pre-bday imbibing and baking

Baking my own gf bday cake, of course.

I haven’t made one of these cakes -the normal version in about 20 years! Used to be a Xmas staple.

I haz invented a cocktail!

  
It looks very bday-ish and tastes just as sweet. I’m thinking this ain’t one to get hammered on…

Lily’s 44th Birthday Cake Cocktail

2 oz Triple Sec

2 oz Vodka 

3 oz Pineapple Juice

4 maraschino cherries

1 t maraschino cherry juice (or grenadine)

10 oz ‘Tropical’ soda (think Fresca or Squirt)

I typically prefer bitter but this is quite fun!

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‘I am a Scientist’ – you dirty, drunken hippie

Anybody around me long enough will hear the self-proclamation of being a scientist but it’s usually meant when I come up with some bullshit that ought to be true but sometimes it’s because I try something and am reporting my findings.

Let’s be clear: that’s not what a scientist does, try something and report their opinion as fact.

It’s why it’s funny when I claim to be a scientist. It’s theHilarity!

Right!

You may have heard of dirty chai (chai with a shot of espresso) and you may have heard it called different things, one of which I’ve heard is a Dirty Hippie. That was particularly funny as it was from an art house-coffeehouse where I got it.

As I’m baking, I needed to drink alcohol –like Incredible People of the 70s-80s, ‘don’t try this at home’ and I’d already made a dirty chai.

Enter The Whiskey.

Lily’s A Dirty Drunken Hippie

2 oz Jameson

1 shot espresso 

1 C chai (I used tea bags and heated ~2 oz unsweetened soya

  

Don’t let me know if you don’t like it.

reviews, Monster. With some improvements.

I like the Monster, not so much any other of your caffeinated BS ‘energy/health’ drinks.

I love the zero calorie, carbonated Ultra Zero (basically a white and silver tin with a tetch of baby blue, NOT the baby blue tin with similar colours, thatshitnasty).

It’s citrusy and what I’d call a hyper-caffeinated ‘Squirt.’ -Gram’s highball of choice was Gin & Squirt If you don’t have Squirt, it’s a little like Fresca.

Great with vodka!

I drink Monster ‘orange’ or ‘green’ REHAB, too. Their Rehab line is 20cal/ tin and has a tiny bit of juice in (do not fool yourself that it’s healthy), caffeine and NO carbonation.

They are orangeade and pineapple-ade flavoured, respectively, though the green tin says it’s got green tea in. I’m not saying it doesn’t. I’m saying it tastes like pineapple and both go well with vodka, particularly mango vodka but plain works, too.

I’ve foraged into their Java line, as well.

They only have one ‘lite’ version, vanilla, and I find it sickly sweet. This isn’t to say the full fat, full sugar versions aren’t also like sucking down melted ice cream shakes, because they are!

I’m saying they’re less sweet-tasting, probably due to an artificial sweetener in the former.

At any rate, I don’t love any of the 4 I’ve tried but this was 1/2 off and I thought an experiment with Whiskey could bring me no possible harm, right?

Each tin is 2 servings at 200 whopping calories each (400 total) and very sweet–and slightly thick. It’s sweeter than your average homemade (or pub) Irish coffee IMO. Then again, this isn’t my swill of choice.

I like it, though, tastes like Christmas in July.

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postcard, Eleuthera & St. Germain

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LovelyLici sent this FAB postcard from the island her fam comes from, isn’t that DELIGHTFUL?

Steve, ::sighs::

I’m not sure how gentlemanly it was of you to dig up this old photo from my days at uni. Look, you know that I paid my way through school and private liberal artsy-fartsy degrees don’t come cheap. I still wish they’d let me keep the shoes. –and accessories

I don’t usually share the personalised sides but this one includes a cocktail recipe, so we’ve made a dispensation.

Thanks for making my Friday Happy Hour even happier, you two!

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2 pounds of cranberries: booze, muffins & compote

I’m not sure what I was thinking other than, ‘Three dollars for 2 pounds of cranberrries? Get in my TROLLEY!’

Two pounds of cranberries is about 4 times the normal bag of cranberries people buy for a nuclear family dinner. If you’re serving 30 or more people (like we always did), sure, you need more.

