Friday, April 15, 2011

Unchartered Waters

I am a baker if anything so living in Italy and learning to cook for myself has been quite an experience.  I am proud to say...with the help of my knowledgeable roommates...I am coming into my own - cooking wise that is.  It has been so fun learning and experimenting so I just wanted to share a little about my successes.

Rosemary Chicken, Garlic Rosemary Potatoes, and Red Pepper Broccoli:  This was really my first attempt cooking a full meal in Italy in the smallest kitchen known to man.  I frantically was cooking all three at once on tiny burners and an oven that only worked on the grill setting.  I was very happy with myself :)

Baked Parmesan Zucchini Sticks:  I swear I am going to turn into a zucchini from all that I have consumed.  I stumbled across this recipe on the web and needed to try it!!!

My attempt at plating haha

3 large zucchini, sliced longways, halved and cut into sticks 
2 eggs 
1/2 cup plain bread crumbs 
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated 
1 tsp dried oregano 
1/2 tsp dried garlic powder 
Olive oil spray 

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Spray olive oil spray on large baking sheet. Set aside. 
Slice zucchini into long planks. Cut planks in half then slice long into sticks.In large shallow bowl, whisk together 2 eggs, set aside. In large shallow dish, combine breadcrumbs, 
Parmesan cheese, oregano and garlic powder. 
Working with 3-4 zucchini sticks at a time, start breading process by dunking and completely covering 
zucchini with egg mixture. Take zucchini sticks out of egg mixture, allowing an extra egg to drip off, and 
place into breadcrumb mixture. Gently coat the zucchini stick completely with breadcrumb mixture. Place 
breaded zucchini stick onto baking sheet. 
Continue this process until all zucchini sticks are breaded and on baking sheet. Spray each zucchini stick 
with olive oil spray and place into 425 degree oven. Bake for approximately 10 minutes or until bottoms are golden brown. Using a spatula, flip each zucchini stick and bake for an additional 10 minutes or until crisp and golden brown.

Chocolate, Chocolate Chunk Cupcakes and Peanut Butter Buttercream Frosting:  For my roommates 21st birthday, I went back to my roots and backed for the first time here in Italy.  It is soo hard to find some of the ingredients here but after making a run to two stores I was able to get pretty much everything.  I bought Betty Crocker Devils Food Cake and added cut/crushed chocolate chunks from a candy bar.  The frosting was the fun part - and if I do say so myself, pretty darn good!!

Two sticks of butter
1- 1 1/2 cups of peanut butter (depending on how peanut buttery you want it - I did 1 1/2)
4 tablespoons of cream or milk (I did 2 cream and 2 milk)
2 cups of powdered sugar
Salt to taste

Soften the butter and whip the butter and peanut butter until fluffy.  Add two tablespoons of milk.  Add powdered sugar and stir as you go, adding just a little at a time.  Add salt to taste - the salt really finished it off.  Frost cupcakes and add shaved chocolate on top :)

It was so easy and so yummy!!

1 comment:

  1. OMG....yum!!! Thanks for the ideas, cuz! I've been really enjoying your blog, and now that you've added recipes into the mix - I love it even more! I'm seriously going to try those cupcakes this weekend! Glad you're having a blast - miss you and love you!! XOXO