Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Kristy's Hot Chocolate (Cocoa)

In October, when my sister was visiting, she perfected this recipe. It's great when you have a crowd for cocoa. In fact, we had one yesterday when all the kids were playing in the snow. This is decadent and delicious despite a relatively small amount of sugar. Dutch cocoa would work best for this, but regular old Hershey's cocoa works well. As a side note I've been saying on my blog that Hershey's Special Dark Cocoa is dutch cocoa. Turns out it's a blend of natural and dutch cocoas. I recently tried it and it's flavor is weird. It's not terrible, but I wouldn't recommend it.

Kristy's Hot Chocolate

INGREDIENTS
3/8 c (6T) sugar
3 T natural (regular) cocoa
heaping T dutch cocoa
1/3 c water
good pinch of salt

4 c milk (I use 1%, but whole milk would be even better.)

1 1/2 tsp vanilla

1. Combine the first four ingredients in a sauce pan. Bring to a boil and cook until dissolved.
2. Add milk and heat to temperature. I'd suggest just below a boil.
3. Stir in vanilla just before serving.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Oyster Crackers with Dill and Ranch


This is a more recent family tradition. We've been making these off and on since the late 80's. I think next year I may look for a different kind of cracker to make this with, something whole wheat. The oyster crackers are a bit blah as a cracker base. I do love this spice combo. This recipe is from my Dad's Aunt Mavis. I reduced the amount of oil.

OYSTER CRACKERS

INGREDIENTS

1/8 (2 T)cup oil

1/2 tsp garlic salt

1/2 tsp dill weed

1 pkg. Hidden Valley Ranch dressing

1 pkg. Oyster crackers


Warm the oil. Drizzle some of the oil over the crackers. Stir. Drizzle, stir, drizzle, stir until most of the crackers are coated. Add the spices and stir.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Doughnuts and Rosettes


Last week I went to "Santa Claus Day" down at the town hall. The local Lions club serves a pancakes and sausage breakfast. The Lutheran choir (of about 10 people) sang carols. Later that day Santa came. Each child told Santa what they wanted for Christmas and then received a paper bag full of candy and peanuts in the shell. I actually went home before that. I got a ride downtown to the hall from someone who lives out of town and there was a big blizzard. In fact this is the third weekend in a row where there was a blizzard and 40 below wind chill. Lovely. I assume Santa Claus Day continued the same way as usual. It's been the same for 30 years. . I bought these doughnuts and rosettes from the Lutheran bake sale. The doughnuts were a blast from the past from my childhood. They are the yeast doughnuts you used to be able to get at a small town cafe. Small town cafe's still make doughnuts, but they tend to be too greasy now and just not as good. Not these doughnuts though. They were amazing. Perfect texture and flavor. One day I'll learn to make them. The rosettes I remember from my childhood too. A rosette shaped iron is dipped into batter and then deep fried and sprinkled with powdered sugar. My grandma used to make them. I think they are either Swedish or Norwegian.
*I deleted a few sentences from this blog since I'm not sure they were true. What can I say. It's a few days before Christmas and I'm tired.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Tomato Soup from Canned Tomatoes


I don't know if it's Campbell's tomato soup has changed or if my taste has changed. But,is seems as if the Campbell's tomato soup is a whole lot sweeter then it used to be. It also tastes a whole lot like corn syrup. I've mused over the idea of making soup from canned tomatoes for a few years. Then I came across this post with general instructions. I had to give it a try. This is the recipe I came up with.
See also my recipe for tomato soup from fresh tomatoes.

Tomato Soup from Canned Tomatoes

INGREDIENTS
oil to saute
1 onion
3 cloves garlic
3 14.5 oz cans tomatoes
1 15 oz can vegetable or chicken broth
1 tsp salt
1 tsp honey
2 c milk

In a dutch oven, saute onion and garlic in oil over medium high heat until soft. Add tomatoes, broth, salt and honey. Simmer 45 minutes. Puree with an immersion blender until smooth. Add milk. Heat until warm. Serve. You can freeze leftovers.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Chili and Vegetarian Chili


A few years ago they had a chili cook off at the local bar during a football game. I wasn't aware this was happening before I got there or I would have brought a crock pot full. While I was sampling the chili I pondered this question "Which chili would the local, mostly farmer, crowd find least offensive? My chili with TVP (Textured Vegetable Protein), my sister's chili with Bulgar wheat, or my *no rules* sister's chili with green peas." I still sometimes ponder this years later. Now I make my vegetarian chili with Bulgar wheat in place of the hamburger. I ran out of TVP and didn't want to buy more just for chili. The vegetarian chili also omits the Worcestershire sauce. Worcestershire contains a small amount of anchovies. It's a stealthy non vegetarian ingredient.
I recommend using the Penzy's medium hot chili powder. I recently switched to Penzy's chili powder. It changed the chili I've been making for maybe 20 years from good to fantastic. If you order online, I suggest you get the spices in bags rather then the glass jars. It's a better value.
Try this with my cornmeal muffins and a sprinkling of cheddar cheese. This recipe is adapted from "The Frugal Gourmet Cooks American".

Chili (pictured)
INGREDIENTS
1 lb lean hamburger
2 T oil
1 large yellow onion, peeled and chopped
3 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
3 T chili powder or to taste (I prefer Penzy's medium hot chili powder)
1 T cumin
1 T Worcestershire sauce
1 28 oz (or two 15 oz) cans of diced tomatoes
1 green pepper, chopped
2 15 oz cans kidney beans
salt to taste

Brown hamburger in the oil along with onion, garlic, and chili powder. Drain any excess fat. Add remaining ingredients and simmer, stirring 1 1/2 hours. The chili is much better the second day.


Vegetarian Chili
INGREDIENTS
2 T oil
1 large yellow onion, peeled and chopped
3 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
3 T chili powder or to taste (I prefer penzy's medium chili powder)
1 T cumin
1 28 oz (or two 14.5 oz) cans of diced tomatoes
1 green pepper, chopped
2 15 oz cans kidney beans
1 15 oz can water
1/2 c Bulgar wheat
salt to taste

Saute the onion, garlic and chili powder in the oil. Add remaining ingredients and simmer, stirring 1 1/2 hours. The chili is much better the second day.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Apple Sauce and Cranberry Ginger Applesauce


I had a ton of apples from my tree this year. So, I decided to try my hand at applesauce. First, I made the unsweetened apple sauce. This was quite good, but a bit flat for my taste. I made several batches for baby food for all the babies I know. I didn't add lemon or fruit fresh since I'm not up on the current baby feeding rules. The recipe is from this post.

In the second recipe I added a mere 1/4 c sugar and a cinnamon stick. This took the applesauce from very good to spectacular. I'm still not a huge fan of the texture of applesauce, but I really like this version. I plan to serve it with potato pancakes for breakfast over Christmas vacation.

The cinnamon ginger applesauce is good also. I cut the amount of sugar way down from the original recipe. My family is a huge fan of tart. I may cut the sugar down even more next time. 1 used 1 T ginger as called for in the original recipe. The ginger was a bit too pronounced for my personal taste, so I cut the amount in half in the recipe below. If you prefer sweeter applesauce with more ginger (as I suspect many people would) check out the original post on Pinch My Salt. If you want to get all Martha Stewart you could serve the cranberry applesauce with my sweet potato pancakes (without the spices).

