Saturday, September 15, 2012

Cupcakes and Chowder

Last night, I had a party to go to.  In fear that I would spend all my time browsing recipes (this has happened many times before),  I told Kenzie to choose something for me to make and bring (or make and take, a term I heard last night and loved).  She chose, not surprisingly, Oreo cupcakes.  Well, their official name is cookies and cream cupcakes, but that is the same thing.   I was rather surprised that I have not made Oreo cupcakes before.  Kenzie loves Oreos, and I used to make Oreo things for her, until I realized that I was eating the same amount as she was.  I have grown to appreciate the Oreo as well.  On the other side of things is Mom, who hates Oreos with  a strangely strong passion.  So don't even ask her thoughts on these babies.  Just use your inferring skills. 

Anyway, I will admit that after my first full week, my brain was a bit mushy, and so I forgot to add sugar.  That's a huge rookie mistake (who does that!?) but luckily I spotted my error before I got them in the oven.  Unfortunately, they were already in their muffin cups, so it was a bit messy pouring them all back into the bowl to add the sugar, but luckily in the end the taste was not affected.

Now, these cupcakes aren't pretty.  Even in the recipe's pictures, the cakes are very hole-y.  They are like the Swiss cheese of cupcakes.  They look boiled or something.  At least Rachael and Mom helped me to make my frosting look semi-acceptable.  I definitely need to take cake-decorating lessons because I am unable to pipe frosting on to anything.  It did not help that I was trying to pipe frosting from a tiny little hole in my bag, and said frosting happened to be full of cookie crumbs, so it kept clogging!  Luckily Rach and Mom came to the rescue and just smoothed it on with knives.

I didn't try a cupcake, but they seemed to be well received at the party.  We left the rest of them there because the hostess has three kids and I figured they would actualyl stand a chance of getting completely eaten there.  I had left four at home; Pat ate one today (and he likes everything), and Delilah at the rest (BAD DOG), so unfortumately I don't have much information to share about them!  Judging from the ugliness of the cakes themselves, I would say these are probably not make-agains.

Today Mom and I went grocery shopping and got the ingredients for a couple meals that she has been asking for.  Tonight for dinner I made shrimp chowder.  Mom gets emails from Martha Stewart with crafts and recipes and other things of that nature, and occasionally she forwards cooking ideas to me.  This was one of them.  Now, I was not keen about cooking with shimp, but since you can buy frozenn raw shrimp that has already been peeled and deveined (ugh!), it's actually more doable than chicken.   Very minimal raw meat touching!  Perhaps I will have to make more shrimp dishes (except for the fact that it was so expensive!) The chowder claimed to take only 30 minutes but with me being super slow, it took me longer than that.  I doubled the recipe, so just chopping up two onions and eight potatoes, and taking the kernels off 6 ears of corn took me the thirty minutes!  This was still not a difficult recipe though. 

I used 8 cups of whole milk, and 2 cups of 2% (10 cups of whole milk was first of all more than I bought, and second of all, kind of gross).  What was kind of interesting is that you boil the corn cobs in the soup to get more of the corn flavor!  Then in the end, Mom tossed in some fresh oregano because she claimed to have fond memories of a chowder with oregano.

Boiling some cobs!
In the end, she was ecstatic over this soup.  Jay, Pat and Ross came over as well to have some and they said it was good.  I also enjoyed it, but I don't think it's as flavorful as I would like.  I said to Mom I was not sure it was make-again worthy, but she heartily disagreed.  Go figure!  It's not that this chowder wasn't good, but the flavors were too subtle for me.  Maybe I am more used to things being overpowering.  Either way, I have a huge amount of chowder left, so come on over tomorrow for some corn and shrimp chowder!

cookies and cream cupcakes
shrimp chowder

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