Apples and Bananas

The first time I saw a trailer for Despicable Me I thought it looked like the dumbest thing I’ve ever seen. But when I accidentally saw it in the lobby of a Courtyard Marriott two summers ago and found out it was actually a heartwarming film about family and bananas, my life was changed forever, though not quite so much as when I found out the current batch of Chiquita Banana fruit stickers had minions on them. There was only one in our whole bunch, but I immediately took it off and stuck it on my computer. I knew somehow I had to catch ’em all, and that I was going to make that happen no matter how crazy it made me look.

 

I think the minions are judging me but I don't really care...

 

So did I go through every single banana in the entire display of bananas next time I went to Stop and Shop? Nope! Because my mom did it for me! Two days later she brought home a bag of 15 bananas – meant, to be fair, to develop smoothie recipes – but almost every one with a different minion sticker. I’m ashamed to say I hid them under my desk for about 36 hours, until I could painstakingly apply them to my computer without my sisters trying to steal them. But here’s the finished product – an Apple covered with bananas! They look beautiful, don’t you think?

 

minions2

 

How about you – have you ever done anything as crazy as this? Comment below and let me know I’m in good company 😉

Easy Ghoulish Treats

Most people think I’m a little bit strange when I tell people that Halloween is my favorite holiday. It’s really simple. I adore the foods of Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah and Easter, not to mention all the glorious casual picnic foods from Memorial Day through Labor Day, but I just love the theatre and whimsy of Halloween.

 

Witches Brew Punch with Dry Ice – epic halloween trick/treat | The Road Home

 

This great holiday, after all, is not about gifts or how perfect the table looks for relatives. It’s about fun, and magic, and theatre. It transcends age. We will have 8-year-olds and 16-year-olds side by side at our house all enjoying the same silly food and wearing goofy costumes. What could be better? I get to take my apron off and think solely about what would make kids of all ages happy. The pressure is off to be perfect. All anyone cares about is that the offerings are funny, maybe a little “scary” and of course colorful.

 

Clementine Pumpkins | The Road Home  – cancels out the candy right?

 

So here’s part of our line-up for All Hallow’s Eve at our house. We’ll offer our friends and fellow trick-or-treaters Mad Scientist Bubbly Brew, followed by cauliflower brain dip, and darling little “pumpkins” made of clementines and celery. There will be other things, but these are my favorites. I hope this sampling of our Halloween inspires you to think like a child even for just one day. Happy Halloween everyone!

 

Witches Brew Punch with Dry Ice – epic halloween trick/treat | The Road Home

Halloween Cauliflower Brain with Guacamole - gruesome but great | The Road Home
Witches Brew Punch with Dry Ice – epic halloween trick/treat | The Road Home

Have you got any special halloween foods you make at your house? We’d love to hear about them! Comment below to let us know!

 

 

Clementine Pumpkins

From: Heide Lang

Ingredients:

  • One dozen or more Clementines
  • Several stalks celery

Directions:

  1. Peel Clementines and place on a fun Halloween platter.
  2. Cut a stalk of celery into small pieces for the pumpkin stem. Stick a celery piece into the top of each peeled Clementine and serve!

Creepy Cauliflower Brain Dip with Guacamole

From: Heide Lang

Ingredients:

    Guacamole

    • 4 ripe avocados peeled and pitted
    • ½ cup chopped onions
    • 1/8 cup fresh lime juice
    • ¼ cup cilantro (optional)
    • 1 4 ounce can finely chopped seeded jalapeno chilies**
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • ¾ teaspoon pepper
    • 1 cup of tomatoes, diced and seeded (or canned diced tomatoes in the winter)

    Brain

    • 1 large cauliflower
    • 1 package of red licorice string

    Directions:

    1. Place all guacamole ingredients but tomatoes in a food processor or in a medium sized bowl. Puree in the food processor or puree in bowl using an immersion blender until very smooth.
    2. Drain tomatoes thoroughly through a sieve and gently blend into the avocado mixture using a spatula.
    3. Remove all of the leaves from the cauliflower and remove the stem so that there is a hollow area, but most of the florets are intact. (Use toothpicks to hold the sides together if it starts to fall apart).
    4. Put the hollowed out cauliflower into a snug fitting bowl. (For a really scary presentation, wrap the bowl in cheesecloth stained with red food coloring.)
    5. Fill in with the guacamole and decorate the florets by weaving the licorice between the florets to make the veins and arteries.  You may also sprinkle a bit of red food coloring on the “arteries” as well but be careful not to overdo it.

    Mad Scientist Bubbly Brew

    From: Heide Lang

    Ingredients:

    • Clear glass container or punch bowl
    • Artificial green or red drink, such as Gatorade or Hawaiian Punch (You may also use a clear liquid like seltzer or Sprite, died with food coloring, if you want)
    • Gummy worms, plastic spiders or any other creepy creatures you wish
    • Dry ice

    Directions:

    1. Fill container or punch bowl with a green or red beverage.
    2. Place gummy worms, spiders, etc, on the edge of the bowl.
    3. Add a few small pieces or pellets of dry ice, just enough to get the brew bubbling and smoky. If it comes in a big brick, you will need to chip pieces off of it. (Do NOT pick up dry ice with your bare hands. Use tongs to handle it or protective rubber gloves if you must pick it up with your hands.)
    4. Serve immediately, adding additional pieces of dry ice every 10 minutes, or as needed.

    Ba- ba- ba- ba- banana

    I’m sitting in a library being really productive and putting the finishing touches on this incredible blog you don’t know about yet. A few minutes ago I decided to be really productive by going on Facebook. I saw this on a friend’s wall and since I care about the wellbeing of every reader here, I knew this valuable information was too important to go unshared. Get studying – if you have any work ethic you’ll be fluent by tomorrow.