***Instead of coring and cutting the apples into pieces, I used an apple/corer/slicer/peeler. The peeling part of my machine hasn't worked for years. That's not a problem since the food mill filters out the peels anyway. Once the apples are sliced, make one cut down the apples to make apple circles. If you own one of these machines, that will make sense to you. If you have an apple tree, the corer/slicer/peeler is a worthwhile investment.

Apple Sauce (unsweetened)

INGREDIENTS
10-12 lbs of apples or enough to fill a 12 quart stock pot, cored and chopped
1/2 c water
lemon juice or fruit fresh (optional to prevent browning)

Place ingredients in a stock pot. Bring to a boil. Simmer 30 minutes. Stir several times to move the top apples to the bottom. When the apples are soft, it's done. Run the contents through a food mill and discard the solids.

Cinnamon Apple Sauce
INGREDIENTS
10-12 lbs of apples or enough to fill a 10-quart stock pot
1/2 c water
1/4 c sugar
1 cinnamon stick
1 T lemon juice (or fruit fresh in an undetermined amount)

Place all ingredients in the stock pot with the cinnamon stick on the bottom. Bring to a boil. Cover and simmer 30 minutes. Stir the apples several times to move the bottom apples to the top. As it cooks, the apples will release more water. When all the apples are soft, it is done. Remove cinnamon stick and run the contents of the pot through a food mill. Discard the solids left in the food mill.



Cranberry Ginger Apple Sauce
INGREDIENTS
4-5 lbs baking apples, quartered and cored (or use the apple/corer/peeler)
1/2 c water
1 T lemon juice
1 12 oz package of cranberries
1/2 c sugar
1/2 T grated ginger
pinch of salt

Place all ingredients in a dutch oven. Bring the water to a boil. Cover the pot and simmer 30 minutes. Stir the applesauce a few times, moving the top apples to the bottom. When the apples are mushy it is done. Run everything through the food mill. Discard the peels left in the food mill.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Bacon Fun, part six

Oh, the fun you can have with bacon.

Here is a post discussing the techniques for adding bacon to rice crispy bars. The bacon brittle discussed at the beginning sounds promising.

Apartment therapy has a post about making your own bacon.

Bacon Tiara! at The Anticraft.

Contrasting iconic healthy food with iconic unhealthy food with bacon wrapped bean sprouts at Chop Chop A to Z.

Bacon Today presents the bacon cinnamon roll.

Eli Cooks brings us the bacon apple pie, complete with bacon lattice top.

Apartment therapy showcases the vegan and kosher baconnaise. The bacon salt has potential too.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

German Apple Pancake (Pannakuken)

If you are from the Fargo area, you probably remember the Pannakuken Restaurant. When they brought out a pannakuken, the waitresses would run from the kitchen shouting PANNAKUKEN!!! I never made it to the restaurant, but I've seen it imitated enough to feel as if I had been there. College was divided into two camps: People who would consider being a waitress and yelling PANNAKUKEN!!! and people who would NEVER consider working there. The debate was ongoing. I was part of the "would consider it" camp, and my roommate belongs to the "would never consider it" camp.

A few notes on the recipe:

The first time I made this recipe I liked it more then the second time I made it. I'd suggest making apple crisp instead. It's a better apple recipe. Pannakuken is very sweet. The recipe says it serves four, but I'd suggest serving 6-8 people. I'd also suggest serving it as the dessert part of your breakfast or as actual dessert. The pannakuken took longer to cook in my oven then the recipe states. That may just be my oven however. I didn't peel the apples. I have an apple tree and was over the idea of peeling by the time I made this recipe. Oops, my camera ran out of batteries before I took a picture with the powdered sugar sprinkled on the top. This recipe came from "Cooks Illustrated The New Best Recipe".


GERMAN APPLE PANCAKE (PANNAKUKEN)

A 10-inch ovenproof skillet is necessary for this recipe; we highly recommend using a nonstick skillet for the sake of easy cleanup, but a regular skillet will work as well. You can also use a cast-iron pan; if you do, set the oven temperature to 425 degrees in step 1, and when cooking the apples in step 3, cook them only until just barely golden, about 6 minutes. Cast iron retains heat better than stainless steel, making the higher oven temperature unnecessary. If you prefer tart apples, use Granny Smiths; if you prefer sweet ones, use Braeburns. For serving, dust the apple pancake with confectioners' sugar and pass warm maple syrup or caramel sauce separately, if desired.

INGREDIENTS

1/2 c flour

1 T sugar

1/2 tsp table salt

2 eggs

2/3 c half and half

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 T Butter

1 1/4 lb granny smith or baeburn apples (3 to 4 large apples), peeled, quartered, cored, and cut into 1/2 inch thick slices

1/4 c brown sugar

1/4 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp lemon juice

confectioners sugar for dusting


1. Adjust oven rack to upper-middle position; heat oven to 500 degrees.


2. Whisk to combine flour, granulated sugar, and salt in medium bowl. In second medium bowl, whisk eggs half-and-half, and vanilla until combined. Add liquid ingredients to dry and whisk until no lumps remains, about 20 seconds; set batter aside.


3. Heat butter in 10-inch ovenproof nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until sizzling. Add apples, brown sugar and cinnamon; cook, stirring frequently with a heatproof rubber spatula, until apples are golden brown, about 10 minutes. Off heat, stir in lemon juice.

4. Working quickly, pour batter around the outside edge of the pan

and then over the apples. Place skillet in oven and immediately reduce oven temperature to 425 degrees; bake until pancake edges are brown and puffy and have risen above edges of skillet, about 18 minutes. Mine took much longer, but I think my oven temperature is a bit off.

5. Shout Pannakuken at the top of your lungs while running through the house.


6. Using oven mitts to protect hands, remove hot skillet from oven and loosen pancake edges with a heatproof spatula; invert pancake onto serving platter. Dust with confectioners' sugar, cut into wedges and serve.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Cream Cheese Mints


When I was growing up wedding menus were all the same. The church ladies (women who attended the church) made all the food. You could choose between a ham or a turkey sandwich on a white bun with cheese and mayo. At the end of the buffet line were these wonderful cream cheese mints. They were always green leaf shapes and pink and white flower shapes. At every wedding I would wait until all the people had gone through the food line. When it was polite (loosely speaking) I would gorge myself on whatever cream cheese mints were still sitting out.

I helped make the mints for a friend of the family's wedding about ten years ago. Man they were a lot of work. My sister (the cake maker) is visiting now and made the mints with her three year old daughter. Turns out they are only a lot of work if you make a thousand mints. A small batch is quick and easy. Sadly, if I was making these I'd just sit down with the batter and a big spoon. But if you're less of a piggy then me (snort), this is a good recipe to make with kids. The dough is play-doughish and fun for kids to make into shapes. The mints can be colored with food coloring if you like.

