I know pregnant ladies are supposed to have food cravings, but I've had so few throughout the past eight months that when one does sneak up on me I don't even know how to handle it. At some point last week I was struck with a longing for sushi that went beyond reason. Just thinking about the taste of soy sauce against white rice and avocado and my heart would start pumping right out of my chest.
I immediately began scheming. How could I get my hands on some sushi? Sounds easy, I know. This town is full of sushi joints. The thing is that Bobleo has us on a serious budget in anticipation of my upcoming maternity leave. Since our stomachs are our most dangerous money pits, the takeout/going out budget was the first thing to get slashed.
"Go and get a roll from the grocery store.", he says. Psssht. I don't want that crappy, cold stuff. I want room temperature rice, freshly rolled around something delicious... and I want it BAD.
So I took to the internet, stalking All You Can Eat Sushi Joints, searching my email for coupons, Groupons, or any tool that might get me closer to my goal. I even considered driving to Houston to visit my parents so that I could guilt them into buying me a sushi dinner. It's pathetic. I know.
In the end, I ate a pickle sandwich, took some deep breaths, and decided to make myself piles of sushi at home. Thus, my scheme evolved into a dinner party, the best one ever, in fact. I'll be telling you more about that next week. For now, oggle this photo from the night in question.
Later that week I went out to happy hour with my hubby and my sister, Heather. We hit up El Chile on Manor Road pretty frequently, relying on their half price nachos to fill our bellies after work is done. Scott Bobleo appreciates the $3 Pacificos, while Heather usually opts for a $5 house margarita. These days I stick to water, but the queso and chip intake easily makes up for anything I might be missing out on. Their brown salsa is a particular favorite of mine. It's dark and sweet and spicy. Yum.
We joined my sisters, parents, and a few close friends on Sunday for an afternoon Easter meal. As usual, my family delivered in the deliciousness department. Sarah made potato pancakes topped with chives, creme fresh and smoked salmon. Heather brought a cheese and spinach strata, and I made a Coquille St. Jacques casserole by my Dad's request. It was a mighty spread!
I also whipped up a sweet oven pancake with strawberries. I got the recipe from a book I was invited to preview recently, Tina Nordströms Scandinavian Cooking.
By the way, I am devouring this book. It is packed with gorgeous photos and tempting recipes, all inspired by modern Swedish home cooking. As a third generation Swede, this is right up my alley. I look forward to trying out many more recipes from this massive book.
Skyhorse Publishing was gracious enough to gift me with a copy to check out, and also gave me permission to share a recipe with you. I made it pretty much exactly the way the book recommends, only with one little difference. I was inspired by a certain Ricotta Tart over on Stetted and opted to macerate the strawberries with mint rather than adding them plain. To do it my way, simply toss your strawberries with a tablespoon of sugar, a squirt of lemon juice, and some minced fresh mint (or basil, yum) about an hour before serving.
Sweet Oven Pancake with Strawberries
Excerpted with permission from Tina Nordströms Scandinavian Cooking: Simple Recipes for Home-Style Scandinavian Cuisine by Tina Nordstrom. Copyright 2014, Skyhorse Publishing, Inc.
Makes 4-6 servings
- 5 eggs
- 4 tbsp sugar
- 1 cup (250 ml) flour
- 3 cups (700 ml) milk
- 2 tbsp (30 g) butter
- fresh strawberries
- whipped cream
- Preheat the oven to 425ºF (225ºC).
- Divide the eggs into whites and yolks. Whisk the egg whites and the sugar into a stiff foam.
- Mix the flour with half of the milk and all of the egg yolks. Whisk until the batter is smooth. Add the rest of the milk and then fold the egg white foam into the batter.
- Put the butter on a baking sheet and place it in the oven until the butter has melted. Pour the batter into the baking sheet and bake the pancake in the center of the oven for about 25–30 minutes.
- Serve with fresh strawberries and whipped cream. To make it extra special, sift powdered sugar on top.