Thanks to Sarah at Mum in Bloom, our project for 7/26 is Chocolate Pudding.
It was my turn to pick this week’s project, which is in July/Aug Everyday Food: Peanut Butter Chocolate Semifreddo. Now I must confess something. My favorite thing in the entire world is Perry’s Peanut Butter Fudge ice cream. In high school, I worked at an ice cream parlor and one of the girls I worked with used to make us little hot fudge sundaes on the sly – a tiny scoop of Perry’s PBF in a plastic water dixie cup topped with a bit of hot fudge. Sometimes I would buy a sundae and eat it in the car on the way home after work. Heaven. Thankfully, Perry’s is a local company and still makes PBF, although they only make it in the summer. The rest of the year I am in PBF crisis mode. It can get pretty ugly. Do not even suggest to me that I should try peanut butter cup ice cream. It is not even close.
So, when I saw the recipe for PBF semifreddo, well, you can imagine my excitement. Semifreddo is not ice cream, but it is similar. I had semifreddo once before when my mom made it. It was ok, not great. I was willing to try this.
The recipe was a little confusing and involved halving and then halving again a peanut butter and whole milk and sugar mixture, which I found confusing. You whip some cream and mix in some of the PB mixture. You melt chocolate in water (which I think is nasty). Then you fill the pan halfway with the whipped cream/PB mix. Then you put in straight PB mix and choc in the center, cover with the rest of the whipped cream stuff and put PB and choc on top, then you swirl and freeze for 5 hours.
I had way too much for my loaf pan – I ended up dumping some and my loaf pan overflowed in the freezer. It was quite a mess. I also used a silicone loaf pan and then ended up cutting through it with a knife, trying to get this out!
The peanut butter/whipped cream part was pretty good. Semifreddo is not ice cream, but it isn’t bad – cool, creamy, and sweet. I thought the chocolate part was awful – mine was grainy. If I made this again, I would use hot fudge instead. So, with all of that being said, this wasn’t bad and was kind of fun. And in the winter if I’m desperate for Perry’s PBF, I think this might work as a poor man’s substitute.
I’m feeling tired and lazy this morning so I’m not going to retype the recipe. Those of you who requested it, got it by email. If you’re reading this blog and would like a copy of it, just let me know. As soon as the recipe is up on Martha’s site I’ll come back and stick the link in.
If you read my post yesterday, you know I was ready to make a nice dinner of tuna steaks when most of the family suddenly had other plans. So the tuna was put on hold and I was finally able to make it last night.
Teen Martha loves tuna and she loves it practically still swimming – she just wants it seared on the outside. And she has to have wasabi with it. I cannot stand wasabi or anything hot and spicy and I am learning to like my tuna pink.
Now, listen, this recipe is not a big breakthrough by any means, but it’s something I’m a little proud of. I don’t usually order tuna in restaurants, but I have learned that I like it, so I wanted to experiment a bit. It seems Teen Martha is always getting sesame crusted tuna, so I decided to give that a try and make a mango salsa. I loved how it turned out. The salsa gave it a tropical feel and had just enough spiciness in it to liven the dish up. The tuna was cooked perfectly to my tastes (Teen Martha’s piece was left practically raw with a tube of wasabi set next to her). I’ll be making this again since it is quick and very tasty.
Sesame Crusted Tuna with Mango Salsa
4 ahi tuna steaks
toasted sesame seeds
Rinse and pat dry the tuna steaks. Rub with olive oil and then sprinkle with as many sesame seeds as you like. Press the seeds into the tuna a bit to get them to stick. Do both sides. I grilled the tuna but you can also sear in a pan. Cook to whatever doneness you prefer – if you’re like Teen Martha, just sear it on both sides. If you’re like me, cook it a bit longer so it is cooked, but still wiggly. This took about 5-7 minutes on the grill.
1 small gherkin sized cucumber
1 tbsp chopped cilantro
juice of half a lime
1 tsp lemon or lime zest
salt and pepper
Cut up the mango into small pieces. Peel and dice the cucumber and add it. I am a chicken about hot pepper so I have a jar of sliced jalapeno and took just one little piece out and chopped it up. Use more if you like yours hot. Add in cilantro, lime juice, zest and salt and pepper. Allow the salsa to sit for about 30 min, refrigerated. Serve with tuna.
With this we had green beans, pretzel rolls from the bakery with whipped cream cheese and corn on the cob.