Cream Cheese Mints
INGREDIENTS
2 oz cream cheese
2 tsp butter
2 c powdered sugar
1/3 tsp peppermint extract
food coloring (optional)

Combine the ingredients. You can do it by hand with a recipe this size or you can use a mixer. Knead the "dough" a bit to make sure the ingredients are evenly distributed. Shape. We did this by hand in our house like you would with play dough. You can also use molds of leaves and flowers. Dry 2 hrs at room temperature. This is the hardest step for a preschooler. Refrigerate.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Ruben Dip


This recipe was a hit. It's a Ruben, but in dip form. What's not to like. You can pretend that the yogurt dressing makes it into health food too. It doesn't really, but it does cut out some fat. If you like, you can make half a recipe. Cut the loaf of bread in half. Slice a bit off the bottom so it will set flat (pictured). Go Vikings! (Caution: The Vikings have lost both times I made this. This recipe might be a jinx.)

RUBEN DIP
INGREDIENTS
1 8-oz container pastrami, chopped (about 1 1/2 c)
3/4 c grated Swiss cheese + and extra 1/4 c grated Swiss
1 c sauerkraut with the water squeezed out
A round loaf of pumpernickel bread

Preheat oven to 350. Combine the thousand island, pastrami, 3/4 c of the grated Swiss cheese, and sauerkraut. Cut the loaf of pumpernickel into a bread bowl. Cut the extra bread into cubes. Fill the bread bowl with the Ruben dip mixture. Bake 30 minutes. Top the Ruben dip with the extra 1/4 c Swiss cheese. Return bread bowl to the oven and place bread cubes in the oven. Bake an additional 10 minutes. Serve the bread cubes around the Ruben dip bread bowl.

Yogurt Thousand Island Dressing

This recipe is based on a America's Test Kitchen recipe. I replace the mayo with yogurt cheese. I also omit the egg ( I don't like boiled eggs) and replace the sweet pickles (I don't like sweet pickles) with dill pickle relish. You can choose to thin this out with water or milk or just leave it thick.

YOGURT THOUSAND ISLAND DRESSING
INGREDIENTS
1 small garlic clove, minced to a paste with 1/4 tsp salt
1T green olives with pimentos, chopped (3-4 olives)
1/4 C minced sweet pickle (I used pickle relish)
1/2 hard boiled egg, peeled and minced (optional)
1 T minced fresh parsley
1 tsp lemon juice
pinch ground black pepper
1/2 c yogurt cheese
2 T chili sauce
1 T water or milk

Mix all ingredients. until combined.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Guacamole


I use my fresh salsa (previous post) to make guacamole. You may want to omit the salt. I'm going heavy on the salt these days.

GUACAMOLE
INGREDIENTS
2 small avocados
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp lime juice
1/4 c salsa

Mash the avocados, salt and lime juice together with a fork. Stir in the salsa (I use my fresh salsa).

Salsa


I've been making salsa for years. There used to be a green house in town that grew fresh tomatoes. It was so awesome. I had an endless supply of cheap, fresh, vine ripened tomatoes. I miss you green house. Recently I received a few tomatoes from my gardening aunt and uncle that I turned into salsa. I actually took the time to write down some amounts this time. Now people who want the recipe have actual amounts, instead of just a list of ingredients. You will still have to adjust for seasoning because each batch of salsa is different. I've found that if you think your salsa needs something, what it usually needs is salt. My second guess would be more cumin. The salsa will end up watery when made from fresh tomatoes. Your instinct is to drain off some of the "water". If you do that, it will just make more "water" within a half a day. I serve it with a slotted spoon and call it good. My salsa is not very hot. If you want it hotter, you can add the seeds and ribs of the hot pepper (jalapeno) or just add more. You could also add more Tabasco. Also, each jalapeno is unique. To get the same amount of heat sometimes it will take half a jalapeno, sometimes two jalapenos. You'll just have to use your best judgement.

SALSA
INGREDIENTS
3 tomatoes (3 cups), chopped
1 hot pepper, chopped 1 T + 1/2 tsp (mine was from the farmers market)
1 slice of onion, finely chopped onion 2 1/2 tsp
1 clove of garlic, pressed through a garlic press
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp salt
a shot or two of Tabasco
a few grinds black pepper
hot sauce
1 T + 1/2 tsp cilantro, chopped
1 tsp chopped fresh oregano
1 1/2 T chopped fresh parsley

Combine all the ingredients.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

links list

Canary girl has chicken meatball eyeballs atop tomato sauce for Halloween.

Evil Mad Scientist Laboratories has edible googly eyes for Halloween. They have lots of fun stuff there. I also like the Eyeball caprese salad for Halloween. Are you a female "Dungeons and Dragons" fan who likes to sew? The world must have at least three. Check out the 12 sided dice handbag.

Boston Zest had blue pumpkins.

Crazy-videoz has food as art. Little miniature construction workers and engineers working on food.

Once upon a plate had a recipe for homemade girl scout samoas for your year round dining pleasure.

I lose track of how I find my links. They come mostly via Apartment Therapy or Food Gawker.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

links list

Think inside the icebox.com had a recipe for spiced simple syrup to make a pumpkin latte. I plan to try to make some, but it might not rise to the top of my "to do" list.

Apartment Therapy has how to cut a butternut squash.

The Urban Housewife has a recipe for homemade candy corns (they're vegan too). Cute!

Sticky and Sweet has a funny packaged Jamaican mix called Cock Soup. Oh cultural differences and shades of meaning.

Bitter Sweet takes you inside a professional food shoot, shows you how to light food, and how to add shadows to food. Personally I don't have the patience to do much more then turn on the lights in the house and click away. But if you want better pictures...

Friday, October 3, 2008

Spaghetti Sauce

I've made spaghetti sauce for an army. Well maybe not an army, but for the year. I thought I'd make a triple recipe in the stockpot. This is why they teach you math in High School. Had I actually used some math I would have realized that only a double recipe fits in the stock pot. I had to use the dutch oven as well for a triple recipe. Now I'm set for the winter. I didn't actually measure the oregano, rosemary, or thyme. I just threw in a sprig of each that I estimated would be a tablespoon (x3) each. I'm pretty happy with the results. I put a quart of the sauce in a gallon bag and froze the bag flat. Once frozen you can store them vertically or horizontally in your freezer. This is based extremely loosely on the Italian Tomato Sauce recipe in the "Frugal Gourmet Cooks Three Ancient Cuisines".
*2nd year- I don't know what happened, but the sauce has a weird taste. I think it is the red wine I used. Barefoot Merlot. I added an extra 28 oz can of tomatoes to a double batch and some extra sugar. I also pureed some of the sauce with a immersion blender. I hope I like it better when I take some out of the freezer. Blerg!

