I’m currently in clean-out-the-fridge mode over here in Boston. My parents are bringing a cooler up with them when they come for graduation, so I don’t need to get rid of EVERYTHING but I also shouldn’t start making elaborate meals with tons of leftovers. In fact, in order to prevent myself from doing just that, I spent tonight packing up all of my pots and pans/cookingware. Tomorrow I will be having leftover pasta, Thursday I will be going out to dinner with mine and my roomie’s parents, Friday is graduation so my parents and I will be going out, and Saturday I will be back home in my parent’s kitchen. Cooking. I already know what I am going to make, but that is another discussion for another day.
I have been keeping myself busy this week with Senior Week events. On Monday we went to Six Flags New England, which was fun, yet exhausting. Then, after eight hours of walking around the theme park, my roommate and I went out for ice cream at our favorite ice cream place for the last time. I ordered strawberry rhubarb, which was one of the special flavors of the month. It tasted just like the pie, minus the graham cracker crust. Note to self – buy an ice cream maker and figure out a way to make this.
On Tuesday (yesterday) I bought myself a graduation present. A Garmin Forerunner 305 heart rate monitor/GPS-enabled trainer. It is something that I have been dying for since starting my serious runs. The forerunner is a useful device for keeping track of mileage and allows you to calculate tons and tons of statistics about your runs. It was pricy, but I got 15 percent off coupons to Marathon Sports after running the half marathon, and so those helped to lower the price. I probably won’t be running today because I did 7 miles yesterday but I WILL be using the HRM function when I go to the gym for some cross-training. I am SO excited and will keep you posted on how excellent it is.
Today I will be going out to a senior week lunch at Tia’s On The Waterfront with my roommate and her family and then I will be packing the night/day away. My goal is to have everything done by the time my parents get here on Thursday because I have issues with them touching my stuff. My theory is that if I pack it I will know where it is, whereas if they do it, it will not only take longer but I will be super frustrated in a month when I unpack in my new place and can’t find anything. Makes sense, at least to me.
As always with going home, I have some cooking goals for the month that I will be living with my parents before moving into Cornell housing. Now I have already alerted my parents that although I love them dearly, I cannot cater to their ridiculous palates for an entire month. In case you haven’t noticed, I eat a lot of sweet potatoes. They don’t. Thus, there is a glaring and inescapable conflict of interest there. I also eat mostly vegetarian and have recently decided to make the jump to buying only organic and/or local veggies. Not to mention my aversion to red meat that isn’t at LEAST vegetarian-fed and chicken that isn’t cage-free (I would much prefer pastured, grass-fed beef and pastured chicken but beggars can’t always be choosers). They buy all of their meat and veggies at BJ’s, the bulk buyer’s dream store – the word organic is not even in that place’s vocabulary. This would be conflict of interest number two. I could go on and on about their culinary grievances (the conflicts of interest run to at least a hundred), but I will stop here. So, yeah. Basically the agreement is that for the most part I will do my thing and they will do theirs. There may be SOME overlap, but it’s doubtful. It’s just easier that way and will save everyone from hearing me proselytize on the virtues of chickpeas and red bell peppers for the umpteenth time.
Anyway – GOALS. First, there are a few blogging events that I plan on cooking for – Meeta’s Monthly Mingle (the theme is Ravishing Rice), Cook the Books, and Regional Recipes (Korea). I also plan on entering some uncharted food territory – risotto, ricotta gnocchi, ravioli (okay fake ravioli made from wonton wrappers), mole sauce, enchiladas, and red bean pastries. There will also be much more baking in my future, now that I have a whole family of ravenous individuals ready and willing to eat my productions. Think cheesecake, quickbreads, etc. Needless to say, it will be a food-filled month.
Even though I was not supposed to be cooking anything new last night, I felt like I needed a respite from my pasta so that I could really appreciate my last bowl of it tonight (something along the lines of absence making the heart grow fonder). However, I obviously didn’t want to have to buy any new ingredients. That left me with one option – pancakes! I remembered seeing a recipe on Closet Cooking about a decade ago for gingerbread pancakes and when I checked it out, I just happened to have all of the ingredients on hand. These pancakes were quite spicy (which I liked) and tasted like what I imagine a gingerbread-flavored quickbread would taste like. I made some changes to the recipe, using all white whole wheat flour (since that’s all we had) and subbing almond milk for milk. Next time I make these, I will probably add some nuts for crunch – maybe some pecans or walnuts. I think they would really add to the pancakes.
3/4 cup white whole wheat flour
3/4 cup almond milk
3/4 tbsp brown sugar
3/4 tbsp molasses
3/4 tbsp baking powder
1 tbsp butter/margarine (melted)
3/4 tbsp cinnamon
3/4 tbsp ginger
1/4 tsp cloves
In one bowl mix all of the dry ingredients, and in another mix the wet ingredients. Combine the two, stirring until just combined.
Heat a griddle to 350 degrees. Spray it with cooking spray. Add the batter to the griddle 1/4 cup at a time. When the pancakes start to get bubbly, flip them. Cook for another 1-2 minutes.
Cover with maple syrup and enjoy!