Thursday, May 27, 2010

Daring Bakers: Piece Montee

Well I followed the recipe for the profiteroles, pretty much exactly. Are you impressed? No, I'm not dying. Profiteroles are fairly simple and straight forward. There wasn't all that much for me to mess with.

You notice how some are swirly like they were piped and some are more like blobs? There IS a reason why pastry chefs use piping bags. The edge seals on the bags were not so well done. About halfway through it burst. By it burst, I mean the entire side seal split open. The rest of them were shaped by me frantically trying to keep the batter from ending up on the floor. They're not bad looking when you take that into consideration, eh?

Sorry, I'm not building a sculpture. I can't even pipe the profiteroles, a sculpture was not going to happen. I cut them in half and filled them with vanilla pastry cream and macerated strawberries and then glazed the top with chocolate. And they were good.

The May 2010 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Cat of Little Miss Cupcake. Cat challenged everyone to make a piece montée, or croquembouche, based on recipes from Peter Kump’s Baking School in Manhattan and Nick Malgieri.

Barefoot Bloggers: Grilled Herb Shrimp

Another loosely followed recipe. Chosen by Penny.

A fairly simple recipe. Marinate the shrimp in some herbs, garlic and lemon juice. Cook it up.

I didn't actually used the specified herbs. I used random unidentified herbs from my garden. The only herbs that are doing really well in the garden so far is this random herb mix that I got. I don't actually know what most of the herbs are in it but most of them seem to look like lettuces and some parsley. I recognized that one.

I had mine over an herb salad. This actually would have been good with that risotto from earlier in the month. If I had thought ahead I would have had them together. Oh well.

I cooked them in a skillet rather than a grill pan. I hate cleaning a grill pan. It takes forever to get down into all the little grooves of a grill pan and I never seem to get it clean so I almost always opt for a skillet or griddle over the grill pan. Someone please tell me I'm not the only one. Maybe I need to cook a bunch of bacon on it to get a nice season on it. Maybe I'll just stick with the skillet.

PS I uploaded my pic of the spring risotto. Are you proud of me?

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Another Garden Update

Yes, you will get these way more often than is sane. It's aliiiiiive. You can feel free to skip to the next post if you are bored. I'll have both the Daring Bakers AND Barefoot bloggers posts later this month.

OK let's start with the pineapple tomatilloes. I only had them once and they really do taste like pineapple. Only thing is these puppies are tiny. Full size ones are maybe a quarter inch in diameter so these guys are really tiny. I didn't even notice them for a while.
These are wonderberries. I don't know much about them but they have a cool name. These are probably half the size of the pineapple tomatilloes. Just for scale.
Blueberry bush
Watermelon. Other people have flowers on theirs. I'm not cool enough for that.
Butternut Squash. Look the first one has started to form!
OK now let's go to some of the herbs. First up, dill. This is the most prolific of the herbs. Besides the unidentified herb mix.
Back to veggies. Peppers. Not sure what kind.
More peppers just sprouting. I am hoping these ones will come in a bit later so not everything comes in at once.
Beets and carrots.
Corn and soybeans
Tomatoes. I think these are cherry tomatoes.
Here are more tomatoes. I am not sure which ones are which. I think they are lollipop and green grape tomatoes. These ones popped up out of nowhere. I was taking pics and I figured I'd take a more careful look at all my plants and went whoa there's a whole bunch in here.


Thursday, May 13, 2010

Barefoot Bloggers: Spring Green Risotto

YES! I am totally making all the recipes this month for all the cooking groups. The first one for the month is this one. This on is Spring Green Risotto chosen by Kim.

By making the recipe, I mean vaguely following it. I had the arborio rice, asparagus and peas. I halved the recipe, added edamame, replaced the mascarpone with cream cheese, upped the lemon juice, replaced the wine with chicken stock. Not to mention I don't measure anything. But it came out pretty good. I would like to believe it was pretty healthy too.

I said I would make them. I didn't say I would have anything interesting to say or download and post pics.

Edit: Here's the pic.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Garden Update

This is my garden. This is what it looked like when I came back after a few days out of town. The plants are doing well. Even the weeds are doing well. I guess I should probably do something about that.

Here's the whole plot. Well almost the whole plot.
The lettuces were pretty much a failure. I harvested a couple leaves and now they have all bolted.
The sunflowers have really taken off. Possibly more than I had intended.
First row of tomatoes
2nd row of tomatoes

Pineapple Tomatilloes
Insectary Herb mix. Don't know exactly what's in here but I'm gonna harvest some randomly and see how they taste. They are the only herbs that I put straight into the ground that seem to be doing relatively well.

Corn and soybeans. I am planting them in batches so they don't all come up at once, hence the shorter plants in the back. I read somewhere that they grow well together so we'll see how that goes.
Butternut Squash
Bell pepper and beets. Carrots are in there too but you can't make them out from the weeds.
This row just sprouted. I put seeds in last week. Watermelon, Cucumber, zucchini.
This row isn't doing as well. The butternut squash is at the end. but the cantelope and other stuff I put in as seeds haven't sprouted.
Another shot of the whole garden.