Friends (Strawberry Gelato)

If you have friends like the ones I have, then you are one lucky person.

I’m talking about friends who will pick you up when you’re stuck at home in the rain with only a bike to get you around. I’m also talking about friends with whom you can have a philosophical conversation on the psychology of social relations while massacring wave after wave of alien invaders on the television screen in front of you. I’m talking about friends who are artists, rhetors, future politicians, athletes, or just downright cool.

Friend who are foodies, friends who would rather have a Big Mac than a peppercorn-encrusted New York strip steak with a red wine reduction; friends who enjoy cooking with you and friends who just like to eat the food you make.

Moreover, I’ve got friends who I not only appreciate but who appreciate me, so much so that on a rare occasion they will buy you an ice cream maker–because they remember talking with you about it a few months back–to say “thanks.”

For that, I’m one lucky guy.

Either that, or they all like me for the free food they get when they’re with me. I try not to think about that one, though.

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Short and Sweet (Spring Salad with Citrus Vinaigrette)

Let me get to the point.

I’ve got a salad. It has an awesome vinaigrette. It’s basically the essence of spring tossed into a bowl. It also uses some extra candied orange peels from my last post. It’s quick, it’s resourceful, it’s intensely flavorful. It’s awesome.

Go make it for lunch. Now. Enough said.

Hey, pecan! Get back in there!

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My Love-Hate Relationship with Costco (Strawberry Banana Muffins)

I love Costco. My family loves Costco. Everyone and their mother loves Costco. I’m pretty sure my dog knows full well what Costco is and loves it.

Loving Costco means two things, though. First, my family buys a lot of produce in bulk for hardly any money. Second, a lot of that produce sadly ends up going down the disposal when it gets old and moldy after we have only had a chance to use half of it. I can’t tell you how much I hate when uneaten food goes down the sink or in trash; I always think of wasted food as lost opportunities to make a dish.

The Aftermath

I’ve developed ways of combating this waste, usually by freezing the fruit we buy and steaming the heck out of a pound of baby spinach on a weekly basis (what family of three needs a pound of spinach per week, especially when I’m usually the only one that uses?). However, I think I may have found my new favorite method for my mounds of fruits: bake with them!

It is not an infrequent sight to see bananas of varying shades of yellow-brown sitting on the countertop in the kitchen, but making bread out of these bananas has never really crossed my mind (I know, how could it not have crossed my mind beforehand?). What with the newly purchased…pound (again, a pound for a family of three?)…of strawberries from Costco, I knew this would be the perfect opportunity to prevent those luscious berries and, well, those not-as-luscious-looking-but-still-delicious bananas from going down the black hole that is the kitchen sink.

Don’t judge a banana by its peel, people.

The Aftermath, Pt. 2

To all my high school readers: this takes almost no time to make! Sure, this will technically takes about an hour to make, but remember that most of that time is baking time. I whipped up the batter in about 5 or 10 minutes and stuck these puppies in the oven while I was studying for Chemistry (an apt combination, Chemistry and Cooking), took them out a little while later, and had tasty homemade muffins for the rest of the week! Cooking and baking aren’t daunting tasks, guys; great food is only a bit of time and effort away!

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