misshepeshu: (Default)
2009-09-13 08:52 pm
Entry tags:

Lessons I learned today, with bonus recipes:

1. Potato starch will look like it's doing sweet fuck-all, until you get it above a certain temperature. Then BAM. Solid goo. Solid emulsified goo. It's amazing. *The More You Know star shoots across the sky*.

2a. I will never, ever make pie crust with anything other than Strauss European-Style butter. It contains a gram more fat per tablespoon, and sweet Jesus, the pie crust I made today was unbelievable.

2b. So apparently the secret to making amazing pie crust for me is using a food processor. I've finally learned the magic touch. Huh.

2c. If I continue on this pie and bread-making kick, I need to buy a sturdy baking mat of some sort, because using my bamboo cutting board just ain't working for me any more.

3. I will make sure to get frozen peaches to room temperature before introducing browned butter to it, because damn, those congealed lumps of dark brown fat sure looked gross.

4. Speaking of browned butter: when browning butter, use a light-colored stirring implement, because it's impossible to see how dark the butter is truly getting otherwise.

So today was my apartment complex's Garden Party. We all made food harvested from our respective gardens ([livejournal.com profile] katealaurel had started a garden this year, and yea verily, it yielded a buttload of tomatoes and squash), got dressed up in swank gear and sat in our courtyard at a long picnic table, hanging out, stuffing our faces with incredibly delicious food, cracking jokes and generally having a fantastic time. I decided to make squash curry from the assload of unripe squash we rescued when three of Kate's plants fell prey to the powdery blight, and the squash was so big (I think it weighed about 8 lbs.) that I made two different kinds: a coconut milk-heavy variant with chicken, and a dry vegan variant with tomatoes. Both turned out amazingly well; in fact, I inadvertently replicated one of my favorite Indian curries with the dry curry. Win! And for dessert: a brown butter-peach-rum pie, modified from a prize-winning pie from this year's Portland Pie-Off. I was terrified at first that it was going to suck, because the filling was so watery, but lo, the potato starch miracle blessed me, and the filling was AMAZING: firm, juicy, intensely peachy and just the right kind of sweet, with a delicious caramelized overtone from the browned butter.

And lo: there were recipes and rejoicing. )