Sunday, December 13, 2009

Need to cut back on the rich foods

My triumphant return to mountain biking has been delayed. We really do need the rain, but I wish we could have switched the order of days, so that today's sunny and mild weather came before the driving rain.

Since I didn't have a nice long workout, it was clearly time for me to make all sorts of rich foods. I made bittersweet cranberry brownies, much to R's chagrin. I like them (though they did turn out pretty wet, probably since I used frozen cranberries), but he feels the strong cranberry flavor obscures the chocolate. I'd never taken him to be a chocolate purist before - guess I'm rubbing off on him. Lucky for R, though, there are more brownies in the future, as the chocolate kept seizing up while I was making chocolate popcorn with sea salt. After the first bag of chocolate chips seized up I put the chocolate in the fridge for a future batch of brownies, blamed the splash of cold milk, and started over. When the second (and last) bag of chocolate chips also seized, I had to make the best of it and added some oil to re-liquefy the chocolate. I had to refrigerate the resulting popcorn in order for it to harden, but my grandpa didn't mind. Cool chocolate popcorn is still delicious. (I'm thinking there was too much steam coming out of the double boiler. Cooking with a crying baby tends to mean I'm not paying quite enough attention to what I'm doing.)

To top off the no-exercise-rich-foods weekend, we dined last night on a lovely home made pate. We had been missing the pate at Costco and the local grocery store at our new place doesn't seem to carry it, so this week I resolved that it was finally pate time. Rather incredibly, in my opinion, the little butcher shop by my house didn't carry any sort of liver, so I wound up going across the street and getting a tub of chicken livers for $2. It turned out delicious. So there.

Chicken Liver Pate
Adapted from Jacques Pepin
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter
  • 2 very large shallots, chopped
  • 12 oz chicken liver
  • 1 t herbes de Provence
  • 3 big fat cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 t fresh ground pepper
  • 3 t bourbon
1. Melt butter. Saute shallots until soft. Add liver, herbes de Provence, and garlic and cook over medium-high heat until liver is done (about 2 minutes). Add salt and pepper.

2. Transfer to blender. Add bourbon. Blend until liquid.

3. Pour into a dish. Let cool 1 1/2 hours, then refrigerate overnight to allow pate to set and flavors to develop.

3. Serve on a crusty baguette. Take some to you in-laws to show off you mad cooking skills.

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