thursday things and a real ice cream sandwich

sunset clouds

I know I’ve been really busy lately and have neglected the “food” section of this food blog. Shame on me. Don’t worry, I will get cooking again soon. I promise. Just once we finish unpacking from that trip we took last week… :)

I mean, I HAVE BEEN MAKING STUFF. Honest! I even made A Periodic Table’s tsoureki last weekend – see? Learn from my mistake – Don’t mash the ends of the braid together until you’re ABSOLUTELY 100% SURE THAT YOU’RE NOT MAKING A ROUND LOAF.

It is also helpful to make sure that you roll out your ropes to a length that you know will fit on your sheet pan, so that you don’t have to turn your regular loaf into a round loaf because it’s too big for your sheet pan… Not that I learned that from experience or anything…

Though it’s not as beautiful as hers, I’m sure it tasted every bit as good. And it definitely made some killer french toast. I mean, it tasted really good, not that it went on a murder spree or anything.

tsoureki

In other super extremely important food news – TRADER JOE’S HAS PUMPKIN KRINGLE!!! So RUN DON’T WALK (or – even better – drive (safely)!) to your nearest Trader Joe’s and GET IT BEFORE IT’S ALL GONE BECAUSE IT’S FLIPPIN’ DELICIOUS! So much so that I even had to use ALL CAPS to express my excitement. Just do it.

pumpkin kringle

Apparently maple water is a thing and now I’m super intrigued and need to find it.

And so is Kale Soda, which I fully intend to locate at our local hippie grocer.

Oreo released their Pumpkin Spice flavor yesterday and for the first time ever my usual grocer actually had the new Oreos on release day! Clearly it was a sign that I had to buy them, even though I was fairly confident that they would probably taste like perfume. You know, for science.

ps oreo

And, the verdict? Surprisingly not terrible. Although the cookies definitely smell like a pumpkin-scented candle they do not taste like potpourri. They actually taste kinda… good. They have a decent amount of pumpkin-spice flavor that really pairs well with the vanilla cookies. I think the cookies actually mute the flavor of the filling ever so slightly to prevent it from being overwhelming. I was pleasantly surprised.

In case you, like me, end up in various random debates about things like the difference between apple juice and cider, turns out there really isn’t one (depending on where you come from). So just agree to disagree and move on with your lives, OK? It’s better for everyone. :)

This New Mexico dairy farm became my hero when it fired all of its workers when it found out they were abusing its animals.

Krispy Kreme has Ghostbusters donuts for the month of October because, well, Ghostbusters is awesome.

If you’re a fan of Arrested Development, you’ll probably love a few of these Lucille Bluth quotes

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And now, since you’ve been so patient with me… a (kind of) recipe.

ice cream sandwich1469

There is one huge issue I have with these alleged “ice cream sandwiches” – mainly that they aren’t actually sandwiches. They are cookies with ice cream in between them.

If you made a roast beef sandwich with cookies on the outside I am certain that people would tell you that it was NOT a sandwich, yet somehow if you put ice cream in between the cookies it’s totally OK.

This, on the other hand, is a real ice cream sandwich. Using a sweet “bread” (well, cake baked into a bread shape, which is way more sandwich-y than a cookie). Although, I suspect that a sweet brioche or challah would do just fine in this application.

thursday things and a real ice cream sandwich

Ingredients

  • 1 loaf loaf cake or quick bread, even challah or brioche would work!
  • 1 to 2 pints ice cream (depending on how much you want to spread as filling), softened

Instructions

  1. Slice pound cake into desired number of slices (thinner slices = more sandwiches!)
  2. Spread softened ice cream onto one slice of your loaf and top with other slice. Quickly wrap in plastic wrap and place in freezer.

Notes

I used my condensed milk pound cake and cherries and cream biscuits recipes but any loaf cake/bread and ice cream should work (even store bought)

http://wee-eats.com/2014/09/25/thursday-things-and-a-real-ice-cream-sandwich/

Oh, and here is a video of a helper puppy because my bestie sent it to me and it’s amazing. Enjoy!

thursday things – WE GOT MARRIED!

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HAPPY THURSDAY! It’s my first Thursday as a WIFE.

Crazy, right?

Last Thursday Future Husband and I hit the road to drop the “Future” from his name and turn it into just plain “Husband” – 358 miles later we arrived in sunny San Diego for our relaxing beach wedding in sunny and cool San Diego.

silhouette

What we did not anticipate was that apparently they were going to have the heat wave of the century. So, although San Diego “never needs a/c” we definitely could have benefited from it on this trip. We were all a little melty and cranky, but all in all things went off without a hitch! (Except for those of us getting hitched, of course).

