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May 2010
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What I've Been Doing - In The Kitchen

I’ve been pretty busy in the kitchen lately.

I made a batch of venison chili yesterday from leftover ground venison from the year before last’s deer and ground, dried habaneros as well as a batch of split pea and ham soup (with a couple of ham bones that disintegrated into nothing in the crock pot).

I also made kefir using coconut milk instead of raw cow’s milk. I find I can tolerate the flavor much better than I can regular dairy kefir. It’s a bit sweeter and has that coconut taste that makes it much more pleasant.

I made some easy breakfasts for the Husband. I took chorizo, browned it in a wok, then removed it. I used the grease from the chorizo to saute up chopped jalapenos, onions and garlic and removed them. I used a dozen eggs and scrambled them with a bit of milk, then added everything back into the wok and mixed it all up adding a ton of cumin (blech!) and ground habanero. I parceled them out onto a cookie sheet into single serving sizes (got about six servings from all that) and popped it in the freezer. When they were solid, I pulled them off and stuck them in ziplock bags and put them in the freezer. He pulls on out in the morning, tosses it on the plate and heats it up – easy breakfast! He did mumble something about the frozen onions sparking in the microwave the other day though…

The wine is coming along well. I tested it last night and the hydrometer read 1.002 and so I racked it off the sediment into the carboy. It tastes kind of like a sweet concord grape wine with a lot more weird sediment floaties.

I discovered much too late that it wasn’t in fact a 6 gallon carboy, it was only 5 gallons. By the time I realized that, I had sprayed wine all over the kitchen from a rogue hose going out of control and had stirred up the sediment so much that it probably didn’t do much good to rack it anyways. I had some extra, so I racked it into a half gallon container, not sure how great it will work when it all comes down to it, but…*shrug*

I got about 15 pounds of peaches from my local farmstand on Saturday – organic and local. I took them and canned them into rum peaches (ostensibly for gifts). I blanched and peeled them all, added about 3T of rum to each pint, enough to make them buzzy and nice.

I had some extra carrots and decided to give them a shot fermenting them. I used a recipe from Wild Fermentation using salt, dry dill, peppercorns, fresh peeled garlic, peeled and sliced carrots and let it sit for a week or two. I skimmed the surface today, pulled the carrots out and put them in jars, covered them with the brine and put them in the fridge to slow down the fermentation. They were pleasantly sour, with a bit of a garlic taste. Very tasty. Husband says, “How can you tell if they’ve gone bad?” I snickered and said, “They’re too sour for you to eat them?”

I started re-hydrating my sourdough starter and it came full up to use earlier this week.

I used some of the starter to make a sourdough chocolate cake and coconut butter chocolate frosting. (Thanks, Wardeh!) It is for a friend’s birthday, I’m hoping to get to try a piece at some point though. I had to take the sponge for the cake to bed with me overnight to keep it cool enough (sat it in front of the air conditioner on my nightstand) so it didn’t over-ferment. It was rather hilarious when Husband asked me why I was taking a jar of goo to bed with me.

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