Monday, December 26, 2011
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Christmas time usually means non-stop eating which means non-stop cooking/baking. On my dream list?
Candy Cane Marshmallows from Martha Stewart
Martha Stewart Living, December 2004
Makes sixteen 2-inch squares
Add to Shopping List: Ingredients
Vegetable-oil cooking spray
2 cups sugar
1 tablespoon light corn syrup
4 packages (1/4 ounce each) unflavored gelatin
3/4 teaspoon peppermint extract
2 large egg whites
2 teaspoons red food coloring
Coat an 8-inch square pan with cooking spray; line bottom with parchment paper. Coat the parchment with cooking spray, and set pan aside. Put sugar, corn syrup, and 3/4 cup water in a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring, until sugar is dissolved. Stop stirring; let mixture come to a boil. Raise heat to medium-high; cook until mixture registers 260 degrees on a candy thermometer.
Meanwhile, sprinkle gelatin over 3/4 cup water in a heatproof bowl; let stand 5 minutes to soften. Set the bowl with the gelatin mixture over a pan of simmering water; whisk constantly until gelatin is dissolved. Remove from heat, and stir in extract; set aside.
Beat egg whites in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment until stiff (but not dry) peaks form. Whisk gelatin mixture into sugar mixture; with mixer running, gradually add to egg whites. Mix on high speed until very thick, 12 to 15 minutes.
Pour mixture into lined pan. Working quickly, drop dots of red food coloring across surface of marshmallow. Using a toothpick, swirl food coloring into marshmallow to create a marbleized effect. Let marshmallow stand, uncovered, at room temperature until firm, at least 3 hours or overnight. Cut into squares.
Friday, December 9, 2011
So it has been awhile guys. I have missed you. The truth is simply that I can't be CandyAnna unless I am hungry, and sometimes I am just not hungry. Or I am hungry but for news, or history class, or fashion. CandyAnna was stuck in a treat rut.
Bourbon Pumpkin Cheesecake
Adapted from Gourmet, November 2003
Serves 12 to 14
3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs (from five 4 3/4- by 2 1/4-inch crackers)
1/2 cup pecans (1 3/4 ounce), finely chopped
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 1/2 cups canned solid-pack pumpkin
3 large eggs
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon bourbon liqueur or bourbon (optional)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, at room temperature
2 cups sour cream (20 ounces)
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 tablespoon bourbon liqueur or bourbon (optional)
Garnish: toasted pecan halves with brown sugar and sea salt
Make crust: Invert bottom of a 9-inch springform pan (to create flat bottom, which will make it easier to remove cake from pan), then lock on side and butter pan.
Stir together crumbs, pecans, sugars, and butter in a bowl until combined well. Press crumb mixture evenly onto bottom and 1/2 inch up side of pan, then chill crust, 1 hour.
Make filling and bake cheesecake: Put oven rack in middle position and Preheat oven to 350°F.
Whisk together pumpkin, eggs, brown sugar, cream, vanilla, and liqueur (if using) in a bowl until combined.
Stir together granulated sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and salt in large bowl.
Add cream cheese and beat with an electric mixer at high speed until creamy and smooth, about 3 minutes. Reduce speed to medium, then add pumpkin mixture and beat until smooth.
Pour filling into crust, smoothing top, then put springform pan in a shallow baking pan (in case springform leaks). Bake until center is just set, 50 to 60 minutes. Transfer to rack and cool 5 minutes. (Leave oven on.)
Make topping: Whisk together sour cream, sugar, and liqueur (if using) in a bowl, then spread on top of cheesecake and bake 5 additional minutes.
Cool cheesecake completely in pan on rack, about 3 hours.
Chill, covered, until cold, at least 4 hours. Remove side of pan and bring to room temperature before serving.
Do ahead: Baked cheesecake can be chilled, covered, up to 2 days.
A few notes:
1. I decided to toast my pecan halves.
-Spread them flat on a baking sheet and sprinkle liberally with brown sugar. Add a dash of chunky sea salt. Toast until your house smells like the holidays (about 15 mins).
2. I would not let the cheesecake come to QUITE room temperature. So sit out for an hour or so...
This recipe was beautiful as well as tasty!!
Friday, August 26, 2011
I haven't done a candy review for awhile so I figured it was time. Plus I walked into a place called In Zone- a type of store unique to college towns featuring tiny Iowa Hawkeye shorts/19 cent fountain sodas/candy/rolling papers and glass pipes for tobacco use only - an impulse bought 4 kinds of candy. For an inexplicable reason I bought Skittles Blenders- one of those new variations they force on people because they think they are bored w/ regular skittles. This one features unnecessarily mixed fruit flavors and then shove them into a Skittles.
Saturday, August 20, 2011
Leaving a beloved old city and moving to a new one has sort of been like this...Iowa City is currently sitting in the corner of my apartment, and we are slowly getting used to each other.
The upside/flip side to this transitional period is gobs of hours to bake! And it is summertime in Iowa, one of the most delicious places on earth. When you buy fresh produce from the Pioneer Co-Op it comes from a farm 10's of miles away, at a quarter of the price of Union Square Farmers Market (score one, Iowa). Tomatoes, summer squash, cucumbers are running wild. How, oh how will we use all this zucchini?
Makes 15 biscuits
- 3/4 cup zucchini, shredded (***I recommend 1 full cup because I like bigger, faster, more)
- 2 teaspoons salt, divided
- 1 cup grated cheddar (***I recommend a 1 1/4 cup because I like to overdue it)
- 2 1/2 cups of flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 stick butter, cold and cubed
- 1 cup milk
With each warm biscuit Iowa City and I are warming up to one another, making sure we fit into each others wardrobe. In the meantime I am going to continue to bribe it with baked goods and new shoes.
