Friday, July 8, 2011

J-E-L-L- No

I made banana pudding above for a Fourth of July get-together with some old friends. I wanted to do something special. Something I knew we would all enjoy. So I decided to try my hand at whipping up some pudding from scratch.

I was a little intimidated at first. I mean, it had to be complicated, right? Surprisingly it was really easy. And used ingredients ai almost always have on-hand. And let me tell you, it was a hit! When I got ready to head home post fireworks, the dish had almost been licked clean. I think I have a new specialty in my arsenal.

Want to make it for yourself? Here's what you do: In a medium sauce pan, mix 3 tbs all-purpose flour, 1/4 sugar and slowly incorporate 2 c milk. (I used whole milk.) Heat over low to medium heat until it begings to thicken, stirring constantly. Separate 3 eggs (save the whites for a meringue if you're feeling adventurous. I just scrambled them for breakfast so nothing was wasted.). Slowly mix about 1/4 to 1/3 of your milk mixture into your egg yolks. Then pour that back into the saucepan. (This tempers the yolks, allowing them to warm up to the temperature of the milk mixture without being scrambled.) Cook for another 2 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in about 1 tsp pure vanilla and 4 tbs butter. In your dish layer Nilla wafers (I prefer the real thing here), 2 to 3 sliced bananas and pudding mixture. Alternate layers beginng with cookies. Let cool, or not, and enjoy. If you want to use real whipped cream on top when you serve it, allow the pudding to cool first so the whipped cream doesn't melt.

With God as my witness, I will never make boxed pudding again.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Farmers Market finds

Best beets I've had yet. Picked them up at the farmer's market. Roasted them with some olive oil, rosemary and garlic. Delicious! And check out the nose on that eggplant at the top. My friend D grew that on his dad's farm near shorter. Roasted it as well. Tossed some with a little pasta. The rest I ate with some roasted zucchini and onions I had left over.

One of my favorite things about shopping at the farmers markets is knowing where my food comes from. And knowing that it hasn't traveled across the country, bouncing around i the back of a truck. I like knowing who grew it, too. I feel better supporting small farmers than I do when I spend my money at a big box store.