Obedient Ingredients

A place to put cooking ideas to the test.


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Homemade Bitters

This summer’s project is homemade bitters.

The best way I’ve seen bitters described goes something like this: You can have all of these great ingredients and amazing flavor combinations in a cocktail, but the addition of bitters makes you come back for me.

I’m not sure where I read that, but I enjoy the sentiment and agree; bitters in a cocktail add a depth to the drinking experience that is enticing.

I made four bitters:

  • House bitters
  • Coffee-Pecan
  • Charred Cedar
  • Apple

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Everything is taken from this great book by Brad Thomas Parsons called Bitters: A Spirited History of a Classic Cure-All with Cocktails, Recipes and Formulas. Check it out.

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Snacket Championship!

VS.

 To use one of my new favorite comments from you guys: “Valar snackghulis”

That’s right, Girl Scouts Samoas lost by 15.5% and White Cheddar Popcorn – which was NECK AND NECK for the past few days – lost only by 3.8%. Close races!

And heated emotions! Over snacks!!

You and your so-called “friends” and “loved ones” have until Sunday at midnight to vote for the winner (among other fun things) right here: http://goo.gl/forms/l8BYl2fkrm 

The winner of the 2015 Snacket will be announced on Monday, along with the winners of who came closest to predicting the champion (remember, no one picked the Final Four correctly. Only 18 out of 77 people guessed the final match-up correctly.)

 

I asked voters to share their dream match-ups. This is what some of them said:

I am making up my own – homemade oatmeal chocolate chip cookies vs. vermont cabot extra sharp cheddar cheese because WHY were neither of these in the snacket!? BOO.

Lime-salted chips from Chipotle vs. McDonalds Fries

Cheetos v. Nutella OR Reese’s Pieces

Oh it’s already happened. Girl Scout Cookie on Girl Scout Cookie. Epic. And the best cookie won for sure.

M&Ms vs. Movie Theater Popcorn

As a person who religiously eats 2-3 snacks for every meal, my dream match-up would be two contenders that complement each other. Like cheese and crackers vs veggies and hummos. Or reese’s peanut butter cups vs pretzels with vanilla ice cream. Then again I am the kind of person who makes sure no one gets left out of huggy-bear.

Cheetos (crunchy) vs. Tates Bakeshop chocolate chip cookies

I say we think big. Would you rather have access to all Kraft Products or all TJ products?

Cheetos or Oreos vs anything Reese’s. HOW WOULD ONE CHOOSE!?

TJ’s Dark Chocolate Covered Almonds with Sea Salt vs. Nutella

Peanut butter stuffed Oreos vs. Reese’s peanut butter cups

Ooh, this is tough. I definitely feel for Nacho Doritos, who simply got a tough draw this year. A pretty great match-up would be Reese’s mini PB cups v. Nacho Doritos, because those strike me as serious heavyweights in the sweet and salty regions. (Wait, did that match-up actually happen last year!?)

As for the polar opposite: dates (?!?!?!?!) vs. ants on a log, or whatever that celery-raisin abomination is called. Both teams should be banished forever and ever.

All of them in a smoothie vs. never eating again.

Blueberries vs. almonds. But seriously, there are so many criteria for best snack: taste, source of sustaining energy, ethics, health factor, etc. How can one choose? Also, the quality and type of apple from which the slices come makes a HUGE difference.

OMG, this question is too hard.

KFC Double Down vs. Deep-fried Oreos (AJ’s note: ….wat?)

 

 

More juicy comments:

I was going to boycott this vote because none of my snacks made it through until I ate a peanut butter cup that had been sitting in my office fridge since Halloween and realized just how good they are. Also had to vote for white cheddar popcorn because no fucking way am I going to let apples through. Fuck. That.

As the happy chompy mouse gif reminds me, why weren’t Ritz Crackers in this?

If apple slices with peanut butter win, everyone needs to rethink the definition of the word snack. What is this? An episode of the Biggest Loser? What are you trying to prove? People eat a ton of apples and peanut butter because that is a snack that satisfies your need to eat the “good” fats and “good” sugars, yet will never satisfy your stomach’s true craving.

I am upset by the lack of a cracker section. Also, as a snack I thoroughly enjoy cheese and not one single cheese made it on here. The closest respected option would be Cheez-It’s Party Mix but they weren’t even involved. They are LITERALLY a party in a box. I don’t see how string cheese, brie, mozzarella, etc did not make it here. I think the next bracket needs to expand to think of others.

Can we do a grilled cheese bracket? I think that’s a wonderful idea if you ask me. But who asks me? If I was to be asked… we could include condiments (i.e. soup, ketchup) that go with GC, the cheeses, additions (i.e. bacon, tomato)… you see where I’m going here.

SAMOAS ARE BAE ❤

White cheddar popcorn is trashy. The rest of the final four are so wholesome. This tournament is making me a snob.

My life is a lie. I have just learned that Samoas and Carmel Delites have been co-existing for decades and I never had a clue! They are NOT, in fact, the same cookie! Why? Why Girl Scouts? I knew I made the right choice by not participating in your cult-ish shenanigans way back in the Daisy days. I refused to wear that horrid jumper! Brown? Really? Who looks good in brown? The answer is NO ONE! While I would like Samoas to come out the victor, I feel betrayed.

We have to defeat Reese’s peanut butter cups. They are in no way a superior enough snack to deserve this much honor.

THINK OF ALL THE PEOPLE WITH PEANUT ALLERGIES. Voting for Reese’s is voting for possible death and the Epi Pen. Just saying.

Consoling myself re: Cadbury mini eggs’s loss by eating Cadbury mini eggs at my desk at 9:58 a.m…

 

Click on each of the regions to see the bracket to see how it went down or where it all went so, so wrong:

Snacket Champion Sweet Cookies & Other Snacket Champion Sweet Bite Sized Snacket Champion Salty Snacket Champion Healthy


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Creative Cocktail Challenge: Apples

First experiment in a long time! Happy almost-autumn, my favorite time of year.

I’ve been very busy getting curious and excited about cocktail making recently. This post will be the first of many, I hope, to showcase some of the things I’ve learned.

I’m participating in a group that comes together to test their skills in mixology by focusing on a certain theme. This challenge’s theme is apples. That means incorporating apples in any part of your drink.

In my excitement to dive into cocktail testing, I may have gone overboard. The following showcases my notes of exploration and eventually a drink I came up with that uses apples!

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