SPAGHETTI SAUCE

INGREDIENTS
1 28 oz can tomato puree
1 28 oz can chopped tomatoes
1 28 oz can whole tomatoes, drained (save juice) and chopped
2 c red wine
2 yellow onions, minced
1 carrot, chopped
2 ribs of celery, chopped
2 whole cloves (I used 1/8 tsp ground cloves)
2 bay leaves
6 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp pepper
1 T salt
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
3 T fresh basil, chopped
1/2 c parsley, chopped
1 T fresh oregano. chopped
1 T fresh rosemary, chopped
1 T fresh thyme, chopped

Saute the garlic, onions, red pepper flakes, celery, and carrots. (Since I was making a huge batch I sauteed these in a frying pan separately and then added to the pot.) Add the remaining ingredients (except basil). Bring to a light boil and then simmer for 2 hours, partly covered. Near the end of the 2 hours, add the basil.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Links list

1. Have too many pumpkins? Check out the pumpkin recipes at pinch my salt. They sound great. A few examples are whole wheat pumpkin pancakes, pumpkin ice cream, pumpkin enchiladas, and black bean pumpkin soup.
2. Apartment Therapy tell you when to use red, russet, and Yukon gold potatoes.
3. Not Martha had a taste test between Oreos, Hydrox, and Newman's O's.
4. Foodista has devil fruit. Fruit that looks like the devil or maybe a bat. Odd looking anyway.
5. Daily feed asks (but doesn't answer) Why is the bread a BBQ places so bad? Good question. Why to they take so much care to create the perfect barbecue and then just slap a piece of wonder bread on the plate?
6. The good people at This peanut looks like a duck are looking for pictures of things that look like a duck.

Friday, September 26, 2008

How to freeze bacon in individual strips



Oh, if bacon was somehow deemed good for you, I'd eat it for every meal. It's not. If you are like me and have less then eight people in your family, you might not want to cook a whole package of bacon at once. Here is how to freeze it so you can pull as many (or few) pieces of bacon out of the freezer as you need, when you need them. Place a strip of bacon on the plastic wrap. Pull the plastic wrap over the top of that strip of bacon and stack another piece of bacon directly on top of that piece of bacon (with the plastic wrap between). Pull the plastic wrap to the other side of the stack so the plastic wrap is on top of that piece of bacon. Stack the bacon and weave the plastic wrap in between until you have stacked all your bacon. Wrap the stack with the excess plastic wrap and place in a freezer bag. Place the freezer bag on a cookie sheet and place in the freezer. The cookie sheet is to ensure that the bacon remains flat while it's freezing. After it's frozen, you can remove the cookie sheet.
Alternate method: Roll each slice of bacon into a pinwheel. Place each bacon pinwheel on a cookie sheet and freeze. When frozen, place in a freezer bag.









Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Baskin Robbins Shake of Death

Congratulations Baskin Robbins. You've managed to pack your large Heath Shake with 2,300 calories, about a half pound of sugar, and 64 grams of saturated fat (plus some other fat). Way to go. I didn't think it was possible. But you did it. See this post.

More Hershey's that aren't chocolate.

According to this post 5th Avenue bars, Reese Sticks, Nutrageous, Reese's Whips, and Reese's Crispy Crunch are not chocolate either. They also lie currently or were previously lying about their chocolate content on their website describing their bars as chocolate. This is even true for products that haven't been chocolate for years and some the were never chocolate. Also, they won't give you information about the contents of their bars on the phone. The author of the website in the link tried to call to find out what is in a Krackle. (ingredients on the miniatures bag are the ingredients for all of the miniature bars listed together) They wouldn't tell her what was in a Krackle. She guessed the ingredients. Sugar and vegetable oil (I'll get to that) flavored with some chocolate and crispy rice (plus a few others). Vegetable oil is not really made from vegetables. It's palm oil and shea and sunflower oil and safflower oil. I'm not sure that palm oil and shea oil should really count as food. They sure don't count as vegetables. Krackle bars might be better titled Kraple bars. It's also possible that none of this ingredients she guessed are correct, but Hershey's sure won't tell you.
On a personal note. When I've had Whoppers (which evidently haven't been chocolate for years) in the past few years, I've thought there was something really weird about the chocolate. It tasted oily (because it was made from "vegetable oil") and didn't melt at all in my mouth. My sister suggested that it probably wasn't chocolate. It said chocolate (probably chocolate candy or chocolaty) on the box (it has to say milk chocolate to be real milk chocolate. I didn't know that then.) so I just thought it was cruddy chocolate. Little did I know. My point is that replacing the cocoa butter with vegetable oil is not only deceptive and has nutritional implications, it also doesn't taste good.
See my other Hershey's posts here and here for lists of other Hershey's products that aren't made from chocolate. Happy Halloween.

Acorn Squash with Brown Sugar

I made this recipe to see if I liked acorn squash. (Last year, before I had a blog.) I decided if I didn't like the squash in this recipe, I just don't like squash. I can't imagine that there would be a better acorn squash recipe. This recipe (acorn squash with brown sugar) was fantastic. Well...ya know...except for the squash in it. Needless to say, I didn't make the second squash recipe. See the entry for how to pick out and store an acorn squash (next post). See the hints at the bottom of this post on how to cut a squash safely. This recipe is from Cooks Illustrated magazine.

ACORN SQUASH WITH BROWN SUGAR
Squash smaller then 1 1/2 lbs will likely cook a little faster then the recipe indicates, so begin checking for doneness a few minutes early. Conversely, larger squash will take slightly longer to cook. However, keep in mind that the cooking time is largely dependent on the microwave. If microwaving the squash in Pyrex, the manufacturer recommends adding water to the dish (or bowl) prior to cooking. To avoid a steam burn when uncovering the cooked squash, peel back the plastic wrap very carefully, starting from the side that is farthest away from you.

INGREDIENTS

2 acorn squash (about 1 1/2 pounds each), halved pole to pole (through the root end) and seeded

salt

3 T butter

3 T dark brown sugar


1. Sprinkle squash halves with salt and place halves cut-sides down in a 13 by 9-inch microwave-safe baking dish or arrange halves in large (about 4 quart) microwave safe bowl, so that cut sides face out. If using Pyrex, add 1/2 cup water to dish or bowl. Cover tightly with plastic wrap, using multiple sheets, if necessary; with paring knife, poke about 4 steam vents in the plastic wrap. Microwave on high power until squash is very tender and offers no resistance when pierced with a paring knife, 15 to 25 minutes. Using potholders, remove baking dish or bowl from the microwave and set on a clean, dry surface (avoid damp or cold surfaces).

2. While squash is cooking, adjust oven rack to uppermost position (about 6 inches from heating element); heat broiler. Melt butter, brown sugar and 1/8 tps salt in a small saucepan over low heat, whisking occasionally, until combined.

3. When squash is cooked, carefully pull back plastic wrap from the side furthest from you. Using tongs, transfer cooked squash cut-side up to rimmed baking sheet. Spoon portion of butter/sugar mixture onto each squash half. Broil until brown and caramelized, 5 to 8 minutes, rotating baking sheet as necessary and removing squash halves as they are done. Set squash halves on individual plates and serve immediately.

