Thursday, February 28, 2013

Sloppy Joe 2.0

So I had leftover Sloppy Joe meat.  And I did not want to repeat myself so I made


Not So Sloppy Joe Hand Pies.


Which yohboh liked.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Chocolate Souffle

I tend to avoid certain recipes.  They are recipes that that require specialized equipment or recipes that need me to separate eggs.  I also am not fond of recipes that require me to dirty a lot of pots and bowls.

So why did I make this chocolate souffle?


Because Hubert Keller did so on The Chew for his Las Vegas restaurant Fleur.  And Vegas has been on my mind lately.  A friend was there over the weekend and posted some really great pics of the wine angels at Aureole.    There seem to be some really fancy restaurants there from some very nice chefs.  When I visited Vegas 15 years ago, there were no really fancy restaurants that I knew of.  I only knew about some extensive buffets and the two dollar shrimp cocktails.  It seems like Vegas these days is a bit more fine dining and less all you can eat.  It may be time for Minjenah to visit Sin City to eat well and discover some things to do there.

And I really like Hubert Keller.  He was in the first challenge in the first season of Top Chef.  And he really intimidated all the cheftestants.  And there is nothing like an intimidating French chef.

A few notes:

1) I halved this recipe because I REALLY should not have eight chocolate souffles in my house at the same time.  I would inhale them before someone would restrain me.  If you have better self control, please make the eight.  But even halved, I ended up making five souffles.  If you would like the original recipe, here you are.

2)  I do not own ramekins.  I used coffee cups.  Specialization is for insects.

3) The freshness and quality of your ingredients makes a HUGE difference in this recipe.  Buy the best chocolate you can afford.  I ended up using Callebaut because that is what I had on hand.    Also, fresh eggs are important.


Chocolate Souffle adapted by Hubert Keller


For Souffle:
4 Tablespoons of butter
5 Tablespoons of all purpose flour
1 cup half and half
3 ounces semi sweet baking chocolate, chopped fine
1 ounce unsweetened baking chocolate, chopped fine
1/2 cup vanilla sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 tablespoon dark rum
1 fat pinch of salt
4 egg yolks

For the meringue
4 egg whites
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar

Vanilla Ice Cream


In a small pot, make a roux with the flour and butter.  Cook for about three minutes.  Set it aside.

In a medium pot, heat the half and half until  little bubbles form on the sides.  Add the chocolates and whisk until the chocolate is melted. Add the sugar, vanilla and rum.  Whisk until the mixture is smooth.  Add the roux and stir until thickened.  Set it aside to cool.

Butter and sugar five oven safe coffee cups.

Preheat the oven to 375.

When the chocolate mixture is warm to the touch, add the egg yolks, one at a time.  The mixture will be glossy.

In a separate bowl,  add the egg whites and cream of tartar.  Using a hand mixer, whip until soft peaks form.

Fold in the egg whites into the chocolate mixture in three batches.  The first batch is to lighten the heavy chocolate stuff so the other two additions can be mixed in.

Pour the souffle into the coffee cups and bake for about 15 minutes.

Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.

When I made these, I thought my kids would not like them because they are very rich, not too sweet and have a bitter aftertaste.  Much too adult for a six year old.


Quite clearly, I was wrong.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Kidlet Lunch


Kidlet gets more veg than anything else.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Almond and Clementine Cake

I made this cake.


This is Nigella Lawson's recipe.  I was curious about it with the fact it has no flour or butter, which I consider to be important for cake.  Also, I found some almonds in the freezer and I had no idea how old they were.  And I had some clementines that were too dry to eat but I am sure would be flavorful.  And this recipe was just so foreign I had to try it.  You boil oranges for two hours?  You add whole boiled oranges?  How good is this?

It is a bit eggy with a texture like tamogoyaki. And a similar sweetness level.  The only things I did differently in the recipe were I added 2 tablespoons of vanilla. and a teaspoon of salt, because I think in sweets you should always add a bit of salt.  I did this all in the food processor.  I actually had slivered almonds that I ground into the almond flour.

Would I make it again?  Only if I find myself with almonds in the freezer of an unknown province and and more dry clementines.  Probably next year at this time.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Sloppy Joes

The first time I ever ate a sloppy joe was in elementary school at lunch.  I did not like it back then.

Yohboh requested these so I made them:


They were better than I remembered.

Sloppy Joes
2 pounds ground beef
1 onion, minced
1 bell pepper, minced
1 T garlic
1 cup of ketchup
2T Worcestershire sauce
2T chili powder
2 T Yellow Mustard
1 T brown sugar

Brown the ground beef very well and drain the grease.  Add the onion, bell pepper and garlic.  Saute until it is tender.  Add the rest of the ingredients and about 1/2 cup of water and let simmer until it is a loose mixture.  Salt and pepper to taste.

Serve with buttered buns and top with shredded cheddar and cole slaw and potato salad.

The grown ups added hot sauce.

Fed all of us with enough for lunch later.

How did I get this recipe?  I read about six on the internet and then looked in my house to see what I had.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Birthday Brownies

Kidlet got my birthday brownies for her birthday dessert.


Sunday, February 10, 2013

The Greatest Fruit Picker Ever

My mother is the Greatest Fruit Picker Ever.

This is what she provided for my oldest daughter's birthday on Saturday.  In February.


Monday, February 4, 2013

January Grocery Challenge, the aftermath

Well I went over budget with the January Grocery Challenge.

Since we are still getting over the flu, I will tell you that the best way for my family to save money is to STAY OUT OF THE STORE.

And when your family is sick, you will get your ginger ale fix, come hell or high water.