Friday, June 17, 2011

Back Tracking to My Kitchen

Okay, I've been cooking and going on food-related adventures for some time now. And I'd like to share those experiences with you. So I think I'll summarize some past adventures, and mix it up with some current ones. And it's taking some time gathering together photos and then I get all nostalgic ("Oh yeah, I remember going here, and it was great...") and then I get distracted. I'll try to focus more on the matter at hand, and that's revealing some cool places that are munchworthy and some things I've made as well. I hope you enjoy.

First up are things I've made:

These are truffles for Valentine's Day. Truffles are easy, ingredient-wise, but the hardest part is rolling them, and keeping them pretty cool. I tend to have warmer than average kitchens, and curious pets, so this is sometimes tricky. The outside is coated in white chocolate candy melts, you can usually find them in Michaels, other crafting stores, even baking supply shops. I know it's white chocolate (which isn't technically chocolate), but there is even a time and a place for white chocolate. Here's the recipe I work from, minus the brandy.

 This is breakfast pizza (biscuit dough crust, scrambled eggs, cheese, bacon, I think breakfast sausage and a touch of maple syrup). I did buy biscuit dough, pastry and the like are not so good to me :) I'm sure I saw this on a TV show and had to replicate it. I don't have a recipe, this was more of one of my alchemical tricks ("This should work, in theory...")

 During the winter months, I was inspired to try to make my own chicken broth. I was buying chickens and roasting them for the Fisherman (his favorite meal), and I wanted to test my inner homemaker and see if I could reuse the carcass for broth. It wasn't as good as my great-grandmother's, but that's like comparing myself to God. I used this recipe, which definitely made me feel confident that I could make my own broth.

 Homemade candy corn. This was a lot of fun, it was like playing with HOTHOTHOT playdough. I'd definitely make it again, but maybe with gloves next time. And FYI, this does cool down fast, so you have to work fast, or if it stars to get too hard, a quick spin in the microwave for 30 seconds should do it.

 Carrot cake. One of my mom's co-workers was having a birthday, and she asked me to make a carrot cake, since that's his favorite. I tend to make it sans-pineapple and sans-nuts, but that's just me.

 Homemade Chicago Deep Dish Pizza. Now, as a native New Yorker, this should almost be heretical. Before you pick up the tar and feathers hear me out: while New York Style pizza and Chicago Style pizza are both called pizza, I think these are variants of the same idea. Like the term "dumpling" changes wherever it goes (ravioli, pierogi, Chinese dumplings). While I will always love New York Style pizza, I think Chicago is a different animal that just happens to be called pizza. Besides, who eats pizza with a fork?

 This was one of the first things I made for the Fisherman when we started dating. He said he had Italian Wedding Soup before, but in college. I had to show him the real deal. I don't recall why exactly I made this, I think I found a great recipe and had to try it. I thought it would be fun with pastina, but did not realize it would soak up ALL the broth, and start to resemble congee, or Chinese rice porridge. Anyway, we both liked it, and that's good enough for me.

I think that's enough to whet your appetite for now. Tune in next time, when I'll attempt to track down Kimchi Taco for lunch. Mangia!

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