Victor has inspired me to post today.
My idea for a materinity t-shirt:
No, I'm just fat.
Seriously, though. I'm fat. At least I feel that way after eating, like, 7 deep-fried potato latkes and innumerable cookies in our Christmukkah food orgy yesterday.
In culinary news:
Christopher pioneers the use of a deep fryer in latke creation. Initial results are promising: a lot less oil splatter, perfectly crisp outsides. The remaining challenge is that they cook so fast in the fryer that the insides don't quite cook, so we tried finishing them in the oven. However, we left them in too long at too high a temperature (about 375, I think), and they came out pretty overdone. I think with a few adjustments we've got a pretty good method.
I go on a cookie-baking spree. My output this year:
- Linzer cookies. Yum! My favorite of the whole bunch. The cookies are a short dough with ground toasted almonds, and they're filled with either raspberry or apricot jam and then very lightly dusted with powdered sugar. Got the recipe from JoyofBaking.com.
- Oatmeal lace chocolate sandwich cookies (somewhere in between Pepperidge Farm's Brussels cookies and Florentines). These were an interesting recipe from Nick Malgieri's Cookies Unlimited. I think my guests liked them better than I did.
- Ricotta drops. Another Nick Malgieri recipe. These are Italian-style drop cookies with ricotta cheese, lemon and orange zests. The flavor was fabulous, but the texture not so great.
- Gingerbread cookies. This year in the shape of gingerbread people, dreidels, and 6-pointed stars. Recipe from Cooks' Illustrated. I thought they turned out pretty nicely, more chewy than crisp, which I prefer.
- Brownies. First I made a Cook's Illustrated recipe for Triple-Chocolate Espresso Brownies. I didn't like them -- the flavor was harsh. I think this came from the ground espresso beans and my use of Scharfenberger's chocolate -- their semisweet is closer to bittersweet than I'm used to, and I didn't figure this out till after I'd used it. I may try the recipe again with a different mix of chocolate and coffee extract. So then, I decided to just throw together our traditional family recipe for brownies: a box of fudge brownie mix from the grocery store along with a cup of chocolate chips, and then bake it for the minimum time possible. Damn it, I hate how those turn out so well!
Pictures to come soon...