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Archive for the ‘food’ Category

Gelato!

It’s gelato!  It’s Nutella!  It’s Nutella Gelato!  Is there anything more perfect?  This recipe is so easy and so good!  Very creamy!  It’s a great go-to recipe to wow guests. I made some to celebrate this 4th of July weekend and recommend you do the same.  It’s fast becoming a regular staple in our freezer.

Gelato di Nutella
makes 1 quart

  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup sugar, plus 1/4 cup
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup Nutella (I prefer the “heaping” 1/2 cup measurement)

In a saucepan combine the milk, cream, and 1/2 cup sugar over medium heat.  Cook until the sugar dissolves (about 5 minutes).

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl whip the egg yolks with the remaining 1/4 cup sugar using an electric mixer until the eggs have become thick and pale yellow (about 4 minutes).  Pour about 1/2 cup of the warm milk and cream mixture into the egg mixture, while stirring, to bring the eggs up to the temperature of the milk and cream.  Add this mixture back into the saucepan (keep stirring!).  Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, for all eternity until the mixture becomes thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon.  This usually takes between 10 and 20 minutes so pull up a chair and grab your favorite magazine or a book.

Pour the warm custard mixture through a strainer into a medium bowl. Stir in the vanilla and Nutella until it dissolves (the wire whisk is your friend).  Chill mixture completely.  I usually put it in a quart-sized container and put it in the fridge overnight to make sure it’s good and chilled. Pour into an ice cream maker and follow manufacturer’s instructions to freeze.

The best part?  You now have four leftover egg whites to make a healthy omelette in the morning!  This will cut down on any guilt you may have about eating an entire quart of Nutella Gelato.

You’re welcome.

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Roasted Pumpkin Seeds!

So I finally got around to carving our pumpkin last night and I made some roasted pumpkin seeds to celebrate the season. He raved about the pumpkin seeds and when we had family over today they loved them, too. So I thought I’d share the recipe! My pumpkin yielded 1 1/2 cups of seeds so all of my measurements are based on that. Tweak it to your desire!
Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
Yummy Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
1 1/2 cups raw pumpkin seeds
6 cups water
4 tbsp + 1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tbsp butter, melted
1/4 tsp garlic salt
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce

Preheat oven to 275°F.

In a large pot, place pumpkin seeds, 6 cups water and 4 tbsp salt and bring to a boil. Let simmer for 10 minutes. Drain seeds onto paper towels to wick away as much of the moisture as possible. They may be a little slimy but that’s ok!

In a separate bowl, combine remaining salt (1/2 tsp), butter, garlic salt and Worcestershire sauce and add pumpkin seeds, stirring to coat.

Pour onto a sheet pan and shake to evenly disperse seeds in one layer. Bake for 45-60 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they are browned to your satisfaction. Let cool completely before eating (they get crunchier as they cool).

Enjoy!

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I’m posting again on a Wednesday. Seems to be the pattern this month.

In knitting news, I am finished with the Fiery Bolero! Yay me! Well, I still have to weave in the ends and block it. Hopefully I can do that this weekend so I can take a pic. I also turned the heel of my Badcaul sock. That was interesting. Short row heels… I think I held my breath the entire time. Question – As I try the socks on, the foot part fits great but I think the leg part may be too small. What should I do? Find a way to increase the number of stitches? Go up a needle size? Keep knitting as is and hope for the best?

Wanna hear the best knitting news of all? The Lopi for my Aran Tree Skirt is coming tomorrow!! Wahooooooo!

Since I don’t have pics of any knitting I will leave you with pics from last night when Geoff and I went to visit our friends Liz and Alex and check out their new house. We had a fantastic dinner on their back deck. See?
Dinner at Liz and Alex's
Yummmm-o!

We had chipotle chili with corn cakes on top. Very very good! Dinner conversation ranged from the crazy old lady next door to a contest of sorts to see how many different terms we knew for male and female genitalia. Yup. We’re classy folk.

For dessert I made these…
Andes Mint Cookies

These are called Andes Mint Cookies and are so yummy and so easy!

