Thursday, July 5, 2012

Summertime Guests

My partner's 86 year old mother is here for her annual two week visit so I have been focusing on getting the best flavors and looks on the plate. We're also eating in the dining room so I have to set the table and it's a lot more work, but worth it. The cookies are made using the recipe on the back of the Chip-its! chocolate chips package. Actually I made a half load and only added a cup of diced apricots at the insistence of my partner.  Half of them are gone already so I think they're a hit. Here's the proportions I used adding in this order:

1/2 cup butter creamed
1/2 cup brown sugar cream it in
1/4 cup sugar, cream it in
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup chocolate chips - brand names tend to taste better
1 cup diced apricots

I baked them on a cold ceramic cookie sheet and a pizza stone at 375ยบ for 20 minutes. I bake on parchment paper so I don't transfer flavor via the ceramic.

Dinner last night was Snapper, mashed potatoes, carrots and broccoli. My rub was good but I've been there before.  Tonight I made chicken with Southwest Rub, brown and red rice pilaf and garden salad. Good but again, been there done that. It's time to take my meals to the next level and I finally can see in my mind how to do it. This probably means spending an extra hour in the kitchen but the results should elevate my dishes out of the suburbs so I am excited at the prospect.

I have a pork loin brining in the fridge for tomorrow. I'll have to make photographing it part of setting up.  I also have a beef brisket corning in the fridge. It won't be ready for another week and a half. Interesting things are starting to happen with my cooking.

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