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MamaCooks's Profile

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Can this vanilla extract be saved?

Yep, Tahitian. I haven't done any baking at all, but I'll get on it this weekend.

Nov 15, 2010
MamaCooks in Home Cooking

Can this vanilla extract be saved?

Thanks, everyone! I guess I should try it before I dismiss it. I guess I'll just have to test it in a cake, and maybe some cookies, and maybe some other stuff... Thanks!

Nov 08, 2010
MamaCooks in Home Cooking

Can this vanilla extract be saved?

I started my first batch of vanilla extract in May, hoping to give some as holiday gifts. I threw it together based on tips from the Chowhound posts: Basically, it's a ton of good-quality vanilla beans, all split in half, and upper-middle-grade vodka, stored in a dark cabinet and shaken weekly for 6 months now.

And it still smells and tastes way too boozy. I couldn't use it in recipes.

Any suggestions for salvaging it?

Nov 08, 2010
MamaCooks in Home Cooking

should I be worried about my orange-tinted limoncello?

Months later, a belated reply -- it turned out well enough! The color was odd enough that I kept it for ourselves, and didn't give any away. Which was just fine!

Nov 08, 2010
MamaCooks in Spirits

Do you have to sneak vegetables into your kids?

I have two sons too: Why can't they ever like the same things?!

I'm not a fan of "sneaking" veggies either. I think some parents do it because it's easier than arguing with kids who balk at veggies, they don't like veggies themselves and so don't present them as something yummy, and/or they want to be sure their kids are getting adequate nutrition.

A scientist pal tells me that one benefit is that kids' bodies are being exposed to these hidden veggies and so they're more likely to tolerate/enjoy them when they're older. She doesn't think it's all bad.

I know some people hate the idea of deceiving kids, but I understand why parents might go that route. After four nights in a row of my kids howling about dinner, I'm ready to throw in the towel.

I did not grow up a veggie fan, and they're still too often an afterthought for me. My young kids like only a few veggies, so I try to make them a routine part of the meal, and fun. We do a lot of taste-testing, to find out if we like some preparations better than others (cooked vs. raw onions, different seasonings, etc.). My boys are fussier than I'd like, but they're usually open to trying foods and experimenting with different approaches to veggies. And they're more likely to eat what they can help with: picking veggies from the garden, snipping herbs for dressing, cutting up lettuce with kid-safe scissors, choosing what goes into their salads. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't.

We sometimes make the sneaky-veggie dishes, but with full disclosure. My 6-year-old hates spinach, but loves to make spinach-puree brownies -- he thinks it's cool that they are made with spinach and don't taste at all of spinach. I'm hoping they develop an appreciation for the magic that can happen in the kitchen, which I think is a decent foundation.

Sorry if this veered into sanctimommy territory!

Nov 08, 2010
MamaCooks in Not About Food

should I be worried about my orange-tinted limoncello?

Thanks for the reassurance. Last year's batch was a cheater's version -- much less time -- and the color was pure sunshine. I figured it was hard to mess this up. Smells good, tastes good so far. Thank you!

Mar 04, 2010
MamaCooks in Spirits

should I be worried about my orange-tinted limoncello?

I've had organic peels in vodka and Everclear for 60 days. The liquid isn't the bright yellow I anticipated -- it has a definite orange tint. I'm doing this in glass jars that don't have screw-on tops, and now I'm worried that was a bad idea.

What do you think? Just fine, or funked?

Mar 04, 2010
MamaCooks in Spirits