Thursday, April 22, 2004

Tuesday night I made beer battered fried calamari. Deep frying is one of those things that sounds much more difficult than it is. Truly, all you need to know is that the oil should be 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Get yourself a candy thermometer for $3 at Target and you can deep fry anything. However, deep frying in batches is not something that lends itself to leisurely eating at the table- Jeff and I ate the calamari as it came out, straight from the paper towels on the counter. The beer batter was especially nice. I remember my dad used to use a beer batter to make onion rings- he would "borrow" a half a can of Budweiser from our neighbor Tom.

Then I made some cookies for a birthday- I made Mark Bittman's One Batter, Many Cookies from The Minimalist Cooks At Home. This was an odd recipe, in that instead of creaming the butter and sugar, you mix in all the dry ingredients and then cut the butter in- in the food processor. The butter doesn't get as smoothly integrated. It was an okay cookie, but the real miracle was in the speed. 5 minutes to make a whole batch. I can understand how when the food processor first came out, it really revolutionized home cooking--- it's magic, what it can do. My friend Kayce used to say, back in high school, she couldn't imagine cooking when she grew up without a food processor. I couldn't really imagine cooking, period, at the time, and if we had a food processor in our house, I never saw it. (My mother is an excellent cook- I just never took advantage of watching or helping her do anything. Because I was a stupid kid.) Now, though, I can't imagine life without my food processor either.