Archive for the baking Category

Adventures in Cultural Misappropriation: Albania

Posted in baking, food, recipes, adventures in cultural misappropriation, albania with tags , , , , on June 16, 2018 by uglydudefood

In this post:

Byrek

Turli perimesh (recipe 7 at link)

Albanian walnut cake

The CULINARY ADVENTURE took us to Europe. Albania. I don’t know where in Europe it is, shut up.

The first thing I made was byrek, which I guess can be made in a lot of different varieties, but this one is cheddar and spinach. A bunch of that type stuff in phyllo dough.

byrek and turli perimesh

From previous recipes I’ve done, I learned that puff pastry and phyllo are super insanely hard to make, and homemade isn’t any better than store bought, so don’t waste the time. Thanks Dorie!

It was real easy, and I’m definitely gonna make it again with the other half of my phrozen fyllo dough.

The turli perimesh is Albanian mixed vegetables. I used green pepper, potato, zucchini, and eggplant. It cooked down to stewlike consistency and I’m tempted to think that I may have overcooked it. Regardless, this meal receives my highest rating: GOOD AS HELL. Suggested wine pairing: Diet Mt. Dew.

The walnut cake was really good, too. Basically a simple cake batter with toasted walnuts mixed in, and then soaked in a lemon sugar glaze and baked again for ten minutes. Nice and moist. Reminded me a lot of a zucchini bread or something similar, even though the only fruit was lemon juice in the glaze.

Albania, u have earned ur place on earth’s map. Bless.

The next country we picked was very challenging from a vegetarian standpoint. See u then, buttz.

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Adventures in Cultural Misappropriation: The Bahamas

Posted in adventures in cultural misappropriation, baking, food, the bahamas with tags , , , , on June 9, 2018 by uglydudefood

In this post: Bahamian Mac and Cheese

Johnnycakes

Bahamian rum cake

I was excited when the random country generator picked the Bahamas, mainly because I misread it as THE BAHA MEN.

come on everybody, sing along, u know the words!

Difficult to pick fishes from this area. That was a genuine phone typo for “dishes,” but a happy accident, because everything in the effing Bahamas is seafood. So ladies and gentlemen, here is the vegetarian option from the Bahamen!

Bahamian mac and cheese is basically mac and cheese with some veggies chopped into it, and then cooked until you can slice it into bricks. I made the mistake of saying “WELL THIS DOESNT SEEM VERY CULTURALLY RELEVANT” and getting hit across the head by Rachel, who does all of the research on this stuff. Anyway, doubt it all you want: Bahamian macaroni and cheese isn’t just the title some schmo gave on a Cooks dot com recipe, but also something with a cultural tie to the Bahamas as evidenced by Tru Bahamian Food Tours Dot Com! English traditions filtering into the island nations etc etc.

I’m pleased to announce that it’s good as hell!

As a side dish, johnny cakes! Best known in America for that mention in one episode of the Simpsons, these are very simple, and very similar to biscuits in both ingredients and technique. Cold chopped butter, a little hand kneading, and baking. A bit sweeter than biscuits, and cooked as a big block (although certainly these could be portioned before baking).

Ugly by design, works for me

I could have baked these a little longer. I didn’t want them to get too dry, but the middle part had a thin band of doughy/gummy undercooked stuff in the middle. Still tasted great.

So this is the meal, you shits. Bahamian mac and cheese and Bahamian johnny cakes. Suggested wine pairing: Diet Mt. Dew.

For dessert, Bahamian rum cake! I don’t drink, so this recipe caused me to go into the liquor store and feel like a naughty little boy. I usually keep rum in the baking cabinet (I use, like, a tablespoon or two over the holidays every year in pies), but this cake calls for like two cups and a designated driver. Twenty dollars for a bottle of rum!!!! The extra large soda I grabbed at Sheetz while I was out was a buck twenty nine, and it had more liquid!

I’m going to steal a term from those creepy internet pizza blogger assholes: here is the “upskirt.” Gross!

Anyway, it’s a rum-flavored bundt cake with a strong butter rum glaze. It was real good. I took the rest into work but probably ate most of it myself anyway.

As you can see, my running headphones are pink and my counters need a wipedown.

In conclusion, the Bahamen is a country of something.

Rachel is really enjoying learning about all of the countries and making a traveling list. I’m really enjoying making and eating food. My kid is really enjoying Mickey Mouse these days.

Next up: another country I wouldn’t be able to find on a map. Thanks for stopping by, dickwads!

