Anotheryarn Eats

November 6, 2009

breakfast breaks the rut?

Filed under: almost a recipe, Breakfast — Tags: , , — anotheryarn @ 11:40 am

One can hope.  I know I’ve been woefully absent, I have drafts for three meals, am behind on chronicling our weekly share and to top it all off got in a rut of barely cooking for the last two weeks – which of course means that my fridge is overflowing with kale.  (A friend of mine shared this link the other day and I totally felt for the people who have fridge picture #3 on page 1, oh I remember that time).  Luckily with fall means winter squash and potatoes and onions which keep much longer than greens and don’t hog precious fridge-space).

But back to breakfast.  I’ve been trying to get better about eating breakfast.  I’ve always been one of those people who isn’t hungry right when I wake up.  On weekdays breakfast must be simple, something that I can make while half-asleep, while I like to wait a bit on the weekends and make your classic breakfast fare like pancakes, french toast, omelets, muffins and such.  But today I was excited to try this combination that I thought up a couple weeks ago and finally set in motion on Wednesday with the purchase of some granola.  Well, I didn’t really think up this combination, I’m sure someone else did.  I know a number of people strain yogurt to get a cheaper version of greek yogurt, and I had a classmate who used to add jam to his plain yogurt; if I googled it I’m sure oodles of people have done this before me.  But it was so easy, and am excited to have another jam eating outlet so I have an excuse to make more jam (I have fruit just waiting for me in the freezer, but first I need to free up a few jars).

breakfast

Wednesday night I put some plain yogurt in a strainer (over a bowl) lined with cheese cloth, covered it with plastic and plopped it in the fridge.  This morning I spooned some of the very thickened yogurt into my bowl, added a spoonful of my homemade peach-lavender jamsyrup, stirred it up, tasted, added a smaller spoonful of jam, then topped it with granola (supposedly ginger, but I didn’t notice).  Soooo good.  The type of breakfast that makes you say, “I’m going to eat this for breakfast everyday for the rest of my life” (which of course you never do, because after a week or two you get tired of eating the same thing everyday; this is the same reason why I don’t make yogurt at home, too often I barely get through my quart of yogurt in time).  I now have visions of doing this and pre-prepping this in cute little mason jars (but then I couldn’t use the strained yogurt for things like tzaziki).  Must by more cheesecloth.

September 21, 2009

the other peaches

Filed under: food preservation, thoughts — Tags: , , , — anotheryarn @ 4:35 pm

Our 20 pound box of peaches came with two layers.  I forgot to count when we started grabbing peaches for baking, eating and cooking, but did remember to count once the first batch of salsa had been made.  The bottom layer had 24 peaches on it, so I figure we started out with 40-50 peaches (if each peach actually averaged 7 oz, based unscientifically on one weighed peach, we had about 45 peaches).

The peach preservation stats:
12- frozen
8- salsa
6- peach lavender jam
6 – cranberry-peach conserve

In addition to salsa, jam and frozen peaches we used some up right away.  I made peach muffins the morning after we got the box.  1 peach gave me 1 1/4 cups of roughly diced peach (though this did not hold true for the rest of my measuring).  And 4 peaches, cooked into 2 cups of very thick peach nectar.  I think I actually screwed the recipe up somehow since it measured peaches in quarts and I suspect was referring to the picking basket quart and not a volume quart.  With the peach nectar I made the Peach Iced Tea from Super Natural Foods.

4 – peach nectar for iced tea
1 – buttermilk peach muffins

That adds up to 37 peaches.  One had a bad spot that grew too much before I got around to using it (38 peaches) and the rest must have been eaten in hand, probably at least one peach per day during the duration of my canning craziness (that definitely gets us in the 45-50 count range).

And the results:
canned

3 pints of salsa (the 4th was a hair shy of water-bath ready so we just enjoyed most of it that night with chips and then stuck the jar in the fridge)
9 half pints of peach lavender jam (the recipe was supposed to make 6 cups, I’m not sure what happened)
8 half pints + a couple leftover tablespoons of cranberry-peach conserve (again was supposed to yield 6 cups)

The lesson learned – always prep at least one extra jar, you might not use it but it is much better than scrambling to prep more jars when you still have hot jam in the pot and have filled all the jars. I prepped 5 pint jars for salsa and only used 4; I prepped 8 jars for the jam-round 1 and scrambled for a 9th, which didn’t even fit in my water-bath and so went straight to the fridge; I prepped 5 pint jars for salsa and only used 4; luckily I instinctively prepped 8 jars for jam-round 2. The extra jam also meant I had to go back to the store for a second box of half-pint jars, and I ended up with the regular mouth half-pints instead of the wide-mouth half-pints since the former was on sale while the latter was not. What are those four red filled jars on the left? That will be explained in the pickle post.

April 24, 2009

When you think there is nothing in the fridge

Filed under: Breakfast, Recipes — Tags: , , , , — anotheryarn @ 11:58 am

Last Saturday we had a mish-mash of food in the fridge. I’ve been trying to stick to a weekly meal plan and that involves planning on Sunday or Monday, then grocery shopping for only the things I need to complete each meal. I only plan dinners, with a mind to making sure most of the dinners make leftovers for lunches. This means my fridge has been a lot emptier lately. This also means I’m wasting less food (yay).

Which brings us to weekend breakfasts. We spend too many weekend mornings debating what we will eat, and then eventually we manage to eat around 11:30 and that throws the entire day’s meal schedule out of whack (lunch at 4 pm, dinner around 9:30…). So I woke up with a mostly empty fridge and bummed that I forgot to blend up crepe batter the night before (our recipe asks for a resting period so we make it the night before).  Enter pop-overs. Normally a vehicle for jams (attention all those who can oodles of jam and then wonder what to do with it all), it dawned on me that popovers have essentially the same ingredients as crepes, and all pantry staples to boot (eggs, milk, flour, butter, salt). I quickly whisked together a batch without even consulting TheHusband. Breakfast crisis averted.  We also pulled out the huckleberry chevre that I originally wanted to have in the crepes (also on this morning: peach preserves and Strawberry Marmalade from Holly).  

Popovers seem very decadent with the melted butter brushed over the top, but the recipe I’ve been using only uses two or three tablespoons total and that doesn’t seem so bad divided by 12 (and um multiplied by 3 or 4).  There are oodles of recipes, probably one in most all-encompassing cookbooks, but the first recipe I made came out nicely so I’ve stuck with it over the years.  Somedays they all rise up beautifully, other days they don’t and this day about half of them did – either way they are still tasty vehicles for jam.  And they often have nearly empty centers to fill.

popovers

Popovers from The Moosewood Cookbook by Mollie Katzen (she lists egg quantity variations but this is what I do)

  • 2 T melted butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 1/4 c milk
  • 1 1/4 c flour
  • ½ t salt

Preheat the oven to 375 F.  Melt the butter in a small dish*.  In a medium bowl whisk together the eggs and milk then add the flour and salt and whisk until smooth.  Brush a 12 cup muffin tin with the melted butter.  Pour 3-4 tablespoons of batter in each cup (I use a 3 tablespoon scoop, a 1/4 cup measuring cup also works nicely).  Bake for 30 minutes, or until golden. 

When you remove the popovers from the oven immediately pierce each popover with the tip of a knife and then brush with the remaining melted butter.  I like to run the knife around the muffin cups before removing the popovers to dislodge any slightly stuck bits.

*If you, like me, don’t have a microwave, toss the butter in a small oven proof bowl and put it in the oven while it preheats – then set the timer for a couple minutes and check it, repeat if necessary.  For some reason washing a small bowl seems like less work than a small pot.

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