Yes, I know the other Octoberfest is spelled with a K but this October fest is all about me! October is my favourite month for a few reasons: 1) my birthday! 2) Thanksgiving! 3) Hallowe’en!
It’s jam packed with action and I love planning outings (or innings) around all the holidays. Even though technically my birthday isn’t a holiday (yet). So far I’ve gone to a pumpkin patch, Fright Night at Playland, had a super duper birthday, gone to a wedding reception at a club, had the fam over for thanksgiving, been treated to dinner and scoped out the latest opening at the Vancouver Art Gallery! On top of mid-terms this has been quite the month!
I was going to a post-Thanksgiving recipe post with a menu of everything but there was just too much going on! I wanted to take pictures but was too busy eating! Most of the stuff I made was just traditional Thanksgiving fare (mashed potaters, yams, glazed carrots, stuffing etc) but I did make a great salad dressing! It was a killer creamy cranberry dressing but unfortunately I didn’t write down the recipe while I was making it (bad girl!). The salad had caramelized walnuts, dried cranberries, goat cheese and butter lettuce. I’ll just give an informal idea of what I did instead. So, salad dressings are basically made up of two things: a fat and an acid (the most basic being the classic oil and vinegar). To this basic formula you can do anything you want but I think a lot of people forget that oil isn’t the only fat out there and vinegar isn’t the only acid; for this recipe I used cranberry juice (reduced, sweetened and seasoned with black pepper) for my acid and cream for my fat. I emulsified the cream with my hand blender (I think when using cream a true emulsion is needed so it doesn’t break and get all curdled and gross looking) and the results were pretty awesome! It had a wonderfully luxe mouth feel and was sweet and tangy.
When it comes to different combinations, the possibilities are pretty much endless. Have a spoon at the ready; constant tasting is necessary when experimenting. And remember that less is more, adding salt is easy, taking it out not so much! Keep a notepad to mark down what you’re doing while you’re doing it; if I hadn’t been too lazy I would be posting my dressing recipe right now! Coconut milk is a good option as well, maybe with some ginger infused pineapple juice and a tick of curry paste, toss with some cold cooked soba noodles, bean sprouts and julienned mango and red pepper! Add some sesame crusted tofu and you have a full meal. But I digress. Pomegranate juice would probably work well also.
I took some pictures of my cornucopia and am hoping to improve my photography skills soon! I found a great blog about food photography called Taylor Takes A Taste and am picking up some great tips. Hopefully my next post will show some improvement in the pics!