Thanksgiving macarons (not a thing, now a thing)
Thanksgiving macarons (not a thing, now a thing)
I found this last year when I was home for Thanksgiving and posted it on my Instagram, spelling or grammar, sadly, has never been a skill of mine.
My family has a Thanksgiving tradition, mainly promoted by my mother, since I can’t remember how long. Everyone sitting at our table writes something they’re thankful for and then fold it up and put it in a basket. We then mix them up and everyone pulls out someone else’s gratitude and we all take turns reading them aloud, and the group guesses who’s it is. My mom has saved these notes in ziploc bags, and every year I glance at a couple of old ones, including (now) ex-girlfriends, out-of-state friends, and family members that have passed away. It’s a plastic bag full o’ thanks from appreciating good company to moving past cancer scares. The paper above, lives in one of these bags, a lot of the things still pertain to today.
However you spend this holiday, I hope you are able to take a moment to reflect. I hope that you are reminded that you are important. I hope that you know that you are important if you aren’t reminded… I don’t know really where I’m going with this one but I’ve been very emotional lately, so just let me do me. I’ve just burnt the teapot again, and need to figure out what to do with the ever-so-appropriate for thanksgiving French macaroons I over-baked, so I really must be going anyway.
I now use box mix only once a year, per request of my mother, to make cornbread croutons for Thanksgiving(I can explain more later)
More hubbard squash deconstruction.
In the center you see a sketch Tyler made of his “plan,” he was really the brain child of this event. If you click on the pictures, I wrote captions for all of them, with blurbs explaining what’s going on.
We made pasta, which was a first in our household, and have made it one more time since, making some real nice squash-filled tortellini (although we didn’t figure out how to make the correct shape until we we halfway done making them). I made a squash pie, with the help on Lindsay, and we were able to feed lots of bellies that evening with our baby hubbard. It wasn’t too big of a time investment, for what we got out of it, and from our one squash, in addition to every thing we made that day, froze three and a half quarts of squash puree that we will continue to enjoy throughout the fall and winter.
Tyler and I adopted a hubbard squash when we went apple picking, back in September. I say adopted, because the thing is as big as a 1-year-old. Tyler was set on buying a big one, that squash he choose was even too big for the scale at the farm. I had never actually known what a hubbard squash really was until recently, but that’s beside the point. Usually used for decoration, the hubbard squash is a light greenish-bluish color that is speckled in the way that most squash are, and I think it’s very beautiful. Below is a picture of Tyler (right) compared next to an almost identical picture of his dad. I thought it was neat.
Now, when we got this squash, Tyler had big plans.. the thing is pretty huge after all. We opened our doors to any friends wanting to help out or keep us company whilst we processed this beast.
Macaroons, take 1
Way back in January, I casually mentioned a few "baking New Year’s resolutions" and among them was French macaroons. A little while ago, I realized it’s almost December and I hadn’t even read a dang recipe (apparently I say “dang” now). So of course, action had to be taken! For a first try, it wasn’t a total flop and I’m pretty proud of myself. The delicate cookie sandwiches didn’t look like total monsters, and were actually very yummy. Let me take you through the photos… left to right:
1. Out of focus almond flour, confectionary sugar and some egg whites and sugar, next to meringue being whipped. I am still not so comfortable or familiar with meringues, but I was by myself and had to decide when it was done. 2. Cross-refrencing recipes. I mostly followed the recipe and technique from Thomas Keller, and am not sure how I feel about it. Obviously it has to work, it’s TK, but the method was quite different from the other two books… the amount of meringue added to the almond flour mixture is flexible, no wait time after the cookies are piped before they go in the oven, etc. 3. I am so smart!! I broke the buttercream. Of course I broke the buttercream, I had no idea what I was doing. But, I remember reading somewhere that the bowl might be too cold, so I took a hair dryer to the outside of the bowl, and I fixed it! I was so excited I almost called someone to let them know. I made non-American buttercream at home for the first time successfully!! THIS IS A BIG DEAL 4. Attempting to match cookies. A lot didn’t make it, and they’re a little spotty (either a result of improper mixing or old almond flour), but whatever. 5. The most perfect macaroon I could find in the batch!! In the background you see a pile of broken cookies and meringues and Kyle, being Kyle.
I can’t wait to give these guys another try! Sidenote, if you’re interested in someone who actually knows what they’re doing with macaroons, check out KatCakes.
It’s Friday, treat yourself to something sweet.
Can we take a moment to appreciate Rice Krispies Treats? Rice Cereal Treats. Marshmallow Rice Treats. Whatever you want to call them.
Go ahead, close your eyes, think about it. They’re AMAZING. Hold on for a second while I talk about them as if I’ve been living under a rock.
I had forgotten how much I love this treat. When I was working at my old school, and the kids got Rice Krispies Treats as a snack, I would get so excited, and would take 2 for myself, there were some other teachers into this too (don’t worry, everybody still got something).
The kid I currently babysit for will sometimes have them at his house, and I generally try to offer health-ier snacks, but not when those blue foil treats are around, because I know it’s worth it.
But these things homemade, ohman, ohman. You don’t even have to turn the oven on. You barely have to measure anything. You can eat some marshmallows in the process, and brown that butter if you want! I thought to make these last week because I somehow discovered not one, but two opened bags of marshmallows in my pantry, and knew they had to go. I brought them to a party, and then I brought them home from the party (I didn’t want to leave the pan in New Hampshire). And then I ate most of it by myself. I did, however, give a square to the boy I babysit for. And he gave it a “10 out of 10.” Which is a pretty big deal. He’s 8 years old.
For these Rice Cereal Treats I used a recipe from Flour: A Baker’s Collection of Spectacular Recipes
It’s gloomy outside. I’m making cookies.
I’m also wearing an apron with flowers on it. Because after all, it is Friday.
I am currently on hold with MA Health Connector… It’s going to be a while. But it’s necessary so I don’t have a break in my health coverage. So while I’m listening to the repetitive hold statements, advertisements, and same bars of music, I thought I’d share this tart with you.
Our home is finally all out of apples. The last large sum of them went into this tart. The whole time I was making it while thinking, “I have no idea what I am doing” but I did it anyway, and it came out okay. The recipe comes from Pastry: Savory & Sweet, a book given to me for my last birthday by the Pastry Chef I used to work under. It’s a great book on basics of tarts and puff pastries and whatnot. The technique for the crust involves throwing the flour onto the table in a mountain, making a well (at this phase I call it a volcano) and then adding the butter, eggs, salt and sugar and combining it all with your fingertips and then adding the water. The filling involved peeling and cutting up a butt-load of apples (more than I needed to) and cooking 1/3 of them down to a mush with a vanilla bean and water and then layer the slices as pretty as you want them to be. After the tart cools, you brush it with a sugar syrup glaze. I didn’t wait for anything to cool because I needed to leave the house so it was a little soggy, and I left a great pile of dishes, but also the tart, so I’m a good person.
Forget this, I’m filing for health insurance on paper.