Thursday, April 21, 2011

Weekend Needs

Zeng Toi's Coconut Creme Caramel from Food & Wine 
We all have needs; I look forward to fulfilling mine (don't get dirty, guys) during the weekend because gosh darn the week is just so busy.

As I've mentioned to you before, I have various writing jobs, two dogs, and a husband, so therefore Monday thru Friday is pretty much a race to get things done. Therefore, I'd like to start a new tradition on I'm Starving, where I'm going to pick out some food and clothing items I'll look forward to trying and wearing Friday-Sunday. Basically, it will consist of a list of guilty pleasures on a budget (sometimes not) that will make my weekends both productive and satisfying.

Friday Night
A delicious childhood favorite turned amazing, the look of these new Milano cookies reminds me of living in Florence, spending hours with roommates talking, sipping wine, and dunking shortbread cookies in Nutella. "Florence 15," so what?


photo via Pepperidge Farm


Saturday Morning/Afternoon
This month, InStyle says you should look cute (not embarrassed) for your trip to the juice bar post-workout.  I'm in need of some new workout gear and am probably the only one who prefers Nike to Lulu, so I'll be on the hunt. 


Saturday Evening
A good friend is turning 30 and celebrating with a house party. I'll bring two bottles of wine since the stuff is probably gonna flow like Sparkletts. 

For a French, Cotes Du Rhone style wine with an unbelievable price tag, try Rabbit Ridge (left), which can be found at Trader Joe's. Labeled an Allure de Robles, the blend hints at rich berries and black pepper. 


If you want a bubbly, La Marca is hands down my new favorite Prosecco; it's crisp, not too sweet, and leaves a honey aftertaste on the tongue. 


(photos via nvwe.com and jerichowines.com)


Sunday Evening
Trying out a new dessert recipe this Passover was a nightmare, but I intend to perfect it for my parents' enjoyment. Every Sunday we see them for dinner, so I intend on serving them the best Creme Caramel of their lives. 


Zeng Toi's Coconut Creme Caramel (pictured at top of post)
Published in Food & Wine

INGREDIENTS

  1. 1 cup granulated sugar
  2. 1/4 cup water
  3. 10 large egg yolks
  4. 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  5. 2 cups heavy cream
  6. One 13-ounce can unsweetened coconut milk
  7. 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  8. Pinch of salt
  9. 1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut, toasted


DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. In a saucepan, cook the granulated sugar with the water over moderate heat, brushing down the sides of the pan with a wet brush, until a rich amber caramel forms, about 15 minutes. Quickly pour the caramel into a 9-inch square glass or ceramic baking dish to coat the bottom.
  2. In a bowl, beat the egg yolks and brown sugar until very thick, 2 minutes. Beat in the cream, coconut milk, vanilla and salt and pour into the baking dish. Set the dish in a roasting pan. Pour hot water in the pan to come halfway up the dish's side. Bake for 1 hour, until the custard is just set but still jiggly in the center. Refrigerate in the dish overnight.
  3. Run a knife around the edge of the custard. Set the dish in a pan of hot water for 10 seconds. Invert a flat platter over the dish then turn the custard and caramel onto the platter. Top with the toasted coconut and serve.

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