I’ve always loved flavored butters. I think it all started as a teenager when we’d get bagels at our tennis tournaments and there were always some sort of flavored cream cheese and butters. It was usually the honey butter that’d lure me in. And I’d be there all lady-like in my tennis skirt, smothering way too much honey butter on this un-toasted (the worst!) bagel. The butter made everything better. As it usually does.
My flavored butter love affair continued in the PANCAKES book. One of my favorite recipes in that book isn’t a pancake recipe, but actually the recipe for Berry Butters. That recipe goes something like this: you mash up berries, fold them into softened butter and add a few pinches of salt. The berries are very present in the butters and it’s nice.
My body is aching. I can’t tell if it’s from rigorous work-outs or just cooking my little heart out this week. Nonetheless, I’m about to get my hair professionally blow dried so all is ok in the world. It’s one of the greatest luxuries. If you’re a woman, you understand this sentiment; if you’re a dude, you’re probably confused why salons dedicated to just blow-drying even exist. The answer: because it’s important and blow-drying takes too long!
Last year I made my favorite Irish Soda Bread in the entire world. It was laced with brown sugar, whole wheat pastry flour and OMG there were whiskey-soaked raisins, which let me tell you, completely changed my mind about raisins.
I used to be one of those people who despised raisins. Like, if I saw a “chocolate chip cookie” to only then realize the CCs were raisins, serious side-eye, my friends. Serious. Nowadays I’m a grown-up who has the ability to enjoy some raisins in her baked goods. I’m an ever-evolving human.
This is the second installment of Adrianna-tries-to-be-healthy-by-eating-stuff-other-than-just-doughnuts. Friday I gave you fraud-fries (a new technical term that describes vegetable fries). And today, it’s all about fraud-mash.
I’m all about deception and lies and fooling oneself. Food-trickery, is what it is.
Let me tell you last week when I tried this for the first time I had a big attitude about it. I was bratty, skeptical, even trash-talked it on Twitter before trying it. And then, I put it on my plate, right next to a very lean steak and was like, whoa! this is actually delicious! I was going for steak and potatoes and this came pretty close!
So I’m on this sort of diet thing. It’s not a diet, exactly. It’s more of a don’t-eat-everything-you-want-which-includes-two-doughnuts-in-a-row kind of thing. I’m basically just trying to eat a bit healthier, though tomorrow I’m totally sharing something fun with you.
In the nature of this blog, which is a reflection of what I’m eating and obsessing over, there might be some more healthier recipes popping in and out over the next few months. This will never be a healthy-type blog; I simply love butter too much, but I am almost relearning how to cook and eat in a way. My default is always to finish things with a bit of butter. Bolognese? Finish it with butter. Sear a steak? Top it with a bit of butter? I’m learning how to not cook with so much fat.
I always know I feel better when I work out but it definitely takes effort to get in your car and drive somewhere to work out. I tend to make so many excuses. But right now I’m into it so I’m riding the wave. Also, if all this healthy/workout talk is boring, I’m sorry. Tomorrow I have pop tarts, ok? POP TARTS!
But today, fries that aren’t fries. They’re frauds. Delicious little frauds topped with lemony, garlicky yogurt, Italian parsley and sweet pomegranate seeds.
Drop biscuits are the lazy person’s biscuits. That’s how they should be advertised. There’s no kneading, no rolling out, no cutting out. No nothing. Just mix, drop and bake.
I’m currently in hardcore planning mode for my boyfriend’s birthday bbq this weekend. He wanted something low-key with just his closest friends and family so I said, OK, but I’m going to create a Pinterest board and maybe get a little psycho about the decorations because I’m me! He’s breaking out the smoker to smoke some pulled pork and beans and of course I’m making biscuits, Arnold Palmers and putting together a Bloody Mary Bar.
I was playing around with some other ideas besides my favorite classic biscuit recipe. I wanted something that had a bit funkier taste and I love the salty bacon.
My dad was in town for a few days and even though he bosses me around, wakes up way too early and always tells me my car needs to be cleaned, I had the best time ever. Living across the country from my parents is hard. When I see them, I see them differently, and after they leave I always tend to think a lot about my childhood.