ACORN SQUASH WITH ROSEMARY-DRIED FIG COMPOTE

1. Follow the recipe for Acorn Squash with Brown Sugar, omitting brown sugar/butter mixture. While squash is cooking, combine 1 cup orange juice; 4 dried black figs, chopped medium (scant 1/2 cup); 1/2 tsp minced fresh rosemary; 1 T dark brown sugar, 1/4 tsp ground black pepper; and 1/8 tps salt in a small saucepan. Simmer rapidly over medium high heat, stirring occasionally, until syrupy and liquid is reduced to about 3 tablespoons, 15 to 20 minutes. Stir in 1 tablespoon butter.

2. Continue with the recipe to fill and broil squash halves, substituting fig compote for brown sugar/butter mix.

TWO WAYS TO CUT A SQUASH SAFELY

Knife and rubber mallet:


1. Set squash on a damp kitchen towel to hold it in place. Position knife on rind of squash.

2. Strike back of knife with rubber mallet to drive knife into squash. Continue to hit knife with mallet until knife cuts through squash.

Metal bench scraper and hammer:

1. Set squash on damp kitchen towel. Position bench scrapper on rind.

2. Strike handle of bench scraper with hammer until blade cuts through squash.

HOW TO BUY AND STORE ACORN SQUASH

HOW TO BUY AND STORE ACORN SQUASH

According to Cooks Illustrated Magazine:

Season Acorn squash is domestically in season from July through November. When Purchased in the off-season, the squash, which during those months is usually imported from, Mexico, is likely to be more expensive. Squash that has spent weeks in transit cooked up dehydrated, fibrous, and pasty in the test kitchen. (and buying local produce is better for the earth)

Weight Squash should be hard and heavy for its size, and indication that it contains a lot of moisture and has not been sitting on the supermarket produce shelf for weeks.


Color The most popular variety of acorn squash is green, though gold and white varieties are spottily available. Gold or orange tinges on the rind of green squash are not indicators of ripeness, but rather a mark of where the fruit touched the ground during growing (and was therefore untouched by sunlight).


Storage Acorn Squash should be stored at cool room temperature, not in the refrigerator. When storing squash for a few weeks in the refrigerator, chill damage sets in, causing the flavor and texture to deteriorate.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Spaghetti with Cherry Tomatoes Olives, Capers, and Oregano


I brought home some garden tomatoes from my sister's house. They had more then they could use and they were ripening fast. I decided to try this recipe from cooks illustrated. I made it almost as written. I just used plain ole black olives and omitted the pine nuts because I didn't have either in the house. Cooks Illustrated says you can substitute grape tomatoes, but you
should reduce or omit the sugar. I used grape tomatoes with all the sugar (because I didn't read directions) and I thought it was great. The tomato flavor was a cross between a roasted tomato and a sun dried tomato. My tomatoes were nearly overripe garden tomatoes. I'm not
sure if that's why I had the awesome sun-dried flavor or if it is the sugar, or if it just comes with roasting small tomatoes. I've never roasted small tomatoes before. I usually put them in salads or pop them strait in my mouth.

Spaghetti with Cherry Tomatoes Olives, Capers, and Oregano
serves 5-6 people
INGREDIENTS
3 pints (2 lbs) cherry tomatoes, each tomato halved pole to pole (lengthwise)
1/4 c olive oil
1/2 tsp table salt
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1 1/2 tsp sugar, or to taste
3 large garlic cloves, sliced thin
1/4 c drained capers
1 lb spaghetti
1 T salt
1/4 c chopped kalamata olives
3 T chopped fresh oregano leaves
1/4 c pine nuts, toasted (optional)
2 oz grated Pecorino Romano cheese (1 cup) (I used Parmesan)

1. Adjust oven rack to middle position: heat oven to 350 degrees. In medium bowl, gently toss tomatoes with oil, 1/2 tsp salt, red pepper flakes, black pepper, sugar, garlic, and capers. Spread in even layer on rimmed baking sheet (about 17 by 12) and roast until tomato skins are slightly shriveled (tomatoes should retain their shape), 35-40 minutes. (Do not stir tomatoes during roasting.) Remove tomatoes from oven and cool 5-10 minutes.
2. While tomatoes cook, bring four quarts of water to a boil in large stockpot. Just before removing tomatoes from the oven, stir 1 T salt and pasta into boiling water and cook until al dente. Drain the pasta and return to the pot. Using rubber spatula, scrape tomato mixture into pot on top of pasta. Add olives and oregano; toss to combine. Serve immediately, sprinkling pine nuts and cheese over individual bowls.

Friday, September 19, 2008

All Hershey's is not chocolate.

Remember my post on how Hershey's Kissables are no longer legally considered milk chocolate? Well it's not just the Kissables folks. It's also Whatchamacallit (I guess the still make them), Mr. Goodbar, Milk Duds and Krackle are no longer chocolate either. They've replaced the cocoa butter with vegetable oil. Cocoa butter is what makes chocolate melt in your mouth. Mr. Goodbar and Krackle are both in the bags of Hershey's minis. What was once labeled "milk chocolate" is now labeled "chocolate candy", "chocolaty", or "made with chocolate". Watch out for those phrases if you want chocolate in your chocolate. "There's a smile in every Hershey's bar." But there isn't chocolate. "Hershey's: the Great American Chocolate (or vegetable oil) Bar." Read more about it.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Craftzine

Holly Cow. I'm on Craftzine. Kristy sent in my pizza on the grill post and they totally posted it. I'm Famous! Must be my lucky day. I also got two numbers on my Powerball ticket. Only one more number and I could have won actual money.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Lora's Dark Chocolate Ice Cream


I've been working on perfecting my chocolate ice cream recipe. I tried using real melted chocolate. The result? Chocolate frosting ice cream. Not what I was looking for. I tried dutch processed cocoa in place of the regular cocoa. The result? Chocolate cake batter ice cream. Again, not what I was after. I replaced the sugar with dark brown sugar and cut the amount of sugar. I like a deep dark chocolate flavor, which you get with less sugar. I also liked a mixture of the two cocoas. It adds a depth of flavor. Hershey's special dark cocoa is a dutch cocoa found in many supermarkets. (That's not the brand I have.) I liked the recipe at that point, but I thought I needed more chocolate flavor and a deeper chocolate flavor. Next I added a tsp of espresso powder for depth of flavor. This is enough to add low notes, but not enough to make it taste like mocha. I also added the dark chocolate candy bar. This made the ice cream chocolaty enough. The problem now is that when you refreeze the ice cream base, the melted chocolate turns into minuscule chocolate chips and that gives it a gritty texture. I'm not really sure how to fix that. I like the more chocolaty flavor more then I'm offended by the gritty texture. If I come up with a solution, I'll edit the post. (if you like the recipe as is, you should print it, because it might change). My ice cream maker only holds and irksome 3 cups of ice cream instead of a quart. The amounts in parentheses at the end are the amounts to make a quart (plus a bit more) of ice cream if you prefer to make a quartish.

