Friday started with a surprise gift from a coworker, Basil Banana Pepper Jelly made (and sold) by his girlfriend.
It was almost too pretty to eat. Almost.
I’d never had pepper jelly before and had always been afraid to purchase a jar without being sure that I’d like it, but like it I did – especially the spicy bites with pepper slices. I should have assumed that I’d enjoy something that’s traditionally served with crackers and cream cheese.
Every once in a while I do something that’s really, really dumb. Like is-Chicken-of-the-Sea-chicken-or-tuna dumb. I kind of want to hang my head in shame and destroy all evidence of this event, but instead I’m going to write about it on my blog because we all make mistakes and sometimes they photograph nicely. So here goes. I made baking powder biscuits with baking soda. That little difference might not sound all that bad, but that’s only because you’ve never eaten a baking soda biscuit. It’s just as pretty as its baking powder brethren, only instead of tasting buttery it tastes buttery, bitter, and metallic (and in that order). Each bite starts out buttery, like a good biscuit should, but before you know it you’ll think that you’re chewing the fluffiest pop can that ever was and you cannot wait to get that awful taste out of your mouth.
As a biscuit enthusiast, this one stung a bit. Aren’t they pretty though?
Along with (or instead of) the biscuits, we had bacon, scrambled eggs with cheddar and chives, and a peach. And honestly, I ate way more of the biscuit than I should have, fooled by so many bites that started out so buttery and delicious before they took a turn for the metallic.
Saturday night Manhattans
Niçoise salad with Copper River salmon (similar to this recipe)
One of my favorite meals, especially with a side of good bread to wipe the plate clean
Sunday pastries and coffee from Bars Bakery
I used this recipe and really liked it. I swapped out a third of the all-purpose flour for whole wheat flour, used half walnut oil and half plain yogurt instead of olive oil, and added half a cup of raisins plus about a cup of chocolate chips because I couldn’t choose just one.
There was a one-day special on lobster tails at Whole Foods on Sunday, and as soon as I heard about it I started thinking about making lobster rolls. I delayed my run to the warmer afternoon hours so I could arrive bright and early to the lobster party, and it was totally worth it. No crowds, plenty of lobster, and more motivation to run.
Matt took care of all the messy work.
I took care of the doughy work.
I made a half recipe of the basic white bread from The Bread Baker’s Apprentice, divided the dough into six pieces and shaped them into hot dog buns. When they’re lined up closely on a baking sheet and bake together, the inner rolls, once pulled apart from their neighbors, have the perfect soft sides for buttering and toasting in a skillet.
To balance out buttery rolls filled with lobster: a salad of blanched cauliflower, olives, capers, feta, and almonds, dressed in a mustard-herb vinaigrette.
Lobster roll, cauliflower salad, kale chips
Matt used this recipe for the lobster, and my only regret is not adding a little fresh tarragon. It’s hard to argue with perfectly cooked lobster on a buttery roll, though.
To prolong our enjoyment of the lobster, I saved the shells to make stock. I followed the very basic recipe in How to Cook Everything: combine the shells, half a carrot, half a celery stalk, half an onion (sliced), and 4.5 cups of water in a pot. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Let cool briefly and then strain.
It smells wonderful. I think we’ll use it for either risotto or some kind of soup.