Monday, February 24, 2014
Watching Juniper devour her homemade graham cracker, is the epitome of why making things yourself is so fun!
I have been thoroughly enjoying America's Test Kitchen lately, which is where both of the following recipes originated.
Here is what we made yesterday. *Accompanied by the cats Charlie made while working on the letter "c". (Which is a very special letter to him, for obvious reasons. Surprisingly the cats' names are not Charlie. One of them is named Meow.)Homemade American Cheese! I couldn't even get a picture off without someone swiping a slice. Its made primarily with Colby cheese and milk, and I used it to make Percy's Wild Rice Soup recipe for lunch today. The cheese was a winner (everyone actually liked it)... It didn't melt as quickly, but whisking it helped. And it tasted similar, though also like Colby cheese (because of course it was Colby cheese, unlike Velveeta). I will make it again; it only took 20 minutes with my food processor, and I'm curious to see how it works in other recipes.
The Wild Rice Soup on the other hand; hopefully Percy will make it as a treat for Trav sometime... I thought it was pretty similar to Percy's. Charlie ate his whole bowl full, "so he could eat pickled beets for dessert". And Travis said he didn't want to tell me what he thought because I wouldn't like it. When "pushed" he said he couldn't tell if the cheese made a difference because I had added too much milk (which was true), the Wild Rice didn't taste like wild rice (hmmm, that's silly, because it was Wild Rice), and the bacon was different (my sacred last package from Hannah the pig). I may or may not have flipped a certain finger at him when he finished his critique. I rarely do this, but under the circumstances my great-grandmother comes out in me; and I can no longer use strong language or it gets repeated. I told him I found it insulting that he had individually picked out every ingredient in my soup, granted I did ask for feedback. He said, "The potatoes were good." So really, the potatoes from the cream of potato soup were the best part (my only "non-homemade/homegrown" ingredient).
In conclusion, I learned two things... 1) Do not add extra milk. I must do better at remembering this, as it does make a difference in this style of soup and I ALWAYS seem to make this mistake. Probably because I don't think its that big of a deal. And 2) NO ONE can make it as good as Mom can. Hey, I can't make it like my mom either. Not even a peanut butter sandwich using the same ingredients. I think its completely adorable that both my dad and uncle Truman have similar preferences in how done they like their cookies, for example (very done, almost burnt). Because that's how their mom baked them. I feel like my cooking can be very good, amazing sometimes... and sometimes things get a little wonky and I can't seem to follow a recipe (not in a good way). So, good luck to the future Mrs. Charles Lingen! That kind of cooking is going to be very hard to compete with (chuckling to myself).
Homemade Graham Crackers. Amazing. They were really good. Again I used my food processor and they were quick to make. I love the flavor of the graham flour and the sweetness of molasses.
This darn silly little necklace that Charlie got for free yesterday. Juniper doesn't want to give it up and she has a little tantrum when you try to take it away. She likes the noise it makes when she shakes it, so she gets her whole little body into shaking it.
What special thing did your Mom make for you, when you were a kid, and no one else can make it as good?
I would have to say my Mom's bread brings me back to my childhood, and now making it myself makes me really happy. And adding peas to things, which I thought was common sense, but turns out is a habit I picked up from my mother.
Also, has anyone ever made their own Cream of Mushroom, Potato or some other similar soup?
Monday, February 17, 2014
Charlie said they got to eat at Pizza Doctors! Which he also heard about on the radio, and has wanted to go to ever since. I guess we have to be more careful about what he is hearing.
Friday, February 7, 2014
Saturday, February 1, 2014
Grandma and Grandpa's little chair by the fire, fits three.
Clarence visited us in Winona, so we went to the park and scooped snow, for no particular reason.
Homemade play dough! We made a fresh batch with two different colors- teal and purple.
Charlie is full of questions!