Andes Mint Cookies

1 box of any chocolate cake mix (I used Betty Crocker’s Chocolate Cake Mix)
1 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup oil
2 eggs
1 package of Andes Mints

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine cake mix, chocolate chips, oil, and eggs. Drop small spoonfuls of the batter onto an ungreased cookie sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes. While the cookies are in the oven, break the Andes Mints in half. When the cookies are done, drop half a mint on top of each cookie. Let them sit for 1-2 minutes, and then swirl the mints with your finger or a toothpick to create the icing.

I got 40 cookies out of the recipe and they’re almost gone!

Of course an evening with Liz wouldn’t be complete without something to do with knitting. I brought my swift and ball winder and we wound some Koigu that I gave her for her birthday so she can make some purrrty socks.

Liz is mesmerized by it all

Pics of knitting projects next time! Promise! And I promise to post before next Wednesday!

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I’m full!

I can’t help but think about that Taco Bell commercial today… I’M FULL! Thanksgiving was great! Geoff and I did our usual lunch with his family and dinner with mine and by the end of the day we were both properly stuffed.

Geoff and I stay out at my parents’ house on Thanksgiving and Christmas because after two HUGE meals (and plenty of alcohol courtesy of my dad) we are in no condition to drive the 45 minutes back downtown. Of course, this year I made a contribution to the alcohol with my spiked mulled cider! Oh it was sooooo good and a big hit with everyone! I’ll definitely do it again for Christmas. Here’s the recipe:

Yummy Spiked Mulled Cider

1 gallon apple cider
2 oranges, thinly sliced
4-6 whole cloves
4-6 whole allspice berries
4-6 cinnamon sticks

Put all of the ingredients in a crockpot (or a big pot on the stove I guess) and heat it up! Serve with a shot of Apple Brandy (I use Applejack brand) or a shot of spiced rum. Enjoy!

WARNING: Consumption of too much spiked cider can lead to goofy smiling…

I’m surprised I didn’t screw up Geoff’s scarf! Even under the influence of alcohol, I did get a good bit of knitting done. Oh! And on Wednesday I ordered four pairs of Addi Turbos (sizes 1 and 2) so that I can FINALLY try and master this socks on two circs thing! I can’t wait until they come!!

And when Geoff and I finally woke up this morning, my parents were starting to decorate the house for Christmas. That’s always how it was growing up. The day after Thanksgiving was when we’d put up the tree and get out all of the decorations. Seeing them begin that ritual put me in the holiday spirit and I couldn’t WAIT to get home and start decorating our house for our first Christmas as husband and wife.

I was fortunate to have had my best friend from elementary school and her mother throw me a Christmas-themed bridal shower last December and I got such GREAT things for our house! I had registered for Christmas decorations and ornaments from Pier 1 (LOVE that store) and registered for some reindeer Christmas china at Pottery Barn. If you are looking for a great (and useful!) theme for a bridal shower I definitely recommend the Christmas theme. Newlyweds never seem to have enough ornaments and decorations to make their first Christmas together special!

So anyway, I shifted around some furniture in our living room to make room for a tree (which I’m not sure when we’ll get). I put out Christmas stuff and changed out our everyday china for our Christmas china! I’m definitely in the holiday spirit now!

Tonight Geoff and I met up with “Kevelyn” to celebrate their recent engagement and our friend Kelly (my friend who’s pregnant!). It’s always TONS of fun when we all get together. Kelly put in her request for some knitted goodies for the little butterbean. She wants a little hat and some mittens. Does anyone know of a good mitten pattern for a baby? She doesn’t want those little “hand sock” things that keep babies from scratching their faces. She wants actual mittens with thumbs. The baby should be about 7-8 months old by the time it gets cold enough to warrant them. I’m sure I could just make up a pattern but if there is one already out there then all the better!

And one of my friends from high school waited on us tonight when we went out for dessert. And she said she just learned how to knit! Yay! I told her I was really wanting to get a “Stitch n’ Bitch” together here in Columbia, SC. Hopefully she’ll stop by here (Hi Evelyn!) and drop me an email. I know of a good handful of cool knitters here in Columbia and I think it would be great if I could get everyone together. If you’re reading this and live in or near Columbia, SC then drop me a line and maybe we can get something planned! Of course everything is crazy during the holidays but maybe I can get something together after the new year.

Ok, enough babbling for me tonight. I hope that everyone had a great Thanksgiving and you’re recovering from all the food and family!

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