It’s official. I’m in summer-mode when it comes to the kitchen. The thought of turning on my oven makes me pull back in disgust. Heat? In this heat? Not a chance.
Surprisingly I found relief from the heat in this chilled cucumber and dill soup. I tend to struggle with cold soup. Gazpacho, with its chunks of vegetables, I’m ok with, but when it comes to pureed soups I sometimes feel like I’m eating spoonfuls of flavored milk or yogurt. After a bowl of the stuff, I typically find myself agreeing with lactose expert Ron Burgundy.
We rarely go out to eat, but when we do we’re picky. In my opinion, the number one reason to go out to eat is to order something that you can’t do as well at home. Pizza was my favorite example. I don’t have a wood fired oven, pizza peels drive me crazy (my pizza dough always seems to stick while I’m trying to get it on the pizza stone), and my crust never gets as crisp as I would like it. Pizza at home is just not as good. Or it wasn’t.
I’ve experimented over the past couple of months. I’ve let dough rise overnight, for several hours, and for no time at all. I’ve messed with the heat and cooked pizzas at 450 degrees, 550 degrees, and finally just under the broiler. I’ve grilled pizzas on the grill and baked them on a stone. I’ve preheated that stone from 30 minutes to more than 1 hour. In short, I’ve made and eaten a lot of pizza and I think I’ve found one I like. I’ve included the recipe at the end of this post, but to truly get praiseworthy results read on for some tips to making a great pie in your home.
Posted in Uncategorized
Tagged cheese, dough, Food, grilled pizzas, home pizza, How-to, pizza, Recipe, tips, Vegetarian, yeast
I’ve never understood the desire to slow-roast marshmallows. Those people who turn their marshmallows methodically at a safe distance from the flames are enigmas to me. Where is the urgency? While you dally near danger in the hopes of getting a perfect toast, I’ve eaten four s’mores.
Marshmallows are meant to be plunged into the heart of a fire. They should burst into flames immediately and when flaming, instead of cries of dismay, one should proudly hold them aloft and only blow them out when one’s fiery mallow is in imminent peril of falling off the stick. Although, for the record, any kid who has experienced summer and the glories of a marshmallow roast will tell you that the marshmallow lost to the flames is still awesome and one marshmallow should probably be sacrificed for this purpose anyway. Kinda of like pouring out a little of your beer for your homies, it’s good karma.
Posted in Uncategorized
Tagged Chocolate, culinary torch, cupcakes, dessert, Food, graham cracker, graham cracker crust, marshmallow, Recipe, roast marshmallows, s'mores
Tis the season for outdoor entertaining and with it that dreaded request to “please bring a side dish.” Maybe it’s just me, but I find being a guest in the winter is far easier than being a guest in the summer. In the winter, a bouquet of flowers or a bottle of wine, makes any host happy. In the summer, when I’d rather be reading a book in the hammock, it seems that hosts have the same idea and consequently, ask guests to get a little more involved.
I share this observation not to get myself scratched off from every guest list this summer (although after reading my first paragraph, I’m starting to get a little nervous), but instead to advise you to start thinking about a recipe or two that will be your go-to side dish over the next couple of months.
For those that don’t know me, let’s be straight. I like my burgers made from beef. For as long as I can remember, I’ve approached the idea of the veggie burger with a certain amount of skepticism. ”How,” I’ve wondered, “could a veggie burger ever replace the real thing?”
And for a while there it seemed like I was right. I ordered dry, cardboard-tasting veggie burgers at restaurants and always left craving a Big Mac. ”Veggie burgers,” I would say with confidence, “just don’t do it for me.”