I was all set to make a lovely meal last night. I bought some tuna steaks and was going to grill them and serve with a lovely mango salsa. I had some fresh pretzel rolls from the store and local corn on the cob and some green beans from the farm stand. Then Mr. MarthaAndMe texted that he had a late meeting and wouldn’t make it. No problem – Teen Martha loves tuna so I would make it for the two of us. Then she went shopping for shorts, had a crisis (couldn’t find any!) and decided she had to keep shopping before going with friends to a fair. That left me and Dude Martha, who insists he does not like fish. The tuna remains in the fridge and I’ll try again tomorrow. (if you’re wondering, I had a salad for dinner and he had tuna from a can which does not qualify as fish, apparently)
In the meantime, this is a photo of my amazing clematis vine. I can’t grow much of anything, but this thing is going nuts. I originally planted it next to the garage where it did nothing at all. Then a few years ago I moved it to the backyard next to the deck. It went crazy and now gets tons and tons of flowers. This past winter my crazy dogs who now can run free in our newly fenced yard decided it would be fun to chew the vine down. By spring, there was nothing left. I was sure it was a goner, but it has come back to its full beauty. Now if I could just manage to tame it a little bit! It wants to just grow along the floor of the deck and I keep trying to get it to wrap around the posts.
I had heard of Shrimp Remoulade, but never had it, until I ran across it in July Living. Anything that is served cold with a minimum of work is definitely a summer dish I’m interested in! This was incredibly easy – boil and cool some shrimp and mix up the yogurt based dressing which includes ketchup, mustard, capers, garlic, scallion and lemon juice. Add the shrimp, let it sit for half an hour and serve on lettuce. I ended up with more dressing than needed since I left some shrimp plain for Dude Martha, so mine is a bit gloppy looking. It was delicious though. The dressing was cool and creamy but not rich since it is made with Greek yogurt. It had just the right mix of flavors to keep it lively. I loved this and will definitely make it again. It’s a different way to make shrimp, which is always appreciated.
It’s my pick for the next Martha Mondays. My choice is Peanut Butter-Chocolate Semifreddo from July/Aug Everyday Food (if you need the recipe, let me know – it’s not online yet).
Here’s the schedule for the next round:
July 26 Mum in Bloom
Aug 2 Tiny Skillet
Aug 9 and 16 we’re skipping
Aug 23 At Least Twice a Week
Aug 30 City Interlude
Sept 6 Megans Cookin
Sept 13 Sassy Suppers
Sept 20 Perfecting Pru
Sept 27 Homemade Iowa Life
Oct 4 Brenda’s Canadian Kitchen
Oct 11 Stirrin It Up
Oct 18 Sweet Almond Tree
If I missed anyone, let me know. If you want to be taken off the rotation, let me know. And, as always, new members always welcome so just leave a comment or email if you’d like to be added.
I would also love some more Martha on Demand suggestions – a recipe from her site is easiest.
As I think I’ve mentioned before, my family likes Greek food a lot. Mr. MarthaAndMe’s ethnic heritage is a bit unclear so we always joke he actually is Greek. Ana at Sweet Almond Tree chose this Greek Salad for today. I remember the episode when Michael Psilakis appeared on the show. I even got his cookbook from the library at one point.
Now I must admit I cheated a bit with this salad. I don’t care for iceberg lettuce, so I used Boston. I don’t like onions in my salad so I left those out. And I do not care for fennel at all, so that was out too. Oh, I skipped the olives as well since I’m not a fan of those either. All right, so maybe I changed it a lot! It was still good though. What I loved about this salad were the fresh herbs that were mixed into the salad. I never think to do that, and always add herbs to my dressings, but having the fresh parsley, dill, and oregano (and it was fresh – from pots on my deck!) added so much flavor to this. It was just fantastic. I also really like the scallions in the salad. This was a delicious salad!
I like turkey but find turkey cutlets hard to work with. They’re so thin that they can overcook very quickly. They also tend to be a little bit tough and flavorless. I happened upon a recipe in July Bon Appetit that involves marinating them and then grilling them, so I gave it a try. I had 4 cutlets and I marinated them in a mix of olive oil, lemon juice, 2 crushed garlic cloves and 1/2 tsp of rosemary, with salt and pepper for about half an hour. I grilled them. At the same time I also grilled some zucchini spears that I sprayed with cooking spray.
I was very pleased with how the turkey turned out. It was flavorful and pretty tender. Thumbs up on this method! The zucchini was also quite good. And I didn’t have to turn on the stove!
My family likes rice a lot. I almost always make brown rice in my steamer. We often eat it with just some butter on it or the sauce for whatever the main course is. I have a favorite, decadent rice dish that I make once in a while though, called Parmesan Rice. It’s incredibly simple but just fabulously delicious. I made it last night, but used some jasmine rice I had left in the cupboard.
Parmesan Rice (serves 4)
1 1/2 cups of rice
6 tbsp butter
3/4 cup Parmesan cheese
Cook rice according to package directions or however you usually make rice. I prefer to make this recipe with brown rice. Once the rice is cooked, put it in a square baking dish. Brown the butter and spoon over the rice. Sprinkle the cheese on top and cover the dish with foil. Allow it to sit for several minutes, until the cheese melts.
The brown butter gives this dish a wonderful nutty flavor and the cheese – well, cheese makes almost everything better! This dish can be made in advance and then reheated in the microwave. It also works well for large family gatherings – just double or triple the recipe. I almost always double this recipe when cooking for the 4 of us because we just love it so much.