Friday, January 20, 2012
I know it's just a vague mention, but I am ridiculously excited about this! It also makes me feel really guilty about not posting regularly to our dear foodie blog. So I'm resolving, right now at nearly 2:30 a.m., to post here more often. I'm going to research and cook a whole bunch so that we can give you new reading material very soon! Perhaps Anna and I will even try out some more Hunger Games dishes.
While you wait for new posts, check out The Hunger Games Trailer (below), some other Hunger Games recipes (here) and Anna's most recent post on English Scones and Raspberry Jam.
Saturday, December 24, 2011
"THERE is a country, which I will show you when I get into maps, where the children have everything their own way. It is a most delightful country to live in. The grown-up people are obliged to obey the children, and are never allowed to sit up to supper, except on their birthdays. The children order them to make jam and jelly and marmalade, and tarts and pies and puddings, and all manner of pastry. If they say they won't, they are put in the corner till they do. They are sometimes allowed to have some; but when they have some, they generally have powders given them afterwards." -Charles Dickens
So today, we are making scones and freezer jam. I could make another post with some of the other foods they mentioned, but these ones tickled my fancy the most.
Raspberry Freezer Jam
I hate to just direct you to a how-to page, but they spell everything out that you'd need to know for any type, they also have lots of hints on how to do it too.
pictures to come!
The basic ratios for each packet of powdered pectin are:
3 cups mashed fruit
5 cups sugar, and
1 cup water in which to dissolve and boil the pectin.
The process itself is simple:
- Wash and stem the fruit (and peel it, if applicable).
- Place it in a wide-bottomed pan and crush with a potato masher to a smooth consistency, leaving some chunks of fruit if you like.
- Stir in the sugar and let the mixture sit for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- In the meantime, mix together the pectin and water in a small saucepan until the powder is dissolved; bring it to a boil over high heat, and let it boil for a full minute.
- Pour it into the fruit and stir for a couple of minutes.
- Pour the jam into your containers, leaving a half-inch of "headspace" at the top.
- Cover the containers and let them sit at room temperature for 24 hours.
- The jam should thicken significantly overnight, but the jelling process can take up to two weeks to complete. If it's too thick, stirring it will soften it up. If it's still too runny after two weeks, pour it into a saucepan and bring it to a boil. It will get thicker as it cools, and you can re-bottle as before.
It'll set up overnight and like it's named it will keep in the freezer or the fridge.
Why can't I untab?
Now, what you've all been waiting for scones!
I made 16 little scones, but you can make 8 large scones if you'd like
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, frozen
- 1/2 cup craisins, dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1 large egg
- 1 heaping teaspoon of orange zest
- Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Take your craisins, chop them up if you like, and soak them in water, we chose to soak ours in orange juice, just put in enough to cover them.
- In a food processor, mix flour, 1/3 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Chop butter into smaller pieces and feed in through food processor into flour mixture.
- Add sour cream mixture into flour mixture until large dough clumps form, they will look coarse. Add craisins, save the orange juice if that's what you used.
- Pat dough into a plastic wrap lined cake pan and sprinkle with remaining 1 tsp. of sugar. Use a sharp knife to cut into 8 (or 16) triangles; place on a cookie sheet (preferably lined with parchment paper), about 1 inch apart. Bake until golden, about 15 to 17 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes and serve warm or at room temperature.
- Orange juice glaze: Mix together 1/2 cup powdered sugar, 1/2 Tbsp orange juice, 1 pinch of orange zest (I believe that is about a 1/16th of a tsp). Mix together and drizzle on top of the scones.
Saturday, December 3, 2011
- Cook tortellini according to package instructions
- Pour some Prego tomato sauce on your tortellini. (Yes, it must be Prego. Do it or suffer the consequences.)
- Pour some parmesan cheese on your tortellini
- Reheat in microwave if needed
- Partake, and await soul invigoration. (Don’t worry, it will happen.)
Thursday, December 1, 2011
My ingredients: corn tortillas, grated sharp cheddar cheese, 1 chopped roma tomato, chopped olives, sour cream, chopped onions, ground beef (cooked with salt, pepper, garlic powder, cumin, lemon juice and chili powder) and a little Tapatío hot sauce.
And here's my story, in comic strip form. The characters are meant to be tacos, in case you couldn't tell.
Wednesday, November 30, 2011
2 cups water
1 cup uncooked rice
1 large chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 tbsp olive or sesame oil
2 carrots, diced and cooked
1/3 cup peas
- Boil water, and add rice. Cover, and turn down to low heat. Cook rice for 20-25 minutes.
- While the rice is cooking, pour oil into a frying pan, and then add chicken. Stir the chicken in the oil to coat and add soy sauce (I like a lot of soy sauce, so I do about 2 tbsp here), as well as a dash of ginger, garlic powder, and pepper. Turn onto medium-high heat and fry until chicken is cooked on the sides but not in the middle. Fill pan with a quarter of an inch of water and continue to cook the chicken until the water almost completely boils off (5-10 minutes). Check to make sure that the chicken is completely cooked.
