Archives for the month of: May, 2011

Brought a beautiful salad for lunch today only to find that my homemade garlic lime vinaigrette was kind of cloudy and funky looking after a weekend in my sweltering office. You know all that stuff that gets shoved in the fridge after a lunch meeting until someone decides to clean it out? Time to get creative.

Office Vinaigrette (Creamy honey citrus dressing)

  • 2 packets mayonnaise
  • Honey (or in a pinch, splenda)
  • Lemon or lime juice – snag those leftover slices of lemon for tea that you always have because that one dude doesn’t drink coffee.
  • Salt to taste

 

Results of The Scrounge

Yummo!

Combine in a coffee cup – hey look, you found a new use for those little plastic stirrers! Pour over salad of choice and enjoy.

This won’t be in heavy rotation but it’s nice to know that I can have semi-homemade even when i’m not at home.

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Those that know me know that I started a new job today. I’m insanely excited about it and it feels good to be connected and motivated about what I do again. Last night I did some baking to (a) give me something to do besides wander around my apartment freaking out and (b) have a nice little treat to bring on my first day.

I decided on one of my go-to favorites, Banana-Coconut Bread with Fresh Lime Glaze
Inspired by MyRecipes: Coconut Banana Bread with Lime Glaze

StY Tweaks: More dairy, mix brown and white sugars, add citrus zest, add baking powder.

Bread

  •  2 cups all purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup white sugar, 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup sweetened coconut flakes
  • 3 ripe bananas
  • Juice of 1/2 lime
  • Zest of 1 lime
The brown sugar gives the bread more depth of flavor and an earthiness that keeps the citrus from being too overwhelming.  If making by hand, cream liquid ingredients with the sugar and sift in flour and leavening agents.  If you’re lazy like me, throw it all in the food processor and go to town. Blend just till mixed – overblending/processing will bring out more of the gluten in the flour and you’ll get a flat, glue-y brick.
Glaze

  • 2 tbsp powdered sugar
  • Juice and pulp of 1 lime
  • Optional – 1 tbsp condensed sweetened milk (leftover from last batch of frozen yogurt )
Bake bread at 350 degrees for 1 hour or until toothpick comes out with few crumbs.  NOTE: The extra yogurt makes the loaves slightly cake-y, you’ll never get a clean toothpick unless you overbake and dry it out completely and thats not yummy.   Cool on a rack for 10 minutes then pour glaze over top.
Makes 1 large or 2 small loaves of bread.

Coconut Banana Lime Breads

One more from the Mother’s Day file:   In considering a simple hearty side dish, I wanted flavor and color without a lot of carbs or fat.  Zucchini season is approaching  so it’s an easy find in most farmer’s markets and produce aisles.

Shopping Tip:  For the best tasting and lowest priced produce, always choose something at peak season and farmed locally. Check out this cool website to find out what’s growing in your area: Sustainable Table
Recipe and pics after the jump…
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Sometimes I forget that as a foodie, I speak a different language than non-foodies.

A real conversation I had 10 minutes ago: 
 

Me: i’ll be up for a while, i just made a sandwich and i have ziti in the oven

Me: the ziti was originally to eat but its still half frozen, haha

Him: Man, I want to be there.

Me: you want to go to there?

Him: I MIGHT have half a bowl of cereal in the house.

Him: No, THERE. Where you are. You have food.

Me: i like having food in my house

Me: mostly because i dont like to plan ahead so i never know what i want to eat until i’m cooking

Him: I can’t keep too much food because I never cook like I intend to and it just goes to waste.

Me: well whatever your day off is, take 2 hours to do all your mies en place and make 2 casseroles and a fritatta

Me: and a roast chicken

Him: …

Him: You’ve exceeded my capabilities.

Me: divide the casseroles into 3 servings, an freeze 2 of each. that leaves you with 2 servings in your fridge and 4 in your freezer.

Me: the fritatta will get you through the week

Him: What’s a fritatta?

Me: eat the chicken wings, thighs, and legs with each meal, and slice the breasts for sandwiches and salads

Me: it’s an egg pie. like a quiche without a crust

Me: it was created as a way to use up leftovers

Me: so if you have a handful of potato, a little onion, a bit of red pepper. maybe a slice of bacon and the last of your shredded cheese. all of those things alone are not enough to fill you, but bind them with a few eggs and slice, and ka-pow, you have breakfast for the week

Him: …

Me: if you keep doing that i’m going to copy and paste this whole convo onto my blog

I’ve been thusly reminded that not everyone watches as much Top Chef  (or 30 Rock) as I do. This blog should be enjoyed by everyone; I promise to use plainspeak as often as possible, friends. And if I forget, just give me a lengthy  blank stare. I’ll catch on eventually. 

Image credit: Serious Eats

As I mentioned in my last post, Daddy suggested bringing apple pie, so my thoughts turned toward a tart. I found gorgeous fresh plums and turbinado sugar at the farmer’s market, strawberries on sale at the supermarket, and ended up with this little gem.

Did you know? Tart and Pie can generally be used interchangeably, but by definition are both baked in a pan with a type of dough crust. A pie can be open or have a top crust, but a tart always has an open top. A galette is freeform and flat, and can be a pie, cake, or cookie depending on origin.

A Baked Galette

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It started with a phone call from my dad: “Are you coming to the house tomorrow? Get Mom an apple pie and some vanilla ice cream, she’ll like that.”  Did he forget who he was talking to? There are few things I enjoy more than making food for people who really enjoy and appreciate it, and set out early on Sunday morning to collect my Mom’s favorite foods. 3 supermarkets and 2 farmer’s markets later… clearly i’d gotten carried away. Recipes coming!

Mother’s Day Menu

Main Course

Main Course: Crabs, Veg, Bread, Wine

Dessert!

I never told you all what I did with the strawberries, did I? I made Ice Cream! (well, technically, frozen yogurt)
It was deceptively, deliciously, easy and  got rave reviews on Easter and Mother’s Day.

Strawberry Fro-Yo, courtesy of the Dream Machine

The Dream Machine at Work

Strawberry Frozen Yogurt

Note: my first pass at this used regular plain yogurt; Greek yogurt will yield a tang-ier but creamier final product. I kind of hate strawberry ice cream but even (when we got neopolitan as a kid I ate around it) but enjoyed the Greek yogurt version. 

2 Cups Greek Yogurt (fat free if you wish, we’ll get our dairy fat elsewhere)
1 can (15 oz) sweetened condensed milk
1 pt fresh strawberries, stemmed, hulled, and quartered.

Blend, and throw the whole thing in your handy-dandy ice cream maker. If you don’t have an ice-cream maker you can go dixie-cups/ Popsicle stick style like we did when we were kids. There is very little water so you shouldn’t get too much separation or too large ice crystals.  Enjoy!

I recently took a trip to visit an old friend. Despite the time apart and distance, it was nice to see that we still have some common interests. As the author of the excellent Kitchen Courage, the lady knows her way around a plate, and it was wonderful to go someplace I’ve never been. We walked and ate and chatted and giggled our way through the Bitterroot Valley with the occasional husband in tow and meeting new people along the way (Hi David from Chicago!).
Many thanks to B and J for your kindness and hospitality,

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Don’t be surprised if a number of these items re-appear with at StY twist in the next few weeks. I’m inspired 🙂

Warning: This post contains all manner of consumer economics / retail design nerdery.
I love grocery shopping. LOVE IT. Like, way more than I enjoy clothes or shoe shopping. The first person to merge a bookstore with a farmer’s market will be rich because I’ll be there all the time.
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