My birthday is coming up next week and I always take my vacation during that time so I’ve never worked on my birthday, but this year I’m doing a bit of both. I flew down to Florida and stayed for four days and really wish that it was longer and I’m home for a couple of days then work two and off for the rest of my birthday.
So today as part of my vacation I remade some bread and made some basil salt with all the basil leaves I got off my plant and I watched Hamilton which was really very good, too bad I couldn’t do the actually live production but hey this was just as good.
My bread came out really good this time and it looks great.
While in Hannibal, we stopped at this old ice cream shop that was a used bookstore and I can’t pass up any bookstore because I collect cookbooks, especially older books and it’s always a special treat when I find any from the Better Home & Garden cookbook collection because they were a big part of my childhood and my mom getting a new one each month and us trying out some of the recipes for family night dinners.
We found three that I didn’t have in my collection and as we looked through each copy, Nick was interested in a picture of a sandwich called ABC which stood for Avocado, Bacon and Crab, so of course for my guy I will create that sandwich. Finding the ingredients was pretty easy, the only thing was tracking down a round loaf of Rye bread. When we found a loaf of round bread at the store it was for pumpernickel rye and the store wouldn’t slice it into three’s for us, so we made do and did it ourselves at home. Next time we are going to a real bakery or try some different bread (he wants to try it again).
This sandwich was really easy to make, and we really enjoyed putting the sandwich together and the flavors worked really well together. Though I think a few changes are going to be in order like cutting the radish and celery into bigger pieces because the finely chopped version got lost in the other flavors going on, so you couldn’t taste them. Also will try some different crab, maybe go for fresh crab meat or a different canned brand. The one I used was a little too overpowering for my taste.
The funny part about our poor sandwich was that it winded up looking like a monster because the tomatoes I got for the garnish like the photo was a little to big for the size of the bread loaf and when you stuck it on there it looked like giant eyes or something.
Then when I compared my photo to the books photo, you can see were they didn’t use the crab/avocado mixture for their photo and I can understand why because the avocado made it into a mint green mixture, so not a very pretty picture for a cookbook. Thankfully it tasted better than it looked right!
We both agreed we will make this sandwich again with the mentioned changes, but we found at least three more of these classic recipes we are going to have to try out. If your bold enough to try this vintage recipe from the“Better Homes and Gardens So-Good Meals Cook Book”, please post a pic and let me know what you think.
The day was perfect for a quick trip out of the city for a couple of days (unfortunately we had to cut our trip short due to family matters). Our first stop was a trip up to St. Joseph, MO to check out Kris and Kate’s Ice Cream Shop,
This was a cool looking building shaped like a giant ice cream cone, too bad they were closed but I did get a photo and we will be going back to get some ice cream.
Now it was time to head to the main portion of our trip and Mr. Nick let me drive his baby for about fifty miles or so and it felt good it’s been awhile since I was able to hit the road like that, so that was fun. Once we got into Hannibal we checked into the Best Western Hotel and then we headed out to do a little exploring. Our first stop down main street was to check out the Mark Twain Lighthouse — 140 steps, (whew a girl has got to lose some weight)
While in Hannibal we visited the wax museum, the Karlock’s Cars Museum which he loved because they had cool pinball machines (look how cute he looks)…
Finally we both decided it was time to get something to eat, now when we arrived we saw the Mark Twain Diner and knew that’s what we were having for dinner. We got the pork tenderloin and the burger called the steampunk and they were both really good but the burger is what stood out the most for us. It was well seasoned and it came with bacon jam and cream cheese with lettuce and it worked.
It was so good that I had to recreate that burger for us on our next date night.
This has been the longest, craziest two weeks of getting back to work in this new normal. A part of me is glad to be back at work to see all my friends and even my favorite players at the casino. Then of course there’s a part of me that wasn’t ready to go back, its like when you were a kid, summer break going good and then the next thing you know it’s back to school. So yeah I felt like that, to readjust to a new schedule and of course my schedule is not what I want, so my managers and I will be reworking that.
