Archive for August, 2013

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TND – Put the Lime in the Coconut

August 23, 2013

carrot curls

If you’ve ever tried to cook a vintage recipe – or tried to recreate some recipe your grandmother always used to make – you’ve probably run into the problem that older recipes tend to be frustratingly short on details. For example, my grandmother’s recipe for Moravian Coffee Cake (which incidentally is (a) the best coffee cake ever, and (b) why I don’t particularly like the crumb topped coffee cakes you usually see – see below the crunchy sugary glory of a Moravian Coffee Cake)

moravian coffee cake

is a little too vague on specifics for me to attempt to make it without doing some research to nail down quantities, times, and textures. It’s got the basics (flour, sugar, yeast, mashed potato), but veers into ‘here there be dragons’ territory when it comes to exactly how much flour (enough to make a stiff, but not too stiff dough), and how much butter (enough to cover tuck into indentations all over the dough).

 

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TND – Curiosity Killed the Cat

August 16, 2013

fresh dates

I sometimes buy things just because I’m curious (okay, mildly curious – not like buy frozen durian fruit curious). Sometimes this works out for me – amchoor (sour mango) powder is amazing. Sometimes it doesn’t – I have yet to do anything with the dried pomegranate seeds I bought at the same time I got the amchoor powder. And sometimes it falls somewhere in between. Read the rest of this entry ?

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MND – Because

August 7, 2013

bacon to bake

When I was growing up I was always told that ‘because is not an answer’.  However, this week as far as Dinner is concerned, ‘because’ is absolutely the answer.

Why make peach moonshine?  Because I could.  Okay, also because I came across a recipe for it about 2 months ago and have wanted an excuse to infuse the essence of peach into alcohol ever since.  It is delicious, and also a gorgeous color. Read the rest of this entry ?

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MND – They’re Eating People!

August 6, 2013

charring corn

Apparently we’ve just grown the first hamburger in a lab. And by this I mean, it’s the first hamburger that is technically meat, but has nothing to do with an actual animal. PETA must be plotzing.

It was shaped and fried up (with the addition of lots of butter – which, to me, somewhat defeats the purpose of a lab grown hamburger patty – because surely part of the reason to do this is to get away from the ethical concerns of animal husbandry and while dairy cows aren’t slaughtered for hamburgers, I don’t think their living conditions are any better than the average meat cow, so unless the butter was also lab grown I don’t think you’ve achieved independence from the commercial meat industry) earlier this week in London. Read the rest of this entry ?

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MND – Cravings

August 6, 2013

salad

Do you ever get intense cravings for foods you don’t normally like, or is this just me?

I got through periods where all I can think about is eating a rich eggy potato salad, or a traditional creamy cole slaw. These are dishes that I normally pass over in a buffet because I prefer my potato salads dressed with lots of mustard and vinegar, or with a pesto sauce, and my cole slaws bright and tangy with vinegar and citrus.

Similarly I will take a no-thank you helping of pasta salad when presented with it in a situation where I have to take some to be polite, and skip it entirely if etiquette permits. I don’t like mayonnaise, and I’m not particularly fond of cold pasta, and I find that even the smallest serving sits leadenly in my stomach. I have, nonetheless, been day dreaming about pasta salad for the past three weeks straight. I don’t want a bowl of spaghetti dressed with rich tomato sauce, or a plate of fettuccini tossed with decadent alfredo sauce. I don’t want buttered and salted noodles to soak up the sauce from a braised stew. I want cold pasta. Go figure. Read the rest of this entry ?