I didn’t buy it to serve at a dinner. I bought it to experiment!

apple cranberry compote BEFORE blending in the topping.jpgFirst, I tried a sort of compote — or what I’d call the cooked fruit and nut stuff that looks like it ought to be inside a pie but people often eat with breakfast, often atop pancakes or crepes. While I was making it, I thought about making a sort of paleo pie-crust topping for it, just to see if that worked, like a sweet pot pie, almost. Mmmmmnah. I ended up stirring the topping into the bottom and liked it much better. The only difference between what would’ve been quite normal as to this mess (which is delicious but ugly; a common theme in my cooking) is a LOT of fat, since I’d attempted it as a crust / top. Also, the pieces of walnut were rather smooth instead of obviously ‘gibbled’ as Gram said.

simple syrup.jpgblanched cranberries in syrup.jpgSecond, I was going to infuse some mandarin vodka with cranberries but at the last moment, decided to try something Different. I hurry-up-quick made a simple syrup (thin, 1:1) and tossed them in to blanch. Absolut Mandarin.jpgI didn’t want to cook them (pop, like in cranberry sauce), just hit ’em with the heat and prep them for melding with the syrup and booze. I transferred them to the Hillbilly equivalent to fancy glassware (a quart canning jar) and poured the vodka over.

My guess for use?

  • pretty as a boozy picture.jpgatop ice cream, hello?
  • inside chocolate (using mini-cupcake or candy moulds, pour some melted chocolate, then fill, then top with melted chocolate
  • mix with some Sprite / 7 Up / Fresca and drink, heck, maybe coke with lime?

Any ideas? I reckon it should marry 1-2 weeks, since heat was used on the fruit.

 

cranberry muffins.jpgThird, muffins! These, like all else, are grain free, dairy free, full fat and sweetened with maple syrup or honey. It’s a fairly standard muffin, ya know, factoring in the above, and then I put 7 cranberries on top (there was at least 2C of cranberries processed within) and a little ground pecans with honey, coconut oil and cinnamon sprinkled on top. The cranberries burst and melted in with the heat.

It’s my party and I’ll bake my own cake [gluten free / Celiac]

I got Gold Rum on special offer (regular 23USD, it was 11USD). I’ve never purchased gold rum, so I was nervous but for $11 and 1.75L? Mehohkay. In googling what to do with it, up popped a lot of baking recipes. This means it’s probably not so loverly to drink (think ‘cooking sherry’).

Gee, your cake smells delicious

Gee, your cake smells delicious *

My birthday is Friday and that means I will not be in a mood to bake Thursday night to make a gluten free cake for myself and the ingrates at work. -only a couple of people will try anything gluten free I bring in. Didn’t blink an eye through years of non gluten free. Granted, most gluten-free food (particularly ‘faux foods’ or things that are supposed to be a gluten-free version of X) is dodgy. Still, try it if I bothered to bring it.

All the more reason to use booze!

This was interesting as I rarely cook with booze. I do but the Reed in me doesn’t care for the idea of cooking alcohol out. I mean, what’s the point? I’m old-hat at whiskey-soaking, bourbon-balling, rum-tipsy-ing, though. -that’s ‘live’ alcohol

This cake is both: it’s cooked in (out) and soaked ‘live.’ WHEE!

gluten free gold rum cake above.jpg

It’s vanilla cake with pumpkin pie spices, walnuts and LOTS RUM inside and out, well, soaked in after baking.

* I used no special filters on these photos but I did put the cake OUTSIDE to photograph. The angled shot allows for elegance, no? Seriously, this cake has more than 2 cups of rum in it. You’re welcome. It’s a standard ‘tipsy’ cake type of soaky-glazy-not-glaze-thin-syrup** (meaning not a hard sauce, which is like boozy-gravy and not a glaze that leaves a sort of well, you’ve seen glazed doughnuts).

**Since I don’t measure:

  • 1+ C  gold rum (I used Bacardi’s)
  • 1/2 C melted oleo (I used coconut oil but have been known to use Earth Balance, since I can’t do dairy; when baking for others, I’ll use butter; hence ‘oleo’)
  • As much powdered sugar as it needed to be thin and pourable but not so thin that it wouldn’t congeal — I’m going to guess that I started with 1.5 C and added if more was needed. When I do these glazes, I go in assuming that 1/2 sugar is the starting point.

Paleo drinking

It is one week before my BIRTHDAY! Great timing on this ‘how to drink’ chart. Like I need one. -HAR!

Before you get your pants in a twist, the article states:

Drinking alcohol is not paleo, it’s true, but it is a part of many people’s lives. Read the whole article for Smart Drinking but I’ll include this infographic. It’s fun!

-I cannot drink tequila as I’m deathly allergic to agave. That never was a big issue in the Midwest (agave isn’t indigenous here) til agave nectar started being used. Of course, I rarely partake in processed foods but it’s definitely in tequila. None for me! Don’t cry for me, I can still suck down some Newton’s Folly, Strongbow, Crispin’s, Woodchuck…I’ll stop there but I love cidre! 

 It's [Get] Hammered-Time!

It’s [Get] Hammered-Time!