Sunday, August 14, 2011
New place, new space, new zucchini muffin recipe. They all go together, do they not? The fresh Iowa zucchini was burning a hole in my fridge and I was ready to try something new.
Friday, July 22, 2011
Thursday, July 21, 2011
Friday, July 15, 2011
Dear Bluebird Diner in Iowa City, IA,
Wednesday, July 13, 2011
When my schedule opened opened up, my appetite came roaring back in to fill my time and imagination. Everyone should quit their job and gain five lbs!!!! With housing to find and future employers to meet, my mom and I hit I-74 with a mission but a decided lack of haste and an iphone to find the best roadside treats. While I seriously heart Pilot (79 cent Diet Cokes and briefcases sold in the same location), the Subway that shares its space was not going to cut it- especially after this little exchange when we drove from New York to Indianapolis a few days prior.
Anna (Me): "No...not really. I guess they do have a funny smell."
Thursday, July 7, 2011
Hey there Indianapolis. We have a long and rocky history together. You didn't always think I was so great (junior high...most of high school...you know what I am talking about) and I didn't always think you were so neat (umm..most every time I speak of you). How many times can you explain that the flavor of your hometown is born of its unique placement as the largest city in America to exist on a non-navigable body of water... without some kind of resentment surfacing?
Tuesday, July 5, 2011
It was my very last breakfast before I departed my beloved Brooklyn for the wider parking lots and friendlier sales clerks of the mid-west. Before I turned in my keys and packed up the very last of my vintage hat collection, my mother and I stopped at one of my top four favorite places in the world - the back garden at Bakeri.
Sunday, January 9, 2011
Whether or not I am hungry, this jar floats in the corner of my eye, full of the lesser liked flavors of 'red' and 'purple.' I won't describe them as cherry and grape because this is not a true flavor description. Red and purple are certainly more accurate descriptions to taste.
But at the bottom of the jar sits the real object of my desire, the Green Apple Tootsie Pop.
Did you know these exist? Obviously, it is green apple candy with chocolate tootsie roll inside.
I finally answered the siren's call the other day, around 3 PM.
Seven minutes later, I contently threw away my chewed stick, then lamented the bloody/green apple taste on my tongue. I had forgotten the payment for enjoying a Tootsie Roll pop were the candy-cased gashes on the roof of my mouth. Aside from that, it was delicious.
Try it, like it!
Sunday, January 2, 2011
Why thank you!
No problem. Let's chat.
I want to begin the year by taking a brief glance into the creation myth of CandyAnna also known as CACMP1.
Said in a Melanie Wilkes dramatic voice, "To begin my life, I must begin at the beginning of my life..."
CandyAnna was born into the Midwestern tradition of food and drink being the gathering place- the social rallying point, if you will. Good food or bad food (Indiana really isn't known for their fresh seafood-instead for their jello salads and sacrilegious sugar treatment of fresh off the farm fruit), food is at the center of all human connection. Gallons of coffee are consumed, miles of pie, and small armies of "salads' that make little sense to the modern palette (Snicker salad anyone? trust me...say no, thank you).
Midwesterners have many flaws, but they will always serve you coffee and be nice to your face. They will also, without fail, bring food to any sort of crisis situation. They take care of their own, and dishes wrapped in cellophane designed to 'keep', are their bandages. Such situations include death, illness, failing business, missing children, fender benders, neighborhood graffiti, storm damage, and out-of-town visitors. When high winds drove one our gorgeous old trees into the corner of our house, tearing off an entire corner of the structure and making my sister's bedroom decor visible from the street, neighbors came, within minutes, bearing cold cuts and contractor recommendations. While perhaps being a factor in the Midwest's well known obesity problem, food & comfort, food & hospitality, food & conversation, and food & care are all intrinsically linked. Conversation is better over coffee. Happy Birthday is best said with a treat and 'I love you' is often clumsily conveyed in the words "I made this for you."
This glass of very nice whiskey & this Funfetti birthday cake prepared by my father literally means "I love you!"
This tradition has taught me that if you seemingly have nothing in common with a person simply ask them their favorite food/restaurant/childhood birthday cake. The eyes light up and conversation will flow easily. Even the most rugged of anorexics will have a beloved dish their grandmother made they remember not eating (sorry...poor taste?). Food and drink are the most basic universal ties we all have to our family, our childhood, and our culture. As someone with mild social anxiety in large groups of strangers, usually known as 'parties', having a food blog makes things SO MUCH EASIER. When this information comes about, complete strangers come up to me with their eyes shining, ready to discuss the best cupcake they ever had, the new stew recipe they tried, or their mother's continental cooking experiments. It is fascinating and delightful!
My Midwestern food/social tradition has now permanently connected food and human connection. Food and drinks are the fuel that drives humans relating to one another, the Midwestern art of "visiting."
Part two of the creation myth moves this little girl to the wide world of Brooklyn. Food isn't the fuel of the conversation. Food is the conversation. Good food, bad food, vegan food, cheese food...edibles rapidly became a good 60% of my daily conversation (depending if it is an election year). We don't discuss elite based culinary masterpieces but instead street food, comfort food and food made in the home with an emphasis on care and quality. Critics have maintained the current 'hipster' generation has no convictions or ideas and only style. But I see people everyday struggling to bypass the tech world to connect in real time, and usually over the same things my grandparents did- excellent pie, gallons of coffee, and a beer.
Don't listen to me. Listen to her.