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I cook poorly, I craft obsessively and I love the look of a retro cocktail. When I am feeling guilty about taking time away from my family with my obsessions, I make videos about my guilt as "The Guilty Crafter" or I blog here. Thanks for stopping by!

Entries in cooking with booze (2)


Spanish Pork & Sausage Casserole

My last post was about the 3 lessons I learned from making Corsican Beef Stew. The 4th lesson was, read ALL the way through the recipe to plan timing well. This stew took for-EVER to cook and the result was a solid meh. Quite a bummer since it is by far the longest I've spent on a meal to date. I mean, I freakin' hand-stuffed a tiny clove of garlic into each beef cube. Sheesh. But on to bigger and better...

This dish (Spanish Pork & Sausage Casserole from pg. 340) was a love note to my husband because, frankly, it seemed yucky. I'm not a big fan of sausage or pork. And then they're TOGETHER?! But these ingredients inspire the opposite reaction in Mr. Angela Daniels. And the word "casserole" does not inspire a lot of confidence that a dish will be delicious in my experience. I bet you can guess what's coming, though... my husband was practically singing about how much he loved this one. And surprisingly, I did too. I think fresh tomatoes and herbs saved it from being too casserole-y. And the white wine, well, naturally a little dash of wine can only help, right? We will be having this one again.

As for tonight, I just cut up 4 fresh peaches and sprinkled them with my amazing homemade vanilla (it's practically perfect now) and some dark rum. If all goes well, we'll have a lovely dessert of peach filo pouches. Rum and fresh peaches and filo dough. I could eat all that raw and be happy so I feel success is within my grasp with this one. But I'll let you know...


3 Things I Learned While Making Corsican Beef Stew

1: My grocery store has dried mushrooms. All evidence indicates that they have always carried dried mushrooms. And a variety too. They put them by some fancy crouton looking things and bottles of lemon and lime juice. (check it out, you guys- I'm reconstituting mushrooms for crying out loud!):

2: The cookbook I am using was published in the UK. It took me awhile to figure out that courgettes weren't a new vegetable I'd never eaten. And now I know what passata is. Sort of.  I hope to impress someone at a dinner party in the near future with my new trivial knowledge. (Now accepting dinner invitations).

3: Vermouth isn't just for my (extra dry, very dirty filthy) martinis. Vermouth, as it turns out, is a type of dry white wine and comes in handy in Mediterranean cooking when the cook (in this case, me) is steadfast in her allegiance to red wine. Vermouth can be placed in the refridgerator and lasts at least a month (much longer than buying a bottle of white wine that no one would otherwise drink). This also means that the bottle of Vermouth you have in your liquor cabinent from 2002 should probably be given a heartfelt but firm farewell.

No verdict on the actual stew yet. I'm getting better at thoroughly reading the ingredients required for recipes but I still need work on reading the length of time a recipe will take to cook. Turns out this stew takes over 3 hours. Dinner should be ready right around midnight tonight. Meanwhile, it smells so delicious, we'll end up eating peanut butter sandwiches to stave off the aroma-induced hunger pangs.