Friday, December 21, 2012

Pintastic Recipes!

I've been waiting to write this post for a few weeks now. In the last month, I've tested out a few recipes that I pinned (yes, I'm a total Pinterest junkie). The time has come to share the results of three Pintests!

 Homemade Marshmallow Fluff

As part of my mission to make more food staples myself instead of opting for store brands, I found this amazing recipe from Cinnamon Spice & Everything Nice for homemade fluff. I have never liked store brand Fluff, but Mr. J is currently obsessed with it. After reading the store container's ingredient list and seeing dried egg white and vanillin (what the hell is that?), I knew I had to try what Reeni calls "the food of angels."

I made sure to read the instructions multiple times before attempting it because the recipe calls for the use of a candy thermometer while cooking sugar, corn syrup, and water for several minutes, which I've never done before. However, it was far less scary than I anticipated, and it took about 20 minutes total. Score!

 What came out of my mixer was the softest, lightest, closest-to-a-cloud-in-my-mouth concoction I could have imagined. It was so dreamily tasty. Mr. J said hands down, this fluff is worlds better than the store bought crap. Bonus: it is way less sticky AND easier to spread on bread!

The only minor downside was the clean up time. I needed to soak everything in hot water to dissolve the hardened sugar before I could even scrub.

Would I make this again? HELLS YES. Probably every week until Mr. J kicks his fluff addiction.

S.O.S. (Soup or Sauce) Mix

I hate having to use condensed cream of whatever soup, but a lot of quick and easy recipes call for it. I wondered for a long time what could substitute for said soup-in-a-can. I wondered, that is, until I found this over at One Good Thing by Jillee: SOS Mix.

Essentially, it's a dry mix that, when combined with water, become a thick, creamy, soup base. The best part: the ingredients are real things that exist in your very own cupboard!

I made a half batch which is equivalent to over 4 cans of soup. Using the SOS mix and fresh mushrooms instead of condensed cream of mushroom soup pumped up my weeknight stroganoff with flavor and a great texture.

The downside: if you don't have these ingredients on hand to start with, you will have to make a bit of an investment. However, all of the bits and pieces are useable in TONS of other recipes, and they will be available to make your SOS mix time and time again.

Would I make this again? ABSOLUTELY.

Pumpkin Panna Cotta

In search of a festive, easy dessert with lots of fall/winter flavors, I combed through Pastry Affair's archives because I drool over everything that girl makes. I found this recipe for pumpkin panna cotta. It seemed to have it all: easy and quick assembly, yummy flavors, and spot on presentation. The stars seemed to align when I spotted a $5 set of 4 eco-friendly ramekins at Home Goods. I knew I had to try this out.

You really have to like pumpkin to enjoy this dessert. Luckily, I do! I thought it had perfect fall flavors, especially with freshly whipped cream and cinnamon on top. It's not too rich, but it is filling and sweet enough to satisfy a late-night sugar craving.

Mr. J, however, does not like pumpkin, so it was a fail in his book. He took one bite and politely refused to eat anymore (what a gent!). The panna cotta also has the texture of pumpkin pie filling, which is a turn off for some. If I had to do this project over, I would make half a batch. The recipe filled 4 ramekins, which is basically 8 desserts that I have to eat on my own. It's a whole lotta pumpkin in a week that doesn't include Halloween.

Would I make it again? Yes, but only for a bigger crowd or in a smaller portion.

I hope this was helpful. Let me know if you try any of these recipes!

Enjoy xo