Sunday, August 30, 2009


The past week, most of my cooking was recreating things I've made in the past for my cousins who were visiting. I promise, this week I'll return back to my crazy bacon and sausage obsession. I don't plan on reviewing foods too much here but I picked up a bunch of random candies in South Carolina that I can't get at home Virginia. A couple of years ago I read Candy Freak by Steve Almond. If you haven't read it, you should, it's awesome, the ultimate read for sugar junkies. A few things he mentioned in there have actually required some effort to find, so when I stumbled upon Valomilk at It's Sugar on Boardwalk at the Beach in South Carolina, I had to have it. 

After scarfing down two ooey gooey cups of happiness and joy covered in love, I'm praying and hoping some candy store in my area sees this and starts selling them here!!!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Samoas Pie

First of all, check out the chocolate bar my cousins brought me back from their quick trip to NYC with my brother.

How awesome is that? Five pounds of chocolate. I need to start coming up with some chocolatey ideas. My idea for the night just had a chocolate drizzle and it was before they came back, so I didn't get to open the big bar yet. Before vacation I had mentioned I had a pretty nifty idea for a pie and last night I finally got to make it. I had made the Thin Mint Pie, Tagalong Pie, next in line? Samoas! Unlike the previous two, there are no actual Samoas in this pie. I crushed shortbread cookies and mixed with melted butter for the crust and only baked it for a few minutes. Caramel pie must not be a very popular flavor because it was pretty hard finding multiple recipes to pick and choose from. Here's the caramel filling I ultimately used.

Caramel Coconut Pie Filling
1 and 1/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup of milk
1 cup cream
few spoons of flour
however much coconut you want, toasted
3 egg whites beaten stiff 

Mix everything together minus the egg whites, fold egg whites into the mixture, pour into crust and bake at 300 for 45-55 minutes or until it stops jiggling when you move the pie pan. 
I hadn't planned on being so sloppy with the chocolate drizzle. But I couldn't find the pastry bag thing with the nozzle so I used a plastic baggy and cut a hole in the corner and the chocolate was hot so I kept burning myself and then I tried to speed it up and squeeze harder but it oozed out the top. In hindsight, I think I also should have only put half the coconut in the pie and sprinkled the rest on top, then drizzle. Whatever. Lesson learned for next time. Important part, the pie was DELICIOUS! 
Why is it so hard to take food pictures???

Monday, August 24, 2009

Egg in a Basket

I am back! After a week at the beach I am fully browned and back in my own kitchen. My cousins are staying with us from Canada, so while I have my kitchen back, the menu isn't exactly in my control and the frying is still somewhat on hold. Do you want to hear the big shocker though? They don't eat bacon! Holy moly ravioli. How are we related? My brother took them to NYC for two days though, so I whipped out the bacon and made myself a breakfast for greasy champions. I took a little ramekin and lined a slice of bacon around the inside, then I placed three strips across to cover the bottom, trimming the side to make it as even as I could. Cracked an egg and popped in the oven and there I had it, an egg in a basket! 

How cute is that? I would totally make this for a brunch, so simple and adorable! While the bacon was cooked, it wasn't as crispy as I tend to like my bacon to be. Next time I would give the bacon a 5 minute head start and then crack the egg into it. 

Saturday, August 22, 2009

South Carolina

I totally should be sleeping right now since there is so much going on. We just got back from the beach last night and this afternoon my cousin and his son came to stay with us for a week from Canada. I feel like I've neglected the blog though, so here are the rest of the food pictures from my trip to Myrtle Beach. 7 days of all you can eat buffets for dinner (twice for breakfast as well), Shaggin Joe's for doughnuts, candy stores galore, foot long hot dogs, and ice cream around every corner. Most importantly, I got PRALINES. 
Look at that cheese ball of a grin.
If you are ever in the South you NEED to go to River Street Sweets. The praline is eye rolling good. So good there are only two pieces left and I bought them on my last night there. They also like to dip things in chocolate, like marshmallows!
I got the Heath Bar chocolate covered marshmallow.
I have to say though, one of my favorite things was at Dairy King, oh yes, the Queen has a King and he lives in South Carolina. Home of the:
People stared, but I think they were just jealous that they didn't order it themselves. 
Original posts will return soon! Have a fabulous weekend! I'm going to a barbecue at my uncles tomorrow and the doughnut bread pudding was requested. Time permitting, I'll hopefully make something new as well! 

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Deep Fried Snickers

I'm still on vacation, but I had something so ridiculously Vartamelon-y that I had to make a post about it as soon as I could and since I'm just unwinding in the room at the moment, what better time than now? There I was walking around the beach carnival when I saw one of those food stands and the sign for fried dough, hell to the yes, I wanted some fried dough. I got in line and started reading some of their other offerings: funnel cake (duh), elephant ears (turns out those are fried dough), and deep fried Twinkies. Next to the deep fried Twinkies was also a sign reading to ask what other things they deep fry, so I became the annoying girl in line asking them what else they deep fried. Turned out they deep fry Snickers, Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, and something else but I forgot. I chose the Snicker because peanuts have protein and that makes me feel less guilty. 

