Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Reflecting on the new year

I just read this post over at Creature Comforts (which is a lovely blog by the way). She is musing on a post from AT which I remember reading a while back. It poses the question "what do you actually use". (I'm pretty sure I could live off of a small fork, a small spoon, 2 bowls and a plate + cooking stuff.) I have natural hoarding tendencies (not this kind) and also value clean design...what's a girl to do. I definitely need to take the time and downsize. That's doable; it's a matter of making myself focus for long enough to do it. But...


What about the stuff that's not junk - the mounds of invaluable heirlooms? I'm not sure if they're really invaluable - but they're old, and they were my grandmothers'/mother's/great-whoevers'. Guilt! Shame! I can't throw them away! WHAT am I supposed to do with all of this stuff? Any ideas?

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Best soup I've ever had

Ok, so I'm prone to hyperbole, but this is really good soup!

Mississippi is a strange place in those in-between-season times. It no longer hits 90, but it's not, em, cold, yet you wouldn't necessarily know that by the way some people dress. I saw a girl with a coat+faux fur-lined hood yesterday. Really However, I do get that after months of hardly even seeing 75 in the middle of the night, you sort of jump at the chance to even think about tights, scarves (even summer scarves...), boots, cardigans, etc. And to be fair, I guess I do it too - considering I set out to make some kind of lentil soup yesterday. 

I scoured the internet, finding nothing particularly appealing for about an hour for one reason or another. I had totally forgotten about Heidi over at 101cookbooks (fantastic website), until yesterday during my quest when I stumbled upon this little gem. I didn't have any shallots, and to be honest I don't really get shallots. They're something that you "get", aren't they? Like, they're in a different echelon of cooking - a French echelon, I think - and I just haven't used them enough to appreciate them. I don't have a problem with them, but I don't understand their necessity I suppose. Anyway, I didn't have any, but I really liked the looks of the recipe. I also had some carrots, and a red onion, and some garlic, and I hate black olives, and I didn't have almonds. Clearly this soup wasn't going to be what Heidi had in mind. But, that's OK. I'm becoming much more comfortable with my culinary sense these days, so I decided to venture a bit away from the fold...

...and this is what I came up with.

Red Lentil and Brown Rice Soup based on Heidi Swanson's Red Lentil Soup Recipe

1/2 medium/large red onion, diced
1/2 medium/large yellow onion, diced
1 medium carrot, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 pinch red pepper flakes
olive oil - as much as you prefer to use to cook the above

6 cups vegetables stock or broth or water with vegetable bouillon cubes 
1 1/3 cup red lentils (picked through and rinsed)*
1/2 cup brown rice (picked through and rinsed)*
salt or Sel Fou**

  • *note* I soaked these. I realize you don't have to soak red lentils, but I figured it would speed up the whole process, especially with the brown rice, and it certainly did.
  • **note** This stuff is amazing. AMAZING. I think it really made the soup - I would recommend making yourself a large jar of it and putting it on e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g.

crumbled feta
julienned or shredded apple (1 sweet, crisp apple should be plenty for the whole recipe)
optional lemon juice solution to soak the apples in to keep them from browning if you will serve this later or if you are particularly concerned about their appearance

  1. Warm oil in pot large enough to make a hearty portion of soup in
  2. add onions and carrots and allow to cook until the onions begin to brown, stirring occasionally 
  3. add garlic and red pepper flakes, cook until onions caramelize a little
  4. add vegetable stock, bring to boil
  5. add lentils and rice, simmer until rice is tender - lentils will collapse into a thick mush (yum!)
  6. taste and adjust seasoning, add salt and/or sel fou until it tastes like something!
  7. serve with crumbled feta and a generous serving of apple
Pictures coming soon!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Interesting idea...

