Sushi Night.

I was running around Harrisburg tonight gathering supplies to make my “headboard” sometime this weekend.

I’m always overwhelmed by my choices when I leave my bubble that is The Valley. I had to decided between froyo, Chipotle or sushi! I really wanted all three, but I chose… SUSHI!

Sushi wins a lot, really.

Tonight I had a salmon roll (my new favorite) and a Japanese bagel roll (smoked salmon, cucumber and cream cheese). Both were delicious, but I managed to bite my lip no less than 4 times.

Back to the sushi… I always go to Miso. They’ve had good reviews on Yelp and I haven’t had a bad roll yet. They also have tempura and teriyaki, so it can feed even non-sushi eaters.

Weirdo non-sushi eaters.
Just kidding. We all have our things.

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Vanilla Rhubarb Pound Cake

Howdy!

I spent a good 9 hours at my parents’ house today — doing laundry, watching movies with  my sister and making dessert. I’m actually quite surprised that I like it so much considering it is one of the less sweet desserts I’ve made in a while, thanks to the rhubarb. Maybe sugar isn’t my main fuel after all.

I made Vanilla Rhubarb Pound Cake. The recipe was swiped from Pastry Affair. She posted her recipe just a few days ago and my sister stumbled upon it. Since our family spends 90% of our time together discussing food, she knew I was looking to make something with rhubarb and pointed me in the right direction.

I made a few changes to make it “healthier” and it turned out quite good.

So, without further ado, here’s how I made the Vanilla Rhubarb Pound Cake (1 normal sized loaf):

Ingredients

  • 2 cups rhubarb, diced in half inch chunks
  • 1/2 cup sugar + 2 pinches, divided
  • 1 cup stevia, divided
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, room temperature
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup light sour cream
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

Directions

Preheat oven to 350*F. Grease a loaf pan.

In a medium saucepan, mix the rhubarb with 1/4 cup stevia and a pinch* (about a tablespoon) of sugar. Over medium heat, cook the rhubarb until it is fork tender, approximately 5 minutes and then set it aside to cool.

In a large mixing bowl, cream the coconut oil and remaining stevia and sugar until combined. Add eggs one at a time, mixing well inbetween. Then add in the vanilla extract, sour cream, and salt until smooth. Stir in the flour until incorporated and then fold in the rhubarb and any of the additional rhubarb “juice.”

Transfer the batter to the greased pan and sprinkle the top with that last pinch* of sugar. Bake for 45 (to 55) minutes — until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

We ate ours at room temperature, but I’m sure it would be delicious warm with a scoop of ice cream. Or maybe with a few fresh strawberries, like shortcake.

Or, hell, add strawberries AND ice cream. No one’s going to turn you into the diet police. (Or at least I won’t.)

* I found it’s important to add that pinch of real sugar in with the stevia because the rhubarb didn’t give off any “juice” until the sugar was added. The Stevia will sweeten it up, but it just doesn’t interact with the rhubarb the same way as real sugar. Also, I didn’t want to eff with the beauty of a sprinkling of sugar on top. Those stevia fluffers just aren’t the same as sugar crystals.

Dijon Egg Salad

I’m still pretty darn broke. Tonight I ate carbonara because I actually had bacon in my freezer and I still have some eggs in the fridge. (I always have cheese. I couldn’t live without cheese.)

Next time I make it, I ought to snap a photo and share it, but tonight it was just for eating. A quick and easy meal to toss together.

This post is about egg salad. You know, it doesn’t have a stellar reputation. It’s sort of… egg salad. But this egg salad. Yum. It was a little deviled egg-y. Probably because it features paprika & Dijon mustard.

Side note: Every time I hear the word “Dijon” I think of the Barenaked Ladies song, “If I Had a Million Dollars.”

If I had a million dollars
We wouldn’t have to eat Kraft dinner
But we would eat Kraft dinner
Of course we would, we’d just eat more

And buy really expensive ketchups with it
That’s right, all the fanciest Dijon ketchups

Anyway, I was inspired by the egg salad recipe on mint. It’s pretty cool site — they’ve got food and design all in one place.

I adapted the recipe because (a) I only wanted to make about one serving at a time and (b) I didn’t want onion in it.

Ingredients

  • 2 large eggs, hard boiled (Click here if you need instructions on how to hard boil eggs — I learned from Martha.)
  • 2 slices of sandwich stacker pickles, chopped
  • 1 tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp. greek yogurt
  • dash of paprika
  • pepper, to taste

Instructions

Mash up the hard boiled egg with the back of a fork. Mash, mash, mash. Take out your frustrations on the egg. Then, add the chopped pickles, dijon, greek yogurt, paprika and pepper. Mix.

Serve open face on the two halves of an english muffin!

Sharing food is the way of my people: Refrigerator Brownies

I had a family “lobsterfest” to attend today, so I had to bring a dessert to share.

I decided that the Refrigerator Bakery Brownies from The Live-In Kitchen looked… amazing.

Since my kitchen is not well stocked and I didn’t feel like making a trip to the grocery store, I made a few tweaks. My recipe is as follows:

For the brownies:

  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) “light” salted butter (I use Land o’Lakes — it is listed as “LOL Butter” on my receipts.)
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • an additional 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips

I preheated my oven to 350*F and placed the rack in the upper third of the oven, just like the original recipe stated to do. I greased a foil lined 8 inch square baking pan, but skipped the flouring because I’m a lazy bear and always do. (I know they make spray oil with flour built in, but… eh.)

