Friday, May 27, 2011

My Manic Kitchen

If I had a cooking blog, this is what I'd call it. Of course, I don't have a cooking blog (I have what one might refer to as a "Rambling Blog") and there are plenty of other people (like my talented friend Mandy) who have excellent and inspiring cooking blogs. I follow in the footsteps of giants when it comes to cooking - I typically take someone else's excellent recipe and revise it as necessary for my household (right now that involves taking out the dairy, eggs, gluten, and sugar - you'd be surprised how good most recipes still taste).

I don't have a lot to offer in terms of innovative cooking techniques or recipes. What I can teach you, however, is how to maximize your ADHD in the kitchen so that you can knock out a stunning number of dishes in a short amount of time while simultaneously working through legal issues for  your family business. My style doesn't lend itself to beautiful pictures (unless you find flour fluff spread all over a kitchen visually stunning) but I did take some snapshots of the finished products so you can see what I'm talking about as I give you my timeline.

The mania began yesterday afternoon - I rushed to make my second batch of these awesome chocolate cupcakes posted on My Real Food Life . Both kids loved them and I wanted to make sure and have a supply before we went out to the grandparents for the weekend so that my son would have sweets available to him. I made more than just a dozen but they disappear quickly.

This morning, I got the kids to school at 7:30, then dashed up north to the Williamson County Humane Society to return the three bottle-fed puppies we'd been fostering for the last week. After that, I rushed to Whole Foods to stock up on groceries and baking supplies. I was back at home by 9-ish and the true cooking mania began. 

First on the agenda were buckwheat waffles. I mixed up a double recipe (inspired and closely following a recipe found in this book) and as I slowly made a huge stack-o-waffles (to be frozen for future breakfasts), I got on the phone with my dad to work through next steps for his business. 

I made a double recipe of these waffles because my son has already told me he simply loves them, so I felt confident in making tons for breakfast over the next week or two.

Once I finished my call with dad, the waffles were still going (it takes a while when you can only make two at a time) so I started on my homemade hummus. My Artist's Way group is coming to my house tonight and I wanted to have at least one option that was homemade.

Man....I hit it out of the park with this hummus. As a matter of fact, it is SO GOOD that I'm compelled to write the recipe down here - not because I think my six readers are dying to try it, but because I want to remember how I made it! I kid you not - this is the best hummus ever created in the history of the planet. Or at least in the history of Austin, Texas.

Jenn's Hummus

2 cans organic garbanzo beans (drained and rinsed)
1 fresh red pepper
juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup Tahini
1 - 2 Tablespoons Harissa extra virgin olive oil (I get my flavored OO's from Con Olio here in Austin)
1/4 cup Lemon extra virgin olive oil
salt to taste
pepper to taste

Cut red pepper in half, smear with Harissa EVOO, and roast in oven - watch closely - it just takes a few minutes.

Add all the ingredients in a blender and blend away. Enjoy the view as the hummus turns slightly pink.

After the waffles were cooling and the hummus blended, I started on the Sorghum Banana Bread from that same rice-free gluten cookbook I used for the waffles. Again - this has been a recipe staple for us over the last month although this time around I think I got carried away with the amount of smooshed banana I put into the mix. You wouldn't think of that as a problem, but it doesn't seem to be cooking as quickly as normal. As I write this part of the post, I'm waiting for it to come out of the oven and I need it to hurry up because I'm trying to make it into work today for a few hours! Here's a picture of it right before I put it in the oven for six more minutes....

Once I popped the banana bread in the oven, I started chopping veggies to go with the hummus because I want everything to be all ready for my friends tonight. Now I've finished my blog post and am about to run into work for two hours before I pick my son up after school. I've cooked quite a few things, chopped veggies without injury to myself or others, cleaned the kitchen, and blogged in three and a half hours.

Move fast and cook with gusto. That's my motto!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

I'm still here

Yeah. I know.

It only affects about six people, tops, but I've been avoiding my blog again. It's all good though, and I'm compelled to at least give you guys a brief update.

1. I'm happier than ever before in my life. Truly. It's somewhat stunning, to tell you the truth. I almost don't know what to do with myself.
2. I'm writing. Not every day, but it's happening. Better yet, it's happening in conjunction with my daughter.
3. I harvested two cucumbers and they were both That's my biggest regret, that I haven't posted a picture of my funky-looking but quite tasty cukes.
4. I realized that what I really want in life right now, more than anything else, is to be a mom. Lucky for me, I just so happen to have two kids hanging around my house all the time. They even call me mom and tell me they love me. What a stroke of good fortune!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Kitchen Massacre

So it turns out that when your 8-year-old can't eat sugar, you are more than happy to buy him pomegranates and spend a while getting the seeds out so he'll be able to much on them over the next few days. (Strangest fruit EVER.)

And...if you're not used to dealing with pomegranates, then you might end up splattering pomegranate juice all over the world. Before I was wearing this tank top, I'd been wearing a very nice white shirt (don't mind just doesn't follow typical kitchen logic), so by the time this picture was taken, my white shirt was already soaking in the washing machine. (I'd like to think I at least get credit for that fact.

By the time I'd gotten all of those crazy seeds out of the fruit, it looked like I'd committed a murder. Next time I drink a pomegranate martini, I'll appreciate it much more.