Tuesday, August 3, 2010

A confession and a recipe -- finally!

So, I have a culinary confession to make – I am absolutely horrible at making quesadillas. I know, I know – they are so simple, and yet I constantly mess them up (usually in the form of burning them). It happened again last night. I have had this weird obsession with avocados lately. I didn’t always like them, but now I love them – so smooth and creamy, and, bonus, healthy! I have had a lone avocado sitting in my fridge for a week and a half now, and I was trying to figure out some use for it before it went bad. Suddenly, inspiration struck – in the form of Napoleon Dynamite, no less. “Make yourself a dang quesadilla!” So, I pulled out a couple tortillas, some shredded Cabot cheese (yes, that was a shameless plug for my favorite local cheese company), some salsa, and of course, the avocado. I filled the tortillas with the cheese and put it on the burner while a sliced the avocado. I then decided it was time to turn the quesadilla before it burned, and low and behold, it fell apart. Now I had half melted cheese in the tortilla and burning in the frying pan, plus a semi-burned tortilla. Awesome. I was able to salvage most of the cheese and trim away the burned part, and then top the whole mess with the sliced avocado, sour cream, and salsa. Did it look pretty? No. Did it still taste good? Yes. So, I guess lesson learned – I simply cannot make quesadillas!
Thankfully, there are plenty of foods that I can successfully prepare. I’ve been into French toast lately – I love making breakfast for dinner! French toast has become one of my go-tos, along with the unsurpassable Dutch Baby. The other night I accidentally invented the most delicious stuffed French toast I have ever tasted (the ugly photo above does NOT do it justice). I made just regular old French toast (the recipe out of the classic red and white plaid Better Homes and Gardens cookbook – eggs, milk, vanilla, and cinnamon soaked bread – homemade wheat bread is ideal because it is denser, but I made do with store bought wheat instead). I was trying to think of a way to jazz it up, and I remembered some leftover goat cheese I had in the fridge. I’d had French toast stuff with cream cheese or ricotta before, so I figured, why not? I microwaved the cheese for just a few seconds to soften it up, and then added two teaspoons of sugar, a generous squirt of honey, some chopped almonds, and more vanilla and cinnamon. I spread this mixture over each of my four slices of bread, and topped the whole thing off with some Vermont maple syrup (only real maple for this girl, none of that fake “pancake syrup” here). OMG, it was delicious! I only made it through about a third of it that first sitting, but the leftovers were dutifully devoured over the next day or so. The French toast was very sweet – homage to my insatiable sweet tooth – from the syrup and the sugar and honey in the cheese, but also crunchy from the almonds and tangy from the goat cheese. What a perfect combination! As Rachael Ray would say, “yum-o!”

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