I found this recipe on the back of the Zulka brown sugar bag. The cake looked great on the package, I happened to have apples in the refrigerator, and I wanted to try something new.
The instructions on how to make the cake on the bag make no sense, therefore, I changed it to the traditional method of creaming the butter and then creaming the butter and sugar together. Okay, so you don’t know what creaming is? It’s very simple. Put room temperature butter into a large bowl, and then beat it with an electric beater until it is nice and smooth. If you don’t have room temperature butter, you can cut the butter up into small pieces and then cream it. The best way to beat is with a stand mixer, but a hand mixer will do just fine. Don’t try this with a whisk, it’s too difficult.
This is a very moist cake, and may take quite a while to bake. The original instructions said 40-55 minutes, mine was in over 80 minutes, your mileage may vary.
I have been a fan of Chinese Chicken Salad since the 1980’s when I first had it. Everyone once in a while, I have all the ingredients to make it. This afternoon, Spane and I went and had a very filling lunch at Everest Burgers, so we didn’t want a heavy or big dinner. I asked him if salad would be good, and he said yes. Then I went to my pantry and saw that I had Mandarin oranges, I knew what to make.
This salad has everything but the chicken, and if you happen to have cooked chicken, you are more than welcome to add it to this salad. Make sure you have a sharp knife because you will be chopping the greens and the onion into small pieces.
You could add other fruit to this salad as well, like lychee nuts, or even cherries. I had unsweetened coconut chips which had just enough sweetness, sweetened coconut would be too powerful, so I don’t recommend it. Please choose whichever Asian salad dressing you like, we like Girard’s Asian Dressing.
I get tired of the same old thing for dinner all the time, especially with my favorite meat, pork. Whilst perusing some recipe websites, I came across a recipe for pork chops with peaches, and that set me to thinking about what I had in my pantry. I had a can of apricots that I was going to have with yogurt for breakfast, but this seemed like a better idea. We had these chops with couscous, and Italian cut green beans. It was delicious, simple to prepare, and impressive enough to serve for company.
It will help you to have an immersion blender when you make this, so that the sauce is nice and silky smooth. If you don’t have one, then crush the apricots with a fork before putting them in the sauce. Either way, you will have an excellent dish.
When you live in the Northern hemisphere, it gets hot in the summer. When you live in Los Angeles, even though were having a historically long drought, it gets humid, too. Hot and humid is uncomfortable to say the least, and one of the best ways to beat the heat is to have something icy.
I happened to have had a bunch of limes and some mint in my refrigerator, and a set of new Popsicle molds. Mojitas are fun, even without the liquor. So, I made these Popsicles for Spane and I. Let me tell you, they were great. If you decide to make these and want to use rum, please understand that alcohol has a much lower freezing temperature than water, so you will have to make sure that your freezer is capable and you leave them in for a sufficient amount of time, over night would probably be good.
This is one of my favorite desserts. I haven’t made it in quite a while, because I have a minor child, and A) don’t want to share with him, and B) don’t want to eat the whole thing myself. So when Easter came, and I knew people were coming over, it was a perfect opportunity.
We have a wonderful Persian bakery, Flor De Cafe, in Glendale, and that was where I was finally able to find real lady fingers. Real lady fingers are crisp and readily absorb liquids. The stuff at the supermarket that comes out in Strawberry season is spongy and will not absorb the liquids correctly for this classic dessert. Ergo, another reason I have made this in a long time.
I was able to find Mascarpone, a wonderful Italian cheese with a texture reminiscent of cream cheese. Mascarpone is slightly sweet, and has a silky texture. It is made from cream and some kind of citric acid. It’s expensive, another reason I don’t make this dessert very often. Well, I found some at my local Armenian store, from the wonderful folks at Sadaf, and it was great. As I was writing this, I came across a method for making homemade Mascarpone, so I will be doing that from now on.
We have a wonderful Farmer’s Market in Glendale on Thursdays, and I was able to get some big, lovely, organic strawberries form my Tiramisu. It made it very special.
A few days ago, someone asked me for a different way to roast a chicken, and I have her this recipe. I haven’t made this in a long time, and it was a welcome change from the ho-hum regular roasted chicken we all know and love.
Spane and I both love grapefruit, and I was lucky to get some beautiful ruby-red grapefruit at my local corner store. Today, I’m going to go to the local farmer’s market and get some more. Did you know that grapefruit is really good for you? As a member of the citrus family, they are packed with vitamin C, have low sodium, low sugar, high lycopene, high potassium, and fat burning enzymes.
Binder clips bind chicken skin together
I have to tell you, binder clips are great in the kitchen. I use them mainly to close up bags, especially bags of frozen vegetables. When I was making my chicken, the skin on the breast tore, and I needed it to cover the grapefruit slices. What to do? I heard some TV doctor yelling “Clamp!” in my head, got some binder clips out of the drawer and clamped it up. When the chicken was finished cooking, it was just a matter of removing the clips, and the skin stayed nicely together. Clean up was simple, too, and unlike twine, I can reuse my clips after thoroughly washing them.