Scott (the toilet paper folks) have come out with this new SmartFlush campaign. For a limited time, if you buy an 8 or 12 pack of Mega Rolls, you get one of these puppies for free. I'm torn on what I think about this. Displacing water in your tank is a great way to save water, but, you don't need anything special to do it. I've been doing it for years with a 1 liter water bottle. Easy. Fill it up, displace 1L of water. Save 1L of water every time you flush. Good for Scott for raising awareness, but it seems a little wasteful to manufacture these things.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Whose got the magic?


This is such a sweet video montage of pregnancy photos from pacing the panic room, but what I totally love is the song. Check it!

Magic- A Belly Grows from The Panic Room Videos on Vimeo.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Black-Eyed Peas and Aloo Sabji

Best Indian dish EVER.

I'm so pleased with myself about this, you have no idea. I've been making a lot of Indian food lately, especially since I discovered that cooking dried beans wasn't the hardest thing in the world (I was convinced that it was - especially after an unfortunate black bean cooking episode back in the vegetarian days). This is the best dish I've made so far! I got the recipe over at hungry desi. I won't reinvent the wheel here; Nithya does a superb job of explaining it. The only thing I did different was sub in some lentils to make up for the black-eyed peas that I didn't have enough of, use the red chilis that I had instead of green and add some fenugreek leaves (methi) at the end. Everything else was the same. I will say it was a little too spicy for me, but I added a bit too much cayenne (red chili powder) and I'm not actually sure how hot my peppers were (though Liz at the Farmer's Market told me they were pretty mild/medium). No worries, I piled on some yogurt and cilantro and barreled through it with no problem. Rice would've helped - but please do note the delightful cultural clash of a tortilla at the top there.

If you think you can't make Indian food...you're wrong - you can. Give this dish a try; you'll be happy you did!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Faux quoi?

Faux bois my dears. I have a cute little table that I scored at GoodWill (I do <3 GoodWill) for $13. It's sort of industrial-looking, with a metal/chromey pedestal and an MDF top. I've been debating what to do with that top and I think I've found the answer over at apartmenttherapy

...white paint + faux bois. I'm hoping contact paper will stick to said white paint...I don't see why not though, right?

Thursday, August 5, 2010

English muffins

On the griddle
So, I love having Adelaide around, really I do, but sometimes I feel bad that she's just sitting in the fridge, not giving bouncy, fermented life to something. That's when I go in search of sourdough recipes that aren't for just a loaf of bread. Recipes like this, and this, and this! Especially that last one. I just finished cooking my second batch of English muffins. They are really delicious and fun to make.

I've adapted my recipe from the one on thefreshloaf, and by adapted I mean I used whole wheat flour instead of all purpose.

Sourdough English Muffins
Makes about 14
  • 1/2 C starter  
  • 1 C milk
  • 2-3/4 C mixture of whole wheat and white whole wheat flour
  • 1 T sugar
  • 3/4 t salt
  • 1 t baking soda
  • Cornmeal, for dusting

Stir the starter, 2 cups of flour and the milk together. Cover with a lid or a plate or some plastic wrap and leave out (not in the fridge!) for 8 hours/overnight. I usually opt for overnight. 
The next day (or 8 hours later) add the rest of the flour if you think you need it. I only added sort of a handful and then used a pretty good bit when kneading. Add the sugar, salt and baking soda and stir until well combined. Turn onto a floured surface and knead for 4-5 minutes. It's going to be pretty sticky. Roll out to 3/4" and cut with a biscuit cutter (Um, did you mean pint glass? Yes? Ok good.) into rounds. Reroll the scrap pile until you've used it all up. The last one may be sort of a mutant; that's ok though. Place the muffins, at least 1/3 inch apart on something (parchment, silpat, cutting board, whatever) with enough cornmeal to really keep them from sticking. Your beautiful circles will turn into ugly ovals when you try to pick them up and they stick to the surface.  Leave them alone for 45 min - 1 hour.
That Guinness glass...not a unitasker!
Rub a griddle with oil using a paper towel (don't burn yourself, please) and heat it to about medium. Cook the muffins for around a total of 10-14 minutes, flipping them every few minutes. I find this works best so you know that you're not burning them and, well, I like to keep an eye on them. 
I love my grandmother's cast iron skillet that fits over two eyes!
Split them open with a fork - for optimum nook/cranny experience, using a knife sort of smooshes them - and enjoy!
Eating three is not really recommended...but I won't tell if you don't!
*For more photos, check out my Picasa page!