LORA’S DARK CHOCOLATE ICE CREAM


INGREDIENTS

1 1/2 c milk (2c)

3 egg yolks(4 egg yolks)

3/4 of a 3.52 oz 60% chocolate, chopped. I used Hershey's special dark chocolate (the whole bar)

3/4 c dark brown sugar (1 c)

1/4 c+ 1 1/2 tsp natural cocoa (just regular cocoa)(1/4 c + 2T)

1 T +1 1/2 tsp Dutch processed cocoa( 2T)

pinch of salt (pinch is about 1/8 tsp)

3/4 tsp vanilla (1 tsp)
1 tsp espresso powder (1 1/3 tsp espresso powder)
1 1/2 c cream (2 c)


Place the chopped chocolate in a medium bowl and set aside. Whisk egg yolks until they are a pale yellow. Whisk in sugar. Gradually whisk in milk over a double boiler.(it goes faster if the milk is prewarmed) Continue to stir until slightly thickened and coats the back of a spoon. The eggs are safe at 160 degrees which is also the temperature when the mixture thickens. Pour the mixture over the chopped chocolate. Let set for 5 minutes and then stir. The chocolate should be completely melted. Cool several hours in the refrigerator or over night. Whisk remaining ingredients together, except the whipping cream. It takes a bit of work to whisk in the cocoa powder. Keep at it and it will eventually mix in. Then whisk in the cream. Process in ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions. .

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Peach Ice Cream



My brother in law bought a box of fresh peaches from a church group. That was great. But the problem was, the peaches were all very ripe and read to be eaten immediately (they were also very juicy and very tasty). They gave me some of the excess peaches and I made peach ice cream. I really like the peach ice cream. It's peachy and creamy and delicious. However, unless I find myself in a situation where I have excess peaches again, I probably won't make this again. I think peaches are great eaten fresh and unadorned. Ice cream doesn't improve the taste of peaches. That being said, if my peaches are in danger of going bad, I'll turn them into ice cream again. I might try adding some fresh mint. I just made it this afternoon, so I can't say for sure. But I'm pretty sure it will freeze as hard as a rock. This recipe is from Dave Libovitz's cookbook "The Perfect Scoop" and this blog and this blog.

FRESH PEACH ICE CREAM
INGREDIENTS
3 large peaches
1/2 c water
3/4 c sugar
1/2 c sour cream
1 c heavy cream
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 tsp lemon juice

Fill a 3 quart pot half way and bring to a boil. Make an X on the top of each peach. Add the peaches to the boiling water and boil 30 seconds to 1 minute on each side. Rinse immediately under cold running water to stop the cooking process. Peel and dice the peaches. Add the peaches and 1/2 c water to a covered saucepan. Heat over medium heat for 10 minutes, stir once or twice. Take the peaches off the heat and stir in the sugar. When the mixture has cooled somewhat, blend with an immersion blender. You can either blend everything smooth or leave some chunks. Cool in the refrigerator until cold. Whisk in the remaining ingredients and freeze according to your ice cream makers directions.

Links list

Article from the New York Times about kids who are picky eaters. 6 Food Mistakes Parents Make

How to infuse spices or herbs (mint, basil, anise) into your ice cream.

Avocado ice cream and 19 others at Desert Candy

Slice citrus (lemons) lengthwise to get more juice.

To double or halve a recipe use the Recipe Ingredient Conversion Calculator. I haven't used this since I'm actually pretty good at math and know facts like there are three teaspoons in a tablespoon off the top of my head.

Why Potatoes turn green. Keep them in a cool dark place.

Places to buy organic vanilla beans, saffron, etc. at good prices on ebay.

Would you like to make your own mozzarella this weekend? Or you could try some homemade ricotta.
I plan to make both someday.

Check out this Chewy Turkish Ice Cream. It looks like taffy.

Friday, September 12, 2008

1,000 Blades of Grass Cake

You should check out the post on my sister's blog about her newest cake. A dome of daises with butterflies and 1,000 individual blades of grass individually placed on the board surrounding the cake. It's pretty cool.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Honey Mustard Chicken


O.K. Ready for the recipe?
1 part honey
1 part mustard
Pretty complicated. Mix equal parts of honey and mustard. You can use Dijon mustard if you want. I used Sandwich Pal brand horseradish mustard. I've used other flavors of sandwich pal mustard to make this too. Whatever you like. You can mix in some fresh dill if you like also. Then season and grill your chicken. Brush on the honey mustard toward the end of the grilling. If you put it on in the beginning the honey will burn. Easy, quick, and good. The honey mustard sauce is also a good dip for pretzels.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Roast Beef, Bleu Cheese, Horseradish and Veggies


This is just a description and not a recipe. Toast whole wheat bread. Spread Mayo on one side and horseradish on the other. Saute sliced cabbage (mine was purple), sliced onions, and sliced green pepper. (you could also add grated carrots). When it gets close to done add bleu cheese (I also added quartered cherry tomatoes). When the cheese is melted, add the veggies and roast beef to the sandwich.

How to freeze chipotle chilies


Almost all recipes that call for chipotle chilies call for one chili and 2 tsp of adobo sauce (the sauce in the can). But then you have a whole can of chilies left. Here is how you freeze them. Line a cookie sheet with waxed paper. Place the chilies on the waxed paper with plenty of space between them. I didn't leave enough space between the chilies in the picture. Divide the sauce between the chilies. Freeze. When the chilies are frozen, tear the waxed paper between each chili and wrap around the individual chilies. This may be enough if you have left enough waxed paper between the chilies. If you are like me and haven't, then wrap the individual chilies in saran wrap. Place all the chilies in a Ziploc freezer bag and store in the freezer. For recipes using chipotle chilies, search for chipotle in the search box in top left corner of my blog by the orange letter B. By the way, a chipotle chili is a smoked jalapeno pepper.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

new look

I chose a new blog template. When I get bored with this one I'll change it again.
If you are a daring baker you can join their food blogging group. I'd suggest above average baking skills or no sense of fear if you join that group. Chocolate Eclairs, Strawberry Mirror Cake, Danish Braids, and Cheesecake Pops are a few examples.
More Asian junk food. Black Tea flavored Kit Kats and a (different brand) Cheetos without the cheese powder but with a spread of chocolate. I'd sure give either a try.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Barefoot Thursdays

Who knew. I just found food bloggers cooking recipes from the Food Network's Barefoot Contessa. It's an every other Thursday thing. If you are interested, click here.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Japanese Junk Food

I found this post on Japanese junk food via food gawker. The Japanese junk food is kind of fun. Watermelon Kit Kats and flavored kelp as a chewing gum alternative with a bonus rags to riches story . Oh, and you can sign up to win your very own Japanese junk food. Good Luck.

What's up in the food blogging world?

The Best Lick. Apartment Therapy has had an ice cream contest going on all month called "the Best Lick". I've been drooling all month. They had 26 recipes total. Some of my favorites are the mint chocolate chip with raspberries, and the cherry cheesecake ice cream. They also had creative flavors like basil, cinnamon, ginger ice cream. For ice cream lovers, it's worth a click and a drool. I plan on making some of the recipes some time in the future.

