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    Entries in Colors! (8)

    Thursday
    Jul032014

    What's a Jicama?

    That’s the question I get nearly every time I mention jicama (pronounced hick-uh-muh) to someone.  When I was growing up, it was a fairly common occurrence to have jicama in the house.  My mom would cut it up and we’d snack on it like carrot sticks.  It has a mild, lightly sweet flavor, and it’s crisp and refreshing like an apple, but with a slightly starchy feel.  If you’ve never tried jicama before, give it a shot.  It really is a fabulous vegetable.  I bought one the other day, and after cutting it into sticks, I realized it was way more than I would eat by myself.  Hubby’s never tried it, but since he’s allergic to every other raw vegetable, it’s probably safe to assume jicama is no different.  I needed to figure out something creative to do with it, so with the 4th of July coming up, I thought why not put it with berries and a light dressing for a fabulous jicama fruit salad. 

    Here’s what you’ll need: 

    • 1 cup diced jicama
    • 1 cup diced strawberries
    • 1 cup blueberries
    • Juice of a lime
    • Honey 

    The first thing you need to do is prepare the jicama.  When you buy one, it’ll just be a big brown root.  You want to find one that’s slightly shiny and relatively unblemished. 

    Using a peeler, remove the skin.  They can be a little bit fibrous on the outside sometimes, so if yours is, just take off an extra layer with your peeler.  Then cut it into sticks and dice it.  You only need about a cup for this recipe, so leave some of it in stick form for snacking. 

    Now for the blueberries.  Give them a good rinse, then spread them on a towel (I used paper).  Pick out any shriveled or soft ones, then lay another towel over the top and gently roll them around to dry them off. 

    And last but not least, the strawberries.  Wash and hull them.  Aren’t they pretty? 

    Have I mentioned how much I love strawberries?  They definitely fall near the top of my favorite things list, and Otto agrees, so he always wanders into the kitchen when I'm doing anything with them.  And speaking of Otto, he's having some pretty itchy days and has been wearing the cone of shame off an on.  Even though I went to the trouble of making him a soft one, he still doesn't look very happy about it.  Poor little guy.     

    Dice up the strawberries and throw everything into a bowl.  I rock at making patriotic food

    So… dressing.  Squeeze the juice of a lime into a small bowl.  Mine was about 1 ½ tablespoons so shoot for something close to that.  Add an equal-ish amount of honey.  I know I’m not being terribly precise here, but it really isn’t rocket science. 

    Stir those together.  A fork works well for this.  At first you’ll have a glob of honey in lime juice, but eventually it will become a nice smooth mixture.  Pour it over the salad. 

    Gently stir/toss until everything is coated and holy crap, it’s gorgeous! 

    Refrigerate it until you’re ready to serve it, and it will be a delicious and refreshing side.  The perfect way to add patriotic flare to the table for your holiday get together.  And if you’re not celebrating the 4th of July, it’s a fabulous fruit salad to enjoy anytime. 

    How do you celebrate Independence Day?  Or if you’re not American, does your country have a similar holiday, and how is it traditionally celebrated?

     

    Wednesday
    Dec112013

    All Natural Purple Frosting

    Did you know you can buy purple sweet potatoes?  I didn’t.  I was actually looking for white ones, which my store didn’t have, but they did have purple ones.  Well, purple is my very favorite color, so I wasn’t about to pass up on those.  Not only did I make sweet potato crisp out of them for Thanksgiving, but the color was just too gorgeous not to use it for something else.  These are the sweet potatoes after being baked.  Seriously amazing, huh? 

    I did some reading and discovered that baking them in something like cupcakes changes the color to a greenish hue.  Some sort of chemical reaction with the baking soda or something, I assume.  Buttercream was the answer, then.  For frosting, I needed to make sure the sweet potato was nice and smooth.  I only needed a couple of tablespoons, though, and really didn’t want to dirty the food processor for that.  Since I don’t have a food mill or ricer, I decided to just press the baked sweet potato through a fine mesh strainer.  It worked beautifully. 

    I used my basic buttercream recipe.  Just add about 2 tablespoons of sweet potato before adding any cream, and adjust the consistency from there.  Who needs artificial colors when nature provides something so perfect already? 

    What is your favorite color?