I LOVE coupons. It almost boggles my mind that company’s will give you money off their products or even free products. I follow a blog called Coupon Geek that lets me know about great samples and sales. She’s the one that clued me in to a Bath & Body Works coupon for a free small candle in the Pink Sangria or Island Colada. It’s only available today and tomorrow though. I also follow another couponing blog called Hip 2 Save which told me about a Wendy’s coupon for a free small order of their new fries. This one’s good til February 26, but I’ll probably use mine long before then. Wendy’s is one of my favorite fast food restaurants, and I think their new natural cut fries with sea salt are yummy! Don’t forget to get a 99 cent frosty to dip them in! I’ve also recently started using a program called Read It Forward. They let you enter to win preview copies of new books; of course, they’re hoping that you’ll spread the word and maybe even write some online reviews. However, they don’t require you to do anything to win except give them your shipping info and e-mail address. Amazingly, I was picked to get a free copy of the book Madame Tussaud. The description sounded like an interesting historical fiction about the lady famed for her wax museums. I’ll keep y’all posted when I get the book and what I think of it.
On to the fabulous food! So yesterday, I had a little belated-birthday, girl’s brunch with some of my friends, and we ate some yummy stuff. We had a clean-out-the-fridge quiche, which was delicious. I don’t actually have a recipe to share because my best friend and I kind of winged it. I’ll try to tell you what we did, though. She made a pie crust with flour and shortening. We sauted a good handful of mushrooms and wilted a couple handfuls of spinach into it. We put those on the bottom of the pie crust and sprinkled them with salt and pepper. For the egg filling, I whipped together 6 eggs, 1/3-1/2 cup of heavy cream (I didn’t measure because we just used what was leftover from making the scones.), salt & pepper, 8 pieces of crispy, chopped bacon (that we had already cooked in the oven), and a good handful of grated sharp cheddar. Then we cooked the quiche for about 30 minutes at 350 degrees. I’ve decided that I might need to make quiche fairly often since it was easy, filling, and Yummy!
One of my friend’s also made a delicious fruit salad. It was strawberries, grapes, and blueberries that she said she dressed with some sugar, lime juice, and -surprisingly- vanilla and then sprinkled with chopped pistachios. I would never have thought to put vanilla in the dressing but it really gave it a whole different quality that was awesome. Then for dessert we had Nigella Lawson’s Girdlebuster Pie. Her recipe is for a graham cracker crust with chocolate chips, filled with coffee ice cream, and topped with a homemade butterscotch sauce. I tweaked hers a little by filling it with 1/2 coffee ice cream and 1/2 chocolate ice cream (for my best friend who doesn’t like coffee) and by omitting the bourbon from the butterscotch sauce. Needless to say, it was amazing, though next time I might halve the amount of crust since I thought it was a little much. My only regret for the brunch is that I forgot my camera, so I couldn’t take pictures to show y’all how good everything looked. We must have been in a mushroom mood, because for dinner that night, my best friend and I and our husbands had mushroom and swiss burgers.
Girdlebuster Pie (from Nigella Christmas)
1 14 oz. box graham crackers
6 tbsp. softened butter
1/4 c. bittersweet chocolate chips
1/4 c. milk chocolate chips
1 qt. coffee ice cream
1 c. golden syrup (Though you can find this in many grocery stores nowadays, you could also substitute another liquid sweetener like honey, maple syrup, or corn syrup.)
1/2 c. brown sugar
6 tbsp. butter
1/2 c. heavy cream
1. Process the graham crackers, softened butter, and chocolate chips (both kinds) til it forms a damp clump. Press the crust into a 9 in. pie plate, forming a lip above the pan if possible. Freeze for about an hour. In the meantime, let the ice cream soften in the fridge.
2. Once the ice cream is softened and the crust hardened, spread the ice cream into the crust. Cover it with plastic wrap and re-freeze.
3. Put the syrup, brown sugar, butter, and a pinch of salt in a saucepan and let it melt over low-medium heat; then turn it up and boil it for 5 minutes. Turn it off and add the cream; mix in and let it cool. Once the sauce is cool but not set, pour the sauce over the ice cream and replace it in the freezer until you’re ready to serve.
Finally, I thought I’d tell you about a cute movie for a girl’s night. I recently watched The Nanny Diaries and really enjoyed it. Scarlett Johansson does a really good job and the movie’s plot is cute and well-written. It’s about Scarlett’s character, Annie, becoming a nanny to an upper east-side mom. Annie has to try to take care of her charge while dealing with the mom’s quirky requests and marital problems. Unfortunately, there was a mention of sex and a little cursing, but it didn’t dwell on it and was, overall, a funny movie.