Thursday, September 14, 2006

Nap first, then cook-a-thon

Given how completely, somewhat inexplicably, exhausted I was yesterday -- pulling laundry out of the dryer and putting the just-washed load in took a real surge of Effort -- I decided to take a nap before I got too crazy with my cooking-tasks. When I was peeling pears with my trusty chef's knife (a bit of overkill, I know, but the paring knife was dirty), I was horrified to think what kind of damage I'd be doing to my fingers if I hadn't caught some shut-eye.

Last night I made up and canned 2x1L jars of pear jam and chopped up two whole chickens up for use in some adobo I made, which will ultimately find its way into the Tortilla Strata I'm making for Tim, Laurie and the kids on Saturday. Tasks left to accomplish: 1) make gluten-free tortillas with the chicken fat from the adobo; 2) carmellize the two Vidalia onions I bought yesterday; 3) re-hydrate a pot of black beans, puree, then add the adobo "sabaw"/sauce; 4) cook up a brown Basmati/wild rice blend; 5) layer the ingredients and bake. I'm undecided about whether or not I'll pre-bake the strata on Friday night, but it's likely I'll forgo that step to have a fresh-"baked" dish for our guests on Saturday. I've definitely got more cooking to do over the next two days, 'though.

I'm also going to re-make the adapted recipe my cousin, Marcia, gave me for a chocolate-couscous cake. Last time I tried making this dessert, I attempted to substitute quinoa for the couscous, with tragic results. What was supposed to have formed a cookie-crumb-like base ended up being a helluvalot of completely unusable chocolately-quinoa soup. What can I say? Even pros mess up from time to time. :)

I ended up salvaging the experiment by grinding walnuts in my food processor and using those as the "pie" base. The pie itself is filled with equal volumes of blended, septic-packaged firm tofu (I use Mori-Nu's Lite Firm Tofu) and melted chocolate chips (I use President's Choice brand, because they're dairy-free), plus a little bit of maple syrup/honey. Yes, it sounds really weird, but you end up with something that's got a texture more mousse-like than pudding and has a rich (almost alcoholic -- kinda like Choclairs used to taste) flavour. I thought the walnut crust went really well with the filling, so I'll use it again this time. Matt usually avoids soy products like they're going to disease him, but the last time I made this dessert, he certainly did his part to help me finish this one off!

I'm looking forward to trying some of Laurie's homemade iced tea, and she's supposed to be bringing Jell-O 'cause she has a package of it that she has no other use for, and Matt will quite willingly scarf it down. :)

Labels: ,


Post a Comment

<< Home