Jolly Rancher

16 Feb 19
Girl Meets Turkey

Happy holidays from Athens (again!)…

16 Feb 19
The Holocron

“I hate you,” She mumbled under her breath. He glanced sharply at her in the passenger seat.  She shrunk into her seatbelt under his gaze.  “Excuse me?” She stared intensely at the glove compartment, gathering her resolve. “I said I HATE YOU!”   A jarring lurch forward pushed her safety belt into her waist and […]

16 Feb 19
Camelot Wine and Spirits

Skittles, starburst, gummy bears? Not something you’d typically expect to find in a liquor store, but there’s a growing trend of infusing alcohol with popular candies, so we’ve stocked a variety of different options (and are adding all the time). If you haven’t tried infusing yet, read on! Vodka is the most common spirit for […]

15 Feb 19
F3 Louisville

10 PAX turned out to get better ITG. Temp was nearly perfect at 45 degrees, but the wind was constant and provided zero relief. YHC promised no running. Without running what else could we do for 45 minutes? Easy…Grinder PT COP – Various warm-ups SSH, Kendra Newman, Merkins, Squats THANG – Grinder SSH – 30 […]

15 Feb 19
life of a doctor's wife

My ten-day challenge is over and I am in a very gleeful mood, fueled by Reese’s peanut butter hearts and pasta. I feel a little high, honestly. I don’t think I rebound-sugared this way after my No Sugar Month last year. Perhaps I need more than ten days to feel settled in the No Sugar Lifestyle. […]

15 Feb 19
Sixteen Paws

Producer: Schloss Biebrich Location: Germany Year: No Vintage Type: Rose Sparkling Price estimate: $8 (Trader Joes) Tasting notes: Pale salmon in color with effervescence and fine bubbles. Not a lot of aroma on the nose, some subtle strawberry is present. Really fine bubbles on the palate. Notes of strawberry, white grape and peach. (Bob got […]

15 Feb 19
smokypeat

L’Encantada – Les Bidets – 35 Year Old – 1982 – Cask No. 003 – K&L Selection – Bas Armagnac – Review | 47% (94 Proof) Color/Appearance: Orange-ish red. Standard amber for Armagnac. Though for thirty-five years old this is sort of light looking. Maybe moved to less reactive casks at some point. Lets talk […]

15 Feb 19
Stilll Walking Martha Home

This will be my first Annual Conference in 15 years without having to “work” every minute. As I packed my car today, I was remembering some of the interesting, unexpected things that happened behind the scenes, things that most people never knew anything about, or had any idea went into Annual Conference planning and execution. […]

