Thursday, May 8, 2008

Chex, Ahi and... Cherry Pie?

It seems I'm making up for not blogging last week by blogging every day this week. But it was certainly a busy weekend/week of cooking and entertaining and I've got some yummy things to show for it!

I tried doing my first lattice topped pie on Tuesday night! I had some cherry filling leftover from the Black Forest Cake. I had a few people over to attempt to finish 20-some beers left from a recent party.  Not that I thought "a few" people could finish 20-some beers on a school night. But they polished off.... 3, which helped.

The trick to a lattice is to start from the middle and work out:

I always say the trick to pie crust is to keep it MOIST. Once it starts to crack and break it can be very frustrating to attempt to keep working with it! Growing up, Mom always had me brush my pie crusts with milk to get them to brown nicely... I would never 'o thought. But it works! And without having to waste almost an entire egg in making an egg-wash.

The menu Tuesday night consisted of marinated/BBQ'd tri-tip, baked sweet potato fries, green salad and ahi poke salad. One of these things is not like the other, right? But while picking the tri-tips up at Costco I walked by the [packed that day] ahi and got a sudden and persistent craving for my ahi and avocado poke! Note - for those who do not know, poke is pronounced "poh-kay" and not "poh-k". (Feel free to read to your heart's content about poke here). I originally started making poke after Deb's fiancé, Nick made it for us many years ago. I asked for the recipe and got the smart-a$$ (you'd expect nothing else from Nick) answer of: "I'll give you my poke recipe if you give me your chocolate chip cookie recipe." I truly doubt Nick would ever have baked chocolate chip cookies - but he still stopped me in my tracks. Therefore... I was forced to make up my own after scouring the web, cookbooks, piecing apart recipes at Hawaiian restaurants... However it's no science - I always include tuna, avocado, soy sauce, green onions, seaweed and sesame seeds - but the quantities are whatever I feel like at the time I'm making it. It's one of those "add and taste then add and taste" things. This time I actually squirted in a little sriracha sauce to add some heat. LOVE THIS. But I'm pretty much a sucker for anything with {good} raw fish and avocados. *DROOL*

And finally we get to the Chex Mix. Since I was doing Game Night it seemed only right to do snack-y things. This nori mix has a cult following in our circle of friends and it seems most people get their recipe from our good friend Michelle. Though I know the recipe is all over the place and have even eaten this at family functions before.

plain Crispix; add syup; stir in furikake

It's sweet and salty and crunchy and has a slight "Asian flavor". It's completely addictive!! When my cousin, Stacey made it for her Superbowl party this year, she also threw in some pretzels. But I think we both concurred (after watching people pick around the pretzels - um... yes I was guilty of that too) that sticking to pure Crispix/Chex proves the best mix.

Mom and Dad just returned from France and shocked me when they informed me that they thought Ladurée's pistachio macarons weren't that much better than mine! It must've been all the cigarette smoke getting to them. But MY WORD - what a compliment! Is it really fair for parents to continue to clap their hands together with enthusiasm for their daughter's accomplishments? I'm 30, not 3... But I appreciated it. And it at least made me feel like I'm on the right track.

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