Thursday, May 28, 2009
It's kinda long, but if you have an extra 5 minutes, and want to add some pure spray cheese to your day, I've got your fix right here....
Does it get any slimier than William Shatner doing a dramatic reading of Elton John lyrics? I think not.
Dev and I will be busy the first few weeks, going to job interviews, visiting schools and such.
My friend Diane is flying in from GA to stay for a week, so I'm REALLY excited about that!
And while she's here, Dev and I are finally going to tie the knot. We have decided to get married some time around June 17th. I'll fill you in on the details later...
We leave later today for an interview in Lake City, CO. After the interview, we're headed to Montrose to spend about a week visiting with his parents and looking at schools in the Grand Junction area. Should be a pleasant trip.
I'm not sure how often I'll be able to post, if at all. But when I get back, I'll put up some pics and tell you what happened!
It would seem after looking at the last few posts I've written, that I'm in a sandwich mood lately.
Dev and I have become really spoiled when it comes to ice cream. Sometime last year I purchased a cheap countertop ice cream maker. You know, the kind you have to store the barrel in the freezer til it's time to use it. I think ours has a 2 quart capacity.
Anyhoo, we now can have really good home made ice cream whenever we want.
The other day I had a batch of vanilla in the freezer, when suddenly I had a WICKED craving for an ice cream sandwich. The kind I usually buy at the store has a 2 chocolate chip cookies with vanilla ice cream in between, so I thought, why not make a batch of home made cookies and then use the home made vanilla to make the sandwiches?
So that's what I did.
I used the sweet cream ice cream base recipe from my Ben and Jerry's book for the vanilla ice cream:
2 large eggs
3/4 cup sugar
2 cups heavy or whipping cream
1 cup whole milk
Whisk the eggs in a mixing bowl until light and fluffy (1 to 2 minutes). Whisk in sugar, a little at a time, then continue whisking until completely blended (about 1 minute more). Pour in the cream and milk and whisk to blend.
I put the mixture in the freezer for about 10 minutes while I set up my ice cream maker. Then I turn on the machine, pour it in, and in about 20 minutes I have soft serve vanilla ice cream. I scoop it into a plastic container and put it back in the freezer to harden up before serving.
For the sandwich part, I used a Paula Deen recipe for Brown Sugar Cookies...
1 cup (2 sticks) butter; at room temp
2 cups packed brown sugar (I used light brown)
2 Tablespoons vanilla extract
2 cups self rising flour
2 cups chopped pecans
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a bowl, cream the butter and sugar, then beat in vanilla. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well. Add the flour 1/2 cup at a time, continuing to beat. Stir in the nuts and chocolate chips.
Drop dough by heaping tablespoon onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until golden brown.
This recipe made 24 really big cookies for me. You can make them smaller if you aren't using them for sandwiches.
So after the cookies cooled, I chose 4 of the biggest and made the ice cream sandwiches out of them.
It wasn't entirely successful. I really think you need to use a softer cookie to make these, because when you bite into the sandwich, you want the cookie to give and allow you to get to the ice cream. These were a bit stiff. But they still tasted really good!
As for the foot in the picture, you all know who that is. Sometimes I wonder what's wrong with that boy.... :)
I have always loved breakfast sandwiches- specifically egg sandwiches. Now that I live out west, breakfast burritos are much more prevalent, but every once in a while, I need to get back to my roots.
The sandwich pictured above was actually Dev's. He only likes his eggs scrambled. My version of this sandwich had a fried egg and some hollandaise sauce on top (and, of course, the Canadian bacon). I guess you could call it a short cut Eggs Benedict sort of thing.
I highly recommend this as a lazy weekend meal, or wrapped in some parchment paper or foil as a meal on the go. And as far as possible toppings, the sky's the limit. Throw some hashbrowns on, or maybe even some strips of roasted green chile. If I'd had a lovely red tomato, you can bet that would have been on there, too.
What's not to love about breakfast??
Friday, May 22, 2009
After we grilled some pork chops the other night, I had a craving for a smore.
So we broke out the bamboo skewers, the marshmellows and all the other fixins, and I got what I was after.
Here's a cute shot of Dev toasting his first marshmellow of the season.
I'm not sure why he makes faces like that when I take pictures. He knows these pictures will end up on the blog...
Let grilling season begin!!!!
Earlier this week, Dev and I made one of the best dinners we've had in a long time. I love it when we both contribute something to the meal.
Dev made jalapeno jelly glazed ribs. I wish I could tell you the recipe, but it is filed away with the secret squirrel "wooing" recipes in a vault somewhere. I know that he braises them for a few hours in a highly seasoned liquid, then cools them, glazes them with his home made jalapeno jelly, and puts them under the broiler until they are crusty and delicious!!
My contribution was a corn salad.
I found the basic recipe in "Real Simple" magazine...
I substituted pecans for the walnuts, but other than that I made it just like the recipe read.
Oh my gosh was this good. Very spicy and sweet, with some saltiness from the feta and some crunch from the toasted pecans. This will definitely make it into the regular rotation!!!
It seems like most of my adult life has been spent in pursuit of a thin crust pizza dough recipe I can make at home, and pretend I'm sitting outside at Vinnies on a perfect spring day.
Well, the best run I've made at it so far was really nothing new. I just did something a little different.
I used Diane's recipe for quick pizza dough...
2 teaspoons of yeast
2 1/2 cups of all purpose flour
1 teaspoon of sugar
1 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of olive oil
3/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons of warm water
Work dough into a ball - let rest on lightly floured surface for 5
minutes - then just do whatever you do with other sauces - I do like to
pre-cook it for about 5 minutes before I add the toppings
But instead of rolling it out after 5 minutes like I normally do, I let it rest for about 30 minutes (while I made sauce and chopped toppings), then I cut the dough into 2 pieces. I rolled each piece out as thinly as I could. I managed to get 2 large pizzas out of that one recipe of dough. When I say large, I mean at least 16 inches across.
I docked each piece of dough and pre-baked them separately on a pizza stone in a 450 degree oven for about 7 minutes before I topped them.
This time around I used spinach, fresh tomato, feta and mushrooms as my topping. Dev added canadian bacon to his.
The resulting pizza was thin and crispy and perfect. I will use this technique from now on.
Now we have enough pizza left over to have lunch for the next week! :)
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
Yes, he's finally done it. Devin is the holder of an actual college degree! Doesn't he look handsome in this pic?? Try not to see the partial black eye and busted nose from his passing out while he had the stomach flu. Oh, and did I mention he gave that stomach flu to me just in time for his whole family to arrive at our apartment?? It was a long 3 days, folks.
But at least everyone ate well (except me, but I'm making up for that now, thanks).
I posted some photos from the weekend on my flickr page. So go have a look.
I'll post more later. This was my second day back to school after a 4 day bout with a really nasty stomach flu. People keep asking me if it was swine flu. I don't really know, but I would call it more like the "liquify everything and make it leave your body at very high velocities" flu. Oh, and just in case you were wondering, after 4 days of eating nothing but chicken broth and noodles, when you finally feel like eating real food again, hot wings isn't a good choice. Just trust me on this.
Saturday, May 2, 2009
After returning home and starting on the triple batches of salsa and marinara for this weekend, I noticed Dev looking a little green around the gills. He is presently ensconced on the couch with a rag on his head and a glass of ice water at his side. Hopefully this is one of those 24 hour things and he'll be good as new Monday morning.