22 February 2011

In which the day is a good one

Because in it, I . . .

Made french toast. With maple syrup and butter and blueberries. This was good fuel for my husband to go shovel snow, and me to, ah, stay inside and cuddle with a tea mug. (Speaking of snow, holy cow, an avalanche just slipped off our roof and tumbled past the window. That always makes me nervous.) French toast is a good reason to let bread go stale. Croutons are another . . .

Wrote about Othello. That's nice enough, but as is the nature of research, I always go down lots of rabbit trails before coming to the conclusion. Today I learned about Scheherezade. It had to do with Othello somehow, I promise.

Went to the gym. Not that making my muscles scream is in itself pleasant, but I like the accomplished, I-pushed-myself feeling afterward. And it's always pleasant to see results. :) Also, a post-workout shower is tops.

Drooled over a Crate & Barrel sale catalogue. Everything in there looked so wonderful. However, in no position to make an order, I was inspired to rearrange several things in the kitchen and living room. To me, creating a new look out of old items is intensely satisfying. I love switching things up around the house, making it fresh without having to purchase anything.

Made up dinner. Farfalle sauced with some marinara and crushed tomatoes, tossed with sauteed grated carrot, red onion, and chunks of sharp cheese, finished with Parmesan and herbs. Don't forget the garlic bread.

Dipped things in chocolate. And decided that this needs to happen more often. Husband concurs . . . so it is written, so let it be done.


Chocolate Dipped Whatever

12 oz bittersweet chocolate (three 4-oz bars)*
1 heaping tablespoon coconut oil**
your selected dipping candidates (pretzels, almonds, strawberries, or the "whatever" so helpfully noted in the name)

1. Line a cookie sheet or jelly roll pan with parchment paper. Break chocolate into pieces. Melt coconut oil and chocolate in a small saucepan over low heat, whisking frequently to prevent burning. (You could be fancy and do it in a double boiler. But I don't have one of those and even hate messing with the bowl-over-simmering-water improvisation, so I just melt it straight in the saucepan and risk the occasional scorch.)
2. Once mixture is smooth and glossy, it's dipping time. You will want tongs for this: either dip the pretzel/almond/strawberry partially into the chocolate, or drop the thing in and remove with tongs. First method is nice for large items, second better for small. I, for example, half-dipped all the whole pretzels we had left in the bag, then dumped in the small broken pieces and stirred them to get thoroughly coated, and fished them out with my handy tongs.
3. Whatever your coating method, once that chocolate has been applied, put the now-enrobed item onto your parchment-lined cookie sheet. Continue with the remaining items and fill up the cookie sheet. Stick it in the fridge to chill thoroughly and get that lovely smooth sheen. Once chilled, the parchment paper will peel right off. Store in the refrigerator, if you have any left.

*Obviously you could use a sweeter chocolate, but I prefer the dark bite of bittersweet.
**You're supposed to put in shortening, according to most instructions I've seen. However, I never have that around, so I used coconut oil instead. It was fab-u-lous.

1 comment:

  1. "To me, creating a new look out of old items is intensely satisfying. I love switching things up around the house, making it fresh without having to purchase anything."

    You are your mothers daughter!