Sandi is blogging from the WhistleStop Cafe kitchen. It's all about good home cooking; food, family and fun. Thousands of posts . . .

~In the south and around the world.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Scoops of Lavender

Happy Slow Scoopin' Sunday!We have had a fun weekend (I'll post more about that later in the week) It is a good thing I got my ice cream making done earlier!

Our selection this week from 'The Perfect Scoop' is Lavender-Honey Ice Cream. This recipe threw me for a real loop. The Piggly Wiggly definitely doesn't carry lavender flowers. I had some in a pot outside~ but that didn't make it through the July heat. Thank goodness for Janice who rushed to my aide!

The lavender flowers are to flavor the honey... next time I will buy lavender honey instead. That was the only hard and messy part.

Lavender-Honey Ice Cream
1/2 cup honey
1/4 cup lavender flowers
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1/4 cup sugar
pinch of salt
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
5 egg yolks
Heat the honey and 2 Tbs lavender, remove from the heat and allow to steep for 1 hour. Warm the milk, sugar, and salt in a saucepan. Take another bowl and set it in an ice bath, fill the bowl with the cream, strain the lavender honey into the cream. When the milk is warm, slowly incorporate the egg yolks. Cook the custard until it is thickened, strain into the cream. Add the 2 remaining Tbs of lavender. This mixture can sit in the fridge overnight to absorb the lavender. Before churning, strain the cream one more time to remove the lavender. Chill according to the directions.

Every week we say 'this is our favorite'. This Lavender-Honey ice cream has the most unusual creamy cinnamony flavor. A real treat!Y'all enjoy!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Bloggin' Love

My friend Just A Beach Kat send me a little Bloggin' love today. That is always a nice treat.
We have a sunny day today... a break in the clouds between Fae and Gustov. At least for this new storm I will say that I like his name better... Gustov sounds like a hurricane. Fae? Not so much. Here is the list for the rest of this year.

You're kidding right? Nana? Teddy? That doesn't sound like something to run from.

But Gustov... he will clear the beaches!
Y'all be safe!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Summer Salsa

Grilled chicken again?
It is summertime, the perfect time to get out once the sun goes down. A little grillin, a little quality time on the patio.
This is a quick salsa that will dress up some plain grilled chicken. It is easy to throw together. I made it up while the chicken was sitting in a little WhistleStop Marinade.
Watermelon Mint Salsa
1 cup chopped watermelon
1/2 cup diced purple onion
2 Tbs diced jalapenos
2 Tbs finely chopped mint
1 Tbs finely chopped basil
1 Tbs olive oil
1 Tbs lime juice
1 tsp sugar (if needed)

Combine ingredients and allow to sit for at least an hour for the flavors to blend.

We like it on salmon too! It doesn't keep well, so make enough to use up in one evening.
Y'all enjoy!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Sunday Slow Scoopin'

This week for the Sunday Slow Scoopers we are traveling a bit... To the official drink of Puerto Rico~ a Piña Colada!

Our recipe in 'The Perfect Scoop' is Piña Colada Sherbet.

Piña Colada Sherbet
1 pineapple, peeled and cored
1 cup sugar
1 cup Thai coconut milk (not the sweet Coco Lopez kind)
1 Tbs dark Rum
1 tsp freshly squeezed lime juice
Puree the pineapple in a blender with sugar, coconut milk, rum, and lime juice. Chill thoroughly, then freeze in your ice cream maker.

It can't get any easier than this. Blend. Freeze. Enjoy.

A little bowl of creamy sunshine is just what the Doctor ordered after a couple of days out of the light. I am going to be the only person who gets a dermatology treatment and gains 10 pounds.

Y'all enjoy!


Saturday, August 23, 2008

Family Photos

A while back we had some family photos made. Lori Mercer is a friend from Montgomery who kindly came up to get some snapshots of the whole McMichael clan. It is not easy to get everyone together~ not to mention cleaned up and looking good at the same time. These are some good pictures!Mr and Mrs Mac~ the original WhistleStop Cafe!Bill's sisters~
Our kids, Brooke and Rob couldn't make it. Like I said... it is impossible to get everyone together. I am still glad we did it while we could.

My plan is to frame these in sepia, and include yours, mine and ours.

I'll show y'all the finished product!


Friday, August 22, 2008

To Much of a Good Thing

I am suffering from to much of a good thing.

It is no secret that...

I love the beach.

I drive a convertible.

I like to putter in the garden.
I am that red-headed-freckle-faced little girl who has now become my dermatologist's best friend. I have had several basal and squamous cell skin cancers removed over the years. Yesterday I had a Photodynamic Therapy treatment. Kat posted on the very same thing last month~ she was brave and posted a picture.
Not me!

I have 40 hours out of the light. So y'all can only imagine my to-do list. Cooking, baking, scooping, blogging, beading, sewing and (if there's time) cleaning.
Y'all can keep me company!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Taking a Staycation?

Have you been hearing about the idea of a Staycation? 'They' are trying to convince us that vacationing closer to home is the economical and practical way to travel. I am trying to think positive.
We can stay close to home and enjoy the wildlife.