14 Feb 19
Twin Cities
May we have a show of hands: Who thinks chocolate is the best flavor in the dessert world? Now, who thinks caramel is the best? Not as many hands in the air, but mine is one of them. While chocolate is perfectly nice — and we’ll be seeing plenty of it during this sentimental season — caramel is the truly sensual treat. Tawny-gold and glossy, a good caramel sauce starts sweet and finishes just short of bitter. For me, bitterness is the key. That edge prevents caramel from being cloyingly sweet, which is a common hazard, as it’s pretty much pure sugar, and it seduces you into taking just one more taste. Beyond the luscious factor, another brilliant aspect of caramel is its simplicity. Anyone can make it anywhere, because for the most basic sauce, all you need is sugar, heat and a final liquid. And while I do add salt and vanilla extract … and, OK, few chunks of butter, caramel’s complexity comes from chemistry. Let’s look at the basic process: Boiling, melting, burning (almost), enriching. Boiling. This involves evaporating all the water in the sugar to yield pure sucrose that can get hot enough to melt. Paradoxically though, when I make caramel, I begin by adding water to the sugar. This method, called a “wet” caramel, takes a few minutes longer but ensures a more even caramelization. For the “dry” caramel method, you simply heat the sugar in an empty pan until melted and caramelized. It’s quick and direct, but the risk is that some parts of the sugar melt faster than others, and can burn before the rest had made it even to light amber. The way to make the dry method work is to swirl the melting sugar gently and strategically for a uniform result. For either method, choose a pot with a heavy base to help prevent hot spots and one whose sides are high enough to contain the caramel sauce as it bubbles during cooking. Please be aware that caramel at all stages is sticky and beyond hot, so be super careful as you go. Make sure your shoelaces are tied. Melting. During this phase, you’ll be jousting with the forces of crystallization. As the sugar liquefies, a crystal can reform at any moment and begin a domino effect which, before you know it, will produce a chunky mess. You may discover many techniques for avoiding crystallization, including cooking with the lid on to create steam to dissolve sugar crystals; sluicing the inside walls of the pot with a water-soaked pastry brush to wash down any crystals; and never letting a spoon come close to the initial sugar syrup. I’ve tried all the tricks, and while crystallization is rare with any sugar method, it occasionally happens no matter. Hence, I don’t stress about it. If you see that your sugar syrup is starting to look like a pond covering over with ice, don’t worry. Keep cooking it. Those new crystals will eventually melt again and start behaving. Burning/not burning. Once the melting begins, good things occur. Your granulated sugar, or sucrose, breaks down into glucose and fructose, which then recombine to form hundreds of new compounds including three called caramelan, caramelen and caramelin. All the newly developed molecules contribute specific flavor notes to the complex caramel profile, including nutty furans, buttery diacetyl and toasty maltol. Toffee,anyone? Once it starts, the caramelization process moves very fast and is irreversible. If you cross the line into truly bitter, you can’t go back. This just means you need to have your liquid enriching ingredient, which will cool down the sugar, measured and ready to deploy. And you must pay attention as you cook, using both sight and smell as your guides. You may not achieve your personal caramel perfection the first time you make the sauce, because, unfortunately, you can’t taste for doneness (do NOT be tempted to swipe your finger through the hot caramel for an exploratory lick). So perhaps err on the lighter side until you’re comfortable with finding that edge. If you decide that your finished caramel sauce is too sweet, you can always cook another 1/4 cup of sugar to a darker stage and whisk your sauce into it, for a boost of bitter. Visually, you should strive for a very deep amber color, like that of strong iced tea. The aroma will go from cotton-candy sugary to nutty with a tiny bit of burnt sugar; the latter is the moment to stop the temperature climb by adding liquid. Enriching. Most caramel sauces and confections use cream for this, but there’s no law saying dairy has to be involved. I make a citrus-juice caramel sauce that is truly yummy, though the flavor’s more Jolly Rancher than Sugar Daddy. Once you’ve got your liquid caramel, it’s time to enrich and customize the flavor. The classic additions are cream, vanilla and salt (yes, even before “salted caramel” became a thing, most of us were adding salt to our caramel). But creme fraiche instead of cream, a splash of dark rum and a drop of almond extract, are all delicious options. I like to finish my caramel sauce with butter, to lock in the most unctuous, satiny texture. Caramel sauce keeps quite well in the refrigerator, for up to a month, and it freezes just fine in a zip-top freezer bag for about three months. GO-TO SALTED CARAMEL SAUCE Makes 1 cup. 1 cup sugar 1/4 cup water 3/4 cup heavy cream or creme fraiche 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, or more as needed 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract, or more as needed 1 tablespoon cold, unsalted butter Combine the sugar and water in a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir a lot at first to dissolve the sugar. Once it is dissolved, boil, undisturbed, until it begins to turn light golden. At this point, the water has cooked off and the sugar is starting to caramelize. Continue cooking, carefully swirling the pan a bit so the caramelizing is even, until the syrup is a deep amber color, like the color of a strong iced tea; this should take between 8 and 12 minutes. This process goes very fast, so watch closely. You