Monday, August 2, 2010

No coincidence

There is 100% correlation between the lack of posts from June to July and my teaching summer school. Now that it's over, I'm like, oh yeah, I have a blog. DUH! Not that I haven't done anything over the past two months. I have. Adelaide and I have gotten better acquainted. I've made all manner of sourdough things - whole wheat and spelt breads, pizza dough, pita bread, English muffins and pancakes...it's been great. Sourdough starters are very forgiving, which is good, because mine inevitably has a dark liquidy "hooch" on top by the time I think about feeding it again. Sigh.

Other than that I sewed up an old-man-plaid shirt to fit me. I love it. It's sort of my new favorite article of clothing. This weekend, the first weekend of freedom, I turned a men's shirt into a skirt (I should have made a tutorial, it's a little different from anything I've seen so far on the web), and I made a cover for my sewing machine using this tutorial from sew4home. I even, feeling particularly crafty and summer-campy, made a friendship bracelet the other day! Speaking of friendship bracelets - check out these beauties!

Well, I'm out for the day. Trying to stay cool, probably failing. C'est la vie!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

To anyone with an ice cream maker

Why hello there fro-yo.

I will make this...soon.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Her name is Adelaide...

I'm making a sourdough starter (squeal!) She's just a little seed right now, but I've named her Adelaide...maybe that's a premature move, but hopefully it will send good vibes her way. I started with this recipe from the New York Times*. However, I decided to drive home (about 2.5 hours), so I obviously had to bring my one-day-old starter with me. After a day here, my dear Adelaide began to separate. After some e-sleuthing I found out that this liquid is called "hooch" - how appropriate, it does smell boozy - and that it is the starters' way of telling you that it needs to be fed. Whew. OK. So, The Fresh Loaf helped me out from there. I think I get to turn it into a real starter tomorrow - if it survives the drive back that is!

*I got the link to the NYT recipe from this article about pizza. It suggests that you leave out your dough for at least 24 hours. Like out, on the counter. I left mine out for a bit over 24 hours, then put it in the fridge, used some of it the next day and then froze the rest. The pizza** that I made was the. best. pizza. I've. ever. made. PERIOD. It was so good.
**I used this pizza recipe from Annie's Eats by the way - which is the wettest pizza dough ever, but very very tasty, even if you don't leave it out for a day. It may actually be mis-written; I usually end up adding a ton of flour when I'm kneading it.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

I couldn't have done it without the internet...

Making that wedding cake was insane.

My mother has a masters degree in home ec., so I know a thing or two about baking and the whatnot, but that is nothing compared to the amount of knowledge I've amassed in the past few weeks. I am endlessly indebted to the following (and many more I'm sure) websites:

Wilton is a long standing cake/decorating company. If you have a cake pan, especially if it's in a fun shape, it's probably a Wilton. They have classes and recipes and so many things. They also have really helpful charts like this one that tells you how many servings a cake will yield, how much batter should go in each pan, how much icing you need to cover each tier, etc. I used their lemon cake and buttercream recipes, both of which were delicious.

Martha - what can I say, the woman knows what she's doing. I didn't use any of the recipes from her site, but I started there and I learned a lot. This page taught me how to assembly my cake; I never would've figured out to put the dam around the edges for the filling...and that would have been a cake wreck!

Besides having an awesome website (I particularly like this post about cloth napkins) - I found my lemon curd recipe here. It's delicious!

This page saved my butt! I was confused about the freezing/thawing/icing process - when? how? etc. This cleared it all up. Can you freeze cake? Yes. Can you freeze it with a crumb coat? Yes. Can you crumb coat it while it's frozen? Yes. Can you ice it while it's frozen? NO. (VERY good to know).

