Thursday, March 22, 2007

The Cook's Night Out

No cooking posts this evening as we are dining outside of the home. I expect to continue tomorrow with the Friday Lenten cake series, though truth be told, I'm getting a bit sick of eggless, butterless cakes. As we are a multi-faith family, the Lenten cakes will be interrupted for Pesach (Passover) where I will be unable to bake with regular flour. That ought to be challenging (it is amazing what you can do with potato starch and matzo meal). I'll likely have posts detailing my very likely disastrous attempts at gefilte fish and borscht. I was hoping the sorrel in our garden would be up by now so I could make Schav (cold sorrel soup) but it is only just beginning to peek through the soil.

I'm devoting this weekend to making various stocks. The weather is expected to be stormy, so what better way to spend an afternoon indoors than reducing beef and bones to the point where they become gelatin? Well fine, you have your idea of fun, and I have mine. Seventeen years as a vegetarian shot to hell…

I'm making my own candy for the Easter baskets this year. As the weather is getting a bit too warm for shipping chocolate safely, I'm making sanded (sugared) hard candies of citron, clove and anisette. I've also worked out a malted milk candy (sans chocolate coating) that is strangely addictive. I might make some macaroons and of course, the ever popular graham crackers as well. Maybe some variations on my butterscotch recipe-using heavy cream instead. I'm at a loss beyond that. I like the idea of pulled mints, but the thought of all the things that could go wrong is enough to keep me from attempting it. I'd better get my show together soon. I'm making giant lollipops for my son Daniel, though I think when he sees all the exciting non-edibles like liquid bubbles, sidewalk chalk, and stuffed animals, he will lose interest after a few seconds.

On the garden front-every sunny window in my house has a tray of seedlings before it. This year (in addition to what we have as perennials) we are growing vast quantities of sweet basil, sunflowers, mint, sage, Brussels sprouts, yellow onions, rosemary, oregano, and edible nasturtiums. I should have about 30-40 basil plants after the less hardy ones sink or swim when replanted. For the months of July and August we are typically overrun with basil, which is, frankly, heaven.

See everyone tomorrow for (ugh, not another) Lenten cake. I'm thinking something with Kirsch.

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