Friday, July 29, 2011

Bread and Butter Pickles

Canning season is coming. For some, it may already be here. For us in the Palouse, harvests are far behind and slim. The university orchard finally opened up cherry picking for 1 day this week. That's nearly 4 weeks behind and just goes to demonstrate how tough it might be this year. My garden is struggling but that doesn't mean everyone's is.
This pickle recipe is wonderful and requires no canning skills. You cook the brine but the cucumbers and onions stay raw. What you get in return is a crisp, sweet and sour pickle chip. We even eat the onions. Save the brine and throw in fresh cucumbers and onions.
The recipe says keep for 1 year. We have batches that are over a year (we make a lot of pickles) and they are perfectly fine. You want to make sure they are well sealed to prevent odd flavors coming from stuff in the fridge. We use glass jars for our pickles which seem to preserve them better than plastic.

Bread and Butter Pickles
3 cup sugar
3 cup cider vinegar
1/4 cup salt
1 teas celery seed
1/4 teas turmeric
1 tb mustard seed
a little dill in each jar
mix all ingredients together in saucepan and boil. Let cool. Slice cucumbers and onions into a gallon jar. Pour cooled liquid over veggies until the liquid comes to the top. Refrigerate for 1 week up to a year.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Squirrel on a Stick

Squirrel on a stick is a family favorite for barbequing. It takes a little preparation and goes fast but it's a fun addition to outdoor cooking. I will put your mind at ease and tell you it's not really squirrel, it's chicken. My mother started making these chicken skewers when we were teens and my brothers named them squirrel on a stick (which stuck and has freaked out non-family members for 20 years).

It does take preparation but when that's done they cook rather quickly and are eaten twice as fast.
It's better to soak your bamboo skewers while marinating the chicken and use them wet. Because they are wood they will burn on the grill, soaking reduces this problem. You can use metal skewers but they will be hotter coming off the grill than the wood.

I have included a link to my homemade teriyaki sauce. My mom would buy the powdered mix (in the aisle with the taco seasoning, powdered spaghetti sauce, gravies) and add pineapple juice and whatever the packet called for. Any teriyaki sauce would work here.

Squirrel on a Stick
boneless skinless chicken breasts
teriyaki marinade
bamboo skewers

Cut the chicken into stripes the long way (I use kitchen scissors). Marinate in the teriyaki sauce for several hours (or as long as you can plan ahead). Soak the bamboo skewers for at least an hour. Thread the pieces of chicken onto the skewers the long way so that you have one long piece of chicken on the stick. Cook on hot coals until done. You can also cook these in the oven at 400 if you set them on a grill with a baking pan to catch sauce/fat drips. You want them to come out a little dry to the touch. Eat and enjoy.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Sauerkraut Salad

This is such a fun recipe. I found it in a Tamar Myers book and have been making it for nearly 10 years. It's a great way for me to use up sauerkraut that's been open for awhile. I'm the only one in my family that eats the sauerkraut so it takes a long time for me to go through a jar - this recipe gets the whole family eating it up. It's a sweet and sour sort of recipe and really great cold. Because I use leftover sauerkraut, I don't make a full batch. I often use 1 bell pepper, part of an onion and 1 stalk celery. I do make a full batch of dressing and then use what's needed for the salad and have the rest on other veggies or toss into sweet and sour sauce.

Amish Sauerkraut Salad
3 cans (16 oz each) sauerkraut, drained and chopped
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 large red onion, diced
3 stalks celery, diced
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup oil
2/3 cups white vinegar
1/3 cups water
1 teas caraway seed, optional
Combine sauerkraut and diced vegetables
Heat dressing ingredients until sugar is dissolved and the mixture is well blended. Pour over the vegetable mixture and toss to combine. Refrigerate 24 hours before serving. If kept in glass container, the salad will keep in the refrigerate for up to two weeks.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Mediterranean Salad

With the summer heat, salads are a great meal that is cool and doesn't heat up the kitchen. This particular salad I created off of a deli salad I would find now and again. I loved the salad so much I would go in and buy it for lunch but it wasn't always available so one day I asked how they made it. It was so easy that it no longer made sense that I would buy it from the deli (that and it became less and less available). I often omit the onions because I don't like raw onions and I don't measure anything for this salad. It's all about what you like and the balance you want to create. It uses creamy italian dressing which really does taste different from regular Italian dressing. Experiment and see what you like.

