Monday, July 10, 2017

Kitchen Creations! Ice Cream, Cheese, Cherries


The past weekend, Alex and I were really creative in the kitchen! That's what happens when it's stormy outside and weekenders are loud. It keeps us indoors and when we have the motivation, we are very creative! :) I started my cheese making this weekend! The above picture is the before shot of Mozzarella...


And here is the after shot! :) Please check out the full post on my other (new) blog Rainy Day Cheese Making! I admit, I had some ifs/ands/ors and buts...but for my first attempt at making cheese, it was a great experience and a well-deserved notch under my cheese making belt! The next cheese will be Cheddar!


Summertime is pretty much the only time we eat fruit; well, other than frozen berries all winter in our smoothies. We bought a watermelon the other day and Alex had the idea of adding some spiced rum to it. Most recipes call for an entire bottle of rum for a watermelon, yeesh! I don't want to get drunk off my fruit lol...I just want flavour. So we kind of put together some "winter" spices (nutmeg, cloves, cinnamon sticks, star anise) and added orange rinds and fresh vanilla bean to the rum.


We're going to let that sit for 24 hours, taste it, then add half to the watermelon. I really enjoy Captain Morgan's White Spiced Rum and we're hoping we can recreate that flavour on our own. I'll report the results in a few days!


I made this Country Peach Ice Cream a few weeks back, but never had the chance to post about it! It's made very differently from the other ice creams I've made. This one is made with egg yolks. A custard is cooked and then everything is strained and brought together a day later in the ice cream maker. I can't say I'm a big fan of this style of ice cream, called "French Style". Alex loves it though, so I'll keep making this one for him with different flavours.


We still had about six pounds of cherries left so Alex spent some time pitting them. He used a wine bottle to hold the cherry and pushed the pit out with a chop stick. If we venture further into cherry stuff, we'll definitely be investing in a cherry pitter! We kept the pits because...


Alex decided on trying out some Cherry Pit liqueurs! Disclaimer: YES...I know that cherry pits DO contain cyanide...so I'll be feeding Alex a little bit of this liqueur daily for the insurance money....lol...I watch too many old movies. Actually there is so little cyanide in these that you need to actually consume over a thousand cherry pits (chewing them) to suffer any kind of poisoning, so we're good! :) We tasted it last night after simmering it for a while and wow...have you ever had Peter Heering Cherry liqueur? Well, it's close! This will sit undisturbed for a good 3 months as well.


Another new creation! I made a "Croque Monsieur" pizza! :) That made two days in a row of pizza, lovely! :) We had leftover "all-dressed" from Saturday night (using the new Mozzarella I made!) and last night I made a cheese sauce (from my Croque Monsieur recipe), loaded it with ham and sprinkled on some Gruyere and ground thyme...I can't describe the deliciousneess of this in words! :) Definitely a keeper!


More ice cream making! :) I made Coffee Ice Cream this morning. I decided at the last minute to add some Bailey's and it was just wonderful. Ice cream making has become a nice hobby for me!


This is the last of the fresh (inexpensive) strawberries! Gosh these fruit "seasons" don't last too long. I'm making another strawberry ice cream - but this time I'm making a "coulis" type of syrup and straining it before I freeze it. The last Strawberry Ice Cream was good, but the strawberry bits were too icy to enjoy. I'll report how this turns out in a few days! The rest of the strawberries will likely go to dessert tonight.

So I'll end my Monday post with some pets...always a sweet way to end a post! :)
(I had to actually verify that today was Monday...I'm so content with my lifestyle, I lose track of time!)


Oscar and "Mr. Wrinkles".


Pavlov and Marlene. Anyone seeing Pavlov in this photo might think he'd have us for dinner! He was just in the middle of a yawn when I got this photo!

Happy Monday to all! :))

30 comments:

Leigh said...

So many treats and they all look so good! I have a cherry tree but it has never given me more than a couple of cherries. Not enough to do anything yummy.

Dawn McHugh said...

lots of yummy kitchen goodies

Plowing Through Life (Martha) said...