The New York Times Chocolate Chip Cookie. Food bloggers have also been talking about the chocolate chip cookie recipe published in the New York Times in this article. It's known in blogging circles as "the cookie". If you do a google search in blogs for "new york times" "chocolate chip cookie" there are 444 entries just in the blogs. (445 once I post this one) The recipe uses cake and bread flour. It calls for a very specific chocolate. It chills the dough for 36 hours to perfect the texture and give it a caramelly flavor. Also, the cookies are sprinkled with salt. I plan to make them someday without the specific chocolate that I'm sure that I would have to special order. I'll add my post to the 444 (well 445) that already exist when I do.

Tuesdays with Dorrie. A group of food bloggers is cooking their way through Dorrie Greenspan's cookbook "Baking: from my home to yours". On Tuesday, over 250 food bloggers all make the same recipe from the cookbook. They always look so tempting. I want to join the fun. But I also don't really have the time and prefer not to weigh 700 pounds. But, I'm totally in love with the idea. Here are a *few**random** *posts** from** previous* Tuesdays with Dorrie. If you are interested in joining, the website is here.

Taste descriptions

Confused by iron chef judges? I found a quick explanation on apartment therapy about taste descriptors. It explains what high notes and low notes and rounded flavor mean as it relates to food.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Food Tattoos

As a woman who can't stand to have the same hair style and color for three years in a row, I don't really get tattoos. It's a level of commitment I'll never achieve. I know I'd just want to change mine in a year if I got one. Anyway, I found this link via apartment therapy. It has 53 food tattoos. I like the #4 good vs. evil cupcake, #27 bacon arm band (I hope this man never becomes obese. It would be a bad combo.), #31 hot dog coffin, #34 Fonzie hot dog described by the man who has it as possibly the stupidest tattoo ever, #50 Campbell's Soup, and #53 Rachel Ray.

Barbecue Chicken (or Pork) Pizza on the Grill


Follow the general instructions for pizza on the grill. I usually use half a leftover chicken breast per pizza. I had left over grilled pork loin so I used that. I used my homemade BBQ sauce too. The cilantro is from my herb garden (It's about to go to seed. That's why it looks like dill and not cilantro.)

Barbecue Chicken (or Pork) Pizza on the Grill

INGREDIENTS
BBQ Sauce (I used my homemade)
Cheese (about 4 oz)- you can use pizza cheese, mozzarella, provolone, jack, pepper jack, or Swiss. I used 1/2 grated Swiss and 1/2 grated pizza cheese. Sliced cheese works really well.
1/2 a grilled chicken breast, cut into pieces (I used grilled pork loin)
Onion, chopped
Green pepper, chopped (I was out)
Cilantro chopped
Chopped parsley and chives (optional)

Pizza on the Grill



If you are the first person on your block to make pizza on the grill you will impress the heck out of your friends and neighbors. Everyone gathers around your grill to see your display of audacity and showmanship. How does this work? Are you sure this will work? Oh, the improbability of it all. Only you will know that it only looks like rocket science. It's actually not that hard. That being said, I have only made this on a Weber grill. The recipe was written for a Weber. The second recipe was written for a Weber charcoal grill. I think charcoal grills are more standardized. So, any charcoal grill should work. Many gas grills, however, have the burners much closer to the grates then Webers. So, I'm not sure exactly how well making a pizza on another gas grill would work, it might be too hot.

You must decide on three or four toppings. If you try to load grilled pizza with everything, it gets soggy and won't work. Sorry, you are going to have to choose.

GRILLED PIZZA DOUGH

Originally all white flour. I substituted some whole wheat flour for the white flour. It takes a little bit more water to make the dough now. I'll measure the water next time I make dough. The amount of water you need for whole wheat dough will vary with humidity and the attitude of particular wheat flour you are using.

INGREDIENTS

1 ½ cups lukewarm water

1 package active dry yeast

3 c unbleached all purpose flour, plus extra as needed

1 c whole wheat flour

¼ tsp salt

2 T olive oil, plus extra for oiling bowl

Place lukewarm water in a large mixing bowl, sprinkle yeast on top and let sit until foamy, about 5 minutes. Combine flours and salt. Add water, 1/2 cup at a time until well incorporated. If very sticky, add extra flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, until slightly sticky. Add two tablespoons of oil and mix well until dough feels elastic. Turn the dough onto a well floured surface. Knead, adding extra flour to your work surface as necessary to prevent the dough from sticking, for 10 minutes, or until smooth and easy to work with. Clean and oil the bowl and place the dough in it. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until it more than doubles in volume, about 1 hour. Punch dough down and knead on a lightly floured surface for several minutes or until smooth.

Divide dough into four 4 inch balls and proceed with pizza-making instructions. Dough may be made ahead, frozen until needed. Just wrap the dough balls in plastic wrap and place in a freezer bag. Thaw at room temperature or in the refrigerator.

Roll the dough on a work surface sprinkled with flour or cornmeal. I always use cornmeal for a more rustic texture. I'm also not concerned with roundness. Amorphous blogs are good enough in my book. Looks more hand made that way.

  1. Brush one side of the pizza dough with olive oil. I crush a few cloves of garlic through the garlic press. I add the garlic to the oil before brushing the dough.

  2. Pick up the dough by two edges like a wet T-shirt and gently place on grill, oiled side down. The dough won’t fall through the grates. But it really does seems like it will. Brush the top of the pizza with oil.

  3. Cook dough over Direct heat for 2-4 minutes, or until bottom side is well marked and as brown as a medium slice of toast. If dough bubbles, poke it with a tongs or whack with a spatula (my method) to release air and flatten crust. Make sure your grill is not too hot or it will burn immediately.

  4. When bottom is brown, flip dough over.

  5. Immediately cover cooked side with toppings and cheese, move to indirect heat, close lid and cook for 5-10 minutes, or until bottom is browned , cheese is melted and toppings are warmed through. Choosing fewer toppings is better. Lots of toppings will make your pizza soggy. I know you want some of everything. But, you must pick and choose.

Pizza on a charcoal grill

1. Ignite 6 quarts (one large chimney) hardwood charcoal or briquettes in the chimney starter and burn until fully ignited, 15 to 20 minutes. Empty coals into grill and spread into even layer over three-quarters of the grill, leaving one quadrant free of coals. Position cooking grate over coals and heat until grill is medium hot, about 5 minutes (you can hold your hand 5 inches above grill grate for 4 seconds); scrape grate clean with grill brush.

2. Pick up the dough by two edges like a wet T-shirt and gently place onto the hot side of the grill. Immediately repeat with another dough round. Cook until tops are covered with bubbles (pierce larger bubbles with paring knife) and bottoms are grill marked and charred in spots, 1 to 2 minutes; while dough rounds cook, check undersides and slide to cool area of grill if browning too quickly. Transfer crusts to cutting board browned sides up. Repeat with 2 remaining dough rounds.

3. Add pizza toppings. Return pizzas to the grill and cover grill with lid; cook until bottoms are well browned and cheese is melted, 2 to 4 minutes, checking bottoms frequently to prevent burning. Transfer pizzas to cutting board; repeat with remaining 2 crusts. Sprinkle pizzas with basil and coarse salt to taste; cut into wedges and serve immediately.


See also my post on Barbecued Chicken (or pork) pizza on the grill.

