Plum and bourbon swirl ice cream

September 5, 2012 § 24 Comments

Hello dear friends.  How are you?!  It feels like an age since I’ve been here.  Maybe it has been an age.  I’ve lost all track of time as we’ve been in a blur of activity and change.

I meant to come back with a roar, with all sorts of things to say and stories to tell.  Instead, I think I’ll go for something more along the lines of a purr.  Roaring takes too much energy for the moment.  Shifts and adaptations, however positive, are tiring.  So is moving and unpacking boxes.  Sheesh.

But we are, in fact, wondrously unpacked.  We still have a small stack of boxes to attend to, and the art needs to be hung.  But, most of the important things (read: kitchen and dining room – and even the living room, actually) are set up and functioning.  We had the most amazing help.  I mean really, that’s part of why we wanted to be here.  The kindness and sense of community are palpable. « Read the rest of this entry »

Salted caramel ice cream and dark chocolate tartelettes

September 29, 2010 § 12 Comments

Sometimes I secretly think maybe my nutrition degree should be revoked.  The thing is, I just think that using smaller plates, cooking more of our own food, and trying to squeeze in extra veggies wherever possible will get most of the job done.  I can’t help but feel that bacon and butter are legitimate “spices.”  Oh, and then there’s the matter of me and salted caramel.  Pardon me for a moment while I glaze over and daydream about creamy, salty, buttery, luxuriousness…Oh no, was I drooling?!  How embarrassing.  Anyway, I firmly believe that one of the most important things we need to do to eat more healthfully is cut out as much sugar (or equivalent) as possible, but can adding some salt to your sugar count instead?  Pleeeeeeeease???  (Real answer: definitely not.  There’s actually something about the salty-sweet combination that trips up our brain and makes us less able to control how much we eat.  Sometimes life is so unfair! )

It all began when Joel’s parents very thoughtfully sent me a care package back when I was studying for my comprehensive exams.  I’m sure they had no idea that they were creating a salted caramel-obsessed monster when they tucked a tiny box of dark chocolate sea salt caramels from Fran’s in with the other goodies.  I ate one.  I promptly adopted the use of the phrase “O.M.G.” which I had steadfastly promised myself I would never use.  Who would have thought that that dark smooth little chocolate cube, with its innocent little sprinkling of grey salt on top, could pack that much decadence into it?!  I ate the second one, and amidst the bars of the “Alleluia Chorus” that were playing inside my head, I came this close to packing up everything and moving to Seattle so that I could go live behind Fran’s and eat nothing but their caramels forever more.  (I’m sure the fact that I was studying for the most stressful exam of my life in no way contributed to my excited planning for an escape.)

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Cocktail Party Nutrition-Bite (or, the devious ways nutrition can be used to justify eating almost anything)

September 2, 2009 § 1 Comment

At a party, or almost any social situation, when people find out that you study nutrition you instantly become a resource to answer burning questions about the most recent health headlines or dietary controversy. I appreciate this, but I also find it frustrating that nutrition seems confusing and controversial to so many people because, at its most fundamental, what we can say about nutrition so far is pretty simple (borderline dull!): eat a variety of minimally processed foods in reasonable amounts; avoid tons of sugar and manufactured foods; and (this is my own philosophy that has yet to be scientifically proven, but I’ll put it in for good measure) allow yourself to enjoy what you’re eating, taking some time to savor it.

That said, one of my favorite “party tricks” is to share some tasty scientific morsel about a nutrient in a particular food so that we can pretend it’s a healthier choice than it probably is (some of the foods I scientifically justify are, indeed, healthy choices, but they’re still not super-duper-amazing-cure-all foods, even if their labels or some tag line in a women’s magazine claim they are). One of my friends once told me that one of her favorite things about me was the way I could justify eating ice cream or a bacon cheeseburger with a flourish (I’m not entirely sure how I feel about this being considered one of my best attributes, but that is as it is…) Don’t worry, I then try to put the food back in context, which is more than the headlines usually do. So, as part of this blog, I plan on sharing some of my favorite “cocktail party nutrition-bites”, and without further ado I’ll begin with one of my favorites: ice cream. « Read the rest of this entry »

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