Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Hot Weather And Salad Dinner

Since it's been two weeks since my last update, I figured I should write something to keep my readers interested. I think that's what blogging is supposed to be about.

If you've been in Baltimore this week, you know that the weather here is kind of miserable right now. It's been in the 90's all week, but with humidity it feels like it's over 100 degrees. Well, this Shabbos, the temperature will actually reach 103 degrees Fahrenheit.

Now I don't want to hear anything from people in Arizona saying 103 degrees is pretty normal by their standards, or people in Israel complaining about 105 degree weather. I'm not trying to start some "who's hotter?" competition, I'm just stating facts. Regardless of whether there's worse weather elsewhere in the world (you like that use of homonyms, don't you?), the weather here is still pretty awful.

Anyway, these kinds of miserable mid-summer days get me thinking about food. Primarily foods like popsicles, ice cream, smoothies, fresh fruit, and bags of frozen peas applied liberally all over my body. I've got a whole bunch of ice cream and sorbet ideas in the works, but until I finish off that Cherry Chocolate Chunk ice cream, I won't have a container to put them in or room in the freezer. We're working on it, no worries.

In the meantime, I've got to come up with dinners that are filling, healthy (read: non-sugar based), but also light and simple enough to avoid heat stroke.

Tonight's dinner was a pretty good example. I made a broccoli slaw with chunks of deli, craisins, Granny Smith apple chunks, and a honey garlic dressing (homemade with low fat mayo). It came together quickly (10 minutes? If that much? How long does it take to cut an apple and a hunk of deli into chunks?), it was pretty tasty, and managed to be a decently balanced meal all at the same time (all the major food groups: protein, veggies, fruit, and mayonnaise). When paired with a nice, tall, ice cold glass of seltzer, it was even pretty refreshing.

Well, I hope this will tide you all over until my next kitchen adventure. Until then, {insert catchphrase here}!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Rice & Beans, Corn Soup, And A Plum Cake



I don't know what came over me, but tonight I was really in a kitchen mood. I had been looking for inexpensive dinner ideas yesterday, and someone suggested rice and beans. I couldn't imagine that being a dinner on its own (my own failing) so I decided it must be accompanied by soup.

I decided on a simple corn soup recipe (found here) and used two bags of frozen corn instead of the fresh corn it calls for, added a little dash of MimicCreme, and decided to leave the "salting to taste" to individual tastes. I can't rave enough about this soup. Yaakov and I both loved it and it was so incredibly simple to make. It took all of 30 minutes and only cost me about $5 to make about 6 servings.

For the rice and beans, I went to an old favorite of mine, Skinny Weight Watcher's Girl. I've made a number of her recipes in the past, and they tend to be pretty good. Knowing the nutrition facts is definitely an added bonus. So I knew that if I made this, I'd be getting a decently balanced meal out of it. This came out pretty tasty and I didn't change a thing. Follow her instructions and it makes a pretty good meal or side dish.



Now, after dinner, I found myself thinking about those plums I picked on Sunday and how they're not disappearing as quickly as they should. Earlier today, while hanging around on TasteSpotting.com (a great way to waste time on the internet if you're a foodie, like me), I had found a recipe for a Peach Cake, but finding my peach supply dwindling and seeing that it can also be used for plums, this seemed like a good solution.

Now on the cake, I made a couple tweaks.

For one thing, I had no raw sugar, but I DID have some vanilla sugar, so I substituted that in the topping.

Also, I decided while mixing the batter that a little lemon extract seemed like a great idea to really rev up the tartness factor.



It was. :)

You can find all the recipes by following the links above. Enjoy!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

A Spontaneous Kitchen Adventure and Post #100!

Hello everybody!

As you may recall, a couple weeks ago, I went cherry picking.

Well this week, I went peach and plum picking!

And I wanted pie.

So badly.

That I broke out some mini frozen pie crusts.

Here's the result:



All this is is frozen pie crust, sliced peaches, sugar and a little pumpkin pie seasoning, topped with a lattice crust.

Now, here's the problem:



SOGGY PIE BOTTOM!

If only I'd added a little flour or corn starch! Anything to soak up those nummy juices!

I'll know better for next time. For now, this is a pretty darn tasty pie. :)



In other news, THIS IS POST #100 ON THIS BLOG!! Get excited! I'm throwing a little party in my brain. ~wiggle to the left, wiggle to the right~

I hope you've all been enjoying it. See you later at post #1,000. :-D