Mediterranean Salad
Sliced olives
Feta cheese
Creamy Italian dressing

Slice cucumbers and onions. Cube tomatoes. Mix together vegetables in a bowl. Toss in olives and cheese. Pour dressing over salad, mix carefully and refrigerate. Serve cold.

Monday, July 25, 2011


With the summer heat in full swing, cooking becomes an undesirable act. Every Sunday we gather together for a big meal and entertainment. Yesterday, the temperature was the low 90's. We had planned on sandwiches and mac and cheese. Too hot. But we went with highrollers and macaroni salad (we cheated and bought the salad while enjoying the stores air conditioning).
Highrollers are a type of sandwich but they are so much cooler than a normal sandwich (I mean temperature). They are easy to make but look like you spent ages making them. Pop them in the fridge before serving and you have a rather nice summer dinner.

Burrito sized flour tortillas
Deli meat
Cream Cheese, mayo, mustard
lettuce (or salad mix)
tomato or other sandwich veggies

* You really can make these any way you want which makes a recipe difficult. I love cream cheese and turkey so that's the instructions I will give you. If you use tomatoes, slice as thin as possible because they will inhibit rolling and they will make the roller wetter.

Lay out tortilla. Spread a thin layer of cream cheese over the tortilla. Layer with slices of turkey. Sprinkle on salad mix. be sure to leave a rim of cream cheese around the edge of tortilla without other toppings. Starting at the side nearest you, roll the tortilla into a tube, using the cream cheese to seal the edges. Slice into 1" pieces.
Refrigerate if you want them to be extra cold or serve immediately.
I like to dip my slices in Italian dressing.
The sky is the limit with these sandwiches, just rememeber dry is better and then dip into sauces.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Super Cook

I don't know how I missed posting about this website. I discovered it through the local new station's facebook page. It is the most amazing site I have seen when it comes to finding recipes.
The concept of Supercook is to find recipes with certain ingredients.
For example, in your cupboards you have a can of black beans, a can of corn and a can of diced tomatoes. You list those in super cook and it gives you 2000 recipes. The first one, 5 minute chili, tells me I have everything I need to make it. The remaining recipes list additional ingredients I will need to make the recipe.
Supercook is a database so when I click on the recipe, it will take me out of supercook and to the recipe site. All the recipes, I have looked at, have been on sites I was familiar with - Martha Stewart, All recipes, etc so I know I am getting sent to good sites that I don't have to worry about spam or viruses.
For me, I hope this site will help me use up some of those odds and ends I have collected in my pantry. It should be a great resource to break out of the same old food routine.

Tilapia in Caramel Sauce

My dad had some Tilapia and wanted to make it for us for dinner. The problem was he didn't know how to prepare it. I offered some suggestions but my dad and I are different sort of cooks. I like to just throw things together and recipes are ideas and guidelines (inspiration). For my dad a recipe offers a certain comfort that a dish will be good. He doesn't really like to substitute or vary from the recipe. He has dishes he has cooked most of my life that he still needs the recipes for. It's not a bad thing, it's just different.
So when I began offering suggestions to my dad, he wanted a recipe. We did a quick search and found Braised Tilapia in Caramel Sauce.

My dad had me cook the fish so I didn't quite follow the recipe (does that shock you?). First thing I did was make the sauce in a saucepan. I dipped the raw fish in the sauce and fried it on an oiled griddle (can use a frying pan). I brought the sauce back to boiling so that all the raw fish stuff would be cooked. I served the fish with the sauce drizzled over it. The reason I did this was I was concerned that the sauce would not be good and would ruin the fish. The sauce is great. It's not what I thought it would be but it's still a good sauce. My first sample of the sauce got me laughing because it tastes a lot like teriyaki sauce. It's a little more complicated than my basic teriyaki but it's worth the trouble.
I will share that my family really likes fish sauce in cooking. We're not quite to the point we can use it as a condiment. Fish sauce is always gluten free so it's great for those avoiding gluten. It does have a strong smell but I found that it's flavor is more mild than it feels like it should be. It tastes like soy sauce with a hint of fish but when serving it on fish you don't notice it at all.
Tilapia is a nice, firm white fish. It's often inexpensive (compared to other fish). It has a mild flavor, making it perfect for sauces. It's great just fried in butter with seasoned salt and pepper. Because it's firm, it fries beautifully and could easily be breaded and deep fried.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Taco Salad

Sorry I missed yesterday, I was on jury duty. If you are interested in that story, you can find a scattered recollection here.
Today I thought I'd share my recipe for Taco Salad. Taco Salad is one of those things I just throw together without any regard for a recipe. I often forget it is a recipe since it's just something I throw together. Feel free to play with the recipe and see what you come up with.

