Tuesday, June 12, 2007

New cookbooks!

I'm a cookbook addict. I'll be the first to admit it. I like sort of wacky cookbooks. I'm a sucker for cookbooks based on actual books.

I've had the Roald Dahl cookbooks sitting on my shelf forever, tho, I've never actually made anything out of them. I have that on my to do list this summer. Read a story and make a recipe.

Yesterday, the Green Eggs and Ham cookbook arrived and i'm happy to say the recipes look at lot more kid/parent friendly than some of the other cookbooks we've come across. I'm anxious to try some of the recipes. There's a peanut butter pancake recipe that looks ultra yummy. Sadly we won't be able to make the recipe for Green Eggs and Ham as written since the eggs are made green by avocados and those are big no-no for those with latex allergies. I bet I can whip up some yummy green eggs by adding basil instead. . .

Friday, June 8, 2007

really quick peanut butter fudge

Another recipe pilfered from food network.

1 cup butter, plus more for greasing pan
1 cup peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar

Microwave butter and peanut butter for 2 minutes on high. Stir and microwave on high for 2 more minutes. Add vanilla and powdered sugar to peanut butter mixture and stir to combine with a wooden spoon. Pour into a buttered 8 by 8-inch pan lined with waxed paper. Place a second piece of waxed paper on the surface of the fudge and refrigerate until cool. Cut into 1-inch pieces and store in an airtight container for up to a week.

It doesn't say to, but I would recommend sifting the powdered sugar to get rid of the clumps. Mine didn't break apart well when mixing this up and i had some lumps.

What the World Eats

This isn't exactly about kids and food but this is still food for thought. I was thoroughly unimpressed with the amount of sodas and other convenience foods being consumed by the "average" American families.

We are a family of 7 and don't spend nearly as much money on food as the American families. We don't eat a heck of a lot of junk. I very very rarely buy a packaged meal. They just don't feed a family our size without buying 2-3 of them and that's not very cost effective at all.

There's just a joy in preparing food with my family that I think helps us not to spend as much on groceries. We don't waste anything. I about had a heart attack when I found a forgotten cantaloupe completely rotten. Leftovers go for next day lunches or frozen for dinners when the kids don't like what I've made or those nights when I just don't feel like cooking. That little bit of cereal left, not quite enough for a bowl, gets put into a zip-loc bag and becomes snackables.

Anyway, I think we're going to make some peanut butter fudge this afternoon. The 8 yo has been bothering me about it ever since she saw it on her favorite show. I think she has a crush on Alton Brown heehee

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

a good playdough

I've made this playdough many times over the years and it is the best recipe. If you keep it in a bag or sealed container it stays soft for a long time. Before we moved here I was able to find a place that sold bulk cream of tartar so it wasn't hugely expensive and I could make lots of playdough. I've not found a place here that sells it bulk, but I'm still looking.

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 teaspoons cream of tartar
  • 1 teaspoon oil
  • 1/4 cup salt
  • food coloring

Mix all ingredients, adding food coloring last. Stir over medium heat until smooth. Remove from pan and knead until blended smooth. Place in plastic bag or airtight container when cooled.

Monday, June 4, 2007

A dessert you can skip

I'm all about sharing failures as much as successes when it comes to cooking. This one, while the kids loved it, the adults were gagging.

I bought some of those new strawberry flavored marshmallows and used them in rice crispy treats. I had a bad feeling about it the minute I opened the bag of marshmallows. They had that overpowering fakey strawberry smell that I usually associate with that berry flavored monster cereal.

It tasted like fake powdery strawberries instead of the juicy strawberry flavor I envisioned. Blech. total let down.

I think if I want strawberry crispy treats again, I'm going to add dehydrated strawberries as I mix it up.

I've been pondering trying crispy treats with the coconut marshmallows, but dang it, I buy a bag and they never quite make it home.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

I'm back!

My computer croaked so I spent the last week or so off line. I made a fabulous Carrot Cake with the kids last Saturday. It wasn't that kid friendly to make, but it sure tastes good! The kids were able to help with pushing the buttons on the food processor.

Other than that, we've just been going crazy with my in-laws visiting. We went down to Mobile, Alabama, to go to the beach. It rained, so we never made it there. We found some great BBQ, which is always a good thing. We also spent much of the day at the U.S.S. Alabama.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Something for a busy day

Today was very rushed. Memaw and Papa are visiting. They haven't seen the children in two years and have never met the baby. With all the commotion we had a very quick meal, that surprisingly generated rave reviews. There wasn't much the kids could help with except for clean up, but they couldn't get enough of the dinner. It was also pretty humid today, so cooking something quick that didn't really heat up the house was a plus.

Found this on food network, btw.

Nacho Bread Pizza

1 loaf baguette or semolina bread, day old is fine
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, 1 turn of the pan
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped or 1 pickled hot pepper of any kind, chopped
1 (15-ounce) can black beans
2 teaspoons hot sauce
1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
Salt and pepper
1 cup prepared salsa, any variety
2 cups shredded Cheddar, smoked Cheddar, Monterey Jack or pepper Jack
1 heart romaine or 1/2 iceberg head, shredded
1/2 cup green olives with or without pimiento, chopped
1/4 red onion or 2 to 3 scallions, chopped
2 plum or vine tomatoes, seeded and diced
Split bread lengthwise. Hollow the bread out and cut each half in half across, making 4 boats.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Heat a small nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add oil, 1 turn of the pan, garlic and hot peppers. Drain beans. Add half of the beans then mash the remainder of the beans in the can using a fork. Add mashed beans to the pan and combine with whole beans. Season beans with hot sauce, chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper. When the spicy beans are hot through, spread them evenly across all of the bread. Top with salsa and liberally sprinkle with cheese, covering bread to all edges. The boats will only be half-full. Melt cheese in the oven until it bubbles and begins to brown.