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Dairy Dreams

I have a mixed relationship with dairy.  I was a kid who had to be bribed to drink milk, even if it was heavy laden with chocolate Quik powder.  Since childhood, if I eat cereal with milk, its sole purpose is to the wet cereal.  I drain the milk off every spoonful and discard what’s left in the bowl.

I’m ambivalent to ice cream.  I’ll eat it.  In fact, a favorite summer activity is to go for a drive where the destination is somewhere to eat ice cream.  I’ll never say no to the trip.  For me, ice cream is a vehicle for mix-ins or toppings.  I seldom order an ice cream that doesn’t contain pieces (chocolate chips, chopped up cookies, cookie dough, candy or nuts).  Plain ice cream requires hot fudge.

On the other hand, I could never live without cheese.  I’m slightly lactose intolerant, but I’m willing to live with the side effects.

I am always enchanted by the idea of making ice cream, enough that we own an ice cream maker, though we seldom make the effort.  David Lebovitz’s Buttermilk Ice Cream, this week’s recipe for Cook the Book Fridays, offered the needed excuse.

This recipe was so simple to prepare.  Sugar and corn syrup are dissolved in heavy cream which then chills overnight.  Stir in buttermilk before freezing in the ice cream maker.  There was leftover peach tart, so rather than serve the ice cream drizzled with olive oil and salt, I served the tart à la mode.

Unfortunately, it was not a hit.  I’ll admit that the corn syrup helped with the iciness that my homemade ice cream often has.  Another positive: the ice cream wasn’t too sweet. Other than that, neither of us liked it.  It tasted too much like frozen milk, more specifically buttermilk, and not enough like ice cream.  What a bummer to pour the rest down the drain.

I’m guessing mine might be the minority opinion.  To see whether my Cook the Book Fridays friends were fans, check out their links here.

Better Late Than Never

I’ve been struggling with my posts lately.  There is too much going on the world at large.  News has captivated my attention, and when I sit at the computer, I end up reading more and more news.  In comparison, taking time to write about what I cooked or ate seems insignificant and irrelevant.

I did make the other August recipe assignment on time, but failed to share the results.  Eggplant caviar is a smooth dip, similar to Baba Ganoush but without any tahini.  Once the eggplant is charred and roasted, it is quick to put together.  Served with pita chips (and maybe some hummus), this is a nice nibble before dinner.  David Lebovitz’s version is tasty, but I preferred the one we made for French Fridays with Dorie which included chopped fresh tomatoes.

Others from Cook the Book Fridays share their opinions here.

Here’s hoping that I’m timely in September.

 

 

 

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ffwd: peach melba

Peach Melba is a dish I hadn’t thought of in decades. When I was a child, I spent a few days of my summer vacations visiting with my grandparents, by myself. My father’s parents lived in Center City Philadelphia, so it was an urban adventure for a suburban girl. My Gram took me to museums, to lunch, and all around the town. We had a great time. My Pop-Pop worked nights, so each evening, Gram made a delicious dinner before sending him off to work.

Often, for dessert, she would make a special treat: Peach Melba. This is not something I ever had at home, or anywhere else, come to think of it. I’m sure I thought that my Gram invented it. Sliced peaches, vanilla ice cream, and raspberry sauce. Sort of a sundae, but something more.

I was thrilled to see that Dorie had a recipe to share for this dessert. I was game to try it for myself. I poached fresh peaches in a lemony sugar syrup, then boosted the syrup with cassis and vanilla extract which made it blush. For the sauce, I pureed frozen raspberries (from my yard) with a little of the syrup. For the ice cream, I was going to make a batch from Jeni’s Splendid recipe. (Have you tried this? If not, you must! It’s amazing, seriously). As usual, I ran out of time, so opted for Ben & Jerry’s instead.

In a fun glass, layer a spoonful of syrup, poached peaches (I used a quarter), some ice cream, and more peaches. Drizzle with raspberry sauce and sprinkle with toasted almonds. You have a festive dessert, and for me, a very nostalgic one, filled with happy memories of time spent with my grandmother.

Gram and Me (August 2002)

This marks the 100th recipe for French Fridays with Dorie. We’ve been at this for nearly two years, starting in October 2010. Each week, we cook a recipe from Dorie Greenspan’s book Around My French Table. I can honestly say that, even though I am a cookbookaholic, I have never made so many recipes from a single book before. I’ve made 95 of the 100 recipes so far. It’s been a blast, and I’ve “met” so many wonderful people from around the world. I’m glad that the adventure will continue. Cheers to my fellow Doristas and to Dorie Greenspan!

You can check out other Peach Melba experiences at the LYL post for this recipe on French Fridays with Dorie.

P.S. I just diced up a poached peach in mixed it along with raspberry sauce into Greek yogurt. Peach melba was great for breakfast, too!