One Sweet Date Night

“Oh, I’ve got a lovely bunch of coconuts, Deedly Dee! There they are all standing in a row.” OK maybe you won’t get this one unless you have children or are one, and I guess I am probably the latter of the two. Both Zazu and Rafiki sing this song from “The Lion King,” and it gets stuck in my head almost every time that I think of coconuts.

Movies are a great part of what I enjoy, including “The Lion King”, but it seems that sometimes it is the easy date choice. Every Friday for probably the last ten years, my wife and I have tried to make it a priority to have a standard date night. Sometimes they get routine by just going to a movie and having dinner. Not much conversation and interaction are involved when going to a movie, and I have been trying to think of more creative ways of enjoying time with my wife.

This last Friday for our date night we decided to make cookies for some of our friends and just spend some quality time together. We made Coconut Butter Cookies (this is where the coconut comes in) and Peanut Butter Cookies. It really didn’t take long to make the dough, then we realized that we had to refrigerate them for three hours. The Peanut Butter Cookies we could have made right away, but I like a chewy cookie. The recipe said, “for a chewy cookie refrigerate for 3 hours.” I decided to let them stand overnight, and we enjoyed the rest of the night together.

Both cookies are excellent recipes and are very easy to make. Do not let the wordiness of the one overwhelm you. It is an excellent recipe. We mixed each ingredient individually to get an even mixture and enjoyed the cleanup afterwards. After all you get to taste the cookie dough off of the bowl and spoon. It was fun, and we enjoyed being able to hand out the cookies to our friends.

So remember, “Have a sweet date night, and cook up something together.”

Recipes can be found Here:
Coconut Butter Cookies
Peanut Butter Cookies

Advertisements

Pesto It’s Magic

Magic has always garnered the interest of both children and adults alike. There is David Copperfield, Houdini, or even just a dad pulling the coin out of a child’s ear. Recently I watched a friend of mine do this to another friend’s daughter, and all I heard was, “do it again.” She just couldn’t figure out how he did it. She wanted to know the secret. That is why I say Pesto is magic. Some dishes are just alright, while with other dishes we scream with glee, “Do it again, Do it again!” We are trying to figure out the secrets of great dining.

The best magic comes with great time, energy, and planning to make some of the greatest and most memorable performances that can be imagined. Most of the dishes that I have made for this blog have been fairly simple. Linguine Al Pesto Alla Moda Ligure from “A Culinary Courses Journey – Princess Cruises“, is not an easy dish to make, at least for a beginner. I think that the “talent-level” verdict is still out on this one, however, this is a delicious dish, and I am sure that there are ways to simplify it.

For instance, in following the recipe, I boiled the potatoes before adding them to the Linguine, but I don’t know that the potatoes are that necessary. I would recommend trying it both with them and without them, just to see what your taste might be. My mother-in-law enjoyed finding the potatoes as she was eating the pasta. Also make sure that you have all the ingredients before you begin. Ensure the herbs are fresh. I had to send my wife to get some things that I still needed and wait for her return. The Pesto can be prepared a day in advance, but more than that will affect the flavor.

I think that the hardest part really was handling it though. The recipe says that it serves 6, but it sure seemed like much more than that. I have a large Wok Pan that was filled to the brim. Trying to sear or cook the noodles a little bit near the end was difficult, because the wok was filled to capacity.

The best part of making pesto is that you do not have to use it for just this recipe. What about a pesto pizza, pesto tortilini, or pesto chicken? Getting creative is the best part of cooking other than getting to enjoy the meal. I say that Pesto is Magic, and you too can create enchanted meals to remember. So remember, “Any cook great or otherwise can create magic in the kitchen.”

Recipe:
Linguine Al Pesto Alla Moda Ligure <– Click here

Cinco De Mayo – Fiesta Tacos

Fiesta TacoThis has been an interesting week. It has been a while since I started this blog, and I have been enjoying all of the different dishes that I have made. There are a couple of things that I still want to talk about (a linguine dish and a potato dish), but for various reasons, I am not yet ready to report on them. I will definitely make these dishes again, because they are worthy of sharing with you.

It was Cinco De Mayo yesterday. To celebrate, I want to talk about a Mexican staple – the Taco Bowl. Well I don’t know if it is a staple, but if it isn’t it should be. Thank God for a bowl that you can eat, and an ingenious people who would think of such a wonderful thing.

I haven’t actually made a tortilla as of yet, but I have enough friends that sooner or later one would probably show me how. My focus right is just to shape the tortilla. I recently prepared a Fiesta Taco recipe that taught me how to do so.

Recently I purchased some Ramekins (custard dishes) for $1.99 each at World Market. They are small ceramic bowls that you can use to bake various delicacies. Basically, you just place the ramakins upside down on a baking sheet. Then you take some store-bought or homemade tortillas, and spray them with cooking spray. After spraying the tortillas, you place them upside down on the bowls to shape them. Cook them at 425 degrees F. until they are a golden brown, and viola, you have a bowl you can eat. LOVELY! Fill it with the stuff you like, and you have a delicious little taco salad. It’s a wonderful thing.

Just remember, “Creativity is a thing of life, and its even better when you can eat it.” Enjoy.