Considering the whole event was planned via e-mail and yelp reviews I couldn’t have wished for more. We chose Dream Beach Weddings for our ceremony and they were so kind and helpful throughout the whole process. They even recommended our dinner location (which ended up being delicious).

wedding 3

The ceremony was super small – just 15 of our closest family members (plus 1 BFF) – all who took the time out of their busy lives to fly across the country to be with us on our big day. That’s the whole gang right up there. We got married on Coronado Beach near the Hotel Del Coronado and had an amazing dinner afterwards at Vigilucci’s Ristorante just a half mile up the road from the ceremony location.

And two very special guests of honor courtesy of two ladies who never cease to amaze me ~ Shannon & Rachel. Pardon the photo below as it was taken in very poor lighting conditions with my iPhone :) But those are the guests of honor in action. :)

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Of course there is plenty happening in the rest of the world but I’ve been a little busy  on my end. I promise to have more for you in the weeks to come and for now – thanks for stopping by and have a happy weekend!

wedding 2

thursday things

rain phoenix

GAH AUGUST IS ALMOST OVER I CAN’T BELIEVE IT! The weather is drying up and in just two short weeks FH and I will be en route to Cali to become MR. & MRS. EATS! So, I guess he will just be “H” then, huh? Or maybe Mr. Eats. I don’t know, we will have to discuss whether or not he is taking my blog-name after the wedding…

All that being said, we’ve been super busy planning and organizing and even though it’s a CRAZY SMALL wedding it is still amazingly time-consuming and stressful, so, not much going on around here outside of that whole ordeal.

We did find the biggest tomato ever. I’m pretty sure its mom cheated on its dad with a pumpkin and thus, he was born. Isn’t he beautiful?

tomato

Unfortunately I murdered him by cutting him into a bunch of tiny pieces and tossing him with some cucumber, shallot, salt, garlic, and a splash of vinegar. At least he was delicious.

I also finally tried two of the four Lay’s “limited edition” flavors (I put “limited edition” in quotes because the last 3 “limited edition” flavors are still out…. sooooo…)

chips

I will preface this by saying that I had EXTREMELY low expectations for these… and on that note, I didn’t hate them! I will say the bacon mac and cheese was underwhelming, but not disgusting. It didn’t really taste like mac or cheese but had a hint-o-bacon flavor. They probably could have just called it “bacon” flavor and been done with it.

The wasabi ginger though, brace yourself for this one, tasted like… WASABI AND GINGER. It kinda blew my mind. It wasn’t super spicy, I think I felt the spice starting to build up about halfway through the bag (this is why I only get the small bags for these things) and I definitely almost finished the bag in one sitting. OK, I did that thing where I left like three chips in the bottom to pretend like I didn’t eat the whole bag in one sitting… I wouldn’t say I loved the flavor or feel the need to buy it again but I was just so shocked that they were really able to nail the wasabi-ginger flavor.

Now I need someone in Canada to send me the Canadian flavors (cough-cough-nudge-nudge – I will totally pay you!) :)

Speaking of Canada – have you read Movita’s latest post? Because you really must. Not only did she make an amazing cake but you get to watch someone fall off of a stage.

I really hope you haven’t stopped reading after she cut back on her baking posts because if you have, my friends, you have been missing out on some real gems.

In other news…

Science proves that mozzarella is indeed the best cheese for your pizza.

Our local New Times gives us tips for keeping our bundts in one piece.

McDonald’s is testing ‘flavor your own’ McNuggets – if I was like 7 years old I would be totally pumped.

This is the coolest notebook ever (and I totally told FH about this idea in the form of having a notepad on the refrigerator that would sync with my Evernote app on my phone – HELLO GROCERY LISTS!) Looks like I missed out on hitting it big again! Dammit!

Here are the best things I ate in August…

Unfortunately we really didn’t go out much so this list is pretty short…

The Original Chopped Salad from The Gladly in Phoenix – this salad is so popular it has its own Facebook page.

It’s basically arugula, israeli couscous, smoked salmon, freeze dried corn, and their own trail mix. You can actually get the recipe here!

gladly salad

Next up was the seasonal corn dish (basically fancy creamed corn) from Cafe Bink in Carefree, AZ.

Consists of corn, peppers, butter, cheese, and croutons (for some reason?) – Who cares, it was delicious.

bink corn

And now a tiny pig running through grass because, why not?

EEEE look at his little legs go! It almost makes me feel bad about eating bacon….

Almost.

cherries and cream biscuit pops

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My love for Jenis Ice Creams is no secret around here.

