My seven year old son had to write a review or critique of something in his first grade class. He chose to write about the restaurant that’s just opened near us (and I’m actually bartending at a couple of times a week). I had to share the review because in my thoroughly biased opinion, it is adorable.
Last year I wrote about being the character Sam of Dr. Seuss’s Green Eggs and Ham. I was just reading the book, in celebration of Dr. Seuss’s birthday, to my youngest son the other night. Then last night had a moment where I felt like I was again Sam-I-Am. My youngest is now seven years old and until a couple of weeks ago, broccoli was one of his favorite foods– not just one of his favorite vegetables, but of all foods. Until two weeks ago that is; now he’s decided he no longer likes broccoli. No, he hates broccoli. My logo is of him eating broccoli with a huge smile on his face. If he hates broccoli, I think, I’m done for. But I remember what my mother said she learnt from Dr. Spock (not the Klingon Dr. Spock, but the baby book author that was popular in the 60′s & 70′s). She said kids will go on “jags” eating nothing but one food until they suddenly no longer want that food. I’m hoping this broccoli dislike is temporary.
Anyway, my youngest is already my pickiest eater by far. Well, when I made dinner last night, I took the vegetables I was going to use for a stir-fry and instead made a pasta dish. It had garlic, shallots, green onions, broccoli, purple cabbage, shredded carrots, shredded cauliflower, zucchini, sugar snap peas and chick peas with a little olive oil and stock. Number Two cried a bit at first then added ketchup (a trick a friend told him about and I said he could try), took a couple chickpeas out and ate most of it. My eldest ate all of it and declared it delicious. My youngest son refused to taste it. Wouldn’t eat a bite. I just said he wouldn’t get anything else until he ate it… or at least tried it.
While preparing to bake a Sticky Banana Toffee Pudding, I decided to share a few of my baking hacks; things to do to make baking easier and more successful.
You may notice recipes usually state ‘use room temperature eggs (as well as) butter’, but you may not have taken the eggs and butter out to warm up enough by the time you’ve started baking. It’s actually quite important when you’re creaming butter, sugar and eggs to not have butter and eggs that are cold. If you don’t have the ingredients at the right temperature it won’t cream properly. If too cold the butter will look like tiny pieces of rice in a puddle of egg stuff. And if you’ve melted it, it also might not bake properly. (Whereas in making pastry (crust) you do want cold butter.)
These tips will help get around the time constraints, so you can have warm enough ingredients.
Continued here: Baking Hacks