Tuesdays With Dorie – Granola Grabbers

Posted in baking, food, tuesdays with dorie with tags , , , , , , , , , , on August 19, 2008 by uglydudefood


Well, let’s see here.  Today’s recipe was Granola Grabbers.  I followed the recipe to the letter, even making a last-minute run for coconut.

I plopped my cookies out onto the parchment-ed tray, and I stuck my trays in the oven.  Easy.  So easy.  And if the dough was any indication, these cookies were going to be damn good.

I had quite a bit of extra dough, and I began to toy with ideas.  EXPERIMENTATION!  It’s like I’m back in college again.

Experiment #1:  Microwaving.  I formed a ball of dough onto a microwave-safe plate, and I nuked it for thirty seconds.   Mistake.  The center was burnt to a smoking crisp, and the outside was still malformed, soft dough.  I tried to eat the whole thing, but after my first bite of burnt…well, it was trash time.

Experiment #2:  THE MONSTER COOKIE.  I was going to bake the rest of my dough into one big monster cookie.  This was destined for disaster, as I’d have no idea how to adjust temperature or baking time.

This experiment was not to be.  My first batch of cookies came out with burnt bottoms, and I was going to have to use the rest of the dough to make some edible food.  Bummmmmer!

I adjusted the baking time to eight minutes, and the cookies came out just fine.  So I had thirty burnt-ass cookies and ten decent ones.  I guess my plans to offload tons of cookies to girlfriend and work fell short.

If you divided your batch into the recommended number of cookies (40), here are your nutritional stats. PER COOKIE. Boy, this sure makes the eight burnt cookies I ate (had to save the rest of my family from such a grisly fate) that much more depressing.

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 30.0g
Amount Per Serving
Calories

141
Calories from Fat

75
% Daily Value*
Total Fat

8.3g
13%
Saturated Fat

3.4g
17%
Cholesterol

15mg
5%
Sodium

49mg
2%
Total Carbohydrates

14.5g
5%
Dietary Fiber

1.5g
6%
Sugars

7.5g
Protein

2.9g
Vitamin A 3% Vitamin C 0%
Calcium 2% Iron 4%
* Based on a 2000 calorie diet

Nutritional details are an estimate and should only be used as a guide for approximation

Tuesdays With Dorie – Blueberry Sour Cream Ice Cream

Posted in baking, food, tuesdays with dorie with tags , , , , , , , , , on August 12, 2008 by uglydudefood

I was really good this week, I swear!  After I made the decision to use an ice cream maker for this week’s recipe, I went right out and bought one.  I had all the ingredients in my fridge so that I could get right to it when I got back from my trip to Ocean City, MD.

Ice cream was a new and exciting challenge for me.  I conquered the oven and mastered the art of the leaky food processor.  I could make Dorie’s “Good For Anything Pie Dough” with my eyes closed.  I would even be able to tell you what a gallette was!  Then Dorie threw me for a loop–“baking” without baking.

I’ll tell you this much:  the recipe came together easily enough.  I had initial hesitance in bringing the solid items to a boil, but one should learn never to question Dorie Greenspan.  Ever.  If Dorie Greenspan told you to walk off a bridge, you should do it.  It would be a delicious and fattening trip.

And then to my shiny, new ice cream maker!  I opened the box and took stock.  I had managed to purchase an incomplete ice cream maker.  It didn’t have the metal ice cream canister or the lid, which were arguably the most important pieces of the ice-cream-maker.  I got what I deserved for buying an $18 ice cream maker at Wal Mart.

I went in to exchange my ice cream maker at Wallyworld, and they were out of stock.  I refunded my purchase onto a gift card (which will give me an excuse to purchase $5 DVDs in the future) and wandered away to Target.  I picked up a nicer (and complete) ice cream maker there.

When I returned home, I looked in the garage for what my parents assured me was rock salt.  Not rock salt.  It was chemical ice melt, which would probably cause my ice cream to eat through my esophagus.  And so I hopped into my poor car and began my second journey of the night.

The grocery store did not have any sort of rock salt.  It was only after asking three different associates at the Home Depot that I found my way to the “water softener” salts and ice cream salvation.

I huffed and puffed my way into my home carrying the sixty-pound bag of salt that I had purchased.  Sure, I only needed about half a cup of salt, but I had to get the best deal!  I’ll have enough salt to make ice cream when I’m dead.

By the time I got home, it was 8:00, meaning my ice cream wouldn’t be frozen to eleven or midnight.  Then, I’d have minimal turnaround time to take photographs, eat the stuff, and type out a silly blog entry for the next morning.

