Friday, July 19, 2013

Ready to start posting!!

SOOOOOOO starting a blog a month before the wedding was kinda silly, but it's been on my mind since I started it 2+ months ago because I have been trying to get back here and post.  I've made stuff.  Yummy stuff.  Cling to your hips n thighs and ruin your "healthy  living...not a diet! lifestyle" stuff.  Ask my husband, he's always thrilled and terrified when I make something because he knows it's gonna be awesome as the smells start wafting from the kitchen while he plays COD III:Black Ops or whatever version is out right now.

So what I made last night was this Tiramisu.  Mind you, I also made homemade mascarpone to accompany it (which btw, is incredibly easy and basically foolproof to make!) and homemade lady fingers (thanks to the Miette cookbook!)  WHO HAS TIME TO MAKE TIRAMISU AND ITS COMPONENTS FROM SCRATCH!?  I must be losing my marbles y'all...but I don't wanna plop down the dough for sponge cookies and soft cheese, so I decided to make it.  Now if only I could  harvest & roast the espresso beans for the coffee component ;)

I thought I messed it zabaglione FELT wrong, and when I added the mascarpone to it, it looked even sadder.  I even told Andy, "if this recipe doesn't turn out I've already figured out two reasons why."  Also when I whipped the cream, it never really looked all that stiff, at least enough to add it into the zabaglione. I also barely had enough espresso brewed to make this work; I also thought we had Kahlua, we don't.  Boo. 

My ladyfingers were fresh made Wednesday eve; not biscuity like the ones found in the store, but light, spongy and just perfect.  I thought this was a good idea, but they might need a firmer/crispier shell to get those contrasting textures of the cookie/cream complexity that is tiramisu.  However, I was thrilled with what came out of my oven; I was just freaking out a bit that I'd over bake them, so I think if they baked longer they may have been up to the tiramisu challenge.

When you make the zabaglione, use superfine sugar; I thought I could get away with granulated because it should dissolve eventually into the heated yolks.  It didn't, but you cannot tell when the final product comes together.  I also thought this guy's version was overly sweet for my tastes, so I would scale it down from 1c to 3/4c. super fine sugar.  I also added on sifted unsweetened cocoa powder after the first layer of fingers/mascarpone and on the top final layer.  I would add chocolate shavings too if it were a fancy affair.  I think the trick is really strong brewed espresso; I really underestimated this part when I read other recipes.  Maybe make a strong pot of coffee/espresso AND add some instant coffee to it to really intensify the coffee flavor.  Also, make more than half a cup; I did and I barely had enough!

I dunno.  I'm not overly impressed with my first homemade tiramisu EVER (which is really a sin because a) it's a fav dessert of mine, and b) i'm Italian, this should've been attempted a loooong time ago!)  Andy loves it and said, "wow, if I liked coffee, that bowl of tiramisu would be gone by the time you got home"!  (he is not a fan of coffee, so more for me haha.) I think as a first attempt it was satisfactory, however not up to my standards.  I do have leftover mascarpone that I could do a retrial, but we have a whole bowl of dessert in my fridge now so I don't think I will attempt again soon.

Pictures to come?  If I do, it'll be a beautiful red Le Crueset bowl with a big chunk missing from the side :) thanks for reading guys, and hang tight as I get the hang of this.  More yumminess to come!  Also, I organized my Pinterest boards so it's got a whole new section of "RECIPES I'VE MADE!!" with some commentary on each pin!  And I've subbed out a pies board and a desserts board to try and organize more properly.

Oh yea, someday I'll post wedding pictures too ;) oh and we're moving, don't know where or when but soon, yay for that awesome timing.  never a dull moment!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Hello! Bienvenue! Welcome!

Well everyone, I'm on the bandwagon... I created my first blog about an hour ago, AND am now posting to it.  This is pretty cool...I can see the allure in having a blog and followers.  I think I came a little late to the party in my "I'm resisting technology because I know it's fad" way of thinking, and for that I hope no one cares lol.

Alright, why am I on here, preaching to the masses and hoping I get some followers?   Well it's largely due to my LOVE for Pinterest (follow me!: saraj0)  It is a great source for inspiration...there's a LOT of pins to weed through, but I have found some amazing recipes thanks to Pinterest, and a lot others I have improved upon/made healthier.  The blog is where I plan to share these upgrades/improvements as well as (maybe!) some original creations!

What sets my blog apart?  Hmph, that is a solid question, one I hope to prove with posts vs. telling you it's going to be the best thing ever in the whole wide universe.  To say it sh*t don't stink when it comes to the kitchen, that's for sure.  I am very fortunate to have parents who LOVE cooking... Joe, the typical Sicilian dad who hunts/fishes (hello, Sicily = fishermen!) and loves to entertain; and Rhonda, my mom, the best cook/homemaker I know.  Not to mention her sister, ie Auntie M., is a pseudo Pinner, bc if she were active on Pinterest she'd be blowing up my feed.  But her obsession dates back to the 80's having binders of recipes in a closet she constantly uses PLUS add in the internet, she has ample ammo.  I have the greatest influences and upbringing in the kitchen, and I think that that love is reflected in my dishes.  Plus my future husband Andy is a sweetheart and tries everything I make and he's always got something to say about food too, so it's wonderful having him taste my creations all the time!

Oh and to throw some professional chops in this mix, did I mention I'm a culinary school grad?  Been in the game 10years?  Whistles go woo WOOO!  Can you tell I may be overcompensating to make sure people think I have the street cred for a blog?  Regardless, I'm into food.  Good food/beer/wine too.  I think I can share some knowledge with folks and spread the love and passion I have for the culinary world to those who're just as excited, or just getting their fingers wet.  I even hope to maybe inspire some folks too, but I might be getting ahead of the game!

Thank you all for stopping by...the web design/layout is definitely a work in progress, and I hope to start posting yumminess soon.  Mind you, all of this while I plan my wedding, 40-something days away, yeehaw.  Here we go!!