10 June 2009

Back in the game...?

So maybe that was the hump I needed to get over... Just logging on and getting in here. Changing things up helped a little, too. Props to Rachel for finding and suggesting Picnik, which is the world's coolest photo editing (free [mostly]) software (photo finishes, frames, text, graphics); finally getting a real header made me happy and want to play on here. I still feel this weird twinge, but I'm trying to ignore it. Because it's just dumb. There are no rules about what this blog has to be, so I guess I'll just see where it goes....

As for now... I'm currently obsessed with rhubarb. Or should I say was, as I think my lucky grab at Arbor Farms yesterday was probably really really the last of it for the year. I've never cooked with it, but I'd been thinking about it for a while. My first attempt was a crumb cake Sara sent me from SmittenKitchen, which was such a disaster I appear to have deleted the link in my pissed-offed-ness. This week I went for simple and made a strawberry-rhubarb cake, which turned out just perfect and was devoured in two days. I had a few stalks left over, and, combined with the package I found at the store, I had enough to test out a recipe I found in my new favorite cookbook, Desserts 1-2-3.
This book is great -- all the recipes only have three ingredients. Can't beat that! Anyway, I'd been eyeing the rhubarb-chocolate pudding recipe for a few days, and now I had everything I needed to make it. Which is to say, I had 2 lbs of rhubarb, chopped into 1 in pieces; 8 oz of chocolate chips; and 1 cup of sugar. I combined the rhubarb in a saucepan with the sugar and two cups of water; then I heated everything, at medium-high, for 15 minutes -- no stirring!

When it's done, and the rhubarb is soft, you stir in the chocolate chips until all melted and combined. That's it! The book has fancy serving instructions involving wine glasses (four servings), but I just poured it into a bowl to thicken up in the fridge.

Last night it was very saucey, so we just had a scoop or two on top of our rhubarb cake (Brad: "Can you OD on rhubarb?"). Now that it's had the evening to thicken up some, it's, well, thicker. Not quite the consistency of a regular pudding, but thick enough to consider it not a sauce. It's VERY rich. It's very chocolately. And, strangely enough, it tastes chocolate-cherry-y. It's also rare for me to say this, but I don't think I could eat a whole serving of this. That being said -- I think it is SOO tasty. And it will certainly get eaten. Oh, I bet strawberries dipped in it would be DELICIOUS. However it gets eaten, it will be, and it will be loved.

Next I hope to try the 3 ingredient, low-cal brownies.... And oodles of the fruit dessert recipes as more fruits come into season!

Of course, while I am on quite the dessert kick, we do still have to eat dinner. And while my dinners are on the underwhelming side lately, I do think I make quite the mean homemade pizza, so we've been having this once a week. And a few weeks ago, I found the greatest thing ever -- squeeze pizza sauce! I never used the full can of pizza sauce, and the leftover sauce always just ended up getting tossed. I've gotten a good 2.25 pizzas out of one squeezer.

Cheap, at Target (and Meijer and everywhere else, I am sure), and pretty tasty. My pizza doesn't have any complaints!

A few weeks ago I bought a bucket and planted myself three basil plants (two green, one purple), and we've had quite the surplus of fresh herbs, most importantly for pizza usage. Mmm. Thanks for not dying on me (yet), basil!


queen b said...

Mmm...that looks heavenly! Birgy wants. (I love rhubarb, too, and always forget!)

Sara said...

Yeah, yeah, yeah! Love the new look. Our favorite celery/cheese combo!

I might need to start buying the squeeze sauce. Good idear.

And I'm impressed you made 2 things with rhubarb! Sorry the coffee cake was a loser! But probably better that it was. I think I gained a couple pounds eating it when I made it.

Lady Lisa said...

DUDE. I love the squeezer. We've been using that baby for a number of years. And when I can't find it in certain stores, we tend to even rinse out the old bottle and reuse for the jarred stuff! We also make really quick pizzas on pita bread. Spread some sauce, sprinkle some cheese, add some veggies, and bake @ 400 for 15 minutes. Brad even cuts it up into 16 mini pieces for me sometimes. Pizza Heaven!

Lady Lisa said...

P.S. Welcome back!!