This Week In My KitchenPosted: May 23, 2012
One of the perks to having parents who work in a restaurant (I imagine), is having parents who can throw together delicious buttermilk blueberry pancakes with neither recipe nor measuring device. John put some handfuls of dry ingredients into a bowl, and I poured some liquids together, and then we combined the two and, voila! Pancakes. The super fluffy, ever-so-slightly-sweet kind.
I sprinkled some flax meal on top for good measure and a little bit of nutty flavor. The blueberries around here are enormous orbs these days, and they pop when you bite into them. I tried to place them so there’d be one per bite. These pancakes were so wonderful we didn’t even eat them with butter and syrup. Mmm mmm mmm.
Summer is just around the corner and the sun has been high and bright these days, which means the grill is back in action. As you all know, I have pretty romantic feelings about grilling. Ok, VERY romantic feelings. Few things make me happier.
My folks sent John a box of Penzeys Spices for his birthday and he’s been using this once spice rub in particular that, no joke, makes perfect chicken. PERFECT. Of course, I can’t remember which on it is right now, and he’s at work, but I’ll try to get back to you all with the name. I’m all for making your own rubs, but I’m also all for having a few tricks in your arsenal that guarantee deliciousness with minimal effort. This spice rub is one of those things.
The byproduct of the return of grilling season, of course, is a steady influx of chicken bones to my freezer. So, last Friday while Maxine was with our dear friend Linda and John was at work and I was working on a contribution to the Lightning Bug Situation‘s next album (The Lightning Bug Situation, just in case you don’t know, is the brain child of Brian Miller. Brian Miller is a badass with a sensitive heart, and a brilliantly idiosyncratic musician. He and his lovely partner, Nancy, are like our soul mates or something creepy like that. Also, and totally unrelated, but if you scroll down on the link to the Lightning Bug Situation’s website, you can see some really great drawings John did. That guys makes me wanna brag on the regular.), I chopped up some onion and carrot and celery and threw them in a big pot with the chicken bones and a few bay leaves and some pepper corns, covered it all up with water, and let it simmer for hours. YUM. Also, the house still smelled good the next day. Homemade stock is the gift that just keeps on giving, isn’t it?
And then it was my last day interning at Memoir Journal. The ladies I worked with there are some of the brightest, funniest, most generous and just generally awesome folks I’ve ever met. In addition to post-work drinks, my last day merited a thank you gift of some sort. But what?
Peanut butter cups, obviously. Sprinkled with sea salt. Because nothing says THANKS FOR BEING AWESOME like homemade peanut butter cups. It’s awesomeness to recognize awesomeness and that’s just, well, awesome.
They’re super simple to make. I made two dozen and used about 1 1/2 bags of chocolate chips (the standard sized bag) and a jar of peanut butter. You just line muffin tins with cupcake wrappers and fill the bottoms with melted chocolate and then freeze. Put a scoop of peanut butter on and then freeze again. Shape the peanut butter once it’s chilled so there’s room for the chocolate to go down the sides and connect with the base. Pour melted chocolate over. Freeze for about a minute before sprinkling sea salt on top (so the salt doesn’t melt) and then let completely freeze. The hardest part comes at the end: Trying not to eat them all.
What’s been going on in your kitchens lately? We’d love to know.