Taco Salad
1 bag doritos
1 pound hamburger
1 packet taco seasoning
1 container sour cream
2 cups shredded cheese
1 bag american/iceburg salad
Fry hamburger with taco seasoning. I often add the seasoning to the hamburger as it is cooking instead of browning and then adding seasoning. This does mean losing some seasoning when you drain the meat and you can not use the color as an indicator of doneness. But it's quicker and doesn't require water.
Drain hamburger.
Crush doritos into bite sized pieces. Dump in large bowl. Add hamburger, lettuce and cheese. Mix with hands or two spoons until evenly mixed. Mix in sour cream until everything is covered.
Serve warm or cold.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Butter-Nut Blondies

I adapted this recipe from a King Arthur Flour recipe. The biggest difference is that I used AP (all purpose) flour instead of whole wheat. Whole wheat is a better grain but the instructions said the dessert had to sit for 24 hours to reduce the grittiness of the flour. I would have used whole white wheat since it lacks that grit but didn't have any. You can use whole wheat or whole white wheat in place of the AP flour. I have to say this was an amazing cookie/whatever (blondies aren't brownies but they aren't really cookies either). We served them topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and it was a perfect end to our BBQ on Sunday.

Butter-Nut Blondies
1 stick butter, melted
2 cups dark brown sugar
molasses, optional
3 eggs
1 TB apple cider vinegar
1 TB Buttershots
1 teas baking powder
1 1/2 cup flour
1 1/2 cup walnuts

Pour melted butter into bowl (or melt butter in bowl). Add brown sugar. If using light brown sugar, add molasses to taste. You want a fairly strong molasses flavor. Add eggs, one at a time, until incorporated. Add vinegar, buttershots and baking powder. Stir until fairly smooth. Add flour and mix until flour is completely wet. Add walnuts.
Pour into 9x13 greased pan. Bake in preheated 350 oven for 26-28 minutes.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Oven S'mores

There is something about S'mores that I love. We were a little disappointed when we made s'mores with our homemade graham crackers and homemade marshmallows. The graham crackers were far to flavorful and completely overwhelmed the marshmallows and chocolate. We tried roasting the marshmallows but their square shape didn't work as well (they're more rectangular and slightly thin). We made the first batch in the oven and I realized it wouldn't take much to make graham cracker-less s'mores the same way. I will give you both directions since they are quite similar. When cooled you can store them in a ziplock bag so they are available any time.

Oven S'mores
12 small squares of graham crackers (for store bought 6 crackers broken in half, gf graham crackers are 12)
Chocolate chips or chocolate bars
6 marshmallows
non-stick baking sheet

Preheat broiler in oven.
Place 6 graham crackers on baking sheet. Top with a square of chocolate that leaves about 1/2" of space from edge of cracker or place a single layer pile of chocolate chips (again leaving about 1/2 inch of space around the chocolate). Top with a marshmallow.
Put baking sheet in oven. Your oven rack should be in the second slot or 6-8 inches away (depending on oven). Broiler for 2-3 minutes. Remove when the marshmallows are golden but not too puffy (if they expand greatly, you over cooked them and they will be a sticky mess which is not bad tasting at all but tough to remove from pan). Top with remaining graham crackers and eat.

For graham cracker-less s'mores, omit the graham crackers and lay the chocolate directly on the baking sheet. Make sure your chocolate chips all touch the marshmallow if not using bar chocolate. Broil in oven (same as above). Because you do not have the graham cracker to hold together all the gooey goodness, you have to place the baking sheet in the freezer for several minutes. Don't let sit too long because the delicate flavor of the marshmallows will absorb freezer flavors. Use a stiff spatula (I use a cake frosting spatula) to pop the candies from the baking sheet. Enjoy.
This is a great way to eat the homemade marshmallows but can be done with storebought marshmallows as well.

Chocolate Pudding

I am working on a writing project that I could be doing lots with but I don't give myself enough time to work on. Yesterday, I thought I'd set aside my blogs for later in the day and work on the project. I did better but I still goof off way too much. I had forgetten my blogs in the process since I always do them early in the day. Not a problem - I'll do it at home, except I forgot my computer was completely eaten by a virus and keeps having to go back to the shop while they try to figure out how to restore it to it's former glory (the computer is about 6 months old and this worm/trojan thing went right through our anti-virus software and completely ate our windows - my mom keeps telling vindow viping jokes since Viper is our software). Needless to say, no blogging was done yesterday and I am sorry. To make up for it I will do two posts today.

