Saturday, January 30, 2010
Friday, January 29, 2010
When I was in D.C. last week, on the side of one of their pristine buildings I spotted a countdown clock for the Winter Olympics. Just in case you were wondering, at this moment in time, we are at 14 days, 8 hours, 4 minutes and counting....
I had actually forgotten they were happening this year. Truth be told, I'm not a huge fan of the Winter Olympics. I tend to enjoy the Games held during the warmer time of year. It may have something to do with the climate I grew up in. Sunny California doesn't afford us the opportunity to enjoy wintery activities very often.
Canadian friends of mine love to discuss professional hockey. My knowledge of the game consists of players moving over ice on skates with a hockey stick, while attempting to shoot a disc the size of saucer into a goal. Oh, and I know one of the teams is the Mighty Ducks, thanks to the 90's Disney film. ;-)
I do love figure skating. I'll watch that on occasion. There was a period of time when I was girl that I dreamt of becoming a professional figure skater. I think it was in between dreams of a professional gymnast and ballet dancer. People moving with grace has always been attractive to me. The underlying strength behind it all is the real charm.
What's cookin', eh?
Kind of like these Naniamo Bars -- exquisitely presentable, yet deeply sweet.
The second part of our Daring Bakers' challenge this month, in honor of the Vancouver Olympics, I present these deliciously rich Canadian specialities.
1/2 c. unsalted butter
1/4 c. granulated sugar
5 T. unsweetened cocoa
1 large egg, beaten
1 1/4 c. crushed graham crackers
1/2 c. almonds, finely chopped
1 c. shredded coconut
Melt butter, sugar, and cocoa in a double boiler. Add egg, mixing until cooked and thickened. Remove from heat. Mix in graham crackers, almonds and coconut. Press into the bottom of an 8X8 in. pan lined with parchment paper (or foil).
1/2 c. unsalted butter
2 T. + 2 t. heavy cream
2 T. vanilla custard powder (I used instant vanilla pudding mix)
2 c. powdered sugar
Cream butter. Mix in remaining ingredients, whisking together until smooth and light in color. Spread onto first layer.
4 oz. semi-sweet chocolate
2 T. unsalted butter
Melt chocolate and butter over low heat in a saucepan. Cool. Spread over middle layer and place in refridgerator to cool and harden. I allowed mine to chill in the freezer for a couple hours and then cut them into squares. These treats are quite rich so small pieces go a long way. :)
The January 2010 Daring Bakers' challenge was hosted by Lauren of Celiac Teen. Lauren chose Gluten-Free Graham Wafers and Naniamo Bars as the challenge for the month. The sources she based her recipe on are 101 Cookbooks and http://www.naniamo.ca/.
Thursday, January 28, 2010
I sprinkled one tray with sugar and cinnamon.
The scrappy ones will be crumbled up for use in Part 2 of this challenge...stay tuned. :)
The January 2010 Daring Bakers' challenge was hosted by Lauren of Celiac Teen. Lauren chose Gluten-Free Graham Wafers and Naniamo Bars as the challenge for the month. The sources she based her recipe on are 101 Cookbooks and www.naniamo.ca.
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
Monday, January 18, 2010
Sunday, January 17, 2010
Even the simplest of suppers, when brought together just right, can prove a melodious tune. Case in point: a very easy dish to make in large quantities and freeze, this hearty meat sauce was a breeze to make (and consume!) and had me humming and dancing around the room
I served it over spaghetti with some freshly grated parmesan, accompanied by steamed zucchini seasoned with salt and pepper.
This Pinot Noir in Robert Mondavi's Private Selection created a perfect harmony in this dinner orchestra.
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
There are few places in the world that hold so much significance for me. This wonderful space at the western end of San Francisco is one such place.
On a family excursion through the mid-West one summer, we stopped in a small town called Cody, Wyoming. It receives its name from a character in history by the name of Buffalo Bill Cody.
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
Saturday, January 9, 2010
I just might be willing to forgo a piece of pie for this instead!
1/8 t. pumpkin pie spice
Tuesday, January 5, 2010
This whipping cream -- still in liquid form -- requires a similiar faith, hope, trust to that you must place in God during those times of uncertainty and trial. With the cream, you are faced with a puddle of white liquid that is supposedly capable of becoming solid through patient, consistent labor. It seems impossible. Take up a whisk. Attempt it by hand. You beat and beat and beat. Whip and whip and whip. Stir and stir and stir. Still liquid.
You turn the bowl. Shake out your wrist. Switch hands. Maybe your left arm is stronger. You turn the whisk faster and faster, continuing to just see liquid.
Finally, when your wrist feels as if its nearly lost feeling, it begins to take shape. Peaks emerge. The cream holds its form. It truly does contain a solid being beneath its apparent watery surface.
Your life may seem like that liquified cream right now, seemingly incapable of solidification. Be patient; God is 'beating' and 'whipping' your life into a beautiful, 'solid' creation. One day, when you least expect it, it will be revealed.
Sunday, January 3, 2010
For our Christmas dinner this year, I was planning to prepare a couple roasted chickens. I spent a while pouring through my cooking magazines and books trying to find the 'perfect' recipe for my fowls. I remembered a time in college when one of my friends had cooked a chicken stuffed with 40 cloves of garlic. I wanted to replicate something similar. Wandering through the kitchen, my roommate glanced at me intently browsing through my recipes and asked what I was looking for. After I told her, she chuckled at me and said "Just wing it!" So I did. And here are the results of my fantastic spontaneity...every bit delicious!!