Sunday, April 27, 2008

Honey Ricotta Ice Cream and Blondies

It's been a long week. By week I mean the last 5 days or so.

First, spring kicked into full gear about Tuesday. It didn't help that Tuesday also happened to be the day I forgot to take my drugs in the morning. I wasn't too bad most of the day. Then I was in my boss' office for a few minutes and he had his window open. That was the end of me. First the throat started itching, the eyes watering, the congestion started and then the sneezing started. They pretty much didn't stop until today. I kept waking up in the middle of the night because I couldn't breathe and I was doubling up on my drugs (ssshhhh don't tell the doc, they yelled at me the last time I did that but I needed something!) Did I mention I hate spring, trees, the outdoors, the sun, flowers....? We got a nice heavy rain last night that helped. Hopefully the rain will keep up.

They announced on Thursday that they are going to do lay offs... everywhere company wide.... and everyone would be informed within the next week.... needless to say Thursday and Friday were not exactly productive days... Well I'm still employed, at least for now.... But this is gonna mean some pretty major changes in how things will work, I am not entirely clear on the new reporting structure (by that I mean I have no idea how it's gonna work) Well we'll see what happens....

To make things better I made Honey Ricotta Ice Cream and Blondies. The ice cream was good when I first made it, though it got kinda hard and doesn't seem as creamy after a few hours in the freezer. I am thinking I should have strained the ricotta or something and maybe gotten out more water that way. The blondies are good. I cut into then maybe a little too early... I took them out of the oven and stood over them until I thought they were cool enough to cut... maybe a couple minutes. But they are nice and chewy, just like I remember them. Though I don't remember the last time I had blondies.

Honey Ricotta Ice Cream
adapted from this recipe from Traveler's Lunchbox, who adapted it from Crazy Water, Pickled Lemons

A little over 1 lb ricotta you

2 cup Half and half
zest of 1 lemon
pinch salt
1/3 cup honey
3 tbsp powdered sugar

Beat the ricotta, honey, salt and lemon zest together until smooth.
Beat the half and half with powdered sugar in a chilled bowl until it starts holding air bubbles.
Mix in about a cup of the half and half into the ricotta mixture to lighten.
Fold in the rest of the half and half into the ricotta mixture.
Taste for sweetness: keeping in mind that when frozen the sweetness will be a little muted. Stir in either more honey (if you want that flavor more pronounced), or more powdered sugar. Churn it immediately in your ice cream maker. I tried to do it pretty quickly after everything was combined so that you could keep your air bubbles.
Freeze for at least 4 hours to allow it to firm up.

based on this recipe from Simply Recipes

1/2 cup of butter, melted
1 cup of tightly packed dark brown sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon of vanilla
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon of baking soda
Pinch of salt
1 cup of all-purpose flour
chocolate chunks (I used Gertrude Hawk Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Teeny Poppers I had them, but you may want to use a dark chocolate)

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line an 8X8 pan with foil.

Whisk together the melted butter and sugar in a bowl.

Add the egg and vanilla extract and whisk.

Add the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt, mix it all together. Add the nuts and chocolate.

Pour into the pan and spread evenly. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool. Cut into squares and serve.

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