Do yourself a favor and make this granola. We’ve been making a batch every other Sunday (or so), and Aaron and I have it for breakfast most days. One batch lasts almost two weeks! It is so filling, I rarely need a snack before lunchtime. I can’t say the boys are huge fans of it in cereal form, though they do love to help mix it and sneak a nibble before it is baked.
It’s supposed to be a versatile recipe, but I say, why mess with a good thing? We like it just the way it is, though I’ve not been able to track down unsweetened coconut flakes. Sweetened it is, then!
We’ve been going to the new Union Market as the occasional weekend treat. Mostly for the grown-ups, of course, as lattes and empanadas and crowds of hip urbanites aren’t really the boys’ scene. But they tolerate it…especially since they get chocolate milk or a cupcake.
It’s a fun space and I wish I had the guts to brandish the camera more, but aforementioned hordes of hip urbanites make me feel like a sheepish tourist with a wannabe food blog or something.
So, I’ve been feeling a little competitive this holiday season. Disappointingly, my glittery eggs-as-Christmas-tree-light-bulbs garland didn’t pass muster for the Washington Post Holiday Craft Contest but I did garner these accolades:
I can’t claim originality. I followed this recipe, with a few exceptions. Those exceptions being the omission of peppermint extract in the cheesecake (thanks, Giant!); the addition of peppermint candy pieces in the crust; and homemade vanilla whipped cream for the top.
It seems like cheesecake has a reputation for being a difficult dessert to make, but every time I’ve tried (about once every 2 years, or so), it always surprises me by its ease of assembly. The major downside, of course, being the enormous amount of time you need to factor in for the baking, cooling, and chilling before serving. A new trick I learned this time was the “water bath” technique of setting the pan (or muffin tins, as the case may be) in another pan of water. I definitely noticed that helped keep the edges firm but not crisp or overcooked. In fact, the picture above actually represents a second batch I hastily made a few days later with less attention to details and a belated water bath….I think the browning on the sides is a consequence.
I’ll leave you with a shot of the glittery eggs. Sigh.
Our garden was not so productive this summer after the real heat hit, and I admit I had some serious tomato envy when I visited other people’s yards. I’m happy to report that cooler temps and a neat little trick with green-tomatoes-in-a-paper-bag (Thanks for the tip, Rachel!) has yielded enough of a harvest to make a couple of large batches of SouleMama’s delicious Carrot Tomato Soup.
And our carrots have been a surprisingly fun harvest as well! Short, fat, gnarly…not so yummy raw (a little bitter, perhaps?) but plentiful enough to add to many soup pots…tomato…butternut squash…split pea.
Speaking of gardening….should I pull everything up this weekend and prepare the beds for winter, or wait and see what Frankenstorm will take care of for me? Hmmm, the latter sounds more tempting!