With everything going on and the crummy weather, I decided it was a chocolate pudding night. I love hot chocolate pudding. I usually make Jello cook and serve but I really want to start making things from scratch. My aunt used to tell me about making real pudding with flour (Jello uses cornstarch). Flour is a more stable thickener where cornstarch breaks down and makes your pudding watery over time. I will say it had good flavor but there was a major texture difference. I make flour gravies that are great but this pudding was a little gritty. It could be that I used cocoa powder instead of unsweetened chocolate so I may be posting this recipe again with some changes (if I waited for every recipe to be perfect I don't think I'd post ever again).

Chocolate Pudding
6 TB cocoa powder (or 2 oz unsweetened chocolate, melted in pan before adding milk)
2 cups milk
1 cup sugar
4 TB flour
2 egg
1 tsp vanilla
Mix cocoa and milk in a saucepan. Heat on medium to med-low temperature until hot but not boiling. Mix remaining ingredients together in a bowl with a whisk until smooth. Add to hot milk and whisk until fully encorporated. Let cook until thickened. Remove from heat.
Serve hot or let chill to serve cold.
The great thing about homemade pudding is you can add your own flavors - subsitute almond, orange, peppermint (anything) for the vanilla. Just remember that the stronger the extract flavor, the less you need.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Cinnamon Rolls

Now that you have the bread recipe (see yesterday's post), it's easy to turn it into cinnamon rolls.

In addition to the bread ingredients you need:
1 cup white sugar
1-2 TB cinnamon
(or about 1 cup cinnamon sugar)
1 stick butter, melted
Unflavored dental floss

After the first rise, pull the dough out of the bowl and knead briefly. Press or roll the dough into a rectangle. The dough will not exactly co-operate since it's rather elastic but keep at it until you get a rectangle that is about 1/2 inch thick. Using a pastry or basting brush, brush the butter on the dough. Make sure to cover it well but not leave puddles of butter. Combine the cinnamon and sugar (you may want to taste it to make sure you have enough cinnamon to sugar ratio). Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar over the butter. Starting at a long side of the dough (preferably closest to you) roll the dough in on it's self until you have a long log. Pinch the dough at the end to seal it. Tear off a foot long piece of dental floss. Wrap it around the dough about 1 inch from an end. Pull the floss tight until the dough is severed. Continue cutting off 1 inch pieces of the log. Use the remaining butter to grease a 9x13 pan. The rolls may not quite touch but that's okay.
Cover with towel and let rise until doubled in size.
Bake at 350 until the rolls are firm and golden.
Frost with cream cheese frosting:
8 oz cream cheese
2-3 cups powdered sugar
milk (you can use milk, dairy substitute or a creamy liqour like irish cream)
Cream the cream cheese with the sugar. Add more to taste if desired. Add milk at 1 teaspoon at a time until you get a frosting consistency. More milk will make the frosting like a glaze if desired.
Frost cinnamon rolls and enjoy.
*If you are eating right away, frost cinnamon rolls warm. If not, wait until the rolls cool before frosting.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

White Bread

I adapted this recipe from Martha Storey's cookbook on country cooking. I highly recommend that cookbook, it's my go-to book, because it covers a lot of the basics in detail. I'm not going to share as much because I just don't have the time or space (that and blogger ate my first attempt to share this with you).
Bread is an intimidating product but it's really not that hard once you understand the basics. This recipe is super easy and over time you'll find playing with it will be fun. The bread that comes out is a basic white bread, great for sandwiches and toast. It's simple to turn into rolls and other baked goods.
Kneading is the hardest part of making bread (and the waiting) so here a good tutorial on kneading bread.
This recipe does not contain salt so the bread will only last about 5 days before molding. To extend the bread's shelf life, feel free to add 1 teaspoon salt.

