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Posts Tagged ‘Dessert’

I’ve done a terrible job taking pictures of my food lately. Trent brought me treats from Tartine Bakery, and they were as beautiful as they were delicious. But did I photograph them? Nah, too busy stuffing them in my face. For the record, if you’re ever in San Francisco, the chocolate hazelnut tart is orgasmic. The frangipani tart isn’t half bad either.

He also brought me a bar of Askinosie chocolate (77%):

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Uh-maze-ing! No fillers, no emulsifiers, and they work directly with cocoa farmers, paying above fair trade prices for their beans. It has a lovely “green”-ish taste that less processed chocolate often has. As you can see, we’ve already gone through half of the bar.

On the homemade side of things, I’ve been putting lemon curd in everything. For instance, it went in my banana-peach-chia softserve:

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and in my almond butter-chia oats:

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Lemon curd in oats is a revelation. It takes oats to a magical dimension that I didn’t know existed. And have I mentioned that lemon curd is stupidly easy to make? All it takes is a little forearm strength – you’ve got to man a whisk for about 10 minutes, and then you’re rewarded with pure lemony sunshine.

There have also been some savory eats. Yesterday we did a crockpot dinner. It’s a little weird to prep dinner at 8 in the morning, but it’s fantabulous to come home from a workout to find dinner ready and waiting. This dish consisted of a cut of beef (I don’t remember exactly what it was, but it’s the kind you use in London broil), an eggplant, a bunch of potatoes, tarragon, rosemary, tomato sauce, red vermouth (makes a great substitute for cooking wine!), and water. It was great, but I again failed to take a picture.

Trent has been on the photography ball, however. He made me document the sandwich he had for lunch the other day, which was pretty awesome.

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Our direct-from-the-farm eggs, jalapeno cheese, and sauteed CSA spring onions on Trader Joe’s flourless wheatberry bread. Well done, T!

Today is veggie CSA pickup day, so I should have some good photos and recipes coming your way soon. πŸ™‚

In blogging news, Chocolate-Covered Katie is giving away a spiralizer! Check out her giveaway here.

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Kitchen Symbiosis

Have you ever made a recipe that calls for part of an ingredient? Say, a few egg whites but no yolks, or lemon peel but no lemon flesh? The wonderful thing about culinary history is that thrifty cooks throughout the ages have come up with wonderful ways to use these castoffs. So when I decided I wanted to make macaroons, which require egg whites, I knew exactly what symbiotic recipe I wanted to use to keep my surplus yolks from getting lonely: lemon curd.

As you may or may not know, lemon curd is a delightful concoction made from egg yolks, lemon juice, sugar, and butter. It gets cooked into a creamy spread that is heaven on scones, toast, muffins, or anything else you can think to spread it on. It’s just tart enough to balance out the heaviness of the yolk and the butter, and it’s the most delectable shade of yellow this side of a daffodil.

I used this recipe from My Kind of Food and this recipe from Joy of Baking for my curd. The first gave me the basic ingredient proportions and the second told me how long I had to cook it. I ended up using the juice of two smallish lemons, 3 egg yolks, 7.5 tablespoons of sugar, and 4 tbsp butter. I whisked everything but the butter over a double boiler for 10 minutes until it took on a thick, creamy, sauce-like consistency, then took it off the heat and whisked in the butter one tablespoon at a time. Then I licked the whisk and almost cried. Yes, it was that good. I’m glad I went with 7.5 tbsp of sugar – it’s just the right amount for a tart-but-not-too-tart taste.

I’m afraid my poor camera won’t do it justice, but here it is:

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I was pretty full when I made this but I needed to eat some fresh, so I spread a bit on half a slice of bread.

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I kind of love that it looks like mustard gone wrong. πŸ˜‰

And what about those macaroons? Well those, my friends, were an abject failure. I make the mistakes so you don’t have to.

I used this recipe from Elana’s Pantry, but the failure was certainly not Elana’s fault. I realized as I was beating my whites that it had been some time since I’d done anything with egg whites and I wasn’t sure that I would recognize “stiff” egg whites when I saw them. It was too late to do my research though, so I just beat until I thought they were stiff. In retrospect it wasn’t nearly long enough. I also realized too late that I didn’t have enough agave, so I subbed in honey, which is much thicker than agave and more difficult to fold into fluffy egg whites. Fail, Daria, fail.

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This isn’t what macaroons should look like. They should not be shiny or flat or oozing. They should be covered in chocolate though. At least I got that part right:

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So now my homework for myself is to read up on the chemistry of egg whites. I’ll report back on my kitchen dictionary page soon. Because no one should have to eat flat macaroons.

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Garlic chives. Sweet potato greens. Baby bok choy. Lettuce. Green beans. Asian cucumber. White carrots. Cabbage. Spring onions. Sweet corn. Eggplant. Green Peppers.

