News bulletin: it’s been REALLY hot this week. So when it came to thinking about a dessert, requirements were low cooking to eating ratio, and something more sharp than sweet. In my humidity-indused lethargy I came across Smitten Kitchen – how did I not know about this blog? Love her tone – perfection is not the goal, I messed up on my way to this recipe, my kitchen looks like the one every NYC-dweller has conducted cooking ballet in before – all in all, great place to peruse. So, dove in with her Pink Lemonade Bars. Here’s my version. I too made some typical cooking shortcuts – didn’t wait for crust to cool before I filled (which may have resulted in more filling being absorbed by said crust) and went forward with raspberries that were a tad lacking in flavor. Nonetheless, result worth repeating. My own addition – had extra raspberry puree, so added a tad of simple syrup (as I said, they weren’t at their best) and drizzled over vanilla ice cream. Perfect antidote to a cloyingly hot summer day. I’m smitten.
I don’t own a deep fat frier, and I’m fine with that. Yet somehow this week I went down the fry road twice. First, needed to devise culinary celebration with my 8-year-old son (sorry, 8 1/2, these things matter!) for my husband. Different ages; similar tastes. Fond memories of the fried Oreos from the dearly departed Albany Wine ‘N Diner were requested. Took a cue from Faith in the Kitchen, and fried the cookies in funnel cake batter. Key tip: freeze the cookies first. Not bad, though curious melding of chocolate cookie and batter into one indistinguishable layer of dough. If I ever take this path again, would like an approach that allows the cookie to maintain more of it’s original crunchy essence. Second fried food tried: Padma Lakshmi‘s take on flautas. General appreciation all around our table; quick to make, so good weeknight dinner. Final culinary question: can you combine the left over frying oil from a sweet food to the leftover frying oil from a savory food to use again?
For what may be our last really chilly evening of the season, we relied on Rolf’s of Albany to hook us up. Freshly made sausages 3 ways: bratwurst, weisswurst, and knockwurst. Showstopper is their red cabbage – would go well with many other things. It’s called a pork store, but with so much more. Go Rolf’s!
Nothing better on a lazy weekend than this eggy puffed pancake. Serve with any jams you have around, or sauté up some fruit leftover from the week. Can even be made with a #pre-caffeine brain, perfect if you have overnight guests waking up in your home. I used the basic Joy of Cooking version this morning, but there are many variations: once you get the basics down, invent you own!
We have finally had a proper snow – only a few inches, but enough to feel like winter, and invite sledding. Great soup accompaniment thanks to the Kitchn. Mushroom and wild rice soup: perfect.