I don’t let my inability to stop by their shop get in the way of my love. Aside from stuffing my face with ice cream and sharing their recipes on the blog, I harrased a number of I ran an impassioned e-mail writing campaign to bring Jeni’s to my local grocery stores. Though it may or may not have had an effect on the fact that I can now stop at my local grocer and pick up a pint of Jeni’s whenever the urge strikes, I like to give myself at least a little credit.

See, people,  if you annoy enough people if you chase your dreams and they really can come true!

My next goal is to get a local scoop shop! (Really guys, I will go in early and churn the ice cream just give me the storefront!)

I was so excited when I found out that my beloved Jeni’s was releasing another cookbook  that even FH knew about the book’s release – and totally surprised me by ordering me a copy FOR NO REASON! Seriously, how often do boys not only a> notice something that you like, or b> get you something out of the blue, let alone DOING BOTH AT THE SAME TIME.

Note: It is entirely possible that the real FH may have been abducted by aliens – but I like this new one so I think I’ll keep him.

The only downfall of this amazing plan was that the book arrived mere days before we started our Whole 30 diet. Sooooo, no ice cream for us.  As soon as the diet ended, though, I dove headfirst into the book and picked out any number of recipes that I decided I needed to make.

In the end I settled on Page 36 – Cream Biscuits with Peach Jam Ice Cream. I gathered my ingredients and got ready for a day of ice cream making… only to realize that my peaches mysteriously disappeared.

Does that ever happen to you? You go to the store and you know you purchased something but then as soon as you go to actually use it… it’s nowhere to be found? Happens to me all the time, guys. Seriously. ALL. THE. TIME.

I wasn’t going to let this hiccup derail me though, so what if I was missing one of the three main ingredients of making this ice cream? We are chefs, we improvise!

So improvise I did – with cherries. The other recipe I’m dying to make from this book is the White House Cherry Ice Cream, but it requires something called “cherry blossom extract” which is a bit outlandish for the home cook and I haven’t yet been able to justify the purchase… so I took the cherry swirl from that recipe and used it in place of the peach jam from my original recipe and – TADAA!

cherry pop 1

Cream biscuits with cherries and ice cream – but that’s a bit of a mouthful so let’s just call it “Cherries and cream biscuit ice cream.” I guess that’s a bit of a mouthful too.

The slight cherry syrup is bright and crisp and pairs perfectly with the sweet ice cream base and the not-too-sweet tender biscuits. Oh, and I made these into Popsicle molds because I couldn’t help myself.

They are amazing.

[ Note: THIS IS NOT A SPONSORED POST - Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams has nothing to do with this post and doesn't even know I exist - I just love them SO MUCH that I really think you should buy their books, check to see if they are at your local grocer, or even if you might be lucky enough to have one of their scoop shops nearby! ]

You can get their new book here: (It’s only $11.99 so you really have no excuse not to buy it)

or pick up a copy of their original book (it’s only $9.99 right now, guys!)

cherries and cream biscuit pops

Yield: 12 pops, with some left over

Ingredients

    For the ice cream base
  • 1 1/4 cups heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup sweet cream shortcakes (recipe below)
  • 1/4 cup cherry swirl (recipe below)
  • For the shortcake biscuits
  • 1 1/2 cups self-rising flour (or add 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder + 1/4 teaspoon salt to 1 cup all-purpose flour and whisk well to combine)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, chilled
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar (optional)
  • 1 1/3 cups heavy cream
  • For cherry swirl
  • 1 cup pitted cherries (I used frozen)
  • 1/4 cup dried cherries
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup water