White Bread
2 cups warm water
2 TB honey
1 TB yeast
2 TB oil or melted butter
5-6 cups flour
1/2 cup powdered milk
Heat water until it's a comfortable bath temperature, you should be able to comfortably put your fingers in the water. Mix in honey until melted. Add yeast and stir. You want the yeast to be fairly mixed in. Let sit until you get about 1" foam.
In large glass bowl, pour in oil, 1 cup flour and powdered milk. Add yeast mixture and stir. Add 1 cup flour at a time until you can no longer stir the dough. Pour up to 1 cup of flour on a clean counter top and set the dough on top. Knead the flour into the dough and continue to knead until your dough is firm and even. Clean the glass bowl, dry and oil it. Roll the dough into a ball and set in glass bowl. Cover with clean dish towel and let rise in warm place. I turn my oven on to warm while I mix the dough, turn it off and set the dough inside to rise.
Let rise until the dough has doubled. Punch dough down and knead for several minutes. I do this in the bowl to save time and messes. Form 2 equal loaves and set in oiled loaf pans. Cover with towel and return to warm area. Let rise until doubled. Bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes (do not open oven for the first 20). The bread should be golden brown and sound hollow when tapped. It is easier to remove bread from pan and slice when cold but it tastes so good right out of the oven.
To make rolls, use a 9x13 pan and roll the dough into equal balls (about 1/2 the size you want the rolls). It takes less time to cook so check them after 15 minutes.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Mixchief Jello

I was wandering the Walmart grocery area to price what it costs for us to make our own marshmallows. There are so many varieties of marshmallows that I want to do lots of experiments. For us, homemade marshmallows are about ingredient control over cost but I wondered if it was really one of those things I could promote as being economical as well. If I had to guess: it costs about $3.25 to make a batch of homemade marshmallows which is about 1 1/2 pounds of marshmallows (equivilent to 3 bags of marshmallows at $1.25 each) so it's slightly less.
But that's not what I wanted to share with you. I was looking at the unflavored gelatin (and really disappointed that all the stores in my area only carry 4 packs of unflavored gelatin instead of my favorite 32 pack) when I found a new Jello product called Mixchief.
The first box was a color-changing instant pudding, the next a juice Jello, followed by a soda Jello and finally a color changing Jello. All 4 varieties sold for $.88. Not a bad price (I guess) but I don't buy Jello because of the artificial flavors and colors but I was a little interested in the juice and soda varietys - well more curious. I was furious to discover that what those two $.88 boxes housed was a single packet of unflavored gelation (you can buy 4 for $1.25 in the Knox brand).
I want to play with this idea but meanwhile, I'm going to share the recipe with you.

1 packet unflavored gelatin
1/2 cup boiling water (or boiling soda/juice for more flavor)
1 1/2 cup chilled juice or soda

Dissolve gelatin in boiling water. Add chilled juice/soda. Refrigerate for 4 hours or until set.

Be careful adding fruit, some fruits will prevent a good set-up.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Vanilla Ice Cream

I'm not as prepared today and I would have liked. I often write my blog at work so if I leave my notes at home then I am stuck. I didn't realize I hadn't shared my bread recipe here so I can't share with you how I turned it into cinnamon rolls but I can share with you how I made vanilla ice cream in my gel canister. I mentioned that the gel canister ice cream maker makes an icy sort of product. I read somewhere (wish I could remember where) that you can add 1 teas of Xanthum gum to make a creamier product. We don't use Xanthum gum in our house, always opting to go with the far less expensive Guar gum. The end product was a little pastier than I prefer so I am going to experiment with the amount and may be posting more on this as I figure out the perfect balance. I also don't use cream in my ice cream which means a slightly lower fat ice cream which changes the consistency as well. However, with all that said my family couldn't stop raving about this experiment.

Vanilla Ice Cream
1 can evaporated milk
Enough whole milk added to the evaporated milk to make 3 cups
1 cup sugar
1 teas vanilla (I thought it really should have more since the flavor was rather muted)
1 teas Guar gum
Mix together until smooth and pour into ice cream maker. Process according to manufacturers instructions.
Something to note here - the guar gum made the ice cream fluffy and come right to the top of the container. I think it added 50% more volume to the ice cream which made a difference when I moved it to the container for freezing. My son got a bowl of ice cream out of the maker because I didn't have enough room to freeze it.
The final product is quite similar to store bought ice cream.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Graham Crackers

I used the recipe from a King Arthur Flour cookbook with some slight alterations. I will say that if you have plans to use these crackers for s'mores then omit the spices. The crackers have great flavor but my family didn't quite care for the cinnamon cracker with chocolate and marshmallow. (BTW - the marshmallows toast really nice on a fork over a candle but for the s'mores we broiled them in the oven.)