So many kitchen goodies at your place! I love fruit and it saddens me how short the seasons are here and how expensive everything becomes off season because we have to import. I wish I lived somewhere where I could pick lemons and oranges off trees in my backyard. And grow my own fresh figs! Etc... But then I think of the extremely hot weather and big bugs year round and so on. I'm good here :)

Hahaha! Had a good laugh with the insurance money! Your pets are adorable. I love ginger cats and hope to adopt one some time in the future. If there's one at a local shelter.

RO said...

OMG, all this lovely and yummy food looks amazing, and you pass along some great ideas. Of course, ending it with adorable pet pics is pretty cool, too! Hugs...RO

Debra She Who Seeks said...

Croque Monsieur pizza! What a great idea!

baili said...

Wow ,
right now i am being envious of your energy level as you know very well how to invest it indoor in such amazing creations.

you are wonderful and hard working my friend!!!
i adore you a lot for your intelligence and activism.

i am not fan of cheese though but the final appearance of your cheese made me want to have a bite believe me ,what color and what smoothness.

watermelon and rum combination sounds unique to me yet interesting ,hope experiment will be great in result.
loved the all delicious food ,specially pizza from left over ,how clever of you sweetie!

Pat Hatt said...

Wow, sure know how to get things made at your sea. The crew looks quite relaxed, even through a yawn that may or may not want to eat someone lol

Mama Pea said...

It's testimony to the fact that your dogs (and cats) are happy, content and well-adjusted that your can bring another dog, Pavlov, into their midst and they are fine with it. That wouldn't happen with all households. You and Alex have put so much time and love into your animals and it shows!

My imaginary maid's name is Agnes, but I think I'm going to change her name to Rain and pretend she's in the kitchen full-time when I'm outside in the garden or working on other projects. She'll be creating heaps of luscious delights for Papa Pea and me in my kitchen for us. These days when I have so little time in the kitchen, Rain will be using our garden produce and making ice cream (and cheese and pizza and wonderful adult beverages) and creating all kinds of other wonderful delights for us. Drool, drool. (I've lost it completely, you say?)

Susan said...

I am very glad that there is a use for cherry pits, other than to make like Agatha Christie. I have a batch of cherry bounce going, so I will just transfer those already-sodden-in-alcohol pits into their next life. Yummo! I had an overwhelming desire to rip off my computer screen and eat it. Funny, that always happens when I read your blog posts... :)

Jenn said...

I love seeing what you make. Everything looks so good.
I still have not pulled out my ice cream maker! The coffee ice cream sounds delicious....coffee anything is good in my books!

MrsDuncanMahogany said...

That's it! I am moving to Quebec...or maybe you should just move to Manitoba. You and I could do lots of fabulous cooking and baking together. I laughed right out loud about the feeding Alex the cherries....I always joke to my husband and say "here, taste this...does it taste like cherries?" then I laugh maniacally and he gets worried. But he knows I am kidding...bwahahahahahaha. :)

All your animals look so happy and relaxed. I can send you Hunter and throw a kooky, wild 9 month old into the mix. Maybe you can get him to sleep in? :) :)

Keep posting these fabulous pictures!!!!! I just had lunch but those pizzas....oh boy!

Nicole Thomas said...

Hmmmm...all this deliciousness. I need to run and make lunch !!!

John M said...

Scary yawn

Yarrow said...

Yum, I love this post. I'm going to miss you while I'm away! Take care and no accidents please. Big hugs.xxx

Rain said...

Hi Leigh :) We thought about planting more cherry trees...but then we're renting. At our new place, I'd love to have a big greenhouse for fruit trees. Cherries are so valuable!

Rain said...

Thanks Dawn :)

Rain said...

Hi Martha :) Yeah, the big bugs come with the warmer weather I guess! But one day I'll have more of an orchard. The problem with the fruits in the off season is that we don't get them fresh. They pick them while they are not quite ripe so they'll handle the shipping times, and they lack flavour, I can't stand imported fruit, it's like cardboard! I'm glad you liked my joke...yes, joke... ;) That's where we got Oscar, at a shelter. All of our pets are rescues...it's hard to believe they weren't wanted :(

Rain said...