Then, in a mixing bowl, I combined the flour and baking soda and set that aside.

I brought two inches of water to a boil and placed my metal mixing bowl (from my kitchen aid) over the water. To the bowl, I added the stick of butter and 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips. Wait for that to melt, stirring it along the way. Then, once it is melted, smooth and well mixed, remove it from the heat. At this point, I added the sugars. Then you want to whisk in the eggs, the spare yolk and the vanilla. Add all the flour and fold it into the chocolate until it’s well incorporated. Add the other 1/2 chocolate chips, stir and pour the batter into the 8 inch pan.Bake for 25-30 minutes (or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with moist crumbs clinging. Remove the brownies from the oven and allow to cool completely.Now, at this point you could just eat the brownies. They’d taste perfectly fine — like yummy, fudgy brownies. Howeverrrrr — there is a frosting recipe which I also adapted a wee bit.

For the frosting:

  • 1 cup milk chocolate chips
  • 4 tablespoons butter (I used pure butter for this because I had a half stick in the freezer.)
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1/3 cup powdered sugar
  • 1-2 tablespoons milk

To make the frosting, pour the chocolate chips and plop the butter in a microwave safe bowl and nuke it in 20 second increments. Stir the goo between increments and continue this until all the chocolate is melted. Mix in the vanilla and salt, then add  the powdered sugar. Mix it up until it’s well incorporated and then add the milk a tiny dribble at a time, stirring constantly until the frosting is smooth and shiny. Spread the chocolate immediately on the cooled brownies and refrigerate until set or until you are ready to cut and serve.

 

These are actually one of the best brownies I’ve made from scratch. Even the un-iced brownie looked pretty tasty. Usually I get cake-like brownies, rather than fudgy ones. These seemed to be more fudgy than cake-like; this is likely due to all that butter. I’d like to make them again with coconut oil. (I need to buy more — I’m almost out.) It just seems more “healthy” that way. Or maybe half oil, half butter. Half-and-half substitutions usually work pretty well.

(I cut the brownies into 24 pieces, but 16 would be more reasonable. I also cut the outside edges off so they’d all be middle pieces; I kept the edges in my fridge for later. Ulterior motive, bitches.)

Dear Pioneer Woman,

This is a post I did over on my general blog — before I decided to compartmentalize my life by creating “PS: Olive you” for strictly food things.

A girl & happenstance

I made your vanilla scones. I know you’re all BUTTER and HEAVY CREAM! But even when I “healthified” these scones, I almost died when I sampled the results.

I love you. I’m pretty serious about that. Scones = love.

“Healthified” means I used half butter, half coconut oil and replaced the heavy cream with skim milk. Oh, I also replaced the two vanilla beans with a tablespoon of pure vanilla extract (because my kitchen is the kitchen of a bank teller — I have no fancy things besides my King Arthur White Wheat Flour).

I also “only” used three cups of powdered sugar in the glaze. Only. And it was still super sugary, sweet-as-hell goodness.

I also had to add a bit more flour. Maybe it’s my substitutions, but the dough was super wet. it was still pretty darn moist when I added the extra 2/3 cup of…

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Fried Goat Cheese.

Inspired by this post on Blogrecipi, I decided to make myself a fried goat cheese sandwich.

Of course, I thought, I WANT TO ADD OTHER CHEESES! So I did.

Cheese mixture.

I mixed up a chunk of goat cheese, some delicious sharp cheddar and some Parmesan. Then, like the blogger over on blogrecipi stated, I plopped it in some olive oil over medium heat.

All I got was a cheese puddle.

Nonetheless, I soldiered on. I tried pushing the cheese back into a circular shape, still a puddle.

So finally I pushed it into the shape of my English muffin and I plopped the muffin on top. The cheese stuck fast, I lifted it out of the pan and stuck the other half on. It was a very thin layer of cheese. Basically, instead of a goat cheese burger, I had a goat cheese grilled sandwich.

image

As you can see, I used the left over oil to sauteed some snap peas.

So, this is a Pinterest “failure.” It was perfectly edible and I’ll definitely use the cheese mixture again on a grilled cheese sandwich. It just wasn’t what I was hoping it would be. I was a little skeptical when I read the original directions. I don’t see how the soft cheese could hold its form with that heat. Ah, well.

I’m hoping the refrigerator brownies turn out better. (I’ll be posting about those tomorrow.)

Let me start your expectations off low.

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So, I’m broke as hell right now. I looked around my kitchen this morning and thought, “What would be edible?”

I had a sweet potato, goat’s cheese and raspberry jam. Really delicious jam.

I thought, “Well, the raspberry jam was good with goat’s cheese in the baked eggs I made a while back.” and so I grabbed these things and packed my work bag.

It was a good choice. The sweetness of the potato and jam against the earthiness of the goat’s cheese was nice. Next time, more cheese and more jam because I don’t believe that there’s ever “too much of a good thing.”

Sometimes being broke makes you think outside the box. What do you make when you’re super broke?

Obligatory Introductory Post

Another blog.

In an attempt to compartmentalize my life, I’ve decided to start a “food blog.”

Sometimes I’ll be documenting what I made for supper. I have a bunch of test recipes for my sister’s bridal shower too.

Mmmmmm. Sweets! Because dessert is my favorite.

Sometimes I’ll just be discussing what I’ve eaten. (I do have a list of restaurants I need to visit.)

Feel free to pop by. I can’t promise any regular posting schedule because I’m not use to being as busy as I am right now, but I’m sort of excited about food, so this might end up being a very healthy relationship.