10 Pound Cake, Beardless Berries and Chocolate Syrup
- I’m gross
Let’s just get this part out of the way. Remember the cake I said I threw together two nights back? Turns out, baking is a science and willy-nilly won’t cut it. The cake tasted like a 10 pound biscuit with Tammy-Fae Baker butter slathered over the top. The boys liked it, but it is hard to find something sugary that they won’t eat.
I learned a trick today! Yellow banner berry man at the farmers market told me to not wash my berries until I am ready to eat them. He says that at his house they layer strawberries on paper towels in a container and refridgerate. If you wash all your berries first and then refridgerate, they grow mold much quicker. Maybe they just take in too much water that speeds up bacteria growth? Not sure.
A half flat of conventional berries is $8 at the farmers market. This is very comparable to most grocery stores, but the berries are so much sweeter. Plus, buying from a farmer keeps local farms in business.
I took the long way home from the beach a couple weeks ago and cruised through some farming towns. I could never be a field farmer, that life would suck! I truly pray that the men and women who work the fields in California enjoy their lives, they work so hard for such little money.
The third topic of the afternoon, chocolate syrup!
We stopped at Whole Foods this morning to grab some sugar and corn starch (for pudding). I was tempted to buy a bottle of their chocolate syrup, which was organic and looked fancy. It was a mere $3.99 for their brand or $5.99 for the kind with the polar bear on the bottle. Pass!
Then I remembered reading this post about making your own syrup, sans-Xanthan Gum, Soy Lecithin and high price. A bottle of homemade Hershey’s-esque chocolate syrup should run you about .80 cents. Yeah, I am serious.
Here’s the recipe:
Homemade Chocolate Syrup
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 cup water
2 cups sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt
Mix the cocoa powder and water in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add sugar and bring to a boil. Boil for 3 minutes – watch it carefully and adjust the heat so it doesn’t boil over! Turn off the heat, add the salt and vanilla extract and stir to mix. Let it cool and store in your refrigerator.
*Let me add a quick note of DANGER here. The recipe notes that you should not let the syrup boil over. Let’s talk about that.
Have you ever tried to make candy at home or heard about people who have? Do you remember that sugar and water together can boil like a sweet pot of lava on your stove? Boiling sugar BURNS skin, big time. Be careful! When my pot reached boiling temp, I didn’t have enough time to take a photo before I started panicking. It boils up so fast!
Oh, I forgot to tell you that this syrup is going into my homemade frap later today. Of course I ran out of coffee yesterday (groan, eek, help, etc.) and will need to get some more this afternoon for my expirement.