Hi RO :) Thanks for visiting! Our pets are like our kids, so I guess I'm just one of those proud parents showing off the little ones, lol...glad you got some ideas!

Rain said...

Thanks Debra! Next up, poutine pizza? Hmmm....maybe not!

Rain said...

Hi Baili :) Thank you :) I don't think I could go a day without cheese! I hope to have a big cheese cave one day so I can make all of our cheeses at home. Sometimes when I look back on my blog posts, I don't know where I found the energy. Days like today, I feel like just doing nothing!

Rain said...

Hi Patt :) Thanks for visiting! Pavlov is the sweetest, most gentle dog I've ever met so that photo of his teeth is really funny. The pack gets along really well thankfully!

Rain said...

Hi Mama Pea :) Thank you! :) Well, you know how much the pets mean to us. For me, they are just a part of life. When my oldest pug passed away in 2014, we had Alex's two cats...but it just wasn't the same for me without a dog at home. That year before we got Charlie (then the rest within 3 months!) was very long and sad for me. I feel whole again...our friend is coming next Sunday with his other dog Stella. FIVE dogs in the house next weekend! :)))

Hahaha...Agnes...for a moment I was thinking of Alice from the Brady Bunch! You can call her Rain if you like. Just remember she practices the Julia Child method of cooking. One ounce for the pot, two for the cook lol...so a good supply of "cooking" wine needs to be handy! :))

Rain said...

Hi Susan :) Oh cool, I'm so glad you started the cherry bounce! I'm so excited to try it out. We decided on letting it sit for 4 months, so it'll be ready end of October-ish. Lol..I'm glad my foodie pictures stir up so many appetites! :) That's a big compliment.

Rain said...

Hi Jenn :) You should get that ice cream maker out!!! It's so easy to make most ice creams! I made a strawberry one last night, it's so delicious! Next time though, I might use espresso because it was slightly mild for my taste, even though the coffee I used was very strong.

Rain said...

Hi Dianna :) Ha ha ha...you DON'T want to move to Quebec, trust me. Most of us (English at least) want to move out...so Manitoba it is ;)! Lol...that cherry/poisoning thing...makes me laugh! We joke about that a lot, he says things like "if you taste almond in your coffee, don't worry about it"...then I tell him I'm leaving everything to the dogs.

I really don't know how you're going to get Hunter to sleep! Since we're home all the time, the dogs are just part of our lifestyle. They get lots of exercise and play time. In the winter and on really rainy days, they get bones to chew out their energy. Maybe he needs to expand that energy more? He's just a morning fella...hard when you're not though!

Rain said...

Thanks Nik :)

Rain said...

Lol, it seems that way John! :)

Rain said...

Hi Yarrow! :) I will try my BEST not to injure myself while you're away lol...but don't be too shocked if I do ha ha, that seems to be the routine huh? Hugs back!!!

Sam I Am...... said...

When I miss your posts I miss a lot!!!! I'm not supposed to eat milk products (cholesterol) but I love ice cream! I wish I could make my own and eat it but it's probably not a good idea for me. I love your alcohol experiments too but alas I don't do much of that either. The cheese, although a milk product, is something I have a hard time getting away from as so many recipes call for it and a girl's gotta live! Yours turned out fantastic! Look at those sweet balls of moz! I need to drag out that cheese kit I have! The pizza looks divine and I will be checking out your new blog! You go girl! I'm finally getting back on track after company so hopefully I'll be visiting more regularly....sorry I've been such a lackey! LOL!
Yes, Pavlov does look menacing there....glad it was just a yawn!

Rain said...

Thanks Sam :) I remember you mentioned your cholesterol...that sucks, it seems like everything yummy is off limits. I don't know that I'd ever have an easy time giving up cheese...I'm so glad I don't have to! I'm glad to see you again :)