Saturday, July 25, 2009
Friday, July 24, 2009
It's been so hot and dry the last couple of years. My neighbor stopped watering her fig bush and it's too far away from our house unless we run 300 feet or more of water hose for us to water it. BUT, another friend remembered me!
Mama has made some preserves in her crockpot so I started in mine.
Well...mine doesn't boil, so I had to revert to a pot. But they had been in the crockpot long enough, that I only had to stir and watch them close for about 30 minutes.
I got 8 pints and 3 half pints. Not bad! I'll have to make biscuits in the morning.
How about this sooo hard recipe?
1 gallon figs
2 quarts sugar
juice of one lemon
Select only perfect figs, ripe but not soft. Wash. Slice in half if they are large. Place alternate layers of sugar and figs in an enamel or stainless steel kettle. Let stand overnight in refrigerator. Add juice of one lemon. Cook over medium to low heat. Bring to a boil. Cook until tender, transparent, and amber colored (about 1 to 1 1/2 hours); stirring often to keep from sticking and scorching. Fill hot, dry, sterilized jars to 1/2 inch from the top. Close and seal.
Note: The first time a friend of mine made fig preserves, she peeled her figs. Please don't. ;o)
I cooked the ripest figs yesterday. The rest today. I started them in the crockpot and cooked in it for about 6 hours on high. If your crockpot will boil, remove the lid and boil down. If it's like mine and won't boil, pour into a pot, bring to a boil, and cook until thick enough to suit you. I didn't have to cook mine but about 30 minutes longer.
Thursday, July 23, 2009
I went to the movie theatre again last night and had another Coke. But I was so sleepy from the sleep I missed the night before that I had no problem falling out at 10 p.m. when Sam went to bed. Carol didn't make it to the movie Tuesday night, but called yesterday. So...I saw The Proposal again. It is really THAT cute! Sandra Bullock showed some nakedness, but she covered her vitals. Also a couple of sexual inuendos, but I don't remember any 4-letter words...well, maybe one or two but not the nasty vulgar stuff. Don't take the kids, but go!
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
We got about 3/4" of rain today. Low temp was 71...high was 91. While it can't be classified as cold, it was a whole lot better than the temperatures we had in June. Alas, the 100s will return.
And guess who left the camper door open? During a break in the rain, I went up with a mop, but nothing was wet.
Sam got the plumbing stubbed out and the ceiling and walls up in his potty room.
After he puts the corner moldings in, he'll move the shower surround in and secure it in place.
And the door is installed along with the door facings. The utility tub is plumbed and the plumbing is stubbed out for the hot water heater too.
I don't know what all he finished after I left for the movies...I'll report in later.
I made salsa yesterday. Last year's batch came out okay, but I really had to tweek the recipe as I went along. Waaay too much vinegar which required waaay too much sugar.
I found a Pace Picante sauce knock-off recipe. It was made with canned tomato sauce. I added fresh tomatoes from Mama's garden. This should be enough for Mama and us. With a jar or two for giveaways.
1 gallon peeled chopped tomatoes
1 (28 ounce) can tomato sauce
3 medium onions, minced
6 large fresh jalapenos, chopped - more or less
3/4 cup vinegar
3 teaspoons salt
7 or so garlic cloves, minced
Bring all ingredients to a boil in large pot over medium-high heat. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes or longer until thick. I don't like sweet salsa. I save my sugar for desserts. ;o) Remove from heat. Pack into jars and process in boiling water bath for 30 minutes.
Some people like a sweet salsa. If you do, just add sugar to taste...1/4 cup at a time...stir and taste before adding more.
Monday, July 20, 2009
Sam and I celebrated our 12th anniversary yesterday, Sunday July 19. Carol and Elton joined us. We ate at Lamache's in Jefferson Texas. Delicious Italian restaurant in one of the hotels...One of the haunted hotels. Stories abound about ghostly visits in several of the rooms and kitchen noises going on in the kitchen...when it's closed. Upon investigation...nothing.
I read about Bailey's Irish Cream Cake. With a bit of searching on the internet trying to find a recipe that didn't call for a cake mix, I found this:
2 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
3/4 cup Bailey's Irish Cream
1/2 cup butter, cut into pieces
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/3 cup sugar
2 3/4 cup heavy cream, chilled
1/3 cup Bailey's Irish Cream, chilled
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon cream
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease, line the bottoms of 2 round cake pans with wax paper or parchment, grease and flour pans. Combine dry ingredients, set aside. In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine Bailey's and the butter; heat until butter melts and mixture almost boils. Remove from heat, stir in vanilla. Cover to keep warm. In a mixer bowl at high speed, beat eggs until pale yellow and tripled in volume (5 minutes or so). Reduce speed to medium; beat in sugar 2 tablespoons at a time, until combined. Reduce speed to low. In a thin steady stream, beat hot Bailey's mixture into egg mixture just until combined. Beat in flour mixture until just combined. Divide batter between pans. Bake 20 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Cool in pans on racks 10 minutes; remove layers from pans and continue to cool on racks.
Combine all ingredients in mixer bowl. Beat at high speed until stiff peaks form (3-5 minutes). Refrigerate frosting until ready to use. Assemble cake. Garnish with chocolate pieces if desired.
Assembled ingredients. The clerk in the liquor store tried to get me to purchase a cheaper Irish cream. Sam has mentioned Bailey's before and since he likes it, that's what I bought. You know, the clerk never heard the phrase, "Don't cook with anything that you wouldn't drink." I took a sip of the BIC. No thank you. I intended to keep the secret ingredient secret, but Sam walked through. This is the first time we've had this in the house since we've been married. He had to have a snort.
The three different bowls ready to be assembled.
Drizzling the Bailey's and butter mixture into the whipped eggs and sugar mixture.
Flour mixture blended in. Then poured into the two pans...ready for the oven.
Cooling and waiting to be slathered with whipped cream.Slathered and we're drooling.
This was a dense cake. It may be the way it is, but there's a possibility that the beating time may have been too long. I remember reading somewhere that once you've incorporated all the air into a mixture that it can take, you then start breaking bubbles. Another possibility is that my baking powder may be old...but it was okay last week when I made cornbread...
And, the whipping cream between the layers squished out when I sliced the cake. I might substitute a butter and powdered sugar icing thinned with Bailey's Irish Cream next time.
Well, next time I intend to try the chocolate version. ;o)