Friday, November 18, 2011

Playing Chopped at the Christensen house

For the last couple of weeks we've been buying a Bountiful Basket every other weekend. Bountiful Baskets is a coop that buys a truckload of fresh produce every other weekend. The produce is supposed to be half fruit and half vegetables, and you buy it by the basket. It's really fresh and a good price, but each time you get a semi-random basket of produce. So, after we get the basket it's a bit like the Food Network show Chopped. We have a basket of ingredients that we have to use to make a meal.

A few weeks ago, our basket included, among other things, limes and sweet potatoes, so I made lime cookies, virgin mojitos and sweet potato fries.

Last week our basket contained some celery, onions and lemons. We decided to make split pea soup from scratch to use the celery and onions. Amy and I knew that a soup with a deep green color and a thick texture would be a big hit with our gastronomically adventurous daughters. (That's sarcasm in case you don't know Abby and Molly very well)

Here's how Abby choked down her poison and maggot flavored soup.

She closed her eyes, pinched her nose shut and waited for me to drop food in her mouth. She would then quickly force it down against her gag reflex and then grab a drink to wash the poison down.

After such a valiant effort she was rewarded with the rest of our Chopped menu, home made Lemon Meringue Pie. Amy made the crust from scratch, we used fresh squeezed lemon juice from our lemons to make the custard, and I made the meringue.

The meringue recipe made a lot more than I had expected.
We tried to spread the mass of meringue over the top of the pie. It ended up more of a rounded top, then the more traditional thin layer with pretty peaks.

Since it was so tall, the meringue didn't really scorch at the tips of the peaks and stay nice and white in the valleys. We got more of an even, overall light brown.

Next time I might need to use a blow torch to get the pretty dark brown peaks.

When we cut into the pie, you can see how tall the meringue is.

After Abby forced down her soup, she was excited for the pie. She took one bite of the lemon custard and declared that it was too sour. But she attacked the meringue and the crust with gusto.

Zeke, maybe you and Abby should share a pie next time we're together...

1 comment:

Zeke said...

Heck yeah. I'll share some pie with her anytime. She can have all the meringue and crust she wants.