Thursday, December 30, 2010

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

I know you are thinking, "Christmas is over!"  Tell that to Mother Nature.  It snowed a lot last night, and it has been snowing again today.  Besides, the title is appropriate for blogging about Christmas, which I was going to do last time, but we had company.

Anyway, I woke up around 8:00 AM on Christmas and nudged Sean awake.  After I woke Mike up, we opened the presents under our tree.  Sean bought me an iTunes gift card, Up In The Air on blu-ray, a Nintendo Wii, an extra Wii Remote and Nunchuk, and two games: Super Smash Bros. Brawl and Super Mario Bros.  We set up the new system and washed the dishes (because who wants to leave dirty dishes in the sink on a holiday?) before going to my parents' house at 11:00 AM.

We ate a yummy brunch and then opened more presents.  My grandma gave me various knickknacks, my stepmom and dad bought me a Walmart gift card, and my sister bought me Diary of a Wimpy Kid and Tooth Fairy on blu-ray (it was a two-disc set...).  We then played a quick board game before going to Sean's parents' house around 2:00 PM, where we opened even more presents (Sean's dad gave me Telestrations, and his parents bought me a nice watch and a bottle of wine).

After eating lunch, we exchanged white elephant gifts (I ended up with the present I bought, a rip off bikini, which I gave to Sean).  We then played Scene It? Star Trek, as well as Telestrations, which ended up being funnier than I expected.  Around 7:00 PM, we went home.  Sean played with his new camera, and I played the Wii.

Christmas didn't end there, though.  A few days later, I bought myself a Nintendo DS Lite, a DS Lite Zip Case, and four games: Golden Sun, Golden Sun: The Lost Age, Golden Sun: Dark Dawn, and New Super Mario Bros.  Sean bought himself gifts, too.

It was, among many feelings, sad Mom wasn't here to celebrate with us, but all in all, it was a good Christmas.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Cooking With Marsala

I am glad I did not commit to posting a topic from The Blog Challenge everyday, like Sean did.  I would have failed, considering I have not blogged since my last entry, My Favorite Things.  At least I completed a topic, unlike Mike (but to be fair, he only committed to posting the list of topics).  So, to make up for my lack of posts, I am blogging twice today!  Yay!  Lucky you!

A few weeks ago, I watched a Good Eats episode ("The Proof Is In The Pudding").  The host, Alton Brown, breaks into the liquor cabinet, not to concoct a drink, but to examine the uses of alcohol in food preparation.  He made zabaglione, a dessert consisting of eggs, sugar, and Marsala.  It looked really good and very simple to make, so I decided to make it.  It was fantastic!  Below is the recipe, as well as a recipe for chicken Marsala I cooked to go along with the zabaglione:


Prep Time:  30 minutes
Cook Time:  15 minutes
Serves:  8 - 10

  • 6 large egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup Marsala
  • Pinch kosher salt
  • Fresh berries, for serving (optional)

Bring 1-inch of water to a boil in a 4-quart saucepan set over high heat.

Add the egg yolks and sugar to a large glass bowl.  Using an electric hand mixer on the highest speed, beat the eggs and sugar until the mixture is thick, pale yellow, and the sugar is completely dissolved, 4 to 5 minutes.  Decrease the mixer speed to low and add the Marsala and salt.

Decrease the heat to maintain a simmer and put the bowl atop the saucepan with the boiling water, making sure the bottom of the bowl is not touching the water.  Beat the mixture on medium speed, until it is thick, frothy, holds a ribbon, and the temperature reaches 145 to 150 degrees F, on an instant-read thermometer.

Spoon the warm mixture into custard cups or serving glasses and serve immediately or allow to cool slightly.  Serve with fresh berries, if desired.

Chicken Marsala

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time:  5 minutes
Serves:  4

  • 4 (8-ounce) boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • All-purpose flour, for dredging, plus 2 tablespoons
  • 3 ounces butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 cups sliced mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 4 tablespoons Marsala wine
  • 2 cups beef stock

Put the chicken breasts between 2 pieces of waxed paper and flatten with a meat pounder until thin.  Cut each chicken breast into 4 pieces.  Add some flour to a shallow bowl.  Dredge the chicken in the flour and shake off the excess flour.

Add the butter and olive oil to a large saute pan over high heat and heat until it sizzles (do NOT let it brown).  Add the chicken and saute until brown on both sides.  Stir in the sliced mushrooms and saute briefly, then add the garlic.  Add the Marsala and simmer for 3 minutes, then stir in the remaining 2 tablespoons of flour.  Pour in the beef stock and let simmer until the sauce thickens, about 3 to 5 minutes.  Transfer to a serving platter and serve.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...