Graham Crackers
1 cup graham flour (can use any whole wheat flour)
1 cup AP flour
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup white sugar
1 teas baking powder
1 teas cinnamon
1/4 teas gd cloves
1/2 cup or 1 stick butter, chilled
1/4 cup milk
Mix together all the dry ingredients. Cut in the butter, can use a pastry cutter or a fork. I found it worked best to cut the butter until it was little bits and then use my fingers to mix the remaining butter into the flour. Work until it resembles corn meal (no lumps of any kind). Working with my fingers also allowed me to find any brown sugar lumps.
Add the milk and combine. The dough will be very crumbly and using your hands to squeeze the dough into balls works better than trying to stir the dough, just be sure to break up the balls and repeat until there is no dry flour left. Form two balls and flatten. Wrap in plastic wrap or foil and refrigerate for 1 hour (minimum). Mine ended up staying overnight because I got busy with other things.
Remove 1 section of the dough. The instructions have you roll the dough out and transfer it to a baking sheet. I found it worked better just to work in the baking sheet. I had to remove the handles to my rolling pin to make it fit in the 9x12-13 baking sheet.
Break up the dough into your baking sheet that you have lightly oiled (I used oil for the first and butter for the second - the butter is harder to work with but makes a better tasting cracker). Mash the dough into the baking sheet and work it until it is solid and flat. Roll the dough until it is even and smooth. Using a pizza cutter or knife, cut the dough into the size crackers you wish to use - I aimed for about a 3 inch square cracker. Use a fork to put holes in the crackers so they don't puff up.
Bake at 350 for 12-15 minutes or until the crackers brown and are crisp. Let cool before removing from the pan.
Repeat with the second ball of dough.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Ice Cream Makers and Almond Milk Ice Cream

There are two basic types of ice cream makers - the frozen canister and the one that uses ice and rock salt.
The frozen canister type (like we are currently using) has a thick bowl that sits on a motor which you remove and freeze. The bowl is filled with a gel that freezes and thaws as it makes the ice cream. There are some great advantages to this type of ice cream maker. It is often cheaper than it's counterpart, it's quiet and you can use it to make a variety of frozen treats from slushies to ice cream. The disadvantages are you have to re-freeze the canister after every use so only 1 recipe at a time and it doesn't make the best ice cream (but I am working on that).
The type that uses rock salt and ice often has a thin canister for the ice cream that sits in a bucket like structure which is all secured by the motor on the top. You pour a mixture of ice and rock salt around the ice cream canister and turn it on. The advantage is it makes nearly perfect ice cream without having to freeze the ice cream before eating. It's rather low tech. The disadvantages are it's more expensive and horribly noisy. The noise kept us from making ice cream as much as we would have.
I am playing with recipes and I have to say with a little experimenting I think you can get a really good ice cream out of the gel canister maker. I'm hoping because that's what we are using. With these, you need a seperate container to store the ice cream. I find that the Ziplock containers with the twist lids are perfect.
Our first ice cream we made was an almond milk - this is really simple and tasty. This version will make more of an ice milk than an ice cream but for those who can't do dairy it's wonderful.

Almond milk ice cream
3 cups vanilla almond milk
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla
Mix together in large measuring cup and carefully pour into ice cream maker. Let stir in make for 25-30 minutes (or to manufacturer instructions). Pour into covered container and freeze overnight.

We did make a dairy version last night with some modifications that look promising so I can't wait to share them with you when I have them more perfected.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Homemade Marshmallows

I had a busy fun fourth of July weekend. I got time to do lots of cooking and creating which helps me move this blog forward. There's something about spending time in the kitchen when there's nothing that has to be done. We BBQ'd for the 4th but it didn't really require a lot of preparation so everything I did in the kitchen was because I wanted to.
On the Feingold diet we discovered that S'mores was not a possibility. The marshmallows and graham crackers both had things our son couldn't eat. I had made marshmallows once before with little success but I was willing to try again. I used this recipe from Alton Brown. It was quicker than I thought. My marshmallows didn't need all the mixing time stated which meant that my vanilla came in a little late but we'll know better next time. Within 2 hours the marshmallows were set.
I was excited to find that Karo syrup has gone back to a natural recipe - corn syrup, salt and vanilla. No more High Fructose Corn Syrup which kept me from having to come up with an alternative. I may still work on making golden syrup to replace corn syrup but I don't have to. I didn't really like the corn starch/powdered sugar blend so I may try it with just powdered sugar.
It did set up fast so I wasn't able to smooth it out to be pretty but it was sure easy and tasty - don't see any reason to ever buy marshmallows again. I used a stand mixer (just thought you should know) and I think the marshmallows alone will make that a must have. I think that if I don't let them set up right away I can make pretty simple rice krispie treats out of it.