Instructions

    Make your ice cream base:
  1. Fill a large bowl with ice water and set aside (this will be your ice bath)
  2. In a small bowl or ramekin, mix 1/4 cup of heavy cream with the cornstarch and set aside.
  3. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk cream cheese and salt together until smooth.
  4. In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, cook the remaining cream with the sugar and corn syrup until it comes to a boil.
  5. Boil the mixture for 4 minutes and remove from heat to whisk in the cornstarch mixture. Return the saucepan to heat and cook, stirring, until slightly thickened (about 20 seconds).
  6. Gradually whisk the cream mixture into the cream cheese until smooth, then stir in the buttermilk.
  7. Pour mixture into a 1-gallon ziploc bag and submerge in ice bath about 30 minutes.
  8. Transfer the ice cream base to the refrigerator until you are ready to churn your ice cream.
  9. Make the shortcake biscuits:
  10. Preheat oven to 450F and line a 8 inch baking pan with parchment.
  11. Pulse flour, sugar, and butter in a food processor until the butter is in pea-sized pieces. Add cream and pulse just unti lthe dough comes togehter.
  12. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and press it together.
  13. Fold the dough over itself, gently kneading, few times until it is no longer clumpy. Spread/press dough into the prepared pan and bake for about 20 minutes until golden brown on top.
  14. Allow to cool completely, then crumble shortcake until you have 1/2 cup of biscuit crumbles. Set aside.
  15. You will have a lot of shortcake left over. (What a problem to have!) I cut mine into individual servings and wrapped them and put them in the freezer for when the urge for shortcake strikes.
  16. Make the cherry swirl:
  17. Combine cherries, sugar, and water in a saucepan over medium-high heat and bring to a boil. Boil about 5 minutes until sugar is dissolved, stirring frequently.
  18. Remove cherries from heat and allow to cool to room temperature.
  19. You have the option to drain and/or puree the strawberries, I left my sauce as-is and just didn't add all of the liquid when mixing the cherries into the ice cream.
  20. Churn and assemble the ice cream:
  21. When ready to churn, pour ice cream base into frozen canister and spin until thick and creamy.
  22. If making pops:
  23. Layer into ice pop molds (ice cream, cherries, biscuits, repeat) starting and ending with the ice cream. Leave 1/4-inch gap at the top of the ice cream molds (it will expand when it freezes). Top with lid and insert popsicle sticks - freeze until completely solid.
  24. You will have extra of everything - I layered my extra into a smaller storage container and had scoopable ice cream as well (hooray!)
  25. To remove mine, I wrapped whatever popsicle I was removing with a damp warm towel and wiggled until the popsicle came free.
  26. If making standard ice cream:
  27. Layer ice cream into storage container, layering with biscuits and cherries. Press parchment paper onto the top and cover with lid. Place in freezer and freeze until firm.

Notes

*You will have extra of everything - I layered my extra into a smaller storage container and had scoopable ice cream as well (hooray!)

*To remove my popsfrom their molds, I wrapped whatever popsicle I was removing with a damp warm towel and wiggled until the popsicle came free.

http://wee-eats.com/2014/08/25/cherries-and-cream-biscuit-pops/

thursday things – new oreos, the perfect butter knife, and my life lately

sunset

Happy almost Friday (which will really be my Thursday, because I work on Saturday so Saturday will be my Friday and then Monday will be my Sunday and I’ll be off kilter the whole week and have no idea what day it is ever!)

Both of my home cities have made national news lately, most recently here in AZ we have had some massive flooding. It’s monsoon season so storms are relatively normal but I haven’t seen flooding on this scale since I’ve lived here…

It’s been pretty exciting.

One thing about living in the desert is that nothing happens, generally speaking, so when something DOES happen suddenly everyone in your contacts list is a weatherman (or woman). You get texts all the time like “THERE’S LIGHTNING BY OUR HOUSE IS THERE LIGHTING OVER BY YOU?” or “THE WIND SURE IS PICKING UP!” or “OMG RAIN! HEADING NE FROM THE SW!”

Thanks, weathermen! I would be lost without all of you ;)

My other (original) hometown of Toledo, Ohio was made national headlines a couple of weeks ago too. Not for storms, though. For having toxic water. Like no drinking, no bathing, no touching, no boiling TOXIC WATER. My amazing niece even made a vlog about it.

Although I’m generally against vanity plate, I saw one that I love on my way home from the gym the other day…

beef plate

Meanwhile in the rest of the world…

Serious Eats explains why we can’t substitute dutched cocoa for regular cocoa (all the time).

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China is eating pears that look like buddha.

This guy is making spiropancakes.

I’ve been ruining my steaks for all these years by thawing them before cooking them when I should be cooking them straight from frozen.

Frozen

For the record, I did try this method over the weekend. Although my steaks were cooked perfectly through, the process was rather messy. It requires starting off with a pretty good amount of oil in your pan on the stovetop and then transferring it to the oven. For me, that meant that I spent the time while the steak was in the oven cleaning oil splatters off of my stovetop, counter, microwave, nearby floor and just general surrounding area…

So, although your steak will be perfectly cooked, your kitchen will be covered in oil splatters so… maybe I’ll just stick to the usual way of cooking steak.

Meanwhile Nabisco has released caramel apple oreos for fall and pumpkin spice may be on the way… This whole oreo thing is getting a little out of control, don’t you think?

Humans have finally perfected the butter knife - Thanks, Kickstarter!

And yes, I pledged because I NEED THIS EFFING KNIFE! There are few things in life that are more enraging than tearing your bread when trying to spread cold butter on it.

Foodbeast taught us how to turn soft tortillas into hard taco shells (hint: it involves the microwave).

finished-tort

I discovered a fun new iPhone game. I didn’t download it (99 cents!? Do they think I’m made of money or something?!)  but the video advertisement is rather amazing… if it’s ever free I’m totally going to download it.