Food Adventures – A Fancy Salad and a Healthy Dessert

In the past week I’ve spent a lot of time with people. It’s been a lot of fun, but I needed today to myself. After church, I was itching to spend some money. It’s not a good itch, but it’s there anyway. I tried to scratch the itch by getting more kitchen stuff, including a 3 qt. mixing bowl and an awesome salad container that I can use for lunches. I’ve found lately that I’ve been bored with my lunches, and I’ve been trying to add in some foods that I don’t normally eat. I spent the afternoon looking through recipes on, and watching Midnight in Paris. After watching that movie, I have a renewed love for Early 20th Century American Literature. My English major days are behind me now, but I still love Fitzgerald, and I can occasionally add in Hemingway.

While conducting my recipe search, I discovered an Australian/New Zealand dessert called Pavlova. I tried to make it, but with the other merengue recipes I’ve tried in the last few months, it didn’t turn out quite right. I think I’ll ask my sister-in-law for help when I finally make it back to California. I know she can make a mean lemon-merengue pie, and I’m hoping that she can help me out with my whipped egg white mess-ups. I topped mine with whipped cream and strawberries, as I am convinced that one can never go wrong with that combination.

I also found a recipe for some Oatmeal Date Bars. I started with this recipe, and made three changes to it: I substituted half the flour with whole-wheat flour, took out the white sugar, and put in 3/4 c brown sugar instead of the full cup. The bars turns out very moist and delicious, and I don’t feel too bad about eating them.

Lastly, I’m excited about tomorrow’s lunch: a spinach salad with kumquats, gorgonzola cheese, pear, and pecans, all topped off with a champange gorgonzola dressing. Are you drooling yet? Are you jealous? I served the same salad at a dinner and board game night with friends last night as we celebrated St. Patrick’s Day together with a game previously unknown to me called Shut the Box which was followed by an AmeriCorps Imagine Iff game.

The work week starts again tomorrow, culminating with my AmeriCorps training on Friday. Less than two weeks till Austin, and the sun continues to tease me: promising spring but departing again before we’ve gotten reacquainted.