthday party or a four year cooking blogiversary. You can find pictures of these Kit-Kat/M&M cakes all over the Web. Mine is a boxed cake mix with chocolate frosting. Nothing fancy because honestly, who cares about the cake when there are Kit-Kats and M&Ms involved? I wonder how I'm going to cut it though!?! Thanks for all of your support, my faithful readers. You know who you are!
Saturday, April 21, 2012
Homemade Ricotta Cheese
1 quart whole milk
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup whole plain Greek yogurt
1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
In a medium saucepan, add whole milk, heavy cream, Greek yogurt, lemon juice and kosher salt, whisking to combine. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat and cook until the mixture begins to curdle.
While the mixture is warming up, line a colander with 4 layers of cheesecloth. Set the lined colander over a tall bowl.
Saturday, April 14, 2012
No recipe. See above!
Friday, April 6, 2012
Dessert!! Custards, creme brulees, or this new favorite, flan. Flan is a Spanish custard dish and it is very similar to the egg custard I usually make. The difference is that it is cooked very slowly and in a water bath so it's texture is so smooth and delicate. Quite amazing. What I love about this particular recipe is that there is no stove top cooking first. Other custard recipes have required heating the milk first and separating eggs, risking curdling of the hot egg mixture. This one is easy and quick and the results are spectacular. The most recent April edition Bon Appetit magazine is the source of this recipe and as usual, it's a good one.
1/4 cup plus 1/3 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup half-and-half
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Six 4-ounce ramekins
Preheat oven to 325°. Stir 1/4 cup sugar and 2 Tbsp. water in a medium heavy saucepan over medium-low heat until sugar dissolves. Increase heat and boil, occasionally swirling pan and brushing down sides with a wet pastry brush, until caramel is medium-dark amber, 5–6 minutes. Working quickly, divide caramel among ramekins, coating bottoms evenly. Let cool until hard.
Place ramekins in a roasting pan lined with a kitchen towel; place pan on a large rimmed baking sheet. Divide custard among ramekins. Pour hot water into roasting pan to reach a little more than halfway up sides of ramekins. Cover pan with foil, crimping to seal. Carefully transfer to oven; cook for 25 minutes. Rotate pan. Cook until custard is set but center still jiggles when dish is nudged, 20–25 minutes longer.
Let stand at room temperature for 10 minutes before serving. Unmold flans onto plates.
Sunday, April 1, 2012
The other wonderful product I have recently discovered is Twining's Lady Grey tea. For me it is just about the most perfect cup of tea I have had since I use to sit at my English grandma's dining room table and drink tea poured from her Blue Willow tea pot. Lady Grey tea is a delicate, fragrant variation on the more famous Earl Grey blend. It consists of black tea scented with oil of bergamot, lemon peel and orange peel. Nothing else needed in my opinion; no sugar, no milk. But a couple of the Nutella cookies certainly went down well with this brew!
Nutella-Peanut Butter Cookies
1/2 cup Nutella
1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup flour
1 tsp vanilla
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Combine all of the ingredients together in a medium bowl and mix with a wooden spoon until thoroughly combined. (This is a very stiff dough and I ended up using my hands at the end to mix.) Roll into 1 inch balls, roll in granulated sugar and place 2 inches apart on the cookie sheet. Flatten each ball with the bottom of a smooth glass. Edges will be jagged. Bake for 7-8 minutes. Place on rack to cool. Makes 2 dozen cookies.