My dad and I have always baked together. It’s the thing we share. My dad isn’t a pro-baker or anything like that—he does it strictly as a hobby, and for many years it was his favorite hobby. A few years ago, over a holiday break, my dad and I spent two days baking gougeres. We had no idea what we were doing, but we followed a bunch of recipes, tweaked a bunch of stuff and after two days we finally ended up with a batch we deemed totally perfect.
After my dad left town all I wanted to do was make something that felt familiar and something that reminded me of the man who taught me to how to change a tire and the man who taught me the value of never quitting.
Gougeres are made from pate a choux. If you’ve never made it before you may think it’s a weird and wrong.
The recipe begins by cooking butter with water, flour, and in this case, beer. And then you mix in eggs–even though they might not feel like they can actually be incorporated into the dough. They eventually do.
Oreo decided to be super nice and send me their two new soon-to-be-released cookies: Cookie Dough and Marshmallow Crispy. So of course I ate like 10 in one sitting and felt sick and terrible about myself. I contemplated not eating for the rest of the day just to make up for it, but quickly admitted to myself that I could never do that. I’m not a girl who goes on cleanses. They’ve never worked out for me. Instead I just eat some carrots.
Last year Josh whipped me up a snack of roasted carrots, whipped goat cheese and carrot-top pesto. I remember having my mind blown a little bit. Up until that point I don’t think I had eaten the tops of the carrot before; I’m pretty sure I usually just threw those things away with absolutely no remorse. But why? I used beet greens in stuff before, why not the tops of carrots?
I know this week I’ve thrown you some renditions of Thanksgiving classics, but when it comes to cranberry sauce I like my stuff simple. Classic. Don’t throw sage in my dang cranberry sauce. Don’t put bacon in my cranberry sauce. I’ll get an attitude.
I have very fond memories of buying cranberry sauce from the can and plopping it onto a plate and carefully slicing it in between the can-rivets. I loved it. For years, even after I got into cooking, I’d still buy cranberry sauce from the can–it was emotional, I think! But now I just can’t do it, especially considering how simple and easy and delicious homemade cranberry sauce is.
One of my favorite “single-person” meals is a baked sweet potato with about three tablespoons of butter on top. It’s the most delicious thing to eat when all I want to do is sit on the couch and watch a TV show. I love the act of eating something and watching something. In film school, I’d go to Chipotle right before class and sneak a burrito into the theater and sit in the back while watching some super artsy movie. It was very much against policy to eat in our school theater, but I couldn’t help it–I wanted to watch the movie AND eat.
Whenever I do go to the movies now, I always try and convince Josh to get a burrito before, but he always wins because his argument about sitting down at an actual restaurant like a real human versus sneaking burritos in my purse is a valid one, you know. Sooo…now you know my single-person/gossip TV meal. This gratin is a hella fancy version of that…sorta.
This is Thanksgiving-table worthy. It’s cheesy and slightly sweet and delicious.
Hello sandwich with apple cole slaw (sans mayonnaise)!!
I’m actually not a mayo hater, I just kind of dislike it in my cole slaw.
A few weeks ago the super nice people from SweeTango sent me an email and asked me if I’d like to try their apples. Of course I enthusiastically said yes because it was sweltering at the time and I was yearning for fall to arrive.
I’m not exaggerating when I tell you that SweeTangos are some of the best apples I’ve ever had–they’re SO crispy, perfectly sweet and slightly acidic. As I bit into the apple and walked around my apartment, Amelia started jumping after me like a lunatic because she’s obsessed with foods that make noise. I don’t understand this, but if I’m eating crunchy chips she will not leave me alone. It’s something about the noise. So, basically my point is that these apples are crazy crispy, in a good way, of course.
While I love to bake with apples, these are better suited to be paired with something, maybe cheese, maybe in a salad or simply enjoyed on their own. I’d categorize them as fancy-ass apples. Kind of high-end, if you will. If you live in LA, you can find them at Gelson’s grocery store. If you’re located elsewhere, no biggie, they’re sold nationwide. I’d like to discuss this sandwich, please.