might see the tiniest wisps of smoke coming from the syrup, too. Remove from the heat. Immediately add about 1/4 cup of the cream. The mixture is going to bubble and create a lot of steam. The caramel might seize up; this is all okay. Add the remaining heavy cream or creme fraiche. Return the pan to the stove top, over medium-low heat; cook for 3 or 4 minutes, stirring with a whisk or heatproof flexible spatula until smooth and slightly thickened. Add the salt and vanilla extract. Taste a cooled-off sample, and adjust with more salt or vanilla extract as needed. Finish by whisking in the butter. Serve warm or cool; the sauce thickens as it cools, so to make it more pourable, just warm it up a bit. OH MY DARLING CLEMENTINE CARAMEL SAUCE Oh My Darling Clementine Sauce (Photo by Tom McCorkle for The Washington Post) Makes 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons. 1 cup sugar 1/4 cup water 3/4 cup fresh strained clementine or tangerine juice (from about 6 clementines or 3 tangerines) 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, or more as needed 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract, or more as needed 1 tablespoon cold, unsalted butter (optional; see headnote) 1/2 teaspoon orange blossom water (optional) Combine the sugar and water in a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir a lot at first to dissolve the sugar. Once it is dissolved, boil, undisturbed, until it begins to turn light golden. At this point, the water has cooked off and the sugar is starting to caramelize. Continue cooking, carefully swirling the pan a bit so the caramelizing is even, until the syrup is a deep amber color, like the color of a strong iced tea; this should take between 8 and 12 minutes, and the process goes very fast, so watch closely. You might see the tiniest wisps of smoke coming from the syrup, too. Remove from the heat. Immediately add about 1/4 cup of the clementine juice and stir for a few seconds. The mixture is going to bubble and create a lot of steam. The caramel might seize up; this is all okay. Add the remaining juice. Return the pan to the stove top, over medium-low heat; cook for 3 or 4 minutes, stirring with a whisk or heatproof flexible spatula until smooth and slightly thickened. Add the salt and vanilla extract, taste a cooled-off portion, and adjust with more salt or vanilla extract as needed. Finish by whisking in the butter, and then the orange blossom water, if using either or both. Serve warm or cool; the sauce thickens a bit more as it cools. BOTH CHOCOLATE AND CARAMEL SAUCE Both Chocolate and Caramel Sauce. (Photo by Tom McCorkle for The Washington Post) Makes 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons. 3 ounces good-quality milk or dark chocolate, chopped into pea-size pieces 1/2 cup sugar 2 tablespoons water 3/4 cup heavy cream or creme fraiche 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, or more as needed 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract, or more as needed 2 tablespoons cold unsalted butter Put the chocolate into a medium stainless-steel or nonreactive bowl. Combine the sugar and water in a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir a lot at first to dissolve the sugar. Once it is dissolved, boil, undisturbed, until it begins to turn light golden. At this point, the water has cooked off and the sugar is starting to caramelize. Continue cooking, carefully swirling the pan a bit so the caramelizing is even, until the syrup is a deep amber color, like the color of a strong iced tea; this should take between 8 and 12 minutes, and the process goes very fast, so watch closely. You might see the tiniest wisps of smoke coming from the syrup, too. Remove from the heat and immediately add about 1/4 cup of the heavy cream or creme fraiche and stir for a few seconds. The mixture is going to bubble and create a lot of steam. The caramel might seize up; this is all OK. Add the remaining cream. Return the pan to the stove top, over medium-low heat; cook for 3 or 4 minutes, stirring with a whisk or heatproof flexible spatula until smooth and slightly thickened. Add the salt and vanilla extract. Pour the hot caramel sauce over the chopped chocolate. Let it sit for 30 seconds or so, and then start whisking to encourage the chocolate to melt evenly. Taste a cooled-off portion and adjust the flavor with more salt or vanilla extract, as needed. Finish by whisking in the butter. Serve warm or cool; the sauce thickens as it cools, so to make it more pourable, just warm it up a bit. [related_articles location=”left” show_article_date=”false” article_type=”automatic-primary-tag”]
14 Feb 19
Marissa McCardell Journalism

Oxford Sip as well as other similar businesses throughout the nation are making their way from coast to coast, allowing customers to enjoy dessert tasting flavors, but without the sugar and extra calories.   Owners of Oxford Sip opened doors of the at 1537 University Ave. business this past September. Since then, they have found […]

13 Feb 19
ByranCito

I’m sorry I’ve been away for a while. It’s been a combination of writers block and not being able to see.

13 Feb 19
The Social Experiment

By: Adam Gorman In recent years, it is widely accepted that rap music is becoming the newest emerging force not only in popular music, but in popular culture. In March of 2017, hip hop and r&b officially surpassed rock music as the most popular form of music in the United States in terms of total […]

12 Feb 19
MadameNoire

Learn when to splurge and when to save when it comes to your hair. Check out this list of ten products, all $10 or less, to keep your natural hair thriving on a reasonable budget.

12 Feb 19
The Swoon Society

The first time I had a cosmopolitan, I was at a trendy bar off Melrose Ave. called The Pearl. I was 25 and newly living in Hollywood. I felt so cool holding my oversized martini glass with the tart pink elixir, which tasted like a grown-up Jolly Rancher. I think I had four of them. […]