Sunday, July 22, 2012

Day at Hollywood Disney!

So we as a family are currently here in wonderful Orlando Florida spending time together as a family that is often 5.5 hours apart. So it is me and Ashley, Steph her kids and her fiancé Mike, then mom and dad! Let's talk ride and adventures first. We rode the Star Tours first which was a ride based on Star Wars which is one of my favorite series. Then the rest went and rode the The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror then on to the Rock'n' Roller Coaster Staring Areosmith while mom, Kali, and I went shopping around the park. I shop because I so do not most of the rides, yep yep I am a whimp! I do have to say though that the Star Tours which was a 3D ride was awesome. We did the great movie ride which was okay but not necessarily as good as I expected it to be. We participated in a little bit of video gaming when the whole family tried their hands at the Toy Story Midway Mania, Ashley had the top score in our crew with 138,000. We also went to The Voyage of the Little Mermaid, which is a live show spliced with clips from the movie. I though the first part of the show was the best when they used black like and had people dressed in black moving the puppets, then back to the Rock'n Rollercoster as Steph and Mike and the kids wanted another go at it, I should add the kids went a total of two times. Now I think I should talk about the food. So we are staying in one of the park hotels, which is nice, the food though is terrible. So far I have had stuff that would certainly only be considered sustenance. So certainly not something to write home about but certainly something to blog about. The best thing I had today was the beef with broccoli that was for dinner. We are all so very exhausted today but we all had a blast. Tomorrow is on to Epcot and we get to have dinner at the french restaurant; the one dinner most are looking forward to. Shopping has been good. I got a hat, and then noticed that there are some really nice looking things that might be fun to have for the kitchen. Will hopefully keep you posted about tomorrow. Sweet sleeping...

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Summer is upon us...

This week while I was off I did a bit of cooking and really got to enjoy the season. I did a recipe I have done before and followed it up with two I had not tried yet. I will share them with you in order of preparation.

Mom and I went to Fredricksburge to Marburger Orchard, which we do every year and have now done for the last 5 years. The trip is always long it takes us about two hours from the house, and we leave before most people are up to get ready for work. We always get out there with in about 10 minutes of opening and this year we had to try for earlier as their crops have been ready earlier then years in the past, and apparently folks are really enjoying going out to pick because they have regularly had to close early this year. We were the third car out there when we arrived at 8:05am and there were more coming behind us. We listened to the same education we have had for the last three years and then we were off. The peaches were not the largest this year but they were still delicious!

The peaches were just wonderful!

My mom and I canned 11 jars of peaches before she had to leave; we did them in light syrup and followed the Ball Canning Book directions. My mom and I split up the remaining 3/4 of the bushel, and sent 1/2 a bushel home with her and kept a 1/4 bushel to use in peach butter. I love peach butter and actually made it the first time with my sister the first time we canned together.
Steph and I canning the peach butter in 2007.

This year I did them on my own. The book is The New Preserves: Pickles, Jams, and Jellies the recipe is for the peach butter, there is also a spiced peach butter version as well. I like the book because it allows one to make a small batch as you get four 1/2 pint jars with about 9 peaches.

Peeled peaches no sugar.

Peach puree with sugar

Peach puree with sugar turning into peach butter.

I do not have a photo from the final canning process but I can say it is wonderful. It tastes like summer. I can not wait to have it on toast, biscuits, and maybe even in a petit fours recipe.

The second recipe I tried was specifically for my mom. I found the recipe on (I totally feel like the I found it on Pinterest card). My mom is planning on a throwing a beach themed party for her sorority next May. So I have of course been looking for ideas and recipes for her it is like party planning vicariously through my mom. One of the things I found were some sand dollar cookies, they are so pretty, they are courtesy of Monda Rosenberg from the website Well fortunately they taste as good as they look.

Sand Dollar cookies with almond slivers.

The final thing I made tonight was corn dogs. I made them from scratch; my dad made them for us several times when we were kids and it is a nice memory. I was talking with Ashley today and learned that he has never in his life had corn dogs. Since growing up in England and Norway I am almost certain there was not a Sonic or a State Fair down the road so I wanted to give it a shot and see what he thought. He was not impressed. The thing that he disliked the most was the texture. I liked them okay however I actually prefer the ones that you get at Sonic. While we were talking about the corn dogs before I made them tonight I told him it is a must to have mustard with them. Then while at lunch with my dear friend Emily the three of us were talking and she too said you must have a corn dog with mustard. There is just something about the tartness of mustard that cuts through the fat of the corn dog. I would try them again at least maybe a different recipe or a different cooking method. Again this was a recipe for corn dogs I found on courtesy of the, the recipe makes a lot of batter and I most likely could have battered several dogs, but chose to stick with the 8 that the recipe suggests; it's just the two of us and we will have lots of left overs.

Final results of the corn dogs. Ashley is not so keen on me taking his picture while eating.

So three things in a matter of two days. I am hoping to come up with more posts soon however it will not be for a week or two as we are headed to Disney and the in-laws next week. Happy cooking, happy eating. 

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Quick Upday on Daring Kitchen.

Okay, so we got challenge, I am so excited! I can not wait to start cooking, I may have to start today and see what I come up with. No reveal for about a month, how am I going to keep it secret.. I guess I will have to post other things until then!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Well it is official, I will be posting more to the blog. I have been contemplating for about a year and a half or so joining The Daring Kitchen and while my mom was here last week, between her and Ashley's encouragement I joined. I just got word early this morning that I have been accepted for at least the Daring Cooks Challenge, I am still awaiting word for Daring Bakers Challenge. I am super excited and can not wait to see what the first challenge I get to participate in will be. Be on the look out for it; if you are interested in seeing what it's all about you can check out The Daring Kitchen web site , I know this will be a fun challenge for me each month I just hope that family and friends will enjoy the benefits of my experimentation!!! To keep you posted, and be watching for the Daring Cooks reveals after the 14th of each month; NEVER before.. Happy cooking!