Was all the trouble worth it?  Well, yeah.  All of the pain and strife and gasoline expended on making Dorie’s creation only enhanced the obviously-delicious flavor.  Dorie:  you’ve not done me wrong yet.  Good show.

Random thought:  I’ve never had sour cream before.  It is disgusting on its own, and amazing in ice cream.

Here’s nutrition info for 1/4 of the recipe.

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 119 g
Amount Per Serving
Calories

255
Calories from Fat

157
% Daily Value*
Total Fat

17.5g
27%
Saturated Fat

10.8g
54%
Cholesterol

50mg
17%
Sodium

32mg
1%
Total Carbohydrates

24.4g
8%
Dietary Fiber

0.9g
3%
Sugars

20.4g
Protein

2.1g
Vitamin A 13% Vitamin C 7%
Calcium 7% Iron 1%
Nutrition Grade C-
* Based on a 2000 calorie diet

And since I have a captive audience!

Here is my girlfriend (Rachel) eating my sister’s (Melvin’s) face. The Ugly Dude is oddly indifferent.

And here is the Ugly Dude all cleaned up for his job interview. This is the first time in years that he has not looked like a dirty, dirty hippie.

Tuesdays with Dorie – New Car Galette

Posted in baking, food, tuesdays with dorie with tags , , , , , , , , , on July 29, 2008 by uglydudefood

Today I finally got my new car–a 2008 Honda Civic Hybrid.  This means a lot of different things to me.  First, I can give my mom back her pimpin’ Astro Van.  Second, I can feel free to drive where I want when I want.  Third, I can finally put the horrifying, traumatic car wreck behind me.

It also means I have an excuse for why my Summer Fruit Galette was such an epic failure. I was tied up until eight last night, you see.

Oh, it tasted okay, I guess.  It’s the little things, though.

The eight peaches recommended by the recipe are far too much for a crust of this size.  Instead of trying to utilize the proper amount, I decided to stuff the galette full of peaches.  As a result…

My crust collapsed as the galette was baking.  This didn’t seem like it would be too much of a problem, considering the fact that my peaches (oh, I used peaches by the way, and some Peach Strawberry Marmalade) weren’t falling out of the pastry at all.  However, I did not take into account that…

The custard used in the next step would not adhere so kindly to the walls of the galette.  It oozed out all over my baking pan and burnt.  Some custard did remain in the galette, and it kind of coagulated into the stable mix that Dorie mentioned in the cookbook.

Here’s the end result, cleaned up.

Here’s the nutrition information (1/12 of recipe).  Not for the faint of heart.

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 89.8g
Amount Per Serving
Calories

253
Calories from Fat

142
% Daily Value*
Total Fat

15.8g
24%
Saturated Fat

8.8g
44%
Cholesterol

49mg
16%
Sodium

249mg
10%
Total Carbohydrates

26.4g
9%
Dietary Fiber

1.0g
4%
Sugars

13.4g
Protein

2.6g
Vitamin A 11% Vitamin C 4%
Calcium 2% Iron 5%
* Based on a 2000 calorie diet

Nutritional details are an estimate and should only be used as a guide for approximation.

Tuesdays with Dorie – Cherry Something Cobbler

Posted in baking, food, tuesdays with dorie with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 22, 2008 by uglydudefood

cobbled

The comment turn-out was huge for my last TWD entry.  Maybe if I make stuff explode every time, people will continue to love me.  I just got back from a five-day vacation, so I have a lot of reading to do.  I’ll be meme-ing and reading your blogs in the near future.  At any rate, I should fail more often!  At least I know people will read what I write!

This week’s recipe was Cherry Rhubarb Cobbler.  I was super pumped, because I love fruit; I love cobbler; and I’ve not yet had a chance to taste rhubarb.  Looks like I’d have to wait a little longer for my last dream to come true.  I walked to the spot in my grocery store that I KNEW had rhubarb the other day, and it was all gone.  Same in all the other grocery stores.  No rhubarb!?  What if I wanted to throw a late-summer rhubarbeque?

Dorie sez: “The biscuit topping is a great crown for almost any kind of cobbler or crisp.”

Emboldened by the words of the second-most-powerful Greenspan in the world, I decided to replace the rhubarb with Granny Smith apples, which I happened to have sitting around.  12 oz. of peeled, cored Granny Smiths replaced the directed 12 oz. of rhubarb.

I made the filling according to recipe.  I made the topping according to recipe.  Everything really, truly was going swimmingly.  And boringly.  How was I supposed to draw the readers back into my ugly website?  I’d have to create a ruckus.

