Aebleskiver

March 5, 2011 § 2 Comments

Or, in local parlance, Viking pancakes.  Delicious fried balls of doughy goodness, filled with whatever happens to be in the fridge at the moment.  We went with Nutella and some nice organic apricot jam.

A few weeks ago I mentioned that O had Viking pancakes at a sleepover, and Mom responded with “Aebleskiver!  We know what those are!  And we have a pan!”  Any breakfast food that comes with its own high-tech equipment is something that I’m totally down with, so after asking around and doing some research, I figured this was something we had to try.  Mom offered us the pan as part of my inheritance (it will go so nicely with the Wegner chair, not that I’m overly keen, but you know…a Danish theme and all…) and she brought it out with her this weekend.  Apparently it cause a bit of a row at security, but she also had some Aebleskiver mix and was able to get it past the somewhat overly keen TSA folks.

So we made them this morning.  There’s the newly enshrined pan–very nice aluminum, heavy and with carefully milled hollows for the cakes themselves.  The mix is less important than the technique, apparently.  You dunk a tablespoon of batter into each hollow, then a quarter teaspoon of whatever yummy stuff you’ve got, and then another tablespoon of batter on top.  When the bottom gets toasty, you take a couple of skewers and flip them over.  The new batter runs down to the bottom, the filling (hopefully) stays in the middle, and the top gets to rest a bit.

We got most of them turned over successfully, after realizing the hard way that a full half-gallon or so of Pam Baking Spray was the missing secret ingredient.  And they were awesome with a little powdered sugar on top.  Crispy outside, doughy inside, and then of course the secret filling inside.  Would it be jam?  Nutella?  Who knew!

They’re a little work, but worth it.  I can totally see this filling in for Muffin Saturdays occasionally.  And the best part?  There are actual Aebleskiver tools–little wood implements that are custom carved for turning these things.  I’m not sure our lack of Aebleskiver turners is holding me back yet, but I think I may need some soon.

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saturday morning

January 29, 2011 § 2 Comments

We had big plans for the weekend, but last night the girl was still wiped out, so we agreed that, barring a remarkable recovery, we’d bag the plans to drive up to Minneapolis and just have a quiet weekend at home.  Anyone need Timberwolves tickets?  Because I’ve got some.  She sacked out last night at 7:30 and is still asnooze…fourteen hours, which I think she needed.  I just went up to make sure she was still breathing, which I don’t know if we’ve done since they were babies.  I am, however, sensing a load of laundry in my immediate future.

Anyway, there are far worse things than a quiet weekend at home.  Before she went to bed O asked if we could have french toast this morning instead of muffins.  Given the tonnage of bread in the kitchen I thought that was a good idea.  So they boy and I had our french toast, and the batter will sit until she finally joins the living.  I asked C if he wanted his french toast made with our ciabatta, or if he wanted baseball bread.  “Both,” he said, “I don’t know if I’d like french toast ciabatta.”  I had to agree, this sounded risky given Franco-Italian relations through history.

I threw some flour into the batter this morning thinking it would crisp things up a bit.  It did seem to brown nicely, but no crispier.  Anyway, the boy nommed his ciabatta and left half of the store bread.  I had to agree with him on this one.

It’s sunny and not so cold today, a nice crisp Iowa morning that promises sloppy streets and maybe a little less ice on the roof.  I’m thinking a loaf or two of sandwich bread this weekend, and maybe an attempt at baguettes.  The boy loves those.  And so do I, really.

Update: The girl just got out of bed, a little wobbly but fever-free.  She’s hitting the applesauce now, and is slowly contemplating nomming the entire refrigerator (except for the meat drawer).  I think she’s back.

brunch–spinach and eggs

January 24, 2011 Comments Off on brunch–spinach and eggs

So my first issue of Bon Appetit came last week, and I have to say I tore into it like my teenage self used to tear into the annual Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue.  Most of it is clearly over my head, but the girl and I found a complex but doable brownie recipe, and I think I’ll work my way through a good winter salad article–though I won’t tell the kids what most of the ingredients are.

One quick meal caught my eye, though, and sounded simple enough.  Spinach and eggs made up one of my late evening meals last year in Chicago, and there was a version of it that added some mustard and vinaigrette bread crumbs.  The recipe I’d used called for steaming the spinach and then at the last minute cracking a couple of eggs into the pot–effiicient, but tough to dig out without losing half the yolks.  This one called for frying the eggs and sauteeing the  spinach separately, so one more pan to wash, but a much easier assembly.  The key ingredient here, though, is fresh bread crumbs mixed with a mustard vinaigrette.  I just used some store bought crumbs, but they worked well and mushed up nicely.

This was perfect today–I had a lunch meeting with one of last semester’s students at the cafe in campustown, and I knew all I could really have there was a salad.  Anything else and I would have shot my day completely.  So my morning snack became brunch, and I figured I could use the extra protein to get through the afternoon.  Worked a treat, and of course the spinach is full of potassium, which I need by the ton, apparently.  And it took all of three minutes to throw together.  The mustard bread crumbs were awesome, and may show up again in something like baked chicken–big flava and not much in the way of carbs.

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