Greetings. I had a great food and friends weekend, and I wanted to write this post Monday morning, but I woke up with a terrible sore throat. Soon it became the kind of sickness that completely knocks you out, and by nighttime I had a fever. Yesterday I went to the doctor and found out I have strep throat so I filled her prescriptions, took the pills, and again was knocked out. Last night I was far too lethargic and nauseous to type anything, so here I am Wednesday morning, pre-med ingestion, to write out this post that’s been hanging over my head then resign myself to another day of boredom and nausea.
When I was in high school, if I spent a Friday night alone I would get really depressed. Now I find I’m perfectly content to spend an entire Friday night at home cooking, and that is what I did on Friday. I knew Saturday I was going to have no free time, so I cooked and prepped everything Friday night. I also made pesto pizza for dinner using farmers market basil and tomatoes and VWAV pizza crust from the freezer.
Upon taking the crust out of the freezer, I was reminded how awesome I am, because I had included this note to myself on how to bake it, so I wouldn’t have to look it up again.
The pesto recipe and tofu ricotta were also from VWAV. I put the red onion on sparingly, but afterwords wished I had put more on, because it was really yummy.
Janeen had invited me to brunch Saturday morning, so I got up and finished up the food to take to her place. I made what I’m calling Monkey Rolls – banana-chocolate-walnut cinnamon rolls. I made the Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls from the Don’t Eat Off the Sidewalk zine, subbing mashed banana for the pumpkin and adding chocolate chips and chopped toasted walnuts to the filling. I also subbed canola oil for the margarine in both the rolls and the filling, as Janeen is allergic to soy. I was most nervous about that substitution, but they turned out great.
I had intentions of icing them with both vanilla and chocolate and almost skipped the chocolate part for lack of time, but I’m glad I went with both because I think the chocolate icing was the part that really took them over the top.
I also made what I envisioned to be baked black bean & sweet potato taquitos. Friday night I made the fillings, which were Refried Black Beans from Yellow Rose Recipes, and a sweet potato mash with lime juice, cilantro and minced chipotles. Saturday morning I made my first homemade wheat tortillas from this recipe. I made 12 tortillas instead of the 8 the recipe calls for, to make them smaller.
They turned out really well for a first attempt, but they weren’t as pliable as I had hoped. I wrapped each one around some of the black beans and sweet potato, secured them with a toothpick, and baked for about 15 minutes. Right around the time I was trying to finish photgraphing and pack up for Janeen’s house, a crazy storm started rolling in and took all my light. So I skeedaddled to Janeen’s just in time to beat the rain and took the rest of the photos by flash, and candlelight because Janeen is romantic like that.
So the taquitos didn’t wrap up as I had hoped, but they tasted really good. I served them with a quick guacamole and homemade enchilada sauce. I like the enchilada sauce you can buy at the store (Old El Paso?) but felt like trying homemade. I figured it couldn’t be too difficult. I was skeptical about just how much a roux would do for an enchilada sauce, but it really did the trick. The sauce had a silky mouthfeel that couldn’t have been acheived by just mixing ingredients together. The only change I made was to add 2 tsp of sugar. I like a sweet sauce.
Janeen made some excellent potatoes, cooked with a bruschetta mix and mushrooms. These were really good.
She also put together a pretty fruit plate.
Here’s our candlelit spread.
We had planned a bike ride after brunch, but since it was storming we stayed in and ate like piggies.
Afterwards we went to watch bf’s band play at an afternoon benefit show, then retired to his house for a bbq. I came home in between to clean up, and by the time I got there this was the spread on the coffee table. Normally we’ll have out a bag or two of chips, but apparently that day we were partying like there were 20 of us even though there were only really 8.
And for further exhibit of “how we roll”, here is the top shelf of the beer fridge. Yes, there are two fridges and one is just for beer.
For the bbq I made Apricot BBQ Sauce from VCon. I was skeptical about how good this could be with no vinegar and such a small amount of tomato, but this is really good. Make it now while apricots are in season!
I used this sauce to baste FatFree Vegan’s Barbecued Seitan Ribz. So good.
I also made squash pickles. You may recall that I first made them a while back, and wasn’t quite happy with the seasoning. This time I got it right. Nobody else seems to like these as much as I do, but I do like them. So if you like squash and pickles, give them a try.
2 yellow squash and 1 zucchini, or 4 yellow squash, sliced
1 c vinegar (1/2 c apple cider, 1/2 c white)
1 c sugar
heaping tsp kosher salt
2 c water or enough to cover squash
medium to large shallot, very thinly sliced
1 tsp pickling spice
1/3 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp mustard seed
2 tsp celery seed
Put all ingredients in a non-reactive container and stir. Refrigerate overnight, stirring occasionally.
For crisper pickles, salt the squash slices and let sit in a colander for a half hour. Rinse before adding to other ingredients.
My plate, with some grilled asparagus.
That’s it for now. I have friends visiting this weekend and am concentrating on getting well before then. And maybe going back to work, since that’s how I get paid.