The Foodie Blogroll

Vegetable Risotto, Parmesan-crusted Tilapia, Carrot Cake

HAPPY EASTER EVERYONE!!

Well... this is going to be quite a long post, I have many ups-and-downs in this story as well, so I hope you enjoy the ride. We will start with Monday. I'm talking about last Monday, the 29th of March. I went and did my groceries for my Easter dinner which was happening the 3rd of April. I bought all the food necessary for the meal, including peaches, because for dessert I was intending on making peach tarts.

When I got home from doing the groceries I put the peaches in the fridge. Really, what was I thinking? They already weren't ripe, and I was so scared they were going to be mushy by the time Saturday came. Friday morning I decided to take them out, ROCK HARD. With my personality this was bad news, I mean bad bad news. I started stressing right then and there. I started reading about how to ripen peaches, well you need more than 24 hours for that so that was out of the question. I decided to boil them. I cut the peaches, cut them up nicely, and blanched them for a minute. It actually did make a difference, so I decided to let them sit for a bit. Well, coming back 45 minutes later, they were brown. BROWN! NOT ORANGE, JUICY ORANGE. WHY! So, I went back to my archives, back to more blogs and spent the next while searching recipes that I could do for dessert. At this point bf is getting angry because I keep asking about ideas, or "what do you think about this?", etc etc...

I think I went through about six or so possible desserts. I was thinking between a tea cake, lemon-poppy icebox cake, chick cake, carrot cakes, and some others. Really if worse came to worse, I did bake quite a bit of cookies at the beginning of the week (which got devoured), but I ended up going for the carrot cake recipe. Well, I looked up many different versions and kind of adapted it to what I wanted it to taste like. I ended up going to bed at 2:30 am on the morning of the third. Waking up for 6:45, my ideal was, the grocery store was closed on Friday, closed Sunday, and it is going to be mad busy during the day so I wanted to avoid the "crazies", I think that just made me one of the crazies.
At 6:46 I left the house, still with my pajama top on, three grocery bags in hand and walked. Walked into the grocery store where it was still dark, there were like about two lights on in the whole store, people EVERYWHERE stocking food, it was a weird scene. I got all my ingredients. Walked home, put everything away and started with the carrot cake. So here is my version

Carrot Cake recipe -
*this makes a six inch cake, ideal for a small party, or just a little snack

Ingredients:
  • 6 tablespoons Grape seed oil or other neutral oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon packed) brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 4 ounces of carrots, finely grated
  • 4 tablespoons crushed pineapple, drained and chopped fine
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
  • ½ tsp grated ginger
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened coconut
Directions:

Preheat the oven to 150°C (300°F). Spray a 6-inch round cake pan at least 2 inches high with baking spray. In a medium b
owl, whisk together the oil and eggs vigorously, until well-emulsified. Add the brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, salt, baking powder, baking soda and whisk until well-combined. Scatter the carrots,pineapple and coconut over the surface and whisk until well-combined. Sift the flour over the surface (a third of the flour at a time), and gently fold in each addition of flour with a spatula. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

I decided to take the easy route and buy cream cheese frosting from the package. Once the cake was cooled I then placed the frosting. This cake was absolutely delicious! I did notice however, that when I took the cake out it was a tad bit oily on top, so if I were to make this again, I would probably do a mix between 3 tbsp oil, and 3 tbsp soy milk. I found the cake to be really moist and just overall delicious, I can't wait until the morning to have that for breakfast!

At this point my day is going well, my cake stayed in one piece, YAHOO, my groceries are done, the house is immaculate, so I decide to take a nap. I'm going to add in the next part, just for pleasure... I finally fell back asleep, and there is CRAZY knocking on the door, I thought I had slept in until my brother and dad were here, so I ran like a mad woman out of bed, knock over our heater and storm up the stairs. I open the door, and there is this lady, and she looks furious... well, furious is an understatement as to what she was. First thing she does is, yell in my face, "DID YOU HAVE A PARTY THURSDAY NIGHT?!" "I don't party" "WELL THERE ARE EGGS ALL OVER MY PROPERTY AND MY NEIGHBOURS" ... I have never seen this woman IN my life, don't know where she lives and she is livid. She keeps yelling, I'm like well, I'm pretty sure someone walked into my house that night as well and stole my boyfriends shoe, "THAT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH ME"... it sort of does, it could of been the same people... she's going ON AND ON... and I just want to be like, "LADY, I JUST WOKE UP, and I DO NOT appreciate being yelled at for something I haven't even a clue about". She went crazy, saying "THEY'RE NOT OPENING THE DOOR UPSTAIRS THEY KNOW I'M ANGRY, I WANT TO KNOCK ON THE DOOR DIVIDING YOU GUYS", I told her no. She asked for the landlord's name, etc... and stormed off. I ended up speaking to her more-rational and calm husband. Point is she's nuts.

That put a chip on my shoulder. I went back into the house and was kind of in a weird mood after that. My dad and brother arrive, so we eat a salad. I started to prep the risotto. Oh the risotto was it ever good. Here, I can't even tell you how many recipe's I incorporated from so again there will not be a source.

Vegetable Risotto -

Ingredients:
  • 1 1/2 cups arborio rice
  • 4 1/2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 leek sliced thinly, without the green part
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 button mushrooms
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • (I made a puree of about 11 cloves of garlic, tsp of dried dill, olive oil, juice of one lemon, salt and tons of pepper)
Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Add in your rice, pour your stock over the rice. (Honestly, I did not to anything special, I did not boil the stock, I just through it in, and my risotto turned out perfectly). I then added my vegetables on top, the salt and pepper and mixed everything together. I stirred it once in between, and left it alone after that. It was in the oven for 40 minutes. Make this ideally for when you would like to serve it, because after it sits for a while it tends to get mushy. This gave a HEAPING amount, I mean I still have a gigantic container left. I did not add any cheese and it was extremely creamy, I loved it.

This turned out well, and so did my tilapia. This I took from a recipe and did not change anything so I will just post the recipe.
http://macaroniandcheesecake.blogspot.com/2009/01/parmesan-tilapia.html
If you're one of those people that thinks tilapia is just a blan boring fish, first off, you've had it done wrong, second of all, TRY THIS RECIPE, AMAZING!

This was the good part of the night. My brother is a ridiculously picky eater, who coincidentally wants to become a chef... he doesn't even like vegetables, er... so I made him goat cheese gnocchi... this I almost cried at. I don't know what happened, it just became a big ball of goop. BUT WHY! When I was making them I tested so many, and they all worked, but no, obviously when infront of an audience, it has to go wrong, (however, I did get a text when he left saying this, "Eh don't worry about it. Honestly it was actually good lol, for a big ball of potatoes =P I didn't mind it" (so not THAT bad I guess right? hahaha). I got really upset, through my oven mit on the oven... FIRE. Oh my gooosh, could it get any worse? So I'm waving them around, smoke is everywhere, finally the bf just takes them and stuck them in the sink, I'm horrible in situations like that... but yeah, so that was my day. Now I'm sitting here thinking about my day, and I mean yeah it sort of sucked, but it's times like this that make holidays memorable am I right? Haha, well I hope your Easter's were good, if you would like to share what you did for Easter I would love to hear it!

Have an awesome Easter weekend!

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