Beautiful sunsets...

There is a little cabin not far from here. It is very shabby chic.
There is always entertainment.
We are not far from our local hangout, where they speak a foreign language.
I am just not convinced!

How 'bout y'all?

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Scooping Tiramisu

Our Sunday Slow Scooping challenge this week is Tiramisu. Krista made this her choice, after reading 'The Perfect Scoop' cover to cover. I am glad she did!

Tiramisu is one of my favorite desserts. I posted a traditional tiramisu recipe before my trip to Italy. Now I have to admit... the ice cream is much easier!

Tiramisu Ice Cream
2 cups mascarpone
1 cup half & half
2/3 cup sugar
pinch of salt
1/4 cup kahlua
3 Tbs dark rum
Mocha Ripple
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup corn syrup
1/2 cup strong coffee
6 Tbs cocoa powder
1/2 tsp vanilla

To make the mocha ripple- Whisk together the sugar corn syrup coffee and cocoa in a sauce pan over medium heat until it starts to bubble. Cook for 1 minute. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla. Put in the fridge to cool before using.

For the ice cream- Pour the mascarpone, half & half, sugar, salt, kahlua, and rum together in a blender. Mix until smooth. Chill thoroughly in the fridge

Freeze in the ice cream maker. As you remove it from the machine, layer with Mocha Ripple.

The only problem I had was that my cream didn't freeze in the machine... could be the amount of alcohol and the fact that I may have tipped a little much. I put it in the freezer in a plastic container and it froze perfectly after several hours.
This is a fantastic dessert, served with lady fingers, much like the tiramisu I enjoyed in Italy. I will be making this ice cream again... in fact I may never soak ladyfingers and layer mascarpone again!
Y'all enjoy!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Zucchini Fettuccini

This pasta dish is a great way to serve squash. I thought saw something like it on Giada's, but when I googled it appears to be Ellie Kreiger. I'm not even sure I liked her. Now, Giada... she is a girl after my own heart!

I had oodles of squash, and this was perfect!

Zucchini Fettuccini
6 yellow and green squash
one onion
3-4 cloves garlic
3 Tbs olive oil
1/2 cup chicken broth
1 cup fresh basil leaves
1/4 cup Italian parsley
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
1 pkg fettuccini noodles

Begin by slicing the veggies into long thin strips, similar to a fettuccini noodle. I sliced each squash in half then just made thin slices. In a skillet, saute the minced garlic and sliced onion in olive oil. Add the squash and half of the basil. Cook in the broth until the squash is tender. Toss in the herbs and parmesan cheese.

Meanwhile boil the pasta in a large pot of salted water until just tender. Drain but don't rinse. Pour the veggies into the zucchini and toss to combine. Serve either as a main dish or with chicken or pork.
I could eat a whole bowl just by itself!
Ellie, I ask, what is so 'Healthy Appetite' about that?

Boun Appetito, y'all!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Busy Summer Days

Last weekend was unusually beautiful for August in Alabama. Cool with low humidity. We enjoyed the chance to sit on the porch and read a good book.

So who had such a busy summer day, you wonder?
(Bill says to remind you to click on the 'play' arrow)
Click to play HUMMINGBIRDS
Create your own scrapbook - Powered by Smilebox
Make a Smilebox scrapbook

The hummingbirds!

Maybe if I just drank red sugar water I'd have more energy...

Have a good summer Y'all ~


Sunday, August 10, 2008

Slow Scoopin~ Butterscotch

This is the first week of our new Sunday Slow Scoopers. A group of my traveling buddies from Slow Travel have decided since we are home in the heat of the summer, we would spend our Sundays making ice cream. We are using 'The Perfect Scoop' as our weekly travel guide through the world of ice cream.
Our scoop this week is Butterscotch Ice Cream with Salted Buttered Pecans. Who would have ever thought that butterscotch ice cream calls for real Scotch! David Lebowitz seems to always include some kind of alcohol in his recipes. The ABC (what a name for a state controlled liquor store) doesn't carry small bottles of scotch. This bottle may sit in our pantry for a l o n g time.

Butterscotch Pecan Ice Cream
5 Tbs butter
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 tsp kosher salt
2 cups heavy cream
1/4 cup whole milk
6 egg yolks
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 Tbs scotch
Buttered Pecans
Melt the butter in a sauce pan, add sugar and salt. Whip in part of the cream/milk. Put the rest of the cream/milk in a mixing bowl. When the sugar mixture is smooth, slowly incorporate in egg yolks by adding the hot to the eggs a little bit at a time and continuously mixing. Then add all the eggs to the pan. Stir over medium heat until the mixture thickens. Pour into the mixing bowl with the cream through a fine strainer to catch the tiny pieces of scrambled eggs (it happens!)

Stir and add in the vanilla and scotch. Chill this mixture in the fridge, then freeze in your ice cream maker. During the last minutes add the buttered pecans.
Salted Buttered Pecans
1 1/2cup pecans
1 1/2Tbs butter
1/4 tsp Kosher salt.
Combine pecans with melted butter and salt. Spread onto a baking sheet and toast at 350° for 10-12 minutes.

