...have hope and add more butter

Debbie on Acrylic by  Troy Hardin

Debbie on Acrylic by Troy Hardin

If absence makes the heart grow fonder you must love me like I love finding the last Little Debbie Swiss Cake Roll my mother used to hide for our school lunches. Again I apologize about the time since our last chat but as my dear friend Betsy Wetsy says, “$h!t got weird”.

In the world of food styling it has been a very busy month. My new landlord will breathe a sigh of relief reading that. I’ve been working mostly on videos, teaching the world how to build things like tacos and meatloaves with the help of far more attractive on air talent than I. However, I was recently told by a photographer that with the right lighting I have the hands of a Millennial Mom .So now there are some photos out on the interwebs of my oddly maternal hands preparing food for a photo shoot.

The rest of my time has been slaving away in my own kitchen. Sadly for the most part I’ve been craving fried egg sandwiches like Snookie craves a tan. I’ve found the most amazing Sourdough Sandwich Bread at Lund’s (my local grocer of choice). The bread is the perfect thickness and has just a hint of tanginess that leads you to hope that maybe Lund’s actually bought a San Francisco sourdough starter.

I start by covering every square inch of one side of the each slice with my own clarified butter that I like to keep on hand next to the stove top. On a VERY hot cast iron skillet I slap down the sourdough and let magic happen. Just like my cookies I look for that golden ring of happiness that sears itself onto the edge of the bread. That coupled with the most perfect shade of amber fried butter in the middle make an orgasmic crispy outer shell for this sandwich. While all this is going on, I quickly fry up two eggs (I wish I could say they were cage free, organic freethinking libertarian eggs but this Working Girl still needs to pay the rent so they are just normal large eggs).

Now the true secret to the perfect fried egg sandwich is the Hellman’s Mayonnaise. Don’t go thinking you can use Miracle Whip, which is neither a miracle nor a whip. It always looks a little gelatinous to me. While Hellman’s Mayonnaise (straight up regular Hellman’s, not reduced fat, not olive oil, not light) is manna from above. Slather that $h!t on both sides of the bread that are not golden brown. Don’t be shy either. Real mayonnaise is totally calorie free (enormous fake wink). 

By this point your egg should be done. Flip it a couple times to make sure you get the yolk to the runniness that you like. I’m sure I’ll lose some readers with that. Make sure it’s good and hot and the runny yolk is fine. Though sometimes I like a fully cooked yolk. Totally depends on the mood I’m in. Finally stand over the sink and eat it like you will never have one again. Eating it over the sink removes all calories and gives the illusion that you are super busy and only have time for the Businesswoman’s Special a la Romy and Michele’s High School Reunion (don’t act like you don’t know what I’m talking about). 

So two Sunday's ago I took a few minutes out of my morning to make myself and the roommate a hearty breakfast. We spent the previous night out with our friend Madam Butterfly and needed to carbo load for the day. A few days prior I worked on a job with a chef who had some leftover cinnamon rolls. The chef gave me a couple and suggested I let them sit for a few days to stale a bit. Then slice them in half, soak them in the usual French toast fashion and griddle them up. This was probably one of the best ideas that I have ever heard. So cinnamon roll French toast made, little piggy fingers fried up with a side of scrambled eggs with spinach made for a great start to our day of rest.

Oh I almost forgot. Neither I nor the roommate had maple syrup on hand. So I took some local honey and mixed in a little caramel flavoring. Super sweet. May have been a ‘betes nightmare. But tasted pretty damn good. 

Now a note on frostings:

I’ve had a few requests for my Swiss Meringue Buttercream Frosting. I will share it with you but warn you it is not for everyone. It requires a lot of patience and understanding (which it sometimes doesn’t like to reciprocate). In fact about 5 months ago I was making a batch and without my knowing a bit of yolk got into my meringue base. Some bakers/chefs will tell you that if you keep whipping the base that all the problems caused by the yolk will go away.I  kept whipping and giving it the attention that it needed but in the end the yolk caused too much damage to my meringue. As hard as it was, in the end I had to toss out my frosting base. This just proved to me that I am still learning and mistakes are inevitable. Below is the recipe I follow (I openly admit to stealing it from somewhere – I just don’t know from where). Also the directions are as if you have all the tools I use. You should.

Stolen Swiss Meringue Buttercream Frosting



Keep your new batch of buttercream covered on the counter for about a week if you’re not going to use it right away. Or you can freeze it. If you do freeze it, take it out at least one day in advance and allow to get to room temperature. Once it has softened it’s not going to look pretty. Give it a really good stir (again using those new Popeye arms) or put back into the stand mixer with whip attachment (don't be this guy).

So this was a super long post folks. I hope it makes up a little for my absence. And I will do my damnedest to be back in a week or so!