HOLY CRAP our CSA share this week is SUPERabundant! I honestly don’t know how I’m going to make it through all of this since Trent is on tour, but I’ll do my level best. πŸ™‚

I think I’m most excited about the sweet potato greens because 1) I didn’t know you could eat them and 2) that means CSA SWEET POTATOES later in the season!!! Also they’re really pretty:

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I stir-fried these along with some green onions, sweet corn, non-CSA shitake mushrooms, and farm fresh eggs from our meat CSA farmer.

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Fantabulous!Β  I love eggs, and, like almost everything, they taste a million times better when they’re right off the farm.

After dinner this happened:

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Banana soft serve with unsweetened dried coconut, cocoa nibs, and a wee bit of agave syrup. Heaven in a bowl.

And now I’m happily plotting tomorrow’s eats. I’m thinking there’s a huge plate of fresh veg with hummus in my future. Yes!

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Dessert, Revealed

So what was that dessert so good that it deserved its own post? Well, it’s not an original dessert. In fact, I’m sure that other people have already done this and blogged about it, but I haven’t seen anyone do this. Points for coming up with the idea independently?

Last night’s mouthwatering, healthy dessert was…a variation on Gena‘s banana softserve. Of course.

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One frozen banana, one spoonful of peanut butter, and two dark chocolate chunks got spun around in my food processor until they looked like this.

Now I love plain banana softserve. It’s deliciously airy and light and fresh-tasting. But yesterday I ran 6 miles and lifted weights, and my hunger was calling out for a substantial dessert. This was just what I needed. The extra fat from the PB makes it taste like real, heavy duty ice cream, as do the chocolate chunks swirled throughout. The best part? No lactose. Lactards rejoice!

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This is a Dessert Post.

This was supposed to be a post about fusili pasta with CSA meat sauce, but T and I agreed that it was too hot to even boil water. Instead we had some uninspired salads with store-bought produce. Veggie CSA pickup is tomorrow, and we need it, stat!

For dessert I made some of the celebrated banana soft serve topped with a Trader Joe’s lacey cookie (macadamia nuts and chocolate! heaven!).

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We also finished off the watermelon, which was much improved by a day spent in the refrigerator. I assume this is thanks to the crappy-white-wine-principle: make things cold enough and you can’t really taste them. Yet another reason why soft serve is superior to “hard” ice creams: warmer temp = more flavor.

I’m off to sit in front of a fan. I hope you it’s more comfortable where you are!

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T and I rarely do lunch together, but we both happened to be home at the same time today. Our veggie CSA partners are out of town, so we have a whole box of produce to polish off by ourselves. A daunting task, but I think we’re up to it.

We did our level best to make a dent by having Hugh Jass salads.

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Mine had beautiful purple kale, spring mix, lettuce, and grated white carrot (!) from our CSA share, plus half an avocado and a big ol dollop of my garlicky bean spread.

These white carrots are crazy! They look like this:

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but they taste like orange carrots. Intriguing.

Actually, I don’t remember where I acquired this knowledge, but I remember hearing that the orange strain of carrots was popularized to honor a Dutch king and it’s been the dominant variety ever since. History: it’s crazy! (I heart you, Kate Beaton.)

Yesterday I threw some bananas in the freezer in preparation to test out the famous banana soft serve. In a moment of insanity, I thought “why peel the bananas first? I’ll just peel them right before I blend them.”

Folks, this does not work. Of course, you’re probably much smarter than I am and hence you could have told me that, but I had to learn for myself. I left them out for a bit to thaw enough so that I could peel them. T was intrigued by the weird, frosty, brownish lumps on our kitchen table, so he had to watch while I peeled them.

Let’s just say that they did not look appetizing oozing out of their skins. In T’s words, “Ew ew ew, they move exactly like feces!”

And they did.

So if you need a laugh (and have the sense of humor of a 5 year old), I recommend including the “banana poop” stage in your raw soft serve making adventure. If not, skip straight to the “blend and enjoy” stage.

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I added cocoa powder to mine, because, as Katie knows, everything is better with chocolate. πŸ˜‰

T also added some of the Pacharan we picked up in Madrid to his:

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Both versions were out of this world. The texture really is identical to soft serve – heaven!

Supper was burgers and warm German potato salad (the recipe’s from the trusty Joy of Cooking). CSA potatoes, scrubbed with the help of a blue man and ready to be boiled:

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Hastily snapped photo of unphotogenic but delicious food: it was getting cold fast! This potato salad recipe is one of our favs because it includes bacon. This gave us a chance to use up the last of our CSA bacon, and also an excuse to top our burgers with it. Nothing like an all veggie lunch followed by an all meat dinner. πŸ˜‰

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