Friday, October 31, 2008
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Lately though, I thought I had grown out of it. I can brag about my chocolate chip cookies. I only use the recipe on the chocolate chip bag, but I promise they are the best cookies you ever ate. The difference is in two things: butter (not margarine) and Mexican vanilla. Joy of Baking says,
I don't know about the chemistry and makeup of the Mexican vanilla bean versus hothouse vanilla beans, but I do know that these cookies are usually awesome. It all started out fine with the wet ingredients, but then Eric and Mark came over to watch Obama inspire the nation and it all went out the window. This is the first batch of cookies I pulled out of the oven, at which point I realized I had only added half the flour. OK, so I added more flour, stirred (a lot) and threw another batch into the oven. I pulled that batch out 8 minutes later. Still not right ... because I hadn't added the salt or the baking soda. Third time's a charm, but these were definitely the (second) worst cookies I have ever made. (There was the time I forgot the flour completely, the cookies melted, ran off the baking sheet and started a sugar fire in the oven). Sorry to Megan, Eric or Mark who may have inadvertently biten into a pocket of salt and/or baking soda. Eric said he liked them and obligingly took some home. Chocolate Chip Cookies: 1 cup softened butter 3/4 cup granulated sugar 3/4 cup brown sugar 2 eggs 1 teaspoon (Mexican) vanilla 2 1/4 cups flour 1 teaspoon baking soda 1 teaspoon salt 12 ounces semi-sweet chocolate morsels Pre-set oven to 375 degrees. Mix butter, sugar and vanilla. Add eggs and beat it (while singing and dancing to Michael Jackson songs). Sift together all of the flour, baking soda and salt. Add gradually to the wet ingredients while mixing. Mix until the consistency is smooth. Add chocolate chips. Place spoonful of cookie mix a couple inches apart on a baking sheet. Bake in oven for 8-10 minutes or until edges are lightly brown. Enjoy. (And don't forget to turn off the oven).
The Mexican vanilla bean is a thicker and darker bean that has a smooth, strong,rich fragrance and flavor.
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Monday, October 27, 2008
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Another thing I was completely fascinated with was this banana factory we stopped at. It happened to be a Del Monte packing "plant," which made me even more excited. I was like, "We eat these bananas! I used to peel those stickers off the fruit and put them on my shirt!" I'm not really sure why this intrigued me, considering I live in the middle of an ocean of corn stretching from Illinois to Eastern Colorado, so farming shouldn't be out of the ordinary. And even more especially since I've been trying not to eat fruit from the nether reaches of the globe. So I'm pretty sure I don't actually eat anything from Del Monte.
Another reason why not to eat these bananas: The factory with in the middle of rows and rows and rows of banana trees. However, our tour guide warned us not to step one foot in the plantation. Why? Because the trees are heavily sprayed with "toxic" chemicals that would make us sick/possibly kill us. Hmm ... But this produce is somehow safe to eat. OK?I don't know who told me everything would be cheaper in Costa Rica, but they were wrong. Maybe it was because we were staying at resorts so all the cocktails cost what they would in the States and were just as diluted, maybe we just got hosed for being tourists. Our driver stopped for lunch at the place pictured below, and it was only $5 for both our meals. And I thought it was one of the best meals we had the entire trip, complete with fried plantains, mixed rice and fish. The best/strangest part of the meal was the "vanilla juice" we had, recommended by our driver. It tasted like melted ice cream. Yum.
Friday, October 17, 2008
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Monday, October 13, 2008
Sunday, October 12, 2008
My other comment about this to note how healthy my friends/two-of-five faithful readers (doesn't anyone make cookies?). Also how much they seem to like alcohol (note the bottle of beer).
Again, send me some lovely, mouth-watering photos of your food, and I'll do a nice, complimentary post about you (even you, dad, gravy, gravy, gravy). lrseyler at hotmail dot com. Thanks.
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
I love this establishment not just for it's food, but because it reminds me of the kind of place that would be in New York's West Village or, I don't know, Paris' Latin Quarter (which I have been to, and they do have Greek/Turkish food galore, so I'm not just saying this). It's small, and like New York dining establishments where space is a commodity, there is no lobby. And if you haven't experienced the late-night European scene, kebab stands stay open well after the bars close, serving hungry drunk people on their way home from the bars.
So the reason why I like this place is because it doesn't seem like the kind of restaurant Omaha would have (and they employ one particularly attractive fellow, and I mean particularly attractive, as in extremely). Yes, it's a lame reason to like a place, but I don't care.
Photo Credit: UNO Gateway