Monday, August 30, 2010

Honey Milk Custard & The Start of a New Week

This recipe should be tried by everyone (except for my mom and other people that don't like honey - shame on you all!). It's my first recipe out of Deborah Madison's Seasonal Fruit Desserts, the recipe that inspired me to purchase the darned cookbook in the first place.

*** Addendum: Mom, even you would like this custard, it's silky and soothe, only about 130 calories a serving if you use skim milk, and doesn't have a strong honey flavor. ***

Honey Milk Custard
Adapted from Deborah Madison's Seasonal Fruit Desserts

3 cups milk
1/2 - 2/3 cup honey (depends on how dark/rich your honey is)
pinch kosher salt
3 eggs + 1 yolk
1/2 tsp vanilla or 1 vanilla pod, seeds scraped out

Bring the milk, cream, honey, and salt to a simmer in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Simmer for 30 minutes to reduce the milk and concentrate the flavor. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs and yolk to combine.

Preheat the over to 350°F.  Bring a kettle of water to boil for the hot water bath the custard will bake in. Place 6 ramekins in a large baking dish.

Whisk the eggs briskly while slowly adding the milk mixture. Stir in the vanilla. Strain through a fine mesh sieve into a spouted measuring cup. Divide the mixture among the ramekins. Place the baking tray in the oven, and pour the just-boiling water into the dish around the ramekins, until it reaches 1″ up their side.

Bake until very nearly set, about 45 minutes. Remove the custards from the hot water bath and allow to cool. Serve at room temperature or chilled.

My custards are cooling as I type. While they don't have the lovely golden hue of the ones pictured in the cookbook itself, I did use my farmers market clover honey. It's not as richly flavored as some of the other honeys, but I added a little extra to compensate. I plan to eat mine tomorrow for breakfast with fresh raspberries.

 - - - -

I start the new counseling position in Ann Arbor tomorrow. I'm nervous. What if clients won't take my advice or help seriously because I'm so young? I know I sound young over the phone, but when you  have a 24 year-old sitting across from trying to empathize about being late on your mortgage payment or losing your job, it's just a whole different thing, isn't it? And what if the other staff don't like me?

Jitters. Things always turn out alright, I just work myself into an unnecessary frazzle because I like to worry about things. George.

On another note, I'm going to try to start a new running program tomorrow. Well, by new running program, I mean a running program other than being forced to run laps in high school, which remains a sensitive topic for all involved. I originally found a running plan in a Mayo Clinic exercise/health book at the library, and although I copied it into my planner, I've both misplaced the written copy and returned the original, so Ian and I have been scrambling around online trying to find the plan, or at least something similar.

The first week has three days of running, and by running, I mean running/jogging for one minute, then walking for two minutes, and alternating these until you reach 30 minutes. I think I can handle that! It also has two days with 30 minute walks (I think I may throw yoga or pilates from Ypsi Studio in here), and two rest days.

We'll see how it goes. I will certainly never be as fast as my handsome husband, but I really would like to be able to enjoy this activity with him. Ian has also offered to do this portion of my workout with me before he goes on what he calls, "his real run." And it's true. But you've got to start somewhere, right?

 - - -

Last but not least, we actually planned a menu this week for the first time since we moved! Huzzah! Here's whats on the list:

   Soy-glazed trout, served with stir-fried tatsoi
   Fennel-leek frittata with goat cheese and black olives, served with oven-roasted beets
   Coconut shrimp with pineapple salsa, served with sauteed green beans
   Carrot ginger soup
   Chicken tacos
   Parmesan barley risotto, served with mashed acorn squash

Nom nom nom!