Monday, April 30, 2007

I'm losing the war

I'm losing the war against jam. Somehow I seem to have acquired 13 jars of jam. And most of it is delicious. Except the one with figs, bland Polish figs.

Obviously, I can eat more jam on toast and jam on pancakes, but I need your help. What else can I do with all this delicious jam?

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Friday Night's Dinner

Asian Chicken Soup

It was pretty tasty but could have used a little more zip. Next time I will use more garlic. I would suggest breaking up the noodles before you cook them to make it easier to eat.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Tomato Soup with Dill

People. People. This is seriously delicious. You should make it.

And I know the pictures is well...decidedly not excellent, but I was in a hurry, because the soup was delicious.

So, here's what you do.

Fry a finely chopped shallot and a clove of garlic in about 1/2 tbsp of butter until soft. Add about 1/2 can of tomato paste (the ridiculously small can, you know the one). Add enough chicken stock to make up one bowl of soup. Then add a big pinch of dried time and a couple good shakes of Worcester sauce. When it starts to steam, eat it, topped with fresh dill.

I use my scissors to chop the dill.

Thursday, April 26, 2007


Last year I started something I jokingly called the "oatmeal challenge." The premise was simple. I was going start eating healthier, and part of this was going to be an oatmeal based breakfast every morning - except Sundays, then I have a pancake and jam based breakfast.

I primarily eat three things for breakfast: regular oatmeal, oatmeal bars (homemade natch), and granola. This recipe is a mix of a few things I read on the internet, and is perhaps overly sugary. But I eat it with plain yogurt, so I figure it balances out.

I usually use a mix of sliced almonds and pecans in my granola. I know that walnuts are good for you so sometimes I throw those in too - but I don't like the taste as much. I experimented with hazelnuts once. I found them too overpowering for granola and they are a pain to chop.

Additionally, this recipe is not clumpy because I mix it so much when I bake it. If you like granola clumps, try cooking it on a slightly lower heat and not stirring.


3 cups old fashioned oats (the ones that take 10-15 mins to cook)
1 cup chopped nuts
4 tbsp vegetable oil (or melted butter)
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup water (or apple juice, but I wouldn't buy some just for this)

1. Preheat the oven to 350.
2. Mix all ingredients in a large bowl. Pour onto a large sheet pan lined with parchment paper.
3. Cook in oven, stirring granola every 10 mins, until granola is toasty brown and crunch, about 30-40mins.
4. Let cool on the sheet pan and store in air tight jars.

For me, this is about 3 weeks worth of granola - so I know it keeps at least that long.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Lemon Orzo

You may recall I went though a phase in the winter where all I wanted to eat was Lemon Cream Sauce on pasta.

I mixed the ideas from that pasta, with the recipe for lemony orzo from this months Everyday Food magazine. I think this made a nice weekday side. I made enough orzo to make a little pasta salad for lunch tomorrow.

Creamy Lemon Orzo
(for one)

1/4-1/3 cup uncooked orzo
1 tsp whipping cream
1 tsp Parmesan cheese
1/2 a lemon

1. Cook orzo. Drain well.
2. Toss orzo with whipping cream, Parmesan, lemon zest and a good squeeze of lemon juice. You can see from the picture I just did this at the table.

I topped mine with some parsley, but you could leave it out.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Amandine's Cake

A few weeks ago my friend from flickr, Olivier, posted a picture of a stupendous looking chocolate cake. I knew I would have to try it. This weekend I did - and it is excellent. It is very like a brownie, but making it in a round pan really makes it seem more special.

The top is flaky, like a brownie, and gave me a little trouble when getting it out of the pan. If I had a spring form pan, I would be temped to use this next time I make this cake - and for sure I will be making this cake again.

The recipe for the cake is here in English, and on Olivier's blog in French. My understanding of things is that this cake is often called Fondant in France. Dorie Greenspan talks about it on her blog, and there was a recipe for the French Chocolate Brownie in the New York Times recently.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007


Last night, I had a profound desire for muffins. And not just any muffins. The raisin bran muffins my mom made when I was a kid. After some pestering, I found out that it is the recipe on the side of the Quaker Oat bran box. I picked up some bran and molasses and I was go go go to make muffins.

The only problem with making muffins when you live by yourself is.... you have a lot of muffins. Happily the Joy provided a solution: make the batter, place into muffin cups and then freeze uncooked. When you want a muffin just put it back in the pan and bake as usually. It took the two muffins I baked this morning about 10mins longer than the suggested time.