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Archive for May, 2009

Mojito Pie

For Memorial Day, Pat and I were pretty low key. My parents and both sisters came up for breakfast and we went out to a diner. For lunch my sister Laura stayed so it was just 3 of us.

I made burgers on the stove top with corn on the cob and Laura brought kettle chips and fruit. I also made a frozen dessert, mojito pie. I actually adapted it from Weight Watchers magazine.

I crushed pretzels in the food processor with some limeade concentrate and butter. The recipe called for sugar but I forgot it. I patted the crust into my new pie pan. (Pat feels I only made this because I wanted to use the pie pan.)

pretzel crust

pretzel crust

I baked the crust and let it cool.

I mixed together vanilla frozen yogurt, limeade concentrate, some chopped mint leaves, lime zest, and vodka that had steeped with mint leaves (I couldn’t find the creme de menthe called for so I heated the vodka with mint leaves and let it steep).

mojito filling

mojito filling

I poured the filling into the crust and decorated it with lime slices and mint leaves. I let the pie cool in the freezer for a few hrs.

mojito pie

mojito pie

This was a pretty delicious end to the day although it might have been better with sugar in the crust.

Mojito Pie

pie crust
2 cups pretzels
2 tbsp of limeade concentrate thawed
(2 tbsp of sugar which I forgot)
2 tbsp butter

filling
1 quart vanilla frozen yogurt soft(I used Eddy’s Slow Churn which tasted more like ice cream than frozen yogurt I think)
remainder of 1 can of limeade concentrate
2 tbsp of mint infused vodka
1 tbsp finely minced mint
zest of 1 lime

For crust, preheat oven to 350F. Whirl pie crust ingredients in food processor. Pat them into the pie pan. Bake for 10 min. Let cool.

Mix filling ingredients together and spoon into crust. Freeze for 4 hrs.

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Anna Raver writes about planting a garden with salsa ingredients…I love the idea of gardening with an idea for the food you will be preparing.

I’ve tried doing window sill herb garden but the plants died from my underwatering and Sydney the cat eating them-she especially liked the thyme.

Some day when I am not in a one bedroom apartment, I will try again…

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waffles!

I am not a big breakfast person-I don’t even like maple syrup! But I do love waffles. We received a waffle maker as a wedding gift so I can finally make them at home.

On Sunday, I was meeting my sister Laura for a run on the Lakeshore (I was doing 6 mi and she was doing 9.5). I knew I wouldn’t be up for making waffles after so I made the batter up before I left and talked Pat into making them while I shower after my run.

Not liking maple syrup, I had made vanilla syrup early in the morning. I heated 3/4 cup of water with 1/2 cup sugar with a split vanilla bean to boiling. I let it come to a simmer until it thickened to a syrup.

vanilla bean syrup

I pulled the vanilla bean out and served it in the creamer we also got as a wedding gift.

mixing waffle batter

mixing waffle batter

I found a waffle recipe in the Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book . I just mixed flour, sugar, and baking powder with the wet ingredients-milk, an egg, and melted butter. I let the mixture sit in the fridge while I ran.

resting waffle batter

resting waffle batter

Laura and I heroically ran our miles and I made my way back home. Pat had the waffle maker and started making them while I got cleaned up.

perfect post-run breakfast

perfect post-run breakfast

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Besides having an emergency kit for the day of the wedding (bandaides to flats to dance in) and holding Pat’s ring, my sister Laura also brought the wedding gifts from the reception to our apartment when we were on honeymoon. Even better than the waffle maker (more on that later), she left homemade manicotti in the fridge.

We came back and unpacked. I opened the fridge, complaining I didn’t know what to eat and saw the manicotti.

home made manicotti

home made manicotti

Perfect wedding gift.

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wedding madness

Pat and I got married last weekend!

cake topper without cake

cake topper without cake

With the plans and arrangements (even though we were pretty laid back), we got pretty busy so it was a little quiet around here.

We had a beautiful chiffon cake with lemon mousse and butter cream frosting. For dinner, we had standard but delicious Chicago wedding dinner: fruit cocktail, salad, roast beef, roast chicken, vegetables (red peppers, green beans, and carrots), and twice baked potatoes.

I think I only had half my potato (my favorite part) and cake! I spent the rest of the night dancing, having my picture taken, and talking to everyone.

For the honeymoon, we stayed in downtown Chicago and did touristy things we never do since we live here. Despite growing up in the Chicago land area, I went to the Hancock building for the first time. Pat and I ate the Signature Room there. The view was spectacular and the food was delicious. I especially liked the burnt caramel ice cream. I had just read about seasonal food in Bon Appetit-someone wrote into the BA Foodist asking about local seasonal food-and noticed that the menu was seasonal without listing every farm the food was from.

We also ate at Trader Vic’s- great drinks and a lot of fun. Playing tourist we also ate at the Cheescake Factory-Pat couldn’t believe how big the portions are.  Pat had managed never to eat at the Italian Village (a set of 3 Italian restaurants in the Loop-the business district in and around a loop of the el train tracks) despite living in Chicago and working in the Loop. They had the best Italian gnocchi and caramel gelato-I see a trend.

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artichoke

Since reading Mango and Tomatoes‘ post on simple artichoke preparation a while back, I have artichokes on the brain.

I bought a few and got to cooking. I trimmed the bottom and top of the artichoke (check out the pics over here, much better than I could take), and wrapped it in saran wrap and microwaved it for about 7 minutes.

While that was steaming, I browned a little butter with some smashed garlic. (I didn’t intend to brown the butter but it worked pretty well.)

delicious artichoke

delicious artichoke

I just picked off the leaves and scraped off the edible part.

I got down to almost the heart and thought it looked quite beautiful as well as being delicious.

almost at the artichoke heart

almost at the artichoke heart

I scooped out the heart and enjoyed it with the brown butter. Quite delicious and one of the easiest ways to prepare a whole artichoke.

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The LA Times has a story examining the many choices of chicken: organic, free-range, heritage….They even do a taste test, I love taste tests.

For what it’s worth, my cat has attacked Pat to get at organic, free range chicken but refuses supermarket chicken. Since she doesn’t do the shopping and can’t read, I figure she’s pretty much a blind taste tester.

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