What a delightful page - full of tutorials and goodness. This one gave me all the information I needed to make these cute little wedding cake toppers. I first got the idea, though, from these - which are truly works of art! They also cost a fortune!

What to do with all of that leftover cake? Cake balls - obviously! Hers are way cuter than mine, because I did them last minute and had run out of patience for perfectly shaped adorableness, but mine were just as delicious. This is a great thing to do if you have leftover cake - or if you have a disaster that can't be remedied... The only problem is the name. Cake balls? Really? With all the linguists at this party - you'd better believe we tried to come up with a better name. We tried French...but it wasn't much better. The little girls called them "mini cupcakes" which is better than "cake balls" ... although Bakerella has mini cupcakes, so we'll have to think of something else!

Like I said, I know there are myriad more websites that I've visited, but these are the ones that I went back to over and over again. A big thank you to all of their creators! Couldn't have done it without you!

Of course - I also have to give a huge shout out to my mother, grandmother and my aunt's friend Cindy. I called all of them several times with random baking questions. And my mother and grandmother taught me everything I know about cooking - thank you! I love you!!

Y'all...I made a wedding cake!

My dear professor/friend just got married and I boldly volunteered to make her cake. The whole thing was very low-key - in fact they got married over a month ago, but had their reception/party yesterday. Yesterday - one week after graduation day. I figured...I have a free week, I would LOVE to make a wedding cake. And I did love it. But wow. It is a. lot. of. work! I'm going to publish several posts with pictures, as I can't seem to easily get them all into one!

Wedding cake!

I started on Wednesday with David Lebovitz' lemon curd.
A mere fraction of the eggs used. I bought 8 boxes of butter for this - 8!
One of the 3 double recipes of Wilton's lemon cake

heating core?! my proudest moment

I discovered something while researching cake making...
if you bake a cake that is really deep or over 10 inches wide, you need a "heating core". This helps the cake cook all the way through, because hate radiates out from the center and in from the edges of the pan.
I did not have a heating core, but I McGuyvered it with a (very thoroughly washed and lined with parchment paper) tomato paste can. Worked like a charm!
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A made these ADORABLE cake topper clothespin dolls thanks to a tutorial from goingsewcrazy
The gum paste flowers were loosely (or not so loosely) based on the flowers from this cake featured in RealSimple.
..which had no tutorial so I had to figure them out myself. I opted for egg cartons, cupcake tins and ramekins. Worked out pretty well. I was happier with them before I tried to paint them though...
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I had to fill them before I could crumb coat them...
and before you can fill them you have to make an icing dam...so the filling doesn't go everywhere!
Three little crumb coated cakes. yay!
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Icing the 9 inch layer...
Putting them together - SCARY
Oh, and, I had leftover cake...so I made cake balls (thanks Bakerella)! I think these may have been a bigger hit than the cake to be honest! They were very tasty.
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Finished product

I loved the topper...
...but sort of hated the flowers...
...as long as they're happy - I'm good.
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The aftermath

I sort of overdid it really. We took out the 9 inch layer - but the WHOLE 12 inch layer was left. I could've just made a 9 inch cake and been done with it...but this was much more fun!
Really good cake!
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Sunday, April 25, 2010

A busy weekend

For the weekend before the last week of school I sure have done a lot of non-school-related things.

  • My friend B and I went to our good friends' A&T's house last night for dinner. We were asked to get there at 6, which I thought was a bit early, but whatever, they're married and go to bed early. Little did I know that we would be making mozzerella! Awesome. I've heard that this is pretty easy to do, well I read about it in Kingsolver's Animal, Vegetable, Mineral (very good read); T got A a kit for her birthday and they've made ricotta and mozzerella a few times now. It was very easy to do - not daunting at all having made yogurt and paneer before anyway. You just use citric acid to separate the curds/whey and then put in a dissolved rennet tablet. There's some specific stirring methods and temperatures, but that's pretty much it. Very cool. Took 20 or so minutes.
  • I went to the dollar store yesterday in search of a toothbrush (they have sweet deals there...you know...things for a dollar). I also found some clothespins. Wooden ones. 36 for a dollar! Wow. So, I bought them. I had recently seen some very cute painted clothespins (can't find the link!), so I thought I'd do that. Then I realized that would be a huge pain, so I thought maybe I could modpodge them. One look at etsy told me that that was obviously the new hotness. I took some paper I had saved from a very pretty birthday present, and set out. They turned out great. I'm really pleased with the results, and I'm looking for some different paper to use on the other 22!
  • To round out the weekend, A gave me some leftover whey. She said it's good for bread making. We'll find out today!
  • Oh. And. I've been doing the no-poo thing for about 2 weeks now, and I couldn't be happier about it. Yay!