It’s good to be back at work though, it just feels weird to have to wear a mask all day and we can’t hug or hi-five each other anymore. How long will this last we don’t know, but we are all happy to be back.
Along with working my regular job full-time, I need to also focus on building up my blog on here, and somehow I will get it done.
I was supposed to be headed to sunny Tampa for a short vacation but things changed up so not doing Tampa but still doing a little trip right here in Missouri, heading to St. Joe and to Hannibal to see an Ice cream shaped stand and to check out Mark Twain’s boyhood home. But just like I had plan on doing in Florida I will post lots of pictures and places that we stop at along the way.
During all this time I did try a new recipe that I have to share before I hit the road and it’s from Darius Williams and his recipe for fried salmon which I never knew you could fry outside of frying canned salmon. I didn’t have the seasonings he had and his directions made no sense so I made it like I fry my fish. It came out really good and I’m not a big salmon fan at all, unless my cooks at the casino fix it or of course salmon patties from the can.
Season cornmeal with the garlic powder, paprika, salt and black pepper
Dry salmon off
Dip fish into flour, then buttermilk then dredge in the cornmeal mixture
Place in hot oil and fry until golden brown
Drain on paper towels
I will try this dish again, if only for the fact that its different but when I get back I’m going to try his fresh Salmon Burger. See you guys when I get back and keep an eye out for my road trip pictures.
A few weeks ago, Nick was telling me how all the guys at his job were bringing in homemade bread and other homemade pastries that their wives and girlfriends have been making for them, and I think he was feeling a little left out. So of course being the great girlfriend I am even though I don’t like baking but hey I couldn’t let him be the only one that didn’t have anything to show off. Just like a mother hen.
I started doing some research to see if I could find any bread recipes that didn’t have a million steps and something that a newbie like myself could pull off. So I found one by brooklyn farm girl that looked really easy to mix up and you cooked it in a slow cooker so yep that was my kind of recipe.
I actually made this bread twice, and even though it didn’t look too pretty the taste was pretty darn good, and now my mom is like she wants me to be in charge of bringing rolls to the family dinner, does she not understand that I am not a baker and I only did this to earn girlfriend points from the boyfriend.
Not very pretty
Like I said I did make it twice and though the second batch came out looking a lot better, I just forgot to get a photo of it. So next time I make it I will take better pictures.
I like this recipe and I will throw it together again at some point, it made up some nice rolls which reminded me of my Aunt Kitty’s rolls when I was a little girl, maybe now I can I ask my sister for the recipe and just maybe I’ll make those we shall see. I really liked that it didn’t have a bunch of fancy ingredients, I just needed to get some yeast and because everyone is baking that was one of the hardest ingredients for me to finally track down.
Now I don’t have a warm spot in my apartment to get bread to rise so what the heck was I supposed to do, well I found a trick and it works great. I turned my oven into a proof box all compliments of Cook’s Illustrated and I couldn’t be happier with this little trick.
Enjoy the bread, it’s great with butter and strawberry jam slathered all over them especially when its fresh out the slow cooker.
Pour warm water into a bowl, add the sugar and mix until dissolved.
Add the dry yeast, let sit until it gets foamy
Add salt, olive oil and flour, mix well
Turn onto the floured counter and knead for 5 minutes, till smooth
Form into a ball and place dough into an oil coated bowl, covered
Sit in warm spot for 30 minutes to rise (or try the oven method)
Place parchment paper the size of your slow cooker for the bottom and to go up the sides for the dough to expand (oil paper with veggie oil)
Once the dough has risen you can place it as is into the slow cooker and let the loaf cook for 2 hours on high.
Or you can do like I did and make rolls, punch dough down and cut into 8 pieces, roll into balls and place into slow cooker. (next time I'm going to cut it into smaller balls to fit into my slow cooker better).
Cook for 1 hour on high.
Once bread is done, brush some butter on top and to get some color just put it under the broiler to brown.