Monday, September 19, 2011

And In the Morning, I'm making Waffles!

Can't help it. Shrek is one of my favoritest cartoons ever. Shrek's sarcasm, Fiona's tomboyness, and then this guy. Who I think of every time I make waffles.

Which, isn't ever. Until tonight. (Ohhh that sounded foreboding!) Anyway, a few weeks ago Target had waffle makers on clearance. So I figured, eh, why not. So I purchased a black George Foreman waffle maker, put in in a cupboard, and promptly forgot about it. However, one of my co-workers who knew I bought it wouldn't let me forget. "Did you make waffles yet?" "Break in that waffle maker yet?" "Are you EVER going to use that thing?"

As I explained to him, I don't have a clue how - Mom takes care of that stuff. All I know is that it's non-kosher to use a boxed mix (and you'll notice that I've had issues with those premade foods before). So after enough nagging I Googled "best waffle recipe ever" and found a recipe that looked decent. So I told Josh that I had found a recipe and he could quit worrying now, thanks for being concerned about my waffle maker ;). But oh no, that wasn't enough, Josh then said since I had a recipe I should MAKE the waffles too! (Proof that guys can never be pleased!) ;) Fine, fine, ok. Went shopping. Bought ingredients. Does anyone realize exactly how many types of flour there are? Wheat flour! Bread flour! All-purpose flour! Tall! Decaf! Cappuccino! (That one's for you, Mom.) I got all-purpose. Even though waffles are a type of bread and should therefore use bread flour. However, in order to be more nutritious and health conscious (oooh look at me using big words!), wheat flour may have been a better choice. Beats me.

There. Now I have a waffle maker, waffle recipe, and waffle ingredients. Think Josh is happy now? Oh no. "Why haven't you made waffles yet?" Good gravy. So I decided that tonight was a good waffle night.

First, the waffle maker. Pretty, isn't it?

And of course the batter is next to it. Don't ask me what's in it. I have no idea. All-purpose flour maybe? According to the destructions (or instructions, if you're not me. Which you're not, which is good cause that would be so awkward. Sorry, rabbit trail...) one should first rub vegetable oil on the waffle maker with a paper towel. Then one should plug it in and turn it on and allow it to preheat. Next one (does anyone else get annoyed by the third-person stuffiness?) Next one I poured in some batter, skimping a bit because the destructions warned me that I should NOT pour in too much. How much is too much? No one ever gives specifics. I NEED DETAILS, PEOPLE!

Anyway, this is the first waffle...

Yeah not quite done. Apparently Mr. Foreman had a slight issue in regulating heat throughout the entire waffle maker. Oh well. The all-knowing destructions say to throw out the first one anyway, because it soaks up all the oil I rubbed on with the paper towel. Pshht yeah right. It was tasty ;)

I'm not a syrup eater. I don't like it. It's super sweet and super sticky. Gross. No, if I'm going to eat breakfast food for supper, I would like some protein with it. So I made a white sauce and threw in some super-oniony/garlicky ground beef to make pure deliciousness in every bite. But now the question is, do the waffles and the gravy taste good together? Taste-testing! :)

 Yummy deliciousness :) I love white-sauce anything. Yeah I'll probably die when I'm 35, but it's so worth it!

The next waffles turned out better, thought Mr. Foreman's heat regulation is clearly going to be a problem. More experimenting to come :) Anyway, that's all the pictures I have because I got a little distracted eating... my only other comment on the experience is, does anyone have any clue how hard it is to clean a stupid waffle maker?!?!?!

Monday, September 5, 2011

Crescent Rolls

My mom makes the best crescent rolls in the whole world. Probably the universe. They're amazingly delicious and buttery and fluffy. She (with the help of child labor, aka her kids) makes them two or three times a year, usually at Christmas, Easter, and Thanksgiving. It takes all afternoon; mixing the dough, letting it rise, and then realizing it hasn't risen enough so letting it rise again (which usually involves the dough rising up over the top of the bowl and occasionally spilling down the sides and onto the stove...). Then it has to be kneaded (insert corny jokes here) which is a nice release for anyone who carries frustrations at the point in time. Then the dough gets rolled out in a half-hearted attempt at a circle (with laments from certain people about how it shrinks) and then gets buttered and cut into... a lot of pieces. Sixteen? As many as looks good.

Of course, there are those miserable times when *someone* forgets to butter the dough before cutting, which then involves laughter-filled attempts to butter these little triangular imps which are constantly shrinking or tearing. These evil fiends then get rolled up from the big end to the point and placed on a cookie sheet and baked at some temperature that rivals the surface of the sun. Eons later (or so it seems as the smell of baking bread wafts across the house) the crescent rolls get taken out of the oven and get their tops dipped in butter. Then they're left to cool a bit (except for those poor rolls who are deemed "testers" and are devoured mercilessly mere second after being buttered) and then packaged up to be taken to Grandma and Grandpa's for whatever-holiday-it-is dinner.

Upon arriving, these rolls who survived the testing phase (and the snitching phases, and the "mom I'm hungry are we there yet can I eat a roll so I don't get sick" phase...) are placed in an *adorable* basket with a cute little bread cloth and displayed for all the world to see and try not to drool over while the rest of the meal takes the time of the Ice Age to prepare. After the rest of the meal is finally ready, these surviving rolls are doomed. Over. Done. Finito. Like, hasta lasagna, don't get any on ya. We never take leftovers home.

Anyway, all this to say that I didn't feel like making a zillion crescent rolls for little ole' me. So I went and *gasp* bought some generic Giant Eagle brand crescent rolls. You know the cardboard tube that's supposed to pop when you open it? That kind.

Well it should've been my first clue. The tube didn't pop. It didn't even make a noise. In fact, it didn't open. After beating it to death on the counter, I got it open. Out popped two rolls of dough. Ok, no problem right? Psht. In theory (and according to the directions) one should simply unroll the dough, split apart the pre-perforated triangles, roll them up and bake them. Voila!

It's a lie. The dough doesn't unroll. It was one big lump. Lacking a rolling pin, I took a less intelligent method and simply cut the roll of dough like cinnamon rolls. The dough, having been in my freezer for... a while, was hard and kind of hard to cut evenly. I guess they didn't turn out too bad for being some store-bought non-name brand piece of dough made with some fake butter that doesn't even taste real... ;-)