Happy New Year!
Happy New Year everyone! We woke up this morning to a world without snow and above freezing temperatures.
Most of it melted yesterday.
But this morning, there was no snow at all left anywhere.
This morning I woke up at 5 AM and it was raining, so the rain did in the rest of the snow. It would be a perfect time for the deer to drop their antlers but with the warmer weather there will be a larger area to search. Since there is no snow or ice today I wandered out the back door to say hi to the goats from the gate. This is the first time I've been able to walk over there because ice so I got a lot of goatie kisses, some major ones especially from Bulrush.
quick everyone it's mom!
where the heck have you been?
Bucket does not like this weather!
Butternut doesn't either....
Buckwheat had lost a bit of his musky smell and had stopped peeing on his beard but apparently he got ready to see me today by doing both. He's too sweet....
We all managed to stay up until midnight, and wish each other a Happy New Year. It was hard to believe we stayed up since we all stuffed ourselves again, and likely will again today! But today is a quieter day here. I spent most of yesterday cooking. It's the only thing I can do even a little of right now and I need anything to make me feel like myself and useful. Long recoveries after surgery are no fun.
I made some Mexican wedding cookies, but I changed one of the main ingredients because I could not reach the walnuts. I was here alone, so I decided climbing on chairs was not a good idea since I've already fallen once, so I used Almonds because I could reach those. They still turned out pretty tasty though. I call them snowballs, but either way they taste really good!
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
1 cup butter
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/4 tsp salt
2 tbs vanilla
1 ground almonds
2 cups of flour
more powdered sugar for coating
Beat butter, sugar, salt, and, vanilla.
Stir in the ground almonds. I just put mine in a zip lock and beat them up, it's a great way to get rid of stress.
Stir in the flour. Shape into 1" balls and place on a cookie sheet. Bake until brown 12-15 minutes, mine took 15 minutes. Let them cool a little bit and then roll them completely in powdered sugar.
I also made parsley garlic hearthbreads from Natashya's site, I made the dough in the morning and the kneading was good for my spirit. The roasting garlic always helps too because it smells so good! These breads take a little work but they are so worth it. I also found out I had no parsley but a bunch of fresh cilantro, so I used that instead and I put some Parmesan cheese on my breads. So this is the recipe with my few changes.
Garlic and Cilantro hearthbreads
2.2 cups flour
7g or 1 packet instant yeast
1 tablespoon salt
aprox 1 1/4 cups water
5 tbs olive oil
3 or 4 large heads of garlic (I used 3)
bunch of fresh cilantro
Parmesan cheese for sprinkling
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
Combine the flour, yeast, and, salt in a bowl. Pour 1 1/4 cups of water into a measuring cup and stir in the olive oil. Mix the liquid with the dry ingredients to make a soft but firm dough, adding more water if needed, and knead by hand. You can also use your mixer fitted with a dough hook, but it's worth it to knead by hand. Knead until elastic.
Form into a ball, wash out and dry the bowl, and coat the dough with a little olive oil. Cover and leave to rise for an hour or so.
While the bread is rising, trim the top off the heads of garlic, making sure they remain whole. Sit them in some squares of foil, dribble over some oil and wrap them loosely but with the foil sealed at the edges. Cook the garlic packages for 45 minutes. I cooked mine at 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Let them cool until you can handle them.
Squeeze the soft garlic cloves out of their skins and into a food processor or blender. Bled in your cilantro and enough olive oil to make a nice runny paste.
When the dough's risen, punch it down and leave it to rest 10 minutes. Divide the dough into 4, and get your cookie sheet ready with parchment paper. I just pulled the dough with my hands to make the curved rectangles or bulky ovals you should end up with. Then I just pressed them out with my hands once they were on the cookie sheet. All four fit on one cookie sheet. Then rub on your garlic/cilantro mixture and top with Parmesan cheese. Bake at 400 degrees for 25 minutes or until golden brown. Mine took exactly 25 minutes.
These were really yummy and so worth the time and effort.
To go along with that I roasted my first duck ever. I've never eaten duck or roasted duck, so this was a new experience for me. It turned out pretty tasty. I roasted the duck for 2 1/2 hours at 325 degrees Fahrenheit. I lightly seasoned it with salt and pepper and that was it.
We had a side dish of some ginger chicken, and some basmati rice.
We had a real feast!
For our New Year's day dinner we are having a prime rib roast with au jus. This week I'll think we'll be trying out a few lighter recipes, I can see some Silver salmon in our near future.
It's a good day to stay inside by the fire anyway, it's wet, damp, and just plain yucky outside, not my kind of day at all. If it's not raining tomorrow I might try a short walk outside. I'd go today but cold, damp, and, rain, just doesn't sound exciting to me. So I'll stay inside where it's warm and dry and just cook.
I wish for everyone a very Happy New Year, good food, good company, good drinks, and many toasts to the good days ahead, and many memories from the year behind us.