Friday, January 23, 2015

Don't Believe Me, Just Watch: Recipe Update

In my sultriest Katy Perry voice I am happy to tell you:

I baked a cake.

And I liked it.

It's not what I'm used to.

Sophie, formerly known as Prince er, Elle, left me the recipe for her Fondant aux Clementines.

She converted metric to US standard and wrote little helpful notes such as " Don't forget to grease the pan and to put a little bit of flour in order not to make it sticky".

She patiently answered my Viber text requesting what size baking pan to use and immediately posted on my IG cake picture "perfect".

I want you all to know the last cake I baked looked like an apple pizza so I'm thrilled with this.

Not only is it easy to make, it's delicious to eat and it's seasonal.

So get going!

Sophie's cake: ( as written)

3 eggs
 150g-3/4 cup sugar
 150g-1+ 1/4 cup flour
 1+1/4 teaspoon baking powder 
 150g- 1/2 cup+2 tablespoons butter
3 clementines

Sophie's syrup:
3 clementines
2 tablespoons of orange juice ( I used blood orange)
50g-1/4 cup of sugar

Preheat over to 350.

* In a bowl mix the eggs and the sugar until it turns into a light yellow color.
*Add the flour and the baking powder
* Melt the butter in the microwave (around 1 minute 30/ 2 minutes). Pour into mixing bowl. Mix well.
* Zest your clementines and add it to the preparation then add the juice of the clementines. Mix well.
*Pour the mixture into a cake pan. ( she uses a 24cm round cake pan, at her suggestion I used a 9.5inch pan) (remember her earlier instructions about greasing and flouring pan.
*Put in the oven for 35 minutes
* While it is baking, prepare the syrup by mixing the sugar the juice of the 3 clementines and the orange juice in a saucepan on medium heat.
Mix constantly stirring 5 to 10 minutes, until it gets syrupy.
* When the cake is done, pull it out of the oven and pour the syrup over it immediately.
Let it cool before unmoulding it.
*Decorate with wedges of clementines if you have any left

From my lips to your ears: Ooh la la.

Merci Mademoiselle. xoxo

Update: in my excitement I deleted the 3 clementines that go in the cake batter itself. These 3 are zested, yes this is the peel, and then the juice is added to the batter.

The other 3 clementines go in the syrup.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

How I Hijacked My Weekend

I had a flat white from Starbucks on Friday afternoon.

I don't know why I switched from my usual iced latte to a hot drink made with two shots of ristretto served with skim milk but I did and I was wired like it was 1986.

Wired enough that when I came home from a full days work I decided to switch bedrooms from the little cosy room in the front to the larger room at the back.

This involved 3 dressers, one old (read heavy) pie safe, 2 beds, bedside table, lamps, 2 mattresses, 2 boxsprings, well you get the picture.

About 45 minutes into it, as I was attempting to wrestle a box spring out of an old brass bed frame I realized my shoulder was screaming.

It had been screaming since Christmas so I listened and after a brief look outside to see who was home, I text Vicky, my glamorous but strong friend across the street, for help.

Three minutes later, full make up, blonde hair flowing, still dressed from work, she was at my door asking what we were doing. Moving bedrooms I told her.

At some point as we were shoving my mattress through the little hallway she asked me if I had taken a caffeine pill.

I am a caffeine pill I told her. Flat white still at work.

45 minutes later we were as done as we were gonna get.

By Sunday I had my clothes moved into the new closet, plants and shelves arranged, pictures hung and had slept like an angel both nights. The sun rises on the front of the house. This has confused Gus so much this morning he let me sleep in till 7:15, believe me when I say this does not happen.

Also believe me when I say I was almost late for work.

I have now created more work for myself because I have to get the little room back into fighting shape before I can rent it out.

And this is a busy week. But I'm pretty sure I know where I can purchase that extra get up and go I'll so desperately need.

 ( This is not a paid announcement)

Monday, January 12, 2015

My Scandi Home

The quiet days of January are upon us.

Outside is white, grey and rainy.

Inside is black and white and dry.

Cats sleep.
I eat.
Was I the last blogger standing who hadn't roasted a cauliflower?
A head of cauliflower does give one pause, especially if you're cooking for one.
But I took the plunge and over 3 days finished it all.

Then had to talk myself out of buying another.

We had a snow day so I made my favorite soup loaded with kale, potatoes, onions, garlic, black eyed peas from the freezer and sausage.

And yesterday, Senor from around the corner, finally returned from New Orleans,made jambalaya with chicken and andouille sausage. We ate it, appetites heightened by the karmic ending of the Packers/Cowboys game. ( Just had to sneak a little football in here didn't I).

I attempted baking, Martha's applesauce, oatmeal cookies. I skipped the icing, swapped out cranberries for the raisins and found myself with a tower of cookies. I couldn't tell if they were good.

The Irishman next door had shoveled me a "wee" path. ( a wee path can you stand it?)
So I forced rewarded him with cookies. I brought a few into work and once they were pronounced edible I brought in the rest.

The applesauce flavor seemed to intensify with age, nice.

This was the first time I had ever baked that I had all my ingredients measured out in advance. It  certainly made it easier but it will take more than one so so batch of cookies to make a baker out of me.

Next week I hope to bake Elle's Clementine Cake for flower shop birthdays.

The full report and recipe coming soon. 

You may notice I'd doing pretty well with that NY resolution to feed myself better.. but why oh why did I forget to add go back to the gym?

Shouldn't these go hand in hand?

Sunday, January 4, 2015

The Good, The Bad And The Playoffs

I have an hour to calm down from the heartbreaking loss of the Detroit Lions to the Dallas Cowboys and get in a proper mood for season 5 of Downton Abbey.

Well, heartbreaking if you're A Michigangster, and that I am.

So,deep breath Jane. And thanks Susan for all the text. They helped until I text " Jesus" and you replied " I think he's their only hope now".

The good: the newly turned 3 year old , the former Mr. B, came for dinner with parents.

He declined a seat at the table. Like his father he seems to prefer lounging on the couch.

Unlike his father, he likes watching endless loops of Thomas The Train and Donald Duck.

The good: dinner was delicious. I made a rice pilaf spiced with cumin seeds and scattered with chopped cilantro and parsley.

Middle Eastern meatballs with finely chopped onions and garlic, laced with heaping teaspoon fulls of cumin, paprika, a bit of cayenne, salt, pepper, chopped parsley and cilantro, an egg and a handful of breadcrumbs.

These were simmered in a sauce of chopped tomatoes, sauteed onion, garlic, a chili pepper with the same herbs and spices as above.

The good news: there are 2 left.

A romaine salad with sliced beets and pomegranate seeds tossed with that nutty vinaigrette I'm so nutty about from How Cook Everything. Maybe it's just the change from balsamic to sherry vinegar.

 The bad news: I forgot to take pictures.

In other bad news: the Lions lost and if the former Mr. B was paying any attention to Aunt Jane he now has quite a vocabulary to show off at "school" tomorrow.

Father forgive me, for I know not what I say.

Blame it on the Motor City.