These beauties aren't mine. They are from the papered crown's etsy shop. Check it out!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

And this, when did THIS happen?

L.L. Bean also became kinda cool, y'all. Seriously, what's going on?!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

When did this happen?

Great pieces from Land's End Canvas

Land's End got sort of...cool? Looks like J. Crew from 3 years ago, but, well, what's wrong with that. Looks like a solid place for basics.

Monday, April 5, 2010

I had a very intimate 2.5 hours with my mom and aunt this weekend...

I made a duct tape dress form!!! Oh my gosh it was intense. More later!

Buttons make everything better

My blog addiction has led me to two photos in the last week that have made me smile (and made me want to sew shorts again...which is a big deal).

Jen, over at The Fabled Needle (Please check her stuff out, it is really beautiful. I have a print!) posted pictures of some of Stella McCartney for GapKids clothing. Now, I am no petite creature, lithe enough to slip into some GapKids, but I can ogle, right? LOOK at these shorts. Please, seriously. WOW! I want them.

Even more button-sporting clothing popped up in my RSS feed this morning. Look at this cute shirt by Coty Lee via Paper and Stitch! Very cute, and super easy to DIY I'd say. I see a refashion in my future!

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

On not having anything to say (link love)

It's funny how a blog can make you feel worthless. I've been bogged down with grad school, teaching and studying for my comps (which are more than halfway over now!). I've accomplished a lot in the last two months, but there's this albatros around my neck - I haven't published a blog post; I'm a bad blogger; value judgments from every direction! And by every direction I really mean from myself. I haven't made much in the way of crafting. I've cooked a ton, but I haven't felt the need to blog about it. But boy howdy do I read other peoples' blogs; seriously, I have a blog addiction problem. I've found some really awesome links over the past 2 months, and I'd like to share them with you.

Heart of Light's Homemade Paneer (from today!)
  • I've wanted to make cheese for a long time. I love Indian food. All you need is milk, lemon juice, paper towels and cheesecloth. Is there anything bad about this idea?
Free bunting printouts from nonpareil magazine via iDiY
  • I'm a sucker for bunting - completely gaga for it. And free things. Again, good idea.
  • Speaking of bunting - diy bunting stamp from broccoli rubberbands!!! How ABOUT orange?!
Chevron things
Refashioned things
  • Look at this bag! Don't you want it!? Salt-water kids via Wardrobe refashion
  • Sew I thought...this girl NEVER disappoints. Next time you walk into a thrift store you will see haute couture written all over the place!
From the world of actual paper you can touch (but also found online)
  • I love Real Simple magazine. I've heard people criticize it, because a lot of the things in it are so expensive and they are often not simple. I. Don't. Care. I love it and I don't care. I bought a 6 month subscription from an office-mate's son. The last issue was their 10th anniversary, and they shared popular tips from over the years.
  • My favorite oldie was to use a salad spinner for getting rid of excess water in hand washed sweaters. I had just gotten back from Minnesota and needed to wash some cashmere, but was frustrated by the instructions that say "do not wring or twist"+ "lay flat to dry". Really? What do you want me to do with it then? Obviously, put in in my salad spinner. Amazing.
  • This issue also shows you how to dry your hair. I've never known how to really dry my hair. I'm serious. No one taught me...who is supposed to teach you? I don't have sisters. My mom has short hair. Stylists, when I do ask for help, do a terrible job of explaining the process. But there it was. In three steps. For straight hair/for curly hair. Thank you Real Simple. My hair looked GREAT!
Kind of out there
  • Anyone do the no-poo thing? As in not using shampoo at all? I've heard of it over the past 5 years or so, maybe longer actually (I used to work at a hippie co-op). I haven't taken the plunge - apparently your hair looks NASTY for 2-6 weeks - and it is supposed to work better with curly hair - I have straight. But I have added some baking soda to my shampoo when I wash. It has made a world of difference. My once greasy-by-4pm locks are now good to go for 2 days. Weird. If you can make it through the transition period - the results are supposed to be AMAZING.
  • Finally, a linguistic note. Did you know there's a midline through the states (think Mason-Dixon-ish) that divides how people say "greasy". People in the Midlands and the South tend to go with greazy (/gɹi:zi/) and people in the North and West tend to go greasy (/gɹi:si/). Neat.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

