I introduced my daughter Sam to Pinterest and she now treats it as a “menu” — she repins all the food pics that she likes (and in just a span of one week, she already has an amazing amount of posts in her “Fooodddduh” board), she shows them to me then insists that we replicate all those dishes at home. Understand that in Pinterest, some of the photos pinned and repinned come from so many websites — including those published by professional chefs and food magazines — and some of the photos that Sam has in her “Fooodddduh” board show food prepared by trained chefs. The meticulous decorations, for instance, are — to put it simply — beyond my patience. I won’t say skill because skill is acquired and perfected with practice. But patience has never been one of my virtues. So, there.
Still, you know. When your daughter sounds so excited about something, it’s so hard to be a killjoy. I know that Sam does not expect that we would be able to replicate all that to the last detail. Her point really — at least, I think so — is how much fun it would be to try. Even if all we manage to come up with is some indiscernible mess, we’d still have fun trying and experimenting.
So, you can guess how this story goes. We spent the greater part of the weekend cooking, baking, washing pans and mixing bowls… The first experiment was not so successful; the other one worked. Let’s start with the not-so-successful one.
The first experiment was making rainbow cookies. Make the cookie dough, divide them into portions, tint each portion with a different food color then assemble the different portions so that, after baking, the cookies will display all colors in an eye-pleasing pattern. Alex mixed in the colors, I made a mistake with one tub of food color thinking it was green, it turned out to be brown, I kept adding other colors while Alex mixed hoping that the brown would somehow transform into green. It did but it was a very, very dark green. At any rate, we had five portions in five colors, we wrapped them in cling film and left them to chill and firm up in the fridge.
The next day, I rolled out the five portions, stacked them one on top of the other…
… then, I rolled them together into a log which I cut into 1/4-inch slices. I arranged the slices on a tray and baked the cookies.
I think we used too much food color because the cookies were too bright and already visually shocking rather than eye-pleasing. As to the execution, the layers really should be more pronounced and the thickness more uniform. No problem with the taste and texture — they’re really just butter cookies and I have a wonderful basic butter cookie recipe.
The second experiment came out really well.
Recipe: Zucchini fritters
Summary: Shredded zucchini is mixed with flour and egg and pan fried. Nice crunch outside, nice specks of green peeping through the golden brown crust… and, the best part? Very easy to prepare.
- 1 large zucchini, shredded (Sam used the grater with the largest holes)
- about 4 tbsps. of flour
- 1 egg
- 1 egg white
- salt and pepper, to taste
- cayenne powder, optional
- chopped herbs of your choice optional
- cooking oil for frying
- Squeeze out as much of water from the zucchini as you can.
- Place the shredded zucchini in a bowl. Add the rest of the ingredients, except the cooking oil, and mix well.
- Heat enough cooking oil to reach a depth of 1/4 inch.
- Drop the zucchini mixture by tablespoonfuls into the hot oil and fry on both sides until golden brown.
- Drain on paper towels.
- Serve hot with your favorite dipping sauce on the side. Our was mayo with garlic, lemon juice, salt, pepper, cayenne and a little olive oil.
Preparation time: 10 minute(s)
Cooking time: 10 minute(s)
Number of servings (yield): Makes about 10 patties good for 2 to 4 persons