Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Taper Town…aka the Kitchen

The day after Thanksgiving marked the first day of an abbreviated tape for the Rock’n’Roll Las Vegas Marathon. Since then I’ve gone a few short, easy runs, done a couple of boot camp style workouts and spent a lot of time stretching and walking. I’ve also spent more than my fair share of time in the kitchen cooking things that don’t necessarily fall under the category of health foods but do qualify as quite tasty.

Cesar’s birthday was Sunday, so many of the things I made were for his birthday dinner. First up, this amazing baked Brie. I didn’t even get a chance to take a picture before it was more than half gone, but trust me when I say it is fantastic. So fantastic, in fact, that I made twice in one weekend. I made it once with apricot preserves as the recipe suggests, and I made it a second time with fig jam. The fig jam was preferred by my taste testers.

Next I whipped up this Quince and Mascarpone Tart, which is a gussied up version of Pasta Frola, one of Cesar’s favorite treats.

Quince Tart with Mascarpone
I thought the creaminess of the mascarpone was a nice complement to the sweetness of the quince, but Cesar prefers the original, unadorned version. I finally got a chance to use the mini pie cutters I bought on clearance at Crate and Barrel last year. How cute are those fall shapes??

Cesar requested a marble cake for his birthday cake, so after some web browsing, I settled on this recipe from Food & Wine.

Cesar's Cake
Please ignore the awesome decorating job I did. I was in Miami visiting family and didn’t bring any of my cake decorating tools. Of course, let’s be honest -  it probably wouldn’t have been much better even if I had brought them. Anyway, some of the reviews of the recipe state that the cake turned out dry, so after baking it, I poked both layers with holes and soaked them with a bit (or lots) of amaretto. I also put the leftover candied walnuts from the baked brie between the layers. We all thought it turned out pretty well, but I don’t think this particular recipe warrants a repeat appearance in our house.

And now for the most awesome thing to come out of my kitchen this week – Movember cookies!! My husband, as you can see in the photo above, is participating in a Movember challenge with a bunch of his coworkers. Today was their last department meeting before the end of the month, so I decided to send some cookies to work with him in celebration of the completion of the challenge. I bought these ridiculous Munchstaches Cookie Cutters from Amazon, and I had a lot of fun playing with them last night. If you are looking for an easy to roll, soft sugar cookie recipe, I highly recommend this one from allrecipes.com. I replaced half the granulated sugar with powdered sugar and doubled the vanilla. The dough was some of the easiest sugar cookie dough I have ever worked with, and the cookies came out soft and buttery, just the way I like them.

Movember Mustaches!
I clearly did a little bit of indulging over the weekend, but from now until the race on Sunday, it’s going to be lots of clean eating! I don’t foresee a PR in Vegas, but I do want to enjoy every minute of my time in Vegas, and that means toeing the start line with a solid taper under my belt

No comments:

Post a Comment