There it is, swimming in the oil, batter oozing everywhere, it's beautiful. A couple of people were asking what it was and gave me funny looks when I told them which surprised me because I thought deep frying everything was totally normal in the South. They then let the excess oil drip off. 
I think I've mentioned before that I make really ugly faces when I eat really delicious, fatty food. My brother captured this on camera. 

Monday, August 10, 2009

I'm Out!

I leave for the beach in two days, so I won't be posting for a while. Take care everyone and please let me know of good burgers and hot dogs if you know of any in Myrtle Beach!!!  

Sunday, August 9, 2009

More Dessert Egg Rolls

I leave for South Carolina in a few days and I've already planned some things I can't wait to make when I get back. In the meantime, many of you are aware I've taken it upon myself to use up things in the fridge. I was originally going to post up what I made for dinner which, while delicious, wasn't anything special (sauted spinach with sausage, roasted eggplant with cheese and seasoned roasted onions). Then I remembered I still had some egg roll wrappers left and a Milky Way that I put in my fridge because it melted after I forgot to bring it inside.
Sssshhh, when I go to the movies I take my own snacks.

So, let's review, quick inventory: egg roll wrappers, bananas, Nutella, peanut butter, marshmallow fluff, and a refrigerated Milky Way. Oh, and some ice cream. This is a pretty familiar path
Milky Way egg roll for me, banana and peanut butter egg roll for Bear, and a banana/marshmallow fluff/nutella egg roll for Sahar. 
This was taken at a friends grad party last summer. She was my vacation buddy last year but sadly can't make it this year.
I took a picture of me eating these but my eyes kept rolling and it was really unattractive. 

Friday, August 7, 2009

Elvis French Toast

I have a few ideas for things to make but I'm saving them for when I get back from the beach (I leave on Thursday and I'll be gone for a week), because, well, I'm kind of vain and want to look good in my bathing suits, that's why. At the same time, I don't want to neglect the blog since I'm going to have to neglect it while I'm gone. See the dilemma? 

I've "met" quite a few awesome people ever since I submitted the egg/sausage roll on Epic Portions, and I'm very grateful and thankful for all their help and support. I can always count on Bear for a post comment, so I had to go for his suggestion of finding a way to fry an Elvis Sandwich. I've never actually had an Elvis Sandwich before, but I was ready to switch it up this morning. Many are already aware I have a weird obsession with french toast. I love it. So there we go, as easy as that, I was going to french toast-ify the Elvis Sandwich. 
What you are looking at, my friends, are two slices of bread with peanut butter, joining bacon and banana together, dunked it french toast batter. The most fun part about this was flipping it over, well, and eating it. It's so dense and hearty, it actually goes "thud" when you flip it. Definitely not for light eaters. I'm such a fat kid at heart, I peeled it open, drizzled syrup, put it back together and ate like a sandwich. 

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Tagalong Pie

It was a rough day. The post I wanted to make turned out to be a super huge bust. I can't believe an attempt to deep fry something went awry. I feel so betrayed. Then, it was just a long day which I was not mentally prepped for because usually Wednesdays are easy breezy. And to add, I didn't make it to the gym. RAWR

Deep breath. I'm ok. I have redeemed myself from yesterdays kitchen fail. The amazing thing about this is someone had mentioned a pie using Tagalongs today and guess what I found in the closet??? That's right! TAGALONGS (and a box of Lemon Cremes, hmmm)!!! Between the peanut butter filling and the chocolate coating, I forwent attempting to use the cookies as the crust. Have you ever tried crushing Tagalongs
Totally looks like poop. 

I'm also not too proud of the Sandra Lee I totally pulled with the filling. I made a traditional graham cracker crust, closest thing I had to the internal Tagalong cookie part, using however many graham crackers are in one of those bags in a box of graham crackers and 3/4 stick melted butter pressed into one of those pie pans that pop up. For the filling I used one box of vanilla pudding mix, a couple of hefty spoons of peanut butter, 9 crushed Tagalongs (it was originally 10, but I ate one), and 2 cups of milk. I used a mixer because I wanted the cookie to become as smooth as possible. It got the job done, no cookie chunks at all, just little bits of chocolate speckled throughout. 
I then poured it into the crust and waited for an hour. Seriously, I waited. It was rough. But wise man said patience is a virtue. You know what I say? Modesty is a virtue God forgot to give me, so he made me better looking. That made no sense in there, but it's late and I'm tired and I still think that's a funny line. Moving on, the final product, Tagalong Pie!

Now, the artsy fartsy picture:
That cookbook it's sitting on was of NO use in this production aside from being used as a tray because someone is too lazy to get one out of the drawer.

