So you know I’m all about keepin’ it real here at HHH. Thus, today’s post. You’d think that since I’m a food blogger, and in the kitchen so much, that I’ve got things pretty much down to a science. I’m always quick, tidy, and efficient, right? Wrong, wrong, wrong! I am here to dispel those myths. Because sometimes, in my kitchen, stuff like this happens:
Occasionally, there’s this too:
…and no, that’s not just a bit of water splashed on the floor, it’s olive oil, MUCH harder to clean up since you need practically boiling water to cut the grease (trust me, I know).
In fact, both of those things happened on the same day, along with a minor BBQ-lighting incident that caused the singeing of a few of my hairs (no, I don’t want to talk about it but fortunately my eyebrows remained intact). But it’s okay…with all the cooking I do, I’m bound to have some mishaps, right? And when the end results are as delicious as this:
it makes the mess almost worthwhile.
Since we’re going in order of the photos today, for this post, we’ll live dangerously and do dessert first.
The cherry disaster that you see up top was part of my quest to make Black Forest Ice Cream. I got my inspiration from several sources: last weeks Biggest Loser chocolate ice cream, the little bit of cherry yogurt still lingering in my fridge from a past (failed) recipe attempt, and the beautiful fresh sweet cherries that are now in season in Southern Ontario.
Side note: a tip for all you cherry lovers out there. I think it was my sister who told me that you can use a regular old plastic drinking straw to pit cherries. Since I wanted about a cup, I decided to put this method to the test. Sometimes you had to force it a bit, but overall, the straw worked beautifully.
So why the microwave cherry mess? I read in a past issue of Rachael Ray magazine with a feature on ice cream that I pulled out that if you want to add fruit, it’s a good idea to cook it first so the pieces are rock-hard and icy (I still found them a little icy though).
So, to make my Black Forest Ice Cream, I made the BL Super-Simple Chocolate Ice Cream base, as directed (this time I pre-chilled the evaporated milk so it would freeze quicker). Before freezing, I whisked in the remainder of the cherry yogurt I had left (I’d say it was probably about 3/4 of a cup). Then I froze the mixture in the ice cream maker as usual.
About 2/3 of the way through the freezing time, I added the cherries, which I had completely cooled in the fridge (I started with 1 cup pitted, halved cherries, microwaved for two minutes (don’t be like me, use a bigger bowl/actually WATCH them to avoid overflow), then drained/drank/wiped up some of the liquid before adding).
So you see the final result above. I enjoyed my first bowl with a few fresh cherries and some BL hot fudge sauce (I heated in the microwave 30 seconds before using, as it gets pretty thick the longer it sits) and fat-free Reddi-Whip. Thoughts? Other than the cherries in the ice cream being a tad icy, I really liked this. The cherry flavour was subtle, but there, and went really well with the deep cocoa flavour of this ice cream.
The olive oil was being used in a little update on my spring spaghetti. It was updated to keep with the season, and turned into more of a summer spaghetti. It still had garlic scapes, asparagus (which is the last of the season…sigh), ricotta, lemon and thyme. But this version also had the benefit of two more ingredients: arugula and zucchini, both freshly picked from my garden. This adapted version was every bit as delicious as the original: fresh, light, and with a nice pop from the lemon.
So you see my friends, out of tragedy can come triumph. From mess we can create success (other than the time I broke a full bottle of balsamic vinegar and it spilt all over the kitchen floor…there was no success to be had there). Although my hands bear the scars of a few kitchen accidents (which have lead to 2 trips to the hospital for stitches), I still live to cook another day, and have just a few more stories to tell.