May 31, 2009

strawberry-blueberry sorbet

Yesterday we attended a bbq for a friend who is moving out of town. Strawberries happened to be on sale and it also happened to be a fairly warm day so sorbet was made! I didn't get any pictures because it was made at the last minute then devoured within seconds of being shared, but just imagine a rich dark red frozen delight sprinkled with seeds and flecks of deep blueberry skin. I modeled my recipe off of a simple strawberry one that I found through a google search but added blueberries and used lime juice instead of lemon (because I had a lonely lime waiting to be used for something). The blueberry wasn't very prominent but there was just enough to notice that it wasn't just strawberry, which is what i was going for. More blueberries can be added to this recipe as needed.

2 lbs strawberries, rinsed & hulled
1.5 c sugar
2 oz blueberries (about a handfull)
juice of 1 lime

Puree all ingredients into food processor until smooth. You can pour the mixture through a sieve if you don't want seeds, but I firmly believe it will compromise the aesthetic integrity of the dessert. freeze in ice cream maker as manufacturer's directions or freeze in airtight canister.

May 8, 2009

I believe that experimentation with food, no matter at what level, is a very important part of life...especially when you're in college. I've since graduated the years of nothing but ramen noodles, pizza and sandwiches but still end up randomly eating like a student, and I have to admit that I keep a small stock of ramen in the pantry. This "regressive eating" happens mostly on Fridays when the week's groceries are starting to dwindle and I'm at my laziest.

Today happens to be a Friday, a day that started with thrift stores and rummage sales. The last rummage sale I went to was in a church and while sifting through piles of other people's used stuff, the all too familiar smell of what I like to call "cardboard pizza" started wafting through the air vents. I immediately craved it, but didn't want to go to the store and buy only a frozen pizza. So, when I got home I realized that we had some frozen chicken nuggets (for emergencies only, i swear) some jarred pasta sauce, and some cotija cheese leftover from Cinco de Mayo. What does that make? A little something I like to call, Ghetto Chickn Parmesan. This is the closest I could get to something pizza-like in the sense that it has sauce and cheese. HA! The cotija cheese is really what makes it. I like to think that the Mexican crumbling dairy solid tastes like a mix between mozzarella and Parmesan, so it worked perfectly. It ended up being a couple of levels higher on the taste scale than those frozen cheapo chicken parm dinners you can but in the freezer section, so I'd say it was a success.
I really wish my pictures were more flattering, but I'm convinced that it takes a pro or a HD camera from the Food Network to make it so. I've had a few conversations in my life about the unflattering-ness of most food photos, and it really doesn't help that I've been using my phone's camera! I'll eventually have everything I need to use my "real" camera again but for now they'll just have to look like those nasty old photos of jello molds in your mom's cookbook that are more nauseous than appetizing.

May 7, 2009

First thing's first: PIE!!!

From the moment that I decided to create this blog, a mere 6-7 hours ago, I've been contemplating what would be the optimal first post. Today I didn't have to actually work much, so I planned on cooking a bit. Wenk had purchased a few mangoes the other day with the sole intention of convincing me to make a pie. A month or so ago, there was a huge sale on the aromatic bulbs and I had decided to use them in lieu of peaches in a traditional 2-crust southen dessert favorite. Wenk loved it but soon after eating it talked to his mom and realized that a cold mango pie, made to imitate his great aunt k's cold-peach pie would be wonderful. He knows me well enough to know that if he gets the ingredients and throws an idea at me that I'll eventually whip something up. Well, I didn't get the recipe for that but found a good and healthy looking recipe to follow for my cold mango strawberry pie. Fresh peach and yogurt no-bake pie

I really wanted to make my own graham cracker crust with some cinnamon grahams that have been occupying my pantry but soon realized that I had lent out all my pie pans to our friend Carrie, who recently did her non-fiction thesis reading which included a piece on searching for authentic pies and of course featured several pies at the reception. So the crust was store bought sadly enough, but ended up being delicious. I substituted 3 decently sized mangoes for the peaches and used a 6oz container of strawberry flavored yogurt from Tillamook (yum!) for the yogurt/sour cream option. While mixing the vanilla into the yogurt I couldn't stop myself from adding some powdered ginger, which ended up amounting to probably 1.5 tsp.

On a less healthy note, Wenk has also been craving tater tot casserole. I've pretty much stopped making anything that calls for a condensed cream of mushroom soup, but decided it wouldn't hurt to make it since it's kind of a comfort food. I used cousin Erika's traditional recipe, 1lb gr. beef/2 cans green beans/2 cans cr. of mushroom soup/tots, but substituted the gr beef for some elk. Wenk had a baseball/bbq get-together the other night and a buddy brought elk burgers.
There were a couple of well seasoned ones left over so I just crumbled them into the mix. Yay comfort food! Great first post, me!

shopping bag

So, I haven't posted for quite some time because we've had some major computer issues, but i've made a few things. The most recent venture into the crafting world was a couple of shopping bags made from reclaimed fabric and old cloth napkins found at a thrift store here called the Wunderground, which by the way is an amazing place under the senior citizen's center here in Missoula.

Here's a pic of one...