February 27, 2011

Daring Bakers’ Challenge: Mocha Panna Cotta with Fleur de Sel Caramel and Florentine Cookies

panna cotta 6

In any area of interest, there are always those complex terms that describe something simple, culinary arts included. You’ve got sous vide—basically boil-in-a-bag, except fancier. Tempering eggs—kitchen speak for “whisk like mad so they don’t scramble in your custard.” Panna cotta—pretty much the cooler, Italian equivalent of pudding. Which brings me to this month’s challenge.

February 19, 2011

Chocolate Chip Brownie Bars

chocolate chip brownie bars

Psychologists will cringe upon reading the following phrase: I reward myself with food.

I know that it’s not the best system—pairing stressful situations with the ultimate reward of something incredibly unhealthy. In fact, it’s kind of a recipe for disaster. And by “disaster,” I mean, “being confined to yoga pants because I’ve outgrown my jeans.” However, something has to be said for giving yourself a treat for a job well done.

At the moment, I’m planning on eating—nay, inhaling—one of these bars the second I finish reading The Rights of Man by Thomas Paine for history class. I’ve got to write an essay about it and I want to work ahead and get it done before spring break, which signifies not only the unpleasant task of reading 18th-century political treatises, but also overcoming my own propensity towards procrastination and spontaneous napping.

February 15, 2011

Valentine Vignettes

rose 1

I know that it’s a day late, but I could not pass up the chance to wish you all a Happy Belated Valentine’s Day. I hope it was a day full of love and all of your favorite people. Myself, I spent the 48 hour period surrounding Valentine’s Day cooking up this month’s Daring Cooks’ Challenge, eating my weight in anything made of chocolate, and catching up on my Korean dramas on Hulu. I also ate a chili cheese hot dog with extra onions, because that’s one of the reasons why it actually is cool to be single on Valentine’s Day.

After doubtlessly reeling you in with that fabby intro, let’s back things up a bit to Valentine’s Day Eve, when I made this month’s Daring Cooks’ Challenge, Hiyashi Soba and Tempura.

February 12, 2011

Vegetarian Chili with Sweet Potatoes

It is solely thanks to this chili that I have not turned into a popsicle. With temperatures dipping into the low twenties at night and hitting a scorching thirty-something degrees during the day, this weather is definitely a departure from what I’m used to, even during the winter. Usually, Houston’s frosty atmosphere settles itself somewhere in the forties during these months, necessitating little more than a warm coat. For the past couple of weeks, however, we have all been blindsided by these freezing temperatures. (Anyone who lives north of, well…Dallas, feel free to chuckle at my version of “freezing”).

February 8, 2011

Believe it or Not…

…I have not forgotten about this blog.

I just wanted to pop in and let you all know that I haven’t fallen off the face of the Earth or anything. It’s just all this gall-durned-dang-nabbit-flippity-flab homework! It’s been taking up all of my time. This past weekend, I experienced the biggest workload of my college career.

Between the English…

February 3, 2011

Beautiful Blueberry Muffins

Blueberry muffins are quite possibly one of the loveliest creations in the known universe. Seriously, they give fuzzy kittens a run for their money. Chubby babies cast them envious glares. Bouquets of fresh flowers shudder at the thought of them. They all see the pure bliss that is about to divert our attention from their attempts at adorableness and delight. And they are not pleased. That’s why kittens scratch and nip at your hands, why babies spew on your shirt and leave pooey surprises in their little diapers, and why flowers wilt and make your kitchen smell weird. They are all jealous…of a muffin.

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