Archive for August, 2010

Beet Cupcakes & Frosting

Wednesday, August 11th, 2010

Beet Cupcakes + Beet Frosting. (pilfered from here)

1.5 cups grated beets
1 cup all purpose flour
3/4 cup white sugar
2 eggs
1/4 tsp salt
1 pinch cinnamon powder
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup chopped toasted nuts (walnuts, cashews)

Beat eggs till frothy and add sugar. Beat well, till the batter is thick. Add oil and the extract. Then add the sifted flour+baking powder+salt+cinnamon powder. Mix till just incorporated. Fold in the grated beets and chopped nuts. Bake for 35 mins at 180 C.

…I mostly followed the recipe. I did a little less sugar, no nuts and added pinches of cinnamon, nutmeg & allspice. Think carrot cake, but with beets. For the frosting, I did a standard cream cheese frosting (creamcheese + lots of confectioner’s sugar) and added beet juice for coloring.

It tasted like any other root veggie-cake (carrot cake, parsnip cake etc). Next time I’m going to try using canned beets (much easier) or slow roasting them in the oven first (until they caramelize and develop that rich caramelized beet flavor). I will also try to take a picture before I’m so tired that everything is blurry.

Flowers and such

Friday, August 6th, 2010

I put a pan on the stove with a little oil, turned up the heat to fry my padron peppers (see last post)… Got distracted… And came back to a lovely smoke filled kitchen. Oops.

The best part is that my ‘smoke’ detector didn’t let out a sound. But it regularly goes off after I shower. Apparently it’s a steam detector, not a smoke detector — how useful.

And more veggies/fruit from my garden — tomatoes (as always), strawberries, green beans and sage:

And more flowers from plants adopted from work –

I can’t figure out why the saturation seems to be so high. All the pictures with the petals in focus are eye-burningly fuchsia.

And, here… is Bender!

And here’s my failed attempt at latte art… It’s hard to do :(

Padron Peppers

Monday, August 2nd, 2010

This is my dog, Moogle. He’s an almost two year old Maltese. He loves food. Possibly more than I do. This picture was taken with the help of some padron peppers (more on those later).

Unlike most dogs, he doesn’t seem to have an aversion to spicy food. He loves curry paste and seems to enjoy scrounging around for chili pepper bits on the floor. However, he’s not a big fan of basil or arugula, but he’ll still sit, beg and chew on whatever you give him — he’s a good sport. He’ll just spit the leaves out when you’re not looking.

In other news, here are some cherry tomatoes from my plants — the orange ones turned out much sweeter than the red ones, though the red ones aren’t bad by any measure. I’m going to try saving seeds from the orange ones, though I suspect everything in my garden is cross pollinated anyway. The flower is from a small flowering bush of some sort I adopted from work.  It’s produced some pretty flowers, but they’ve been full of bugs and spiders (though of course I realized this AFTER picking them and bringing them inside).

And one of the two pounds of padron peppers I purchased from the Ladybug truck. I’ve been eating these quickly fried in olive oil and sprinkled with sea salt. So tasty.  I’m going to try to save some of these seeds too.

Now I just have to figure out what to make with the coriander berries I bought…