     

    Spread food-y, Minion-y love with this super awesome wallpaper from DesignBolt, or, if you’re super crazy, you can decorate your computer like me. Click here for the full story!

     

    Minion Wallpaper

     

    Credits:

    Banana Language: 9gag

    Featured image: DesignBolts

    April Fools!

    Silly skibur skiburs, we would never abandon you like that. Besides all that Swëedish took way too long to translate. (Ï think it måy häve përmånently damagëd my keybørd…) Hope everyone had a wonderfully prank filled day!

     

    Also, on a totally unrelated note, we’re relatively newly on twitter! Find us by clicking the twitter button in the top left column, or by looking up @figtestkitchen. And don’t forget to follow us so you never have to miss our ever-witty quips!

    Bork bork bork!

    Deer Skibur Skiburs,

    Toodee is yoor-a luooky dee! Der Figee Tëst Kitchen is reådee tø return-skiburn tø eets Europinski rootsi-tootsi, ånd we’va begüon to transkiblåte deesa bluøg eento Sweedish ïn hønör øf oür fåvorit chëf! Git reådee für lootsa fishee chøwder, hotsee-totsee, ünd flipfloppin die flappenjacken! If yoo-a døn’t spëåk Sweedish, yoo-a shuood leårn-skiburn. Yoo-a døn’t wänt to meess die mëåtbälls!

    Loov und Bork,

    Hëëde und Gåbriëllë

    True Devotion

     

    I’m sure you’ll be shocked to hear this, but every once in a while, we college students aren’t in the mood to eat healthy food for dinner. In my suite, that means we make pancakes instead. It’s less of an incredibly terrible idea than you think, and if you serve them with fruit and count them as dessert too you can pretty much justify it. And besides, by anybody’s definition my friends and I are really good kids, so I guess this is our way of sticking it to our parents (don’t tell mom). But we should have known better than to disobey anybody ever, because today, karma came and (very literally) stuck it right back to us.

     You see the droplets on that pancake? Contrary to popular belief that's not what they're supposed to look like.

     

    It began at the supermarket, when the cheapest bottle of maple syrup we could find was the same price we paid for tomorrow’s Salmon. Which granted wasn’t that much… but seriously, it’s syrup. But I’m a hardcore New Englander, and one of the very first Facebook groups I ever joined was “Just Say No to Fake Maple Syrup.” I didn’t have it in me to buy Aunt Jemima, and fortunately none of my suite-mates did either (and they’re from California and Alabama!). So we said, “Whatever, at least it will last us a while, and at least it’s not over-processed, artificially flavored corn syrup.” Plus it was organic. And we were splitting it a bunch of ways. All things considered probably worth it. We thought.

     

    There's a nail in that syrup...

     

    Things went swimmingly until we got to the dinner table. The pancakes puffed up perfectly, the bacon was crisp as crisp can be, and even the January blueberries were good. And then Theresa went to open the maple syrup. The cap didn’t budge. Not even a little.  She tried again. Nothing. She passed it to Mary Margaret. Still nothing. They passed it to me. Predictably nothing. As you can probably guess from the picture above (yes, that’s a nail) we were in for a long evening. Still not properly worried, we tried cutting off that little plastic ring that holds on the cap with our pancake knives. When that didn’t work, we successfully severed it with a sharp knife. But obviously, that wasn’t the problem.

     

    This is the arsenal. Don't we look so legit?

     

    After prying with a large kitchen knife, attempting to loosen it with a bottle opener, running it under hot water, banging it on the table and even getting my roommate, a fencer, to try her hand at it, all four of us had injured ourselves in some decently significant way. At this point, any sensible person would just give up, or at least go return the syrup. But the pancakes were cold by now anyway, and for what we paid for the syrup and the effort we’d already put in, gosh darn it, we weren’t eating without it. And since we’re not sensible in the slightest, we got out a serrated knife and started sawing it off. After many minutes of sawing we finally got through to the glass…

     Theresa with a knife

     

    and of course it didn’t budge. Clearly, we realized, some spiteful person at the Brad’s Organic factory had glued the top on just for us. And so finally we had no choice but to resort to… the hammer.

     

    Hammer, otherwise known as desperation at its finest

     

    Five holes later, we were able to apply our syrup in a spongey fashion, like kindergarteners with those funny, squeezey glue sticks…

     

    I wanted to make cookies out of this syrup... Does anyone know a better way to do this?

     

    … and ultimately, we developed this beautiful contraption to let the syrup drip out over the course of the next century, so that someday I can make cookies out of it, and *maybe* we can access enough to put on waffles. The moral of this story is: never underestimate 3 nineteen-year-old girls on a quest for syrup.

    The end!


    I’m going to give you my favorite pancake recipe now, on the condition that your syrup a) is made of Maple and b) is not Brad’s Organic. This recipe is hopelessly fluffy, and great with bananas, with chocolate chips or with both. Or plain, or with blueberries, or with sliced strawberries. Unless you use Brad’s Organic Syrup, you just can’t go wrong.

    Click to download PDF!

     

    Before you make a chipwich…

    … remember to freeze the cookies. And the ice cream. Otherwise you may end up with ice cream-soaked cookies…

    … and you may have to feed them to your six-year-old sister…

    … and she may just get a sugar high and start running around the house and tumbling over the couches singing “James and the Giant Peach? James and the Giant Peach!”

    Although for the record, the song was pretty cute. And the cookies tasted really good. But still. Consider yourself warned.