Every Monday night we have Family Night. We have a quick little gospel lesson with the kids, then an activity/game and treats. Each person takes turns with different assignments for the evening. One is the lesson, one gets to choose the activity and what treats to have, among a couple other assignments. It was Taylor's turn to choose the treats a couple weeks ago. And I asked him what he'd like to have and he said, "Gingerbread men" O---kay. I explained to him that those are something better in the winter around Christmastime. He didn't care and was pretty adamant about gingerbread cookies. So that morning, he and Sam helped me make the cookies.
I used this recipe from Allrecipes for Big Soft Ginger Cookies, as I read that some were making them into gingerbread men. I did have to add quite a bit of extra flour. It was suggested that you chill the dough if you're going to roll it out, but we didn't have time to wait for chilling, so I just added enough flour until the dough was good enough for rolling. (The recipe says to use margarine, but I used butter.)
Sammie chowed down on the cookie dough! I love how in this next picture you can see some flour on his nose.
Don't worry, Mom, he got a haircut last week. I haven't taken a decent picture of it yet, but it's the shortest it's been (although still curly!). I love his dirty bum in this picture and the back of his haircut with mussy hair.
That night for Family Night, everyone got to decorate their own gingerbread cookies.
Parker and Taylor went to town with all the candies and sprinkles I had for them to decorate with and I have no idea why they both chose pink sprinkles for the "pants" on their gingerbread men.
Scott wouldn't be in a picture with his cookie (surprise!), and for some reason his is holding a Halloween pumpkin. ???
Kevin went ALL OUT decorating the two cookies we made for him!
And my lovely little cookie. The only gingerbread girl of the bunch!
Our friends, Bob and Tes, went on a vacation and they always bring each of the kids and Kevin and I little souvenirs. I think this one might be one of the funniest things I've ever seen. It is a "Genuine Old Weather Rock". Here is what it says on the wood.
Place Unit Outside and Observe following
1. If the Rock is WET--it's raining!
2. If the Rock is WH"ITE--it's snowing!
3. If the Rock is moving back and forth--it's windy!
4. If the Rock is hard to see--it's foggy!
5. If the Rock is casting a shadow--it's sunny!
6. If the Rock is cold--it's cold out!
7. If the Rock is warm--it's warm out!
Your Old Weather Rock is Never Wrong!
That makes me laugh every time I see it or think about it!
Bob also gave us this cob of popcorn. Have you ever seen one of these?
We were a little skeptical that it would really pop.
The boys really got a kick out of this. Thanks, Bob and Tes!
Would ya look at this?
That is chocolate ice cream, my friends! Surprise, I told you there would be ice cream!
Into the freezer you go (although it was FABULOUS at this stage!)
What ice cream is that? Why it's David Lebovitz' Perfect Scoop, Philadelphia-Style Chocolate Ice Cream. Everytime I make another ice cream, it seems that I say it's the best I've ever had. Well, I'm tempted to say it again. I LOVED Dorie Greenspan's chocolate ice cream (custard style-with eggs). It is amazing in its own right--lots of great, dark chocolate flavor. But I've decided I like the non-egg kind of ice creams better than the eggy ones.
Chocolate Ice Cream, Philadelphia Style, by David Lebovitz, The Perfect Scoop
adapted ever so slightly by Katrina
2 1/4 cups heavy cream
6 tablespoons unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
1 cup sugar
pinch of salt
6 ounces Hershey's Special Dark chocolate, chopped (wow, I just realized David's recipe says unsweetened chocolate and I thought it was just supposed to be bittersweet!)
1 cup whole milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Whisk together the cream, cocoa powder, sugar, and salt in a large saucepan. Heat the mixture, whisking frequently, until it comes to a full, rolling boil (it will start to foam up). Remove from the heat and whisk in the chocolate until it's completely melted, then whisk in the milk and vanilla. Pour the mixture into a blender for 30 seconds, until very smooth.
Chill the mixture thoroughly in the refrigerator (I like putting it in a bowl and then in an ice bath until the mixture is cold, then refrigerate.) I didn't churn mine in the ice cream maker until the next day and I think that made it even better! Freeze it in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions.
This ice cream was so perfectly scoopable after about two hours in the freezer and what I like about it is that it never got hard as a rock after being in the freezer for a couple days. The mix-in possibilities for this chocolate ice cream are endless!
That'll have to be all for now, but I've got more, Folks! (I also made DL's Chocolate Sorbet--delish--super rich and I can only eat a little bit at a time. I actually haven't even really eaten much of the chocolate ice cream because the sorbet is a lot lower in fat and cures my chocolate cravings. I usually just taste these ice creams when I clean out the ice cream maker bowl.)
Come on back!
Sam's nap today (Thursday)--in our bed. Um, let's not have this be a new trend, Buddy! ;)