My homemade granola

I really like granola, but I never ate it very often because it was 1. expensive to buy and 2. expensive to make (so I thought) and 3. calorific.

  1. It is expensive. The local bakery sells it to take home for around $9 a quart.
  2. My brother used to have my mom make (doesn't that sound terrible) this granola recipe that must've cost like $30. I don't know what was in there, but it was ridiculous, so I assumed all granola would be really expensive to make. But, don't we all know what happens when you assume? I think we do; thank you Oscar Wilde. It's really not that expensive to make unless you just have to have cold-pressed jojoba oil and exotic whatever. Go to the grocery, get some stuff, put it in there, it'll work.
  3. True. This is an energy food. It does not, however, have to have as many calories or as much fat as the stuff you usually buy at the store or the local bakery.
Here's where I started my granola-making journey (another Mississippi girl, yay!). She is a friend of a friend, and I like her granola recipe as a base. I've changed things up a bit though. This is how I make mine:


The dry
  • 3 heaping cups rolled oats (quick, instant, old-fashioned...whatever)
  • 1 1/4 cup of a mixture in whatever proportion of wheat germ, wheat bran, whole wheat flour and flax seeds (or some extra oats)
  • 1/4 - 1/3 cup almonds (slivered or sliced)
The wet*
  • 5 heaping spoonfuls brown sugar (like smallish-sized spoons you eat with)
  • 3 spoonfuls honey
  • 3 shakes cinnamon
  • 1 shake each nutmeg, allspice, cloves (more or less or none depending on what you like)
  • big dash salt
  • 1 spoonful vanilla extract
  • 1 spoonful almond extract
  • 3-6 spoonfuls warm water, to make thick but stir-able liquid
  • 1-2 spoonfuls vegetable oil
The not-listed-yet-so-you-don't-cook-them
  • dried raisins (1/4-1/3 cup)
  • dried cranberries (1/4 cup)
  1. combine (in large bowl) The dry
  2. combine (in separate, smaller bowl) The wet. add water until you have a thick, syrupy liquid
  3. add The wet to The dry
  4. stir stir stir
  5. turn oven on to 325 (don't worry about preheating)
  6. line jelly-roll (1/2 sheet) pan with parchment or foil + spray
  7. pour uncooked granola onto pan and stick it in the oven
  8. set timer for 18 minutes, but be ready to check it
  9. granola is done when it's about a shade darker than it was when it went in and smells fragrant
  10. wait for it to cool a bit and then add the dried fruit
  11. place in large, airtight container and store in the freezer for best (crispiest) results
  • *I know some of those aren't actually wet, you can really add them to either, but I like to put them with The wet.
  • this will burn quickly. when you even think it's done, it is. take it out.
  • it will harden as it cools; don't worry if it does't seem crispy when you remove it
I hope you enjoy this recipe, I really do. It's forgiving; don't be afraid to play with it.

My most difficult (and ugliest) project to date.

