Monday, May 14, 2012



I am many things today:

1. A glutton for punishment.
2. The owner of one mother of a sweet tooth.
3. Someone who is persistent, tenacious, and stubborn.
4. A cheapskate who refuses to pay a buck for 3 candies.

I tackled homemade caramel again today. And this time, I succeeded. At this very moment I have a gallon bag on the kitchen table full of waxed-paper wrapped caramels. That are so yummy I want to eat them all right now.

I am thrilled I was able to do this. I have issues with the idea of failing at anything. This is the sort of thing that keeps me up at night. Memories of scorched sugar and blackened pots.

I had put it out of my head pretty well until this weekend, when we visited the local farmer's market and found a stall selling handcrafted candy and baked goods. Across the counter I spied a little basket with waxed paper nuggets. I have been looking for handmade caramels since I received a little bag from a Carmel, CA confectionery, sent by a shutter sister right before Christmas. I haven't found them anywhere in St. Louis. I kept the tag off the bag from the Carmel shop and was seriously considering calling them up and asking them to ship a pound. Then I found the farmer's market and shelled out a buck for three.

They weren't as good as the caramels from Carmel, and I rankled at what they cost.

Surely, I thought, I can do this.

I found a different recipe online and tackled it again. And I am pleased to say that my caramels are just as good as the Carmel caramels, and a lot less expensive (so long as you don't count time - making caramel is not a quick undertaking).

Today I also made Green Goddess salad dressing from scratch, and a delicious zucchini, tomato and goat cheese omelet. The omelet didn't look so great, but man was it tasty. I think my pan was too large and my heat too high. Will try again later.

Used the Cuisinart to julienne my zucchini. Holy cow. So freakin fast and easy. I have never julienned anything in my life until tonight, and wow was it exciting. Actually it was so quick that I didn't even have a chance to be excited. The directions said to pulse the Cuisinart. They weren't kidding. One pulse and the zucchini was sliced perfectly. I repacked the chute with the slices, gave another pulse and wham! Gorgeously julienned zucchini.

I'm turning into a kitchen geek, I think.

Zozer loves my new forays into culinaria. She finished up the leftover stir fry from last week, announcing that she still thinks it's awesome and that the tofu is her most very favorite part.

That alone is reason enough to keep doing it.

(I'm growing increasingly concerned about leaving The Summer Cottage once The New House is built. I couldn't seem to cook in a normal sized kitchen, but I can make just about anything in this one - even caramels. The stove is the same, but I now have approximately two feet of counter space in total. The kitchen is blessed by M's grandma, I think.)


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