Friday, August 26, 2011

whose got time to blog in the summer.....

...But the tough part is, I had such a great summer... its well worth blogging about, even if its for my own memoirs. I have thought about how to do this, and I will probably blog in order, and I will post them in order... and then repost them after a week or so, to the actual dates they happened so that I can keep good record.

One of the really fun part about my job working in a school is that I get seven weeks off during the summer. I enjoy those 7 weeks immensely and take advantage of every moment. The really hard part about that whole luxury is... for the last 2 weeks of my time off... I am fretting about wasting my whole summer and not getting stuff done that I had planned to do. I hum and haw, and plan, and make lists but still, I watch TV, I visit with friends, I garden and even sew. But then during my last two days before going back.. I cram so much stuff in that I really need to get back to work, just to get a rest!

Just a cute little note... at the very start of the summer, actually, before school was over.. Terry and I were called upon to do our grandparental duties and babysit Michelle and Scotts cats, Apollo and Sirius. We had a great two weeks with them and they often sat shoulder to shoulder, staring at the wilderness TV out our front window.When I snapped this picture I was reminded of them when they were little 3 month old kittens, home from university for Thanksgiving. They did the same thing, and it was so exciting for them to watch the birds and squirrels. Here they are..... at 3 months old!

I am just eating the Peach Ice Cream... Is it delicious?..... most certainly....... was it worth all the trouble?..... maybe..... would I make it again? .... most definitely NO. But oh my, its very good.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Peaches- what was I thinkin'?

Its August in the Valley and the peaches are gorgeous this year. Why, when nothing else seems to be producing well.. are the peaches so pretty... who knows... but they sure sucked me in!
I stopped by Mr. Laffin's little road side market and picked up two bags of small ripe peaches to make some jam... Something, I have never made before... peach jam.
During one of my many evenings of Pinterest sailing, I found a wonderful looking recipe for peach ice cream as well and ideas and cravings started flowing... I can really kill two birds with one project... since I have to poach and peel peaches anyway... why not try peach ice cream too..

Why not indeed... I have made ice cream before, and its fairly time consuming but its usually vanilla with a few added fun things and maybe a flavoring or two. How hard could it be to make peach ice cream.

So, it began yesterday with blanching all my peaches which included a boiling pot of water, a sink full of ice and water.. a slotted spoon, a paring knife, several bowls (for for the skins & pits, one for the skinned peaches, one for the chopped peaches)... This was a fun project and without batteries in my camera! An hour and a half later, they were safely in the fridge for this mornings' project.

Bright and early today, I began my peach projects, and since I have made jam a million times.. I know exactly what the process is, and decided I should start on one of the ice cream stages first.. since the recipe seemed to call for a couple of steps. I was amazed at the number of steps I had to do, including.... finely chop the peaches, mix with sugar and something else (can't remember) and let sit for TWO HOURS (in a bowl)..... meanwhile I had to mix cream with whole milk and something else... and heat until there is steam.... stirring constantly.... and meanwhile I had to whisk 6 yolks with more sugar(in another bowl)... and then add one cup of milk to eggs..stirring constantly... and then eggs back into cream/milk stuff and stir constantly again.. until like it reached some ungodly temperature which meant I had to find my candy thermometer... and then I had to fill another bowl with ice, and put another bowl in the ice and then a strainer.. and then when the milk was a certain temp I had to strain the milk/cream/yolks in to the bowl and STIR CONSTANTLY until it reached room temperature... then I added vanilla.

Then in the fridge for 2 hours. After that horror... I then had to simmer the peaches that had been sitting for 2 hours in a pot.. (a different pot than the milk pot) for 10 minutes.. then cool to room temperature.. and then add peach snaps and refrigerate for 4 hours.... Geeeshhhhh. THEN I had to strain the peaches, and mix the juices from the peaches into the milk stuff.. and then I could actually put it in the ice cream maker..

After 45 minutes... it didn't look much different than when it went in.. but I had to stir in the drained peaches... and now..I have this tiny little container of peach ice cream and it has to freeze in the freakin freezer for like 12 hours!

In between all the constant stirring, the millions of dishes and bowls and pots... and measuring cups, stir things... oh, my ... I actually made Peach Jam... which was a "peach" of cake... hee hee.

So here it is. My last day of vacation.. and its been a peachy day. I haven't gotten to try the ice cream yet, but I will for dessert tomorrow. All I know is that it better be over the moon delicious because I don't think I will ever make it again!