The "a" side

So, I saw these AMAZING pillows over at designsquish, and I thought to myself, "self, wouldn't it be super neat to have one of those pillows?". I apparently also responded with "yes, yes it would" because I embarked on this journey yesterday morning. I set out to make an "a" (because my honey's name starts with "a" and because, conveniently, when you turn it upside down it turns into a "g", which is the first letter in my name). I figured this would be difficult...and it was! The hardest part was the tunnel that you have to make ... and everything else. But now, 28 hour later, I have one pillow form of an "a" and or "g" (I will cover it with a sturdy upholstery fabric or recycled coat like they did so the bumps won't be so noticeable). I will make another one, and I MAY even make a tutorial if you're lucky. I'm trying to figure out the best way to piece this thing together...because what I did can NOT be the best way.

The "g" side

It's not very pretty, but honestly, I think it looks about as good as the one on designsquish. Hopefully I have some tricks up my sleeve for the next one (I think I do anyway), and hopefully it will look better with some thick fabric over it. It was a fun experience anyway and I learned some stuff. However...I may just tuft the hole instead of building that tunnel - that was terrible!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

A shout out to Kroger and store brand white whole wheat flour

Sure, I've sung the praises of white whole wheat flour before. Sure, I love King Arthur Flours (I really really do). But I'm in college. I'm trying to save money. We're all trying to save money. So, I literally gasped when I saw that Kroger put out a store brand white whole wheat flour (ask my boyfriend, he was mid-story when I interrupted him to tell him about this discovery). It was on sale (because it's new?) so I picked up a 5lb bag for 2.49 (regular 2.99). King Arthur usually goes for 4.99, so it really is great savings - especially if you make bread (or pancakes or cookies or tortillas or pita or or or...) every week.

  • If you guys haven't tried white whole wheat flour yet, get your hands on some. It really is whole wheat flour, it's just a different kind of wheat (white wheat instead of the mixture other varieties usually found in all purpose). I use it in place of all purpose because it's really light and soft - very unlike the heavy whole wheat flours you usually get.
  • Next time you're strolling through the grocery, see if they have a store brand white whole wheat flour. Kroger is known as many things around the country, and surely they aren't the only ones to have thought of this. Let me know!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Spain for Christmas

I went to Spain for Christmas, and, being me, I took pictures of, almost exclusively, food. I did have some great food there; I think I gained a stone, but I didn't look!

I thought I would share some Spanish culinary goodness with you all.

Churros y Cafe

Churros: Eating churros is like eating hot, crispy oil - delicious, hot, crispy oil. They are really wonderful, but I didn't need lip balm for the rest of the day. We had them at the famous Chocolatería de San Ginés Restaurant in Madrid. This picture sadly doesn't feature the coffee cup full of melted chocolate in which to submerge your fried tasties.


Montaditos: Spain has about a thousand names for sandwiches, depending on what size they are. Montaditos are these little guys; they're a good three bites. We ate them at the conveniently named Cerveceria 100 Montaditos (so named because they have 100 different kinds to choose from). If you go on Wednesday, they are all 1 Euro - pretty sweet deal.

12 Grapes

Grapes: You can't see all 12, but I swear I ate them. You're supposed to eat 12 grapes on New Year's Eve; well, as the clock strikes 12. I was in charge of getting the grapes, as I had been released into the green pastures of Carrefour for an hour to roam the isles in search of cheap olive oil and Nocilla (which is the Spanish [and better] version of Nutella) and seedless grapes. Fail. I mean, I found cheap olive oil and Nocilla (thank god), but I did not get seedless grapes. I even know the word for seed in Spanish. I just didn't see any. And these guys were little; they were American seedless grape size. Which brings us to a New Year's Eve anticipating crunching down on 12 seeded grapes with the hundreds of us that didn't make it to the center of the Plaza del Sol (bummer). I took it like a champ; my brother and sister-in-law weren't as enthusiastic. I figured I could use the fiber after a week of eating only ham, and, really they're not that hard to chew.

Spain was fun, but I'm glad I'm back state-side.