Posts tagged ‘hotel’

Working with limitations – Making Sherbet

We’re in Cincinnati for 2 weeks and this time, we are in a hotel unit that comes with a kitchen!  Woohoo!  I was not able to contain my excitement the moment I walked into the room.  Its great!  I wanted to set up immediately except that my “food bag” was locked away in my work case and I wont be able to retrieve it till the next day. 

Since I have a kitchen now, I’m a bit more adventurous with what I want to make.  I browsed through recipes app in my ipod and found an interesting one… Lemon Basil Sherbet. 🙂  Hmmmm… Looking at the easy few ingredients listed and a quick glance through the method, I thought,”This should be easy.  I can make it work!”

The company very kindly organised a trip to the nearest supermarket for 25 of us and I got all I needed to make the sherbet:

  1. Half and half or light cream – 1 Cup
  2. Granulated  Sugar – 2/3 Cup
  3. Honey – 2 TBS
  4. Lemon Zest – 1 1/2 TBS
  5. Juice of 3 Lemons (Keep the squeezed lemon halves and use them as cups for serving!)
  6. Basil Leaves – 8 fresh divided
  7. Whole Milk – 2 Cups
  8. Sea Salt – Pinches

Method:

  1. Combine half and half, sugar, honey and lemon zest in saucepan. 
  2. Simmer and stir to dissolve sugar.
  3. Remove from heat add 4 basil leaves and bruise against bottom of pot.
  4. Cover and let steep 15mins.
  5. Remove Basil leaves discard and whisk in milk.
  6. Refrigerate till completely chilled.
  7. Whisk lemon juice into Sherbet base and add salt and sliced remaining 4 basil leaves.
  8. Taste for sweetness and add honey if required.
  9. Freeze mixture in ice cream maker or freeze and blend with food processor/blender till smooth.
  10. Cover mixture with plastic wrap and try to gently tap to release air bubbles from mixture.
  11. Freeze for a couple of hours before serving.

Obstacle 1:  I didnt find basil in the supermarket so I thought maybe i can make do with Parsley or just make Lemon Sherbet… 🙂 – DONE.

Obstacle 2: The recipe said to put the mixture into an ice cream maker.  Frankly I dont know why I didnt see that earlier because that would have detered me from making this.  Well, I googled,”How to make sherbet without an ice cream maker?”  and I found a youtube video teaching you how to do this! – DONE.

Obstacle 3: Lemon Zest… you usually need a grater and since I dont have one in the kitchen, I used the peeler to peel the lemon (just the yellow bits) and subsequently chop them up into thin strips and there you go… Lemon Zest! 🙂 – DONE.

Obstacle 4: I was supposed to use whole milk but I only have 2% fat milk so… we’ll see how it goes.. Low fat Sherbet anyone?! 🙂  – DONE.

Obstacle 5:  To get the smooth Sherbet consistency, it was recommended to at least put the frozen mixture into a blender.  One of our colleagues travel a mini blender so I’m borrowing it from her and hopefully it will all work! – DONE

I’m blending it tomorrow… Fingers crossed!

Obstacle 6: I didnt have any cling wrap so I used any plastic bag I can find, cut out a size, rinse it and cover the sherbet with it.  (Step 10 above)

This is the end product of my Lemon Vanilla Sherbert:

I added vanilla essence instead of basil and it tastes GREAT! 🙂  Nice vanila scent to it too!

January 22, 2011 at 7:17 am Leave a comment

Simple and healthy quick fix

After moving from hotel to hotel in the first month, I’ve realised that I’m never ever going to see a kettle in the hotel room.  The little electri ones that you plug in for power.  That’s what you get usually in hotels in other countries but no, not in the US.  They supply you with a coffee maker, often good to make 1 cup of coffee at a time 2 for the more advanced ones and if you are lucky, you actually get a proper one with a little flask to make more than 2 cups. 

This just means more work for me because I’ll need to constantly refill the machine to make hot water cup by cup if I want to make anything more than a cup of tea. 

Hence, if you only have a coffee maker as in picture above, you can make the following in the hotel room:

Half/ Soft Boiled Eggs

This is a satisfying Singaporean/Malaysian breakfast where its usually paired with our local coffee or tea with Kaya toasts.  You may be able to buy Kaya which is a coconut+eggs+sugar kind of jam (trust me its yummy) from any Asian supermarket particularly those that carries Singaporean and Malaysian products.     

You’ll need:  1 small egg (small eggs cook faster), a cup and a coffee maker/kettle.

Steps: 

  1. Put 1 egg in a cup of hot water (made from the coffee maker/kettle) to sit for 3 mins.
  2. Repeat this step twice with the same egg in a fresh cup of hot water.
  3. Add soya sauce or salt with pepper to taste.   

Do not put 2 eggs in one cup at a time because the heat from a cup of water will not be sufficient to cook both eggs.  The egg white should be white and semi solid while the egg yolk’s consistency is a little more sticky and oozes out slowly when broken.  OooOoOoO…

If you want boiled eggs, you’ll need to repeat and make fresh hot water for a total of 6-7times.

Couscous with vegetables

I’ve never had couscous in my life till I went to Perth Australia to hang out with my best friend.  She made couscous one day and it was the easiest thing ever!

You’ll need: 

  1. 80 grams of dry couscous or the flavoured ones – Parmesan cheese couscous are my favourite!  For that you use half a pack of couscous with half the seasoning.
  2. A plastic container (see my starter kit)
  3. A fork or spoon.
  4. Broccoli and carrots; cut them into small pieces so that its easier to cook.
  5. Coffee maker/Kettle to make hot water.

Steps:

  • Put broccoli and carrots into plastic container with enough hot water to cover them.  Cover and leave it for 3 mins
  • Pour away the water, add the couscous and add about 150ml of hot water (estimated about 3/4 cup of water).  Add seasoning if provided.  Cover and let it sit for 5mins. 
  • Fluff the couscous with a fork. 
  • For plain couscous, add salt and pepper to taste.  Add Shichimi (a spicy Japanese condiment) for the extra Oomph!  

In case you are wondering, you can leave the vegetables in the same container when cooking the couscous or you can empty them into a cup temporary and cook the couscous in the plastic container separately. 

Happy cooking!

January 13, 2011 at 7:45 am Leave a comment

Proof on Main, 21C Museum and Hotel

Went to this funky looking bar for a drink when we were in Louisville KY a few weeks ago… a nice change from the usual irish pubs and pubs!  Hahaha…  Psychedelic seal head and arty abstract horse heads hung on the walls with big red penguins at random corners of the whole establishment. It has a nice expensive feel to it (well the prices of the drinks tells it all!) and its part of a Museum and Hotel all in the same building.  Even the efficient waitress who attended to us looked really interesting; long dreads, black tight vest with a black flare above-the-ankle length big skirt and a fascinating accent and voice.  I couldnt stop giving her all my attention whenever she came to us. 

The museum houses interesting looking collections from photographs to paintings to sculptures and video projections.  The hotel lobby which is the entrance to the museum is nicely decorated with the art pieces as well.  You’ll probably not know that it’s a hotel when you walk in.  I was particularly interested in a video projection on the wall at the lift lobby.  Random letters falling from the top and land on your head, shoulders, arms, well basically on you.  You can try flick it move it up and down and that will keep you occupied while waiting for the lift!

January 12, 2011 at 10:24 pm Leave a comment


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