My favorite time of year has finally arrived! Like Julie Andrews in The Sound of Music, I feel like running through a field while belting out a couple of lines about the hills being alive with the colors of autumn. I know, I sound a teensy bit crazy.
About a month ago I began daydreaming of all the pumpkin, cinnamon, and apple creations that I could be baking and, of course, eating. It’s sort of ironic that the very first thing I made after September 23rd was not pumpkin, spice, or anything apple, but caramel sauce.
Not just any ordinary caramel sauce however, but Jack Daniels Honey Whiskey caramel.
The most difficult part of this recipe is having patience. Patience to let all the granulated sugar melt into a deep golden brown color and then constantly stirring the cream to combine into the initial hardened caramel for a smooth sauce. Not to mention the will power to not eat it straight out of the pan.
“Oh, what is it?” my husband wondered looking at the glass filled with fruit and whipped topping.
“A fool, ” I answered.
“Are you calling it a fool or me a fool?” he asked.
I suppose that was a valid question and yes, I was calling the dessert a fool because that’s exactly what it was, a mixed berry fool. For answers about that name, I’m going to have to question the English about it because this sweet is their creation.
A fool is basically a no-bake, fruit filled delight and I’ve been all about the no-bake foods lately since it’s been so warm in my part of the country. Plus, I really wanted to take advantage of all the yummy Summer berries before they’re gone for the season.
Last week we were invited to a small gathering of drinks and Mexican food. My friend, who was hosting, was preparing a combination of beef and chicken tacos so I decided I wanted to try a new side dish called Esquites, a Mexican corn salad.
When I first looked at this delectable recipe, it contained so many ingredients that I love there was no way it wasn’t going to be delicious. There was garlic, lime, cilantro, cheese, and, of course, corn! Like the original post on Closet Cooking says, it really sounded like pure summer in a bowl.
Ah, Saturday mornings! They’re probably my most cherished time of the week since they mark the glorious start of the weekends. (Insert a quip from the Dowager Countess of Grantham from Downton Abbey about “what is a weekend?”)
One of the things I make it a point to do every Saturday is to prepare breakfast for myself and my husband since I just don’t get that chance during the work week.
It wasn’t too long ago that I made Chocolate Pancakes with Chocolate Sauce and baked a batch of Peanut Butter and Jelly Muffins, so I opted for something out of breakfast left field – quinoa. Yep, I just said quinoa. I know that it isn’t what usually what comes to mind when you think of morning fare, but simmered in soy milk with a touch of cinnamon, vanilla, and brown sugar, quinoa takes on a fantastic new flavor.
Over the last two weeks, I’ve been obsessed with caprese salad and sandwiches. Because of my preoccupation, I’ve been purchasing copious amounts of basil, mozzarella and tomatoes. I must have misjudged how much basil I really needed because I ended up with a huge bunch left over. Oops.
That’s an easy fix, right? Just buy more cheese and tomato! I hesitated to go this route since it’s possible my husband was starting to think I had an addiction that a reality TV show could be interested in.
What else could I do with my basil? I have nothing against pesto (because it’s delicious), but I wanted to avoid another trip to the store and to work with what I had in my pantry. As it turns out, there’s such a thing as basil hummus.