- Push the chicken to the side of the pan and crack eggs into the pan, scrambling with your spatula. Add a little soy sauce to the eggs to flavor them. When the eggs are cooked, add carrots, peas, rice (once it's cooked), and about a tablespoon of soy sauce. Stir well. Taste, and add more ginger, garlic, pepper, or soy sauce as desired.
Sorry, my recipes are always kind of rough. I never measure the ones I make up. Also note that these aren't the only things I'll add to my fried rice -- this is just what I made tonight. If I have spinach or green onions, I'll add those vegetables, or even broccoli. It just depends on what I have on hand.
So for my story tonight, I thought long and hard about it. I realize that my fried rice doesn't look that different from my Turkey and Rice I had on Monday. I kept staring at it, trying to come up with something new, and all I could picture was this blob of rice coming alive and walking off the plate, like something off Better Off Dead (hilarious movie, btw). Then I remembered another story about food coming alive, written/illustrated by a favorite writer of mine, Bill Waterson.
So yes, today I'm copping out and letting someone else tell my story. But you can't really complain. What's better than Calvin and Hobbes? And it actually fits with this blog anyway, because it's literature (yes, I'm calling graphic novels literature), AND it's a fantastic allusion to my all-time favorite Shakespeare play, Hamlet. Enjoy!
Come back tomorrow for another episode of Story of My Dinner! Tomorrow I'll write my own story. Maybe I'll even draw a comic strip. What do you think?
Tuesday, November 29, 2011
Brannie and her husband, Toat, sat in the wading bowl on a hot summer’s day. The pool was bustling with people, mostly children, who jostled into each other. One young tike swam past and kicked Toat in the corner.“Ow!” Toat groaned, wincing. “That kid nearly popped my air pocket!”“This is ridiculous,” Brannie complained in her high-and-mighty voice. “We’re never coming to this bowl again.”“Seriously!” said Toat. “I have never seen this place so crowded.”“And filled with floozies. Did you see how thin that woman’s cinna-stripe was? My mother never would have let me out of the house dressed like that.”“Certainly not,” Toat agreed.They fell into silence for a moment, Brannie glaring at those around her.“What’s the point of coming to a pool if you can’t even touch the milk?” said Brannie. “It’s so hot, Toat. I can feel the sugar dust on my skin.”Toat nodded. “I’ve got my bottom corner in, at least.”Brannie peered over at Toat with a calculating eye. “Is the milk clearer over there? Maybe I should scoot over.”“I’m not sure that’s the best idea, sweetie,” Toat said uncertainly, peering around him. “It’s pretty crowded.”“Nonsense,” said Brannie. She wriggled her way over to Toat, and ended up sliding on top of a toastman in leopard cinnaprint.“Hebbbeybbbbb,” the toastman said, his mouth partway in the water, where he was pinned by Brannie’s large squarish figure.“Oh, hush,” Brannie told him. She then sighed in contentment as she dipped two of her corners into the milk. “This is almost worth it.“Brannie, um, I think that toastman is drowning,” Toat said hesitantly.“He’ll be fine,” Brannie said without concern.After a moment the toastman stopped struggling in the milk. Toat looked at him nervously, waiting to see signs of life. The toastman didn’t move.Then there was the shrill tweet of a whistle and the silver lifespoon dove from her perch at the guardtower and in a quick dip scooped the toastman out of the milk and to safety. The formerly drowning toastman began to stir as the lifespoon set him on the rim of the bowl.“There, see?” Brannie said with a smile as she settled down into the milk that the toastman had previously occupied. “Everyone got what they wanted. I got the milk, the lifespoon got to go for a dip, and the toastman didn’t drown. This day is going better than I’d thought.”
Monday, November 28, 2011
Rice to the OccasionPeawee struggled to raise himself from the mulch of gooey rice that had enveloped him. The thick substance was as firm as cement, yet he continued to struggle. He didn’t know how long it had been since the devastating tidal wave of cooked grain had washed over his family’s home. A minute? An hour? Days? All he remembered was the crushing blow as the wave plowed over him, and the searing heat as he struggled to free himself from it. Now that things had settled, he only wanted to find his beloved. Had she drowned in the wave? Had she been crushed by turkey debris? He shuddered at the thought.In the stillness of the wasteland that was once his home, he heard a muffled cry. It had to be her! She was alive! With renewed determination, he wriggled to free himself.“Sweetpea!” he cried when he was finally free enough to call out. “Sweatpea, I’m coming!”Unfortunately, from his stranded position, Peawee did not see the barbaric carrot lying in wait below, watching. As Peawee freed himself, the carrot pounced, and Peawee was flattened into a casserolic oblivion.
In case you couldn't tell, this makes a TON of rice. I froze about half of it into individual servings, so now if I ever don't feel like cooking dinner, I can thaw out one of the bags and voila! A balanced meal.
Okay, that's that. Join me tomorrow for Story of My Dinner: Episode 2!