Over the winter, we got a "lamb share" CSA from one of the vendors (Cabin Creek Heritage Farm) at the Takoma Park Farmers Market. We liked it, but they don't have lamb over the summer. The Mr. is particular about his beef and doesn't want it to have been frozen, so we went for "mini pork share" this time.( Cut for CSA details and cooking description/rough recipe )
We have had beautiful weather this weekend, but I haven't taken that much advantage of it. We did walk out for gelato (the Mr.: dark chocolate and hazelnut) and sorbet (me: grapefruit) yesterday afternoon at the neighborhood place (Dolci Gelati), and today we walked to Busboys & Poets for brunch (which has become a near-weekly habit).
I have just finished making 6 quarts of chicken stock. I think this is the best I've made. I used more or less this recipe, which I have bookmarked for later. The main difference between this and what I have made previously is far more carrots (6 instead of 2 or 3) and peppercorns (2 teaspoons); also, leaving the skin on the halved onion, which has an effect on the color. And darn I should have known that (it's one of the common natural fabric dye ingredients, for a golden yellow), and in fact, I remember my late mother doing the same.
The chicken stock is for matzoh ball soup for second seder at my sister's place this coming Saturday. I am the official Matzoh Ball Maker on our side of the family. The first seder will be at our friends Michael and Sharon's. They have asked me to bring a fruit platter, which should be easy, except that I will be working most of Friday. I will try to pick up fresh fruit the night before, I think.
And the Mr. is upstairs doing the taxes, because yes, it's spring. *sigh*
Various surpluses in the fridge and elsewhere in the kitchen – milk (a couple of small skim milks past pull date and part of an open carton of shelf-stable lowfat milk), 16 eggs, leftover mashed potatoes, bananas becoming over-ripe – got me to cooking this morning.
We've already eaten the mashed potato pancakes (I added chopped fresh parsley and scallion, then fried them in a bit of the bacon fat left over from the Mr.'s bacon and eggs). The banana bran muffins (I used part whole wheat flour) are just done, and cooling, and the maple cup custards (I messed with this a bit .. I usually make cup custard just from memory) are baking.
So, here we are, half a week past the Vernal Equinox, and the forecast is calling for snow/rain.
March is supposed to go out like lamb, right? This seems to be the Killer Rabbit version of said lamb ... .
And tomorrow night is the first night of Passover, and we're invited to a Seder at my sister's. Which means we'll be traveling through the weather mess during Rush Hour, because Nice Colleague is out all next week (her young daughter's school is on spring break), so I can't really leave early.
I need to get my act together and go off to the grocery store, to get chicken to make stock, because I have been requested to do matzoh ball soup. I already picked up some fresh dill for it at the Farmers Market.
We had some apples left over from the stock-up I did before Hurricane Sandy, so I made an apple cake (adapted from the 1975 Joy of Cooking - Apple Cake Cockaigne; mostly I made it a little leaner by using skim milk and the smaller amount of butter specified, and I added some oat to the batter for a little more fiber).( Click for pix )
From several people:
Bold the ones you have and use at least once a year, italicize the ones you have and don't use, strike through the ones you have had but got rid of.
I wonder how many pasta machines, breadmakers, juicers, blenders, deep fat fryers, egg boilers, melon ballers, sandwich makers, pastry brushes, cheese knives, electric woks, miniature salad spinners, griddle pans, jam funnels, meat thermometers, filleting knives, egg poachers, cake stands, garlic presses, margarita glasses, tea strainers, bamboo steamers, pizza stones, coffee grinders, milk frothers, piping bags, banana stands, fluted pastry wheels, tagine dishes, conical strainers,
rice cookers, steam cookers, pressure cookers, slow cookers, spaetzle makers, cookie presses, gravy strainers, double boilers (bains marie), sukiyaki stoves, food processors, ice cream makers, takoyaki makers, fondue sets, mandolines, and stand mixers languish dustily at the back of the nation's cupboards.
telophase added the mandoline, so I added the stand mixer. We have one (a lucky estate sale find), and I know people say they're marvelous, but somehow I never use mine. In fact, I barely use my hand-held mixer, even when I bake. I keep thinking I ought to have more gadgets I don't use, but really, my kitchen needs are pretty basic and I don't tend to buy a lot of stuff except for knives. And more knives.
And my juicer is a manual one, and my steamer is a metal insert for my double boiler pan. And a melon baller is superb for coring apples for baked apples.
Hmmm, waffle irons aren't listed. Ours hasn't come to play recently. And the Young Lady (inadvertently) destroyed the rice cooker before we got rid of it.