Sunday, I planned on doing homework. I really….with every fiber of my little being intend on committing myself to the two hours of mild boredom and slight torture that is taking lecture notes as a distance student. This all came crashing down when I got home, during a rain storm…..this becomes important…..to discover that my professor had neglected to upload the Mac compatible version of the week’s lecture. So here I sat, with a newly repaired MacBook, and nothing to do with it.
Granted, I could have been responsible, gone back to the office, picked up my laptop, came home, and done my lecture. However…..it was raining, and much like my resistance to snack food, I only have so much. If the lecture had been right there, I would have done it. Much like, I’ll only eat snacks if they manage to cross into my house. If it’s easy I’m all about doing it, doesn’t really matter how much I’d rather not. I wasn’t however, committed enough to lecture notes to brave the cold, bleak, rainy night for a Windows Media Player compatible computer. I could go into a whole rant about how this professor should probably spend less time complaining about technology struggles and just figure out how to make things work for the distance students…..but I won’t. Maybe later…..who knows how I’ll feel about these things later.
I will instead tell you what I did instead of lecture notes……I cooked!! I basically cooked all the things…..spicy sweet potato hash, blueberry and apple crisp, and bourbon caramel. I don’t really have recipes for these things, they are just somethings I throw together now and then.
Spicy Sweet Potato Hash
- 3-4 medium to large sweet potatoes, cubed
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 bell pepper, diced
- 1 can black beans
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 Tbs cumin, chili powder, and paprika
- cayenne pepper to taste
- salt and pepper
- olive oil
Heat the oil in a large skillet and then combine all the ingredients at once (except the black beans). Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally until the potatoes soften. The size of your cubes will dictate how long this takes. Mine took about twenty minutes the other night. Once everything has softened, add the rinsed and drained black beans and heat through. Serve with anything you want…..plain, with eggs, avocado…..anything that sounds yummy. This recipe lead to a new adventure in adulating…..I’ll explain later.
Blueberry and Apple Crisp
- 3 apples, diced
- 1/2-1 cup frozen blueberries
- 1/2 cup rolled oats
- 3 tbs flour
- 1/3 cup white and brown sugar
- 2 tbs butter
- cinnamon and nutmeg to taste
Add the apples and blueberries to a baking dish and mix slightly. In a microwave safe bowl or container combine the remaining ingredients and microwave about 30 seconds. You’ll just need to melt the butter, and then stir to combine the mixture into a grainy, crumb consistency. Sprinkle the topping onto the fruit, and back at 350 for about half an hour, until you can see the filling bubbling and the topping becomes browned. I like mine hot, with vanilla ice cream….and possibly caramel sauce!
Bourbon Caramel Sauce
Usually, I make this on the stove…..in a pan…..like an adult. This time, I was lazy and just made it in the microwave. It worked fine, it just takes a bit more babysitting. You can’t just set it and forget it!
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 2 tbs butter
- a couple splashes of heavy cream or half and half
- splash of bourbon
Combine the sugar and butter in a microwave safe dish. I set the microwave for 2 minutes, but stopped and stirred every 20-30 seconds. Once all the sugar crystals have dissolved, drizzle in a bit of cream while stirring. If your cream is cold and you don’t stir it will solidify the sugar again. If it does get a bit chunky again, just pop it back in the microwave. Once it’s reached a good consistency, splash in your bourbon, stir to mix and enjoy!
I ended up getting a whole weeks worth of food for a couple hours in the kitchen and some microwave skills! It was all pretty easy, and a relaxing night. I had never made the hash before, although I’ve made other hash varieties. I discovered that my favorite way to enjoy it was with some avocado, some cherry tomatoes, and eggs. Makes for a super filling and satisfying breakfast or lunch option. The eggs are what caused me a new adventure in adulting.
I’ve never in my life been one for runny eggs…..or really any kind of egg that isn’t scrambled, hard boiled, or maybe on occasion….fried. Although, scrolling through recipes online has lead to really like the idea of a poached egg…….so I decided to try something new, and I poached my first egg! It went surprisingly well all things considered! Granted, I over cooked it, but I thought that I would start with a more solid yolk, and then back down the doneness scale until I reach a point where I don’t like them. I will say that I’m a big fan of the texture of the egg whites…..they are fluffier than eggs cooked other ways.
So, this week I’ve made several very cute and successful little poached eggs. I also discovered that with enough focus I can crack an egg with one hand. This became necessary because I thought that manicures and egg poaching were two activities that could be done together. I mean…..they can…..but I don’t recommend it. I’m sorry I didn’t take any pictures of the adventure, I was a little bit panicky about it. Horror stories of poached eggs gone wrong were flashing in my brain. However, I had no disasters, and everything was easier than expected honestly!!
It’s never too late to learn a new skill, and it’s always good to broaden your horizons!