Someone needs to back me up here, I can't be the only person that does that much damage in 5 minutes. 

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Cornbread and Chili (?)

That's my dad. He stands like a military man because he is a military man. He was a Naval Captain for the Imperial Iranian Navy back in the good old days when the country was run by humans and not a monkey in an ill-fitting suit (no offense to all the monkeys out there). Anyways. My temper, skinny ankles, and appetite all came from him. So did my love for spicy food. If it makes my eyes water and mouth burn, even better. Since Persian food isn't exactly known for its kick, a spicy dinner wasn't going to sprout from the motherland. 

Enter: Chili. I read a few recipes and came to the conclusion that chili is one of those meals that resulted from leftovers. I had just bought hot sausage and I originally wanted to use that as the meat for my chili, but my dad has high cholesterol and I wanted him to be able to enjoy it so I used ground turkey. Sorry, sausage. I had to make one fatty thing though, and since I'm the only cornbread fan in the house I used that as my opportunity. Standard cornbread with melted jalapeno butter. 

Ok, so it's not really jalapeno butter (does that even exist?), but rather, butter melting with bacon grease and jalapenos. The goal was for all the pepper oils and juices to become incorporated into the butter so that I could strain it into the cornbread batter but keep the jalapeno flavor. Unfortunately, it wasn't as strong as I was hoping for so I just chopped up the peppers and threw them in too. 

Not too shabby. 

Chili time. As I mentioned before, I used ground turkey instead of the hot sausage (*sniffles*), chopped onions, chopped tomatoes, garlic, red kidney beans, and pinto beans. I seasoned it with salt, pepper, cumin, chili powder,  cayenne pepper, more sliced jalapenos and another little green pepper that I don't know what it was, hot sauce, and a little something I picked up that I like to call, awesome:
How cool is that? Seriously? I really hope people aren't thinking "eewwwww, woman you're gross", because I seriously thought this was incredible. Cooked the beans, cooked the meat with the onion and garlic, mixed it all together, let it simmer, and kept adding more of the peppers and seasonings until my tongue went "holy smokes, that's bananas".

Didn't look at all what I thought it was going to look like (kind of funny looking if you ask me, but YUM), that's why I used the question mark, I don't know what qualifies as chili and what just spicy generic food. 

Monday, August 3, 2009

Thin Mint Pie

Most people buy normal quantities of Girl Scout Cookies, in my family, we buy enough to last until they start selling them again. No joke, about 30 boxes every year. That means there's a good chance when that Girl Scout comes knocking on the door I'll answer with a Samoa in my hand. There have been a lot of recipes for Samoa bars floating around on the internet but what about the other cookies? Don't they deserve some lovin' too? Tag-a-Longs are just as deserving, Thin Mints are no less delicious, and those lemon ones with the powdered sugar are for real addictive. 

Friday night I bought a tart pan for reasons I won't get into now, but it played a big part in this, I was out and about all weekend and I finally came home at 10pm on Sunday, but that was as good of a time as any to make a pie. And my brilliant plan? Crushing up Thin Mints for the crust!
Same idea as a graham cracker crust, crushed up cookies (I used a sleeve and a half for a 9 inch pie pan, it made for a thick crust) and half a stick of melted butter. I then baked it at 350 degrees for oh, 15 minutes? I have no clue, I have terrible time perception and forgot to look at the clock, so maybe it was 20? It was enough for it to all firm up. Since the cookie crumbs have the chocolate coating, don't bother trying to press the crust up the sides. The chocolate will melt and all will come down anyways.
Years ago I found a chocolate mousse recipe in a magazine and saved it in my purple cooking notebook because I do dorky things like that. It's pretty basic, but it's light, delicious, and gets the job done. I chose that as my filling. Use whatever chocolate mousse rocks your socks. 
I probably should have doubled the mousse for the pie (for reference, my mousse was based on 4 eggs and 4 ounces of chocolate, and I felt the mousse layer was a tad thin). Since by this point it was almost 11pm, I wasn't about to stay up for the final product, I let it chill in the fridge overnight and woke up to chocolate lovers dream. 

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Excuses, excuses

Another weekend went by and the only things I made were for my nephews, none of which deserved any fanfare aside from my little choompa loompas gobbling it up and making me feel special. Come to think of it, that's the most important thing. I also took my bacon carnivore to a farm fair, and guess what they were selling?
Deep fried Oreo's. Of course, I made a beeline for it and sat down right in the grass to eat them. My nephew wasn't too impressed. He took a bite and asked for cotton candy.

 I inhaled them as to not have the delicious taste tainted by the smell of goat as waited in line to milk them. 
Have you ever seen a goat's teat? I don't even want to say what it looked like, but I will say I did not touch it and as excited as my nephew was to milk, his turn came and he turned to me and said "I don't want to touch it". On to the food little one, on to the food.
He also didn't care for the 10 inch corn dog and asked for fries. psh. Omnivore.