Your wheat bread is not whole wheat bread

I've told many friends and family "If you care, the bread you bought is not whole wheat bread."
They say "What do you mean? It says wheat bread right here on the label."
I say, "Bread made with white wheat flour (as opposed to barley flour or rye flour for example) and flavored with Carmel coloring is wheat bread. You need to look for the word "whole" or preferably "100% whole" wheat bread. Your bread is colored white bread."
I still occasionally get fooled and come home with the colored bread. Oooooh that makes me mad when that happens. I'd much rather eat a good (not wonder) white bread then a fake colored bread, since they have the same nutritional value. Be extra careful on things like English muffins and bagels. They are much more likely to be colored wheat. Also, just because your bread has a lot of seeds and stuff in it and looks super healthy does not mean it's whole wheat. My beloved Boston Brown Bread is very seady, but only the second ingredient is whole wheat. Here's what to look for.
1)100% Whole Wheat or 100% Whole Grain This is what you want. This will be on the front of the package. This means the bread has all whole grain flour and not white flour.
2)Whole Wheat Bread This means that there is at least some (I'm not sure legally how much.) whole grain flour in the bread.
3)Look at the list of ingredients on the back. The first ingredient (or at least the second) should say Whole. Whole is the magic word you are looking for. If the first ingredient is whole wheat flour, it has to be made with at least 51% whole wheat flour. If the second ingredient is whole wheat, the recipe could go something like this..3 C white flour, 2 T wheat flour, 2 1/4 tsp yeast....
Cornmeal also must say whole to be a whole grain. You might also be interested in my post on whole grains or the post below on chocolate vs. milk chocolate.

Hershey's Kissables not milk chocolate

Hershey's Kissables (a candy covered chocolate mini "kiss") are no longer legally considered milk chocolate according to this link. Where the package used to say "candy coated milk chocolate", it now says "chocolate candy". If you want to eat real chocolate, it looks like looking for the phrase "milk chocolate" on the label is a good idea. It appears to me that chocolate refers to the flavor (like in tootsie rolls) and milk chocolate means it's real chocolate. I wish labeling was more clear in the US. See the above post on wheat bread.

Monday, August 18, 2008

The Omnivore's Hundred

I found this link on Chocolate and Zucchini (who has had horse, but not borscht) who found it on Very Good Taste. It's a list of 100 foods that the author thinks you should try. He invites you to post this list on your own blog and add a link in the comments on his blog. I think I did respectably well for a North Dakota Girl who isn't at all well traveled. I turned items red instead of crossing them out. I don't know how to cross items out.

The Omnivore’s Hundred

The Omnivore's Hundred is an eclectic and entirely subjective list of 100 items that Andrew Wheeler, co-author of the British food blog Very Good Taste, thinks every omnivore should try at least once in his life.

Here’s a chance for a little interactivity for all the bloggers out there. Below is a list of 100 things that I think every good omnivore should have tried at least once in their life. The list includes fine food, strange food, everyday food and even some pretty bad food - but a good omnivore should really try it all. Don’t worry if you haven’t, mind you; neither have I (Andrew Wheeler), though I’ll be sure to work on it. Don’t worry if you don’t recognise everything in the hundred, either; Wikipedia has the answers.

Here’s what I want you to do:

1) Copy this list into your blog or journal, including these instructions.
2) Bold all the items you’ve eaten.
3) Cross out any items that you would never consider eating.
4) Optional extra: Post a comment here at www.verygoodtaste.co.uk linking to your results.

The VGT Omnivore’s Hundred:

1. Venison
2. Nettle tea ( I think so, but I'm not sure)
3. Huevos rancheros
4. Steak tartare
5. Crocodile
6. Black pudding(cross out) I don't need to eat food made with blood
7. Cheese fondue
8. Carp
9. Borscht
10. Baba ghanoush
11. Calamari
12. Pho
13. PB&J sandwich (I like both, but never together)
14. Aloo gobi
15. Hot dog from a street cart
16. Epoisses
17. Black truffle
18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes (hello, I'm from North Dakota)
19. Steamed pork buns
20. Pistachio ice cream
21. Heirloom tomatoes
22. Fresh wild berries (Mmmm. I haven't had June berries in far too long)
23. Foie gras
24. Rice and beans
25. Brawn, or head cheese (cross out) this is just an I dare you food. I don't do dare food.
26. Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper (cross out) dare food
27. Dulce de leche
28. Oysters
29. Baklava (good, but overrated)
30. Bagna cauda
31. Wasabi peas
32. Clam chowder in a sourdough bowl
33. Salted lassi (love me a strawberry lassi)
34. Sauerkraut
35. Root beer float
36. Cognac with a fat cigar (I've had both, but never together)
37. Clotted cream tea
38. Vodka jelly/Jell-O(I went to college)
39. Gumbo
40. Oxtail
41. Curried goat
42. Whole insects (cross out) dare food
43. Phaal ( I guess I would try it, but hottest Indian dish? Way too hot for me.)
44. Goat’s milk
45. Malt whisky from a bottle worth £60/$120 or more
46. Fugu (dare food, but given the opportunity, I'd give it a go)
47. Chicken tikka masala
48. Eel
49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut (overrated)
50. Sea urchin
51. Prickly pear
52. Umeboshi (America's Next Top Model's hated it, but I'd give it a shot)
53. Abalone
54. Paneer
55. McDonald’s Big Mac Meal(most overrated food in history)
56. Spaetzle
57. Dirty gin martini (Traditional martinis just taste like strait alcohol because that's what they are. Overrated)
58. Beer above 8% ABV (if this is beer above 8% alcohol content, then Al's homebrew should count)
59. Poutine (sounds good)
60. Carob chips (why is this on the list?)
61. S’mores
62. Sweetbreads (I'd try a small piece prepared by a fancy chef)
63. Kaolin (cross out) Dare food
64. Currywurst (sounds good)
65. Durian (cross out) Dare food
66. Frogs’ legs
67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake (not a beignet, but would love one)
68. Haggis (cross out) Dare food
69. Fried plantain
70. Chitterlings, or andouillette (I'd give these a shot)
71. Gazpacho
72. Caviar and blini
73. Louche absinthe (dare food, but it has alcohol in it so I'll try it)
74. Gjetost, or brunost
75. Roadkill(cross out) dare food. Ask my dad to tell you his funny roadkill story someday.
76. Baijiu
77. Hostess Fruit Pie (why is this on the list?)
78. Snail
79. Lapsang souchong
80. Bellini
81. Tom yum
82. Eggs Benedict
83. Pocky
84. Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant.
85. Kobe beef
86. Hare
87. Goulash
88. Flowers (do chive flowers count?)
89. Horse (cross out) why? I don't think anyone says its good so why eat a horse?
90. Criollo chocolate
91. Spam (cross out) I've seen it. I don't need to eat it.
92. Soft shell crab
93. Rose harissa
94. Catfish
95. Mole poblano
96. Bagel and lox
97. Lobster Thermidor (why ruin the delicate taste of a lobster with heavy cheese and sauce?)
98. Polenta
99. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee
100. Snake (next time I'm in Belfield...maybe. O.K probably not. But I'd try a bite off some one's plate)