Thursday, February 28, 2008

SEARCH FOODBLOGS

I added a new button to my blog. I found it through Elise's Simply Recipes food blog. I think it is a great idea and a very useful tool for researching food! That is something I like to do about as much as I like cooking it or baking it. There are so many wonderful blogs out there, what a great way to utilize them.

I have been so busy preparing for a meal that I made last night that I havent posted anything. My husband works with a man from the Southern region of India, a place called Kerala. He recently went there for his sisters wedding. He had invited us to go but with two small children it just wasn't feasible. Anyway I invited him over for dinner and in return he was suppose to bring pictures of his travels. This way I could live vicariously through him without the headache of traveling.

I made Olan stew which I found on a food blog called sugarandspices.info. Knowing nothing about Indian cuisine I did lots of research. Olan stew is also known as Coconut stew. Oh my, was it ever delicious. I said to myself last night. I really have to get a picture of the stew to put on my blog. Did I? No. Too busy. In life you really need to sieze the moment, huh? So I said to myself tomorrow morning I will put it in a lovely dish and takes its picture. Of course I opened the refrigerator door this morning and much to my chagrin, my husband had eaten it for breakfast. Gone. I am filled with regrets and he with soup.

Regarding the wedding pictures... extremely beautiful and grand. I so enjoyed every picture and every moment. The colors in India are so vivid. The women in their beautiful dresses. To him the setting was the same old thing. To me the setting was so exotic and interesting.

When the women are married there they have their hands painted with henna. It was so intricate and beautiful. There are so many details of their weddings. It was fascinating.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

EAT the BREAD FRED


There is nothing like warm bread from the oven. I have made this bread three times over the past month. I like it because it taste so good and even after a couple days it still tastes that good. It is wonderful toasted.

My husband and kids love bread so it is always a hit. No my husbands name is not Fred. Go to bed Fred is an expression my Aunt use to say a lot. Just a silly title. I dont know if other foodies out there are lucky enough to have a spouse/partner that is willing to try new recipes. I must say that my husband really enjoys the experience of eating and is always willing to try something new. He is smart too because he always compliments me on my meals.

Here is the recipe for the bread. It is from Taste of Home (I am pretty sure as it is a clipping).

Colonial Yeast Bread

1/2 cup cornmeal
1/2 cup brown sugar or 1/3 cup honey (I like the brown sugar version better.)
1 tablespoon salt
2 cups boiling water
1/2 cup vegetable oil (I use Canola)
2 pkgs of instant yeast
1/2 cup warm water
3/4 cup whole wheat
1/2 cup rye flour
4 1/2 to 5 1/2 cups all purpose flour

Combine cornmeal, salt, sugar or honey, oil and water in a bowl and let cool. In another bowl or a mixer combine flours and yeast. Just before adding the wet mixture to the dry mixture stir in the 1/2 cup warm water. (This is usually for proofing the yeast. With an electric mixer and dough hook I find that this is an unecessary step.) Mix or knead for approximately six minutes. Place in greased bowl and let rise for about an hour and a half. Deflate dough and place in 9 x 5 loaf pans and let rise for another hour and a half. Bake at 375 for 35 to 40 minutes.

Note: I find I can cut rising times by putting my bread in my homemade proofer. My homemade proofer is my microwave. Just before putting the dough into rise I heat a cup of water to boiling. I open the door, move the water to the back of the microwave and put my loaves inside. A nice, moist and warm environment for the yeast. My dough doubles in 45 minutes. If I make a pot of tea (which my stove is beneath my microwave) then all the better.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Blueberries and Cream Crepes


Sunday is our special dinner. I usually make something unique. My parents come over so I usually keep it limited to the fare that they like. For dinner I was making Asparagus and Roasted Bell Pepper Crepes to go with Gizzard Soup. (Sounds gross but it is actually quite tasty). I made so many crepes that we ended up having it for breakfast.

I would give the recipe for Gizzard Soup but somehow I think we might be the only people around that like it. If you do want the recipe then request it and I will post it.
Asparagus and Roasted Red Pepper Crepes

cream cheese
roasted red peppers ( I roast them and freeze them during the summer)
asparagus

Season the red peppers with olive oil, salt and pepper.
Carefully spread about a teaspoon of cream cheese onto crepe. Lay asparagus and about 1/8 of a cup of the roasted peppers out on the crepe. Roll tightly and place in a lightly greased baking dish. Continue rolling until all of your ingredients are used up. Heat in 350 F oven for about 20 minutes until heated through.

Blueberries and Cream Crepes

1/2 cup sour cream
1-2 tablespoons sugar
crepes (see recipe under pumpkin manicotti)
blueberry sauce ( I make and freeze mine in the summer after picking)
banana

Slice a half of a banana onto crepe and roll up. Pour blueberry sauce over crepe and add a dollop of the sweet sour cream.

Simple and delicious. See photos below. I haven't quite figured out how to add the pictures near the appropriate text.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Princess Cake





My daughters birthday was in January. I decided I wanted to make her a Princess Cake. I saw the picture of a princess cake on the Family Fun website. Unfortunately, there were no real clear directions on how to make the cake. So after throwing away about 6 cakes I finally found the best way to make this cake.

I made two nine inch rounds made of chocolate. Then I made a white cake and put it in a smaller size dome cake. I assembled them together with a pudding/cream cheeses recipe I made up. I stuck Barbie down in the center and put pieces of a failed cake all around her to give her stability. Voila, there is the first picture. Then after trying my hand with the pastry bag I fashioned a dress out of 'stars'. I saw this type of "doll dress" on Martha Stewart's website. (Again, there was no real directions, at least that I had any kind of success with).

It was a challenge that I enjoyed. If anyone attempts this I would love to hear about your adventures.



Pudding Filling

1 box of chocolate pudding
1 cup of milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
8 oz. cream cheese
2/3 cup brown sugar

Cream the cheese and sugar together. Blend well and add the vanilla and milk. Finally add the pudding mix. Chill until set.

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