Hoop de doo! We survived another week. Here’s what we had:
Pizza Hut Pizza and Ambitious Birthday Cake
Birthday party! Mr. Husband took the birthday girl and guests and some kids to the Worcester Art Museum, and I stayed home to shop, clean, decorate, and make an odd cake.
I had this black sugar paper that I bought but forgot to use for the last birthday cake, which actually turned out kind of awesome. It was months ago, but I’m going to share it anyway:
My daughter, who turned 16, thought a pretty silhouette of the letter “C” for her name might be pretty.
And it might’ve. This is one of those classic “if only you could see how it looked in my head” projects.
More earthy than ethereal. The sugar sheet was not terrible to use, but definitely not easy; although this was a pretty fiddly design for a first attempt. It was easy to cut, but more delicate than I expected, and I had to patch it together where it fell apart from overhandling. The package suggested spritzing the final result with water from a spray bottle to soften up the edges a bit once it’s on the cake. The only spray bottles we have are full of ammonia, and it wasn’t that kind of party.
The upshot: I’d use sugar sheets again if I especially wanted a straight edge on a design; and I’d try it again for a silhouette, but only with sharper scissors and more time than I had for this cake. Paper punchers would work well with this stuff. It comes in all kinds of snazzy colors and designs, too. The taste? A lot closer to paper than sugar.
Also, someone either bit or clawed or otherwise caused the one end of the cake to disappear from the platter while it was cooling. Also, Corrie dragged some egg shells out of the garbage and threw them in the batter while I was still stirring it up. And I ran out of frosting and couldn’t make more because I was out of confectioner’s sugar, and had already gone to the Quik-e-Mart once and spent half a week’s wages on a pound of butter, and I was saving the other half of my wages for beer. I thought maybe I could give the cake a sort of shabby chic floofiness by floofing up the frosting with a butter knife and then sprinkling candy pearls on it.
Anyway, the little girls were impressed!
Hamburgers and chips
Aldi sells 80/20 ground beef for $2.99, but it only comes in five-pound packages. I used to take out three pounds for burgers and freeze the rest for other meals, but somewhere along the line, we transitioned to just making enormous hamburgers.
Sausage subs with onions and mushrooms; sweet peppers and hummus
Ain’t it purty? Good eats.
Pulled pork; candied yams
Hey, does anyone else have trouble shredding pork? I feel like it ought to just fall apart with a touch of the fork, but no matter what cut of pork I use and no matter how slowly and gently I cook it, I really have to work hard with forks and knives to give it that nice stringiness. What am I doing wrong? It tastes great, but it’s such a hassle.
The candied yams were straight from can to bowl to microwave to table. Mondays are the pits.
They gave me so many compliments on my ham, I started to get kind of mad. I mean, is an old family recipe, the way I cut off the plastic, put it on a pan, and turn the oven on, but still.
We also had mashed potatoes and frozen peas, as you see. I included this picture because I think the fork is funny. There’s life in the old dame yet!
Oh, and here is another ham picture worth sharing.
The dog is thinking, “Lady, just because you paid me a nickel to bust up your chifforobe, doesn’t give you the right to call me ridiculous.”
Seafood bisque; garlic knots
I made up a recipe using only things you can get at Aldi. I hope there is a contest or something.
I cooked some frozen salmon in the microwave (4 of the five wrapped filets that come in a bag), simmered a box of pre-sauced mussels on the stovetop, and shredded up a package of imitation crab meat.
In a heavy pot, I sauteed some diced onions and celery. When they were cooked, I stirred in about a can-and-a-half of tomato paste and about 3/4 cup of white wine, and blended it together. Then I stirred in all the seafood (except I ate one of the salmon filets for lunch), including the sauce from the mussels, and then I blended in about two pints of whipping cream. I bought three pints, but Corrie stole one and, with God as my witness, I don’t know what she did with it. Can she have drunk a whole pint of whipping cream? Did she pour it into the dryer? I guess I’ll find out.
The children, of course, approached it with this attitude:
My daughter made 36 garlic knots from pizza dough topped with butter, salt, garlic powder, and parmesan cheese, baked in a 450 oven for about ten minutes. Put a little butter and cornmeal on the pan to keep them from sticking. These taste way better than they reasonably should.
I believe some other daughter requested tuna noodle casserole, which means she can make it and I can have LEFTOVER BISQUE because I sure made a lot of it.
What’s for supper at your house? Anything good? Anything you made up? Oh, and tell me all about your favorite Italian food. I gots plans.