So I punched my sister in the head

cobblerAfter that?  Well, the cobbler tasted fantastic.  And despite the fact that I am in my mid-twenties, I was grounded for three months.

By the way, I made another batch of last week’s Chocolate Pudding over the weekend.  I replaced the whole milk with 2% (just because it was handy).  Excepting the leaky food processor, nary a mess was made and it was a huge hit with my family.

For 1/12 of the recipe:

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 108.8g
Amount Per Serving
Calories

206
Calories from Fat

57
% Daily Value*
Total Fat

6.3g
10%
Saturated Fat

3.8g
19%
Cholesterol

16mg
5%
Sodium

151mg
6%
Total Carbohydrates

35.7g
12%
Dietary Fiber

1.3g
5%
Sugars

11.2g
Protein

2.2g
Vitamin A 6% Vitamin C 4%
Calcium 6% Iron 5%
* Based on a 2000 calorie diet

Nutritional details are an estimate and should only be used as a guide for approximation.

Tuesdays with Dorie – Chocolate Pudding Disaster

Posted in baking, food, meme, tuesdays with dorie with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 15, 2008 by uglydudefood

Last week’s Double Crusted Blueberry Pie was DIFFICULT.  I was so happy to hear that this week’s would be chocolate pudding, a recipe I’ve made dozens of times.

1)  Open packet of pudding mix.

2)  Add milk and/or water.

3)  Shake shake shake shake shake.

Okay, so it’s bound to be more difficult than that, but not much, right?

Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeee.

I didn’t have to buy any new equipment for this recipe, which is nice after last week’s $50 investment.  I picked up some whole milk (I am trying to follow these recipes to the letter at the moment).  Otherwise, the rest are pretty standard pantry items.  I typoed earlier and wrote “panty items,” but I swear it wasn’t Freudian.

I substituted semisweet chocolate chips for the bittersweet chocolate chips, which didn’t seem like it’d be too big of a problem.  It’s better than another emergency run to the grocery store.  Gas ain’t cheap.

What follows is a testament in my ability to ignore instructions totally; make the biggest messes; and have the worst luck in the world.

MISTAKE #1: Dorie Sez:  “Add the dry ingredients.”  I add the pre-mixed dry ingredients (cornstarch, cocoa powder, salt, sugar), and then for some reason I also add the chocolate chips and the butter (which come far later in the process).

MISTAKE #2: When adding boiling milk to the food processor through the top hole, be sure to remove the “pusher” from the hole–otherwise the milk will go all over your food processor, counter, floor, pants, etc.

MISTAKE #3: Not so much a mistake as a capper to the whole thing.  I tried to salvage my batch of pudding, and in the step where you pour it BACK into the saucepan, I missed the pan with half of the pudding.

It wasn’t all my fault though.  I was blessed with the leakiest food processor ever.  The end result?

This:

And this:

And this:

That’s right.  That was my end result.  It looked and tasted like chocolate porridge–not entirely unpleasing, but not entirely pudding either.  I was devastated.  I didn’t want to do Tuesdays with Dorie anymore.  I didn’t want to bake.  I didn’t want to blog.  I just wanted to go to sleep.

While I could easily have gone with the “ugly food for an ugly dude” excuse, I had to prevail.  After some cleanup, it was round two.   After chastising myself and rereading the recipe multiple times, I was good to go.  I followed it to the letter.

Success!  It felt so good to actually do something right.  Sure, my food processor is still leaky.  And sure, my floor has reached levels of stickiness as of yet unknown to mankind.  But I HAVE SIX CUPS OF PUDDING.  Tastes pretty good, too.  Far better than that instant pudding, no matter how fun it is to shake it all up.

The rest will go towards the dinner I’m cooking for my girlfriend Rachel tomorrow.  The menu:  baked chicken breasts, corn on the cob, salad, chocolate pudding.  I’ve never cooked anybody a real dinner before, so wish me luck.  If all else fails, I’ll have a lot of extra pudding.

Things I’ve Learned

1.  Read carefully.
2.  If at first you don’t succeed, etc!

For 1/6 of the recipe:

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 138.3g
Amount Per Serving
Calories

252
Calories from Fat

144
% Daily Value*
Total Fat

16.0g
25%
Saturated Fat

9.2g
46%
Cholesterol

120mg
40%
Sodium

174mg
7%
Total Carbohydrates

23.0g
8%
Dietary Fiber

2.3g
9%
Sugars

18.5g
Protein

6.8g
Vitamin A 7% Vitamin C 0%
Calcium 12% Iron 3%
* Based on a 2000 calorie diet

Nutritional details are an estimate and should only be used as a guide for approximation