Monday, January 31, 2005

Cleaning Out Leftovers

1. It would appear that I was not the only one having difficulty with my bread dough this past week. (Even the French bread I made yesterday failed to rise as spectacularly as it usually does.) My Fabulous Aunt reported similar problems with her cinnamon roll dough over the weekend, and after much discussion of the matter last evening, we decided that the yeast must have been adversely affected by either the solar flares early last week or the full moon. Perhaps both. You never know.

2. Speaking of my Fabulous Aunt, I now have her not-so-secret recipe for homemade caramels. I don't plan on making any soon, but I just thought you should know.

3. That carrot salad was so fantastic on my peanut butter sandwich last week that I made more salad and bought whole wheat tortillas so that I could continue to indulge this week. Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm...

4. The last of the vegetable stock went into a Provencal artichoke soup yesterday, and I'm afraid I must report that I am not entirely pleased with the results. Although the stockpot marriage of carrots, potatoes, onions, and artichokes with orange juice and saffron is well-intentioned, this recipe is a little too heavy on "top notes"... too brightly tart, too aggressively flavored with little depth. I think I will try it again sometime and add garlic, thyme, and rosemary to see if that improves the flavors. Oh, and I am definitely going to omit the sherry. Sherry-laced soup can be a wonderful thing... and it can also be dreadful. In this case, it just didn't cut it.

5. I used up the rest of the dried cherries in the cupboard in biscotti... took the cranberry-orange biscotti recipe and altered it to include the dried cherries, white "chocolate" morsels, and a dash of real almond extract. A very happy combination, and just perfect for my morning tea time.

6. And since I had yogurt sauce leftover from the Georgian meal, I just had to get more green beans and make the borani again. I love beans! I tried fresh Italian parsley in the recipe this time, which was okay, but the cilantro was better, and I suspect the basil would be best of all. (Must try that this summer when I can pick it fresh from the garden.)

It's amazing what all I can get done over the weekend!


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