I had to serve my buttered scotch ice cream straight-up in a class.
Y'all enjoy!

Thursday, August 07, 2008

A Special Cake

I recently made a coconut cake for a special family birthday. This is one of our favorites!

It is definitely NOT low calorie, but oh-so-yummy. Once in a while you just want to say 'Gimmie some sugar' ~This is just what you need.
This recipe is very similar to the coconut cake that Mr. Mac always made at the WhistleStop Cafe. People are still asking what happened to that cake. The new owner doesn't serve it anymore... but you can make it at home!

Coconut Cake
1 white cake mix
3 eggs
1 1/4 cups water
1/3 cup oil
1 cup cream of coconut
1 cup sweetened condensed milk
1 tub cool whip
1 small container vanilla yogurt
1 cup coconut flakes

Combine the cake mix with the eggs, water, and oil. Pour into a buttered 9x13 baking dish or into a spring form pan. Bake as directed on the box. The cake will be done when a toothpick comes out clean. When cooled, poke holes around the cake with a straw. Combine the cream of coconut and the sweetened condensed milk. Gently pour over the cake, allowing it time to seep into the holes. Combine the cool whip and the vanilla yogurt for a creamy 'icing'. Cover the cake generously with the icing. Top with coconut flakes.

This cake is really better the second day. So plan to make it a day ahead and store in the fridge. This is a dessert that only gets better as time goes by! If it lasts that long.
Y'all enjoy!

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Favorite Find

Rhoda at Southern Hospitality is hosting a party. We are all showing off our favorite thrifty finds. You can't get much more thrifty than this...

I had been looking for an ottoman for my sun room. One of my friends had one that she no longer wanted. Now that is thrifty!

But... it was the wrong color and really looked bad in my yellow and blue room. I did like the large flower pattern, and it was the perfect size. So this is a job for the crafty, and the thrifty.

I painted it with a watered down wash of blue.

It isn't as fabulous as some of the decorating that Rhoda has done ~ but it works for us! The perfect place to set a cup of coffee in the morning.

Y'all check out Rhoda's party!


Tuesday, August 05, 2008

God Save the Queen

Have you heard? I recently received this email from London...

Because it is election year, and we are having such a difficult time choosing a new president, the Queen has decided to come across the pond and revoke our independence. Her Sovereign Majesty Queen Elizabeth II will resume monarchical duties over all the states.

Effective immediately~

*The letter 'U' will be reinstated in words such as 'colour', 'favour', 'labour', and 'neighbour'.

*You will no longer be allowed to own or carry anything more dangerous than a vegetable peeler. Guns should only be used for shooting grouse.

*All intersections will be replaced with roundabouts, and you will start driving your motorcar on the left side of the road.

*You will adopt the UK prices for petrol- of roughly $10/US gallon.

*A tax collector from Her Majesty's Government will be with you shortly to ensure the acquisition of all monies due (backdated to 1776).

*Tea Time will begin promptly at 4 pm with tea cups and saucers, biscuits and cakes; plus strawberries (with cream) when in season.

*The national food of hamburgers and fries will be replaced with fish and chips with mashy peas, to be washed down with an ale.

Cheers y'all,

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Sunday Slow Baking

Our final recipe from Gina DePalma's 'Dolce Italiano' is a Toasted Almond Gelato. I picked this as an easy transition to our new challenge Sunday Slow Scoopers! Starting next week the Slow Travelers will begin working our way through David Lebovitz's 'The Perfect Scoop', perfect for summer.

Luckily, I already have a Cuisinart ice cream freezer... the best Father's day gift ever!

Gelato di Mandorle
1 cup sliced almonds
1 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1/4 cup plus 1 Tbs sugar
1 Tbs honey
pinch of kosher salt
2 tsp amaretto
1/2 tsp almond extract
Preheat oven to 375°. Toast the almonds on a baking sheet 12-14 minutes until golden brown.
Place the almonds in a medium saucepan. add the cream and milk, the sugar and honey and place over medium heat. Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring occasionally. remove from the heat and allow the flavor of the almonds to infuse into the cream.
Allow the mixture to cool, then strain and discard the almonds. Stir in the salt, amaretto, and almond extract. Freeze the gelato in an ice cream freezer.
I couldn't bear to toss out those toasted almonds, so I diced some and stirred them into my cream. It made a wonderful almondy gelato! Next time I will double the recipe, 2 cups is just enough to make you scream for ice cream.

This is our last recipe from 'Dolce Italiano', and what a treat it has been. We have enjoyed Taralli, Polenta Cake, Sweet Apple Omlet, Semifreddo, Strawberries with Cream, Ricotta Cheesecake, Chocolate Hazelnut Cookies, Zucchini Cake, Lemon Biscotti, Grappa Cakes, Grissini, and Pistacio Bars. A special grazie to Jerry for my cookbook! I feel especially honored to have shared my kitchen every Sunday with Gina and the rest of my Slow Baking friends.

Next Sunday... Slow Scooping begins!
Y'all enjoy,
Related Posts with Thumbnails