My Yummy Local Life











So in my last post I told you about all of the beautiful strawberry things that were going down in my kitchen.  On of the things I made was strawberry bread, which was okay, but needed to have MUCH more strawberry in it to be delicious.  I had also made some strawberry scones, which also needed more strawberries to be completely yummy.

So with all of this bread lying around, in addition to all of the eggs and strawberries that need to get used, I decided to try to make a bread pudding out of it all.  I have made savory bread pudding before, but never a sweet one before so this was a bit of an experiment.  It turned out to be VERY delicious and very strawberry tasting!

Strawberry-Bread Bread Pudding

Ingredients:

Strawberry bread, scones, or whatever leftover sweet bread you have; cut into 1 inch cubes (about 6 cups- enough to fill a square baking dish)

4 eggs, farm fresh (from Rare Earth Farms)

2 cups whole milk, organic

1/2 cup sugar, raw (or less if your bread is very sweet)

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp vanilla

2 cups fresh strawberries, chopped (organic, from Cane Creek Farms)

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. Mix together eggs, milk, sugar, cinnamon and vanilla.
  3. Pour over the bread cubes, stir gently.
  4. Carefully stir in the fresh strawberries.
  5. Pour entire mixture into a square baking dish, spreading evenly.
  6. Bake for 45-60 minutes, until most of the liquid is absorbed and the top of the bread springs back under your touch.  It will also be golden brown and delicious looking.
  7. Let cool slightly then serve while still warm.

This is a great yummy way to use up leftover bread and fruit. Might be good with some vanilla ice cream, but I haven’t tried that yet.  Also I’m sure this would be yummy with other berries, leftover banana bread and such.  If you try any  yummy combinations, let me know how they turn out!

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{May 14, 2010}   STRAWBERRIES ARE HERE!

So this past week, I went to the North Raleigh Farmer’s Market (by myself, with $60 in my pocket) to get the majority of our food for the week.  If you know me, you know that the fact that I am now easily able to spend $60 a week at the market makes me a very happy person.  I love the freshness of the local produce and am majorly loving the large amount of variety compared to the greens and potatoes that seemed to drone on through the winter months.

A couple of weeks ago, strawberries started to fill up every market stand.  The first week I got a large basket (about 3 quarts I would guess) for $12 from Lyon farms.  I thought this was a brilliant price for the amount of strawberries I got.  Then the next week I decided to try out Bobby’s (from Cane creek farms) organic strawberries (2 quarts for $4 a piece) to see if they were any better.  I know that the organic ones are supposed to be healthier since there is no fumigation going down in their growing, but let me tell you that these strawberries lasted at LEAST twice as long before they were at the point where they needed to be frozen.

So then it was decided: get as many organic strawberries as possible, every week until blueberry season starts full swing.

So this past week, I go up to Bobby’s stand, and am about to buy two quarts again, when he says “Do you want a flat of strawberries for $10?” Let me think about this very hard: 2 quarts for $8 or EIGHT quarts for $10. The only catch is that a few on the top are smooshed so you have to sort through them (for the record there were about 4 in the entire flat that were bad/unusable- the rest just needed trimmed).

So of course I bought the flat of strawberries, and this week has been a strawberry extravaganza.

Here are all of the things I have made with my strawberries, just this week:

  • smoothies (see recipe example below)
  • strawberry jam (Jamie Oliver’s recipe– I added lemon to be safe)
  • strawberry bread/muffins (double batch-I would at least double the strawberries next time)
  • strawberry martini’s (large batch: hubby made this one actually)
  • strawberry juice (which got mixed into some experimental fruit/veggie juices as well)
  • strawberry butter
  • strawberry steel-cut oats
  • strawberry french toast (on local challah bread from Great Harvest Bread Company – which is totally worth the $6.50 you’ll pay for a loaf)
  • strawberry/balsamic salad
  • frozen strawberries for continues smoothie usage (to the tune of a gallon so far)

Yay for strawberries! They are so yummy and I am completely NOT sick of them and ready to buy another flat again tomorrow- I probably will do it too!

Anyways, so as not to disappoint; here is an example of what one of my smoothies might look like:

Ingredients (for one large glass):

5-8 frozen, whole strawberries

1 scoop of chocolate protein powder (or just powdered chocolate milk mix would work too)

1/4  cup of nuts (this week I had walnuts)

~1 cup of whole milk (I need the calories, but obviously any type of milk would do)

Method:

Put everything into the blender and pulverize!

Pour in to a glass, add a straw and enjoy the yumminess!



et cetera