[FHCx75] National Pears Hélène Day


We just cannot get enough of Auguste Escoffier, it seems. Whoever designed the food holiday calendar definitely had this guy in mind, considering that we’ve had 3 holidays in 3 months – and there’s another next week – of dishes he invented!

This time around, Escoffier put together a dessert to celebrate an operetta by Offenbach, “La Belle Hélène,” about Helen of Troy and Paris. You know, face launching ships and all. But the key to Offenbach’s style was satire/parody, which I guess appealed to our french Chef of the day. He just couldn’t stop naming dishes after things that he liked, but I would imagine that his wife probably wouldn’t like him naming so many things after other ladies…

Anyway, poire belle hélène is very, very similar to Peach Melba. You poach some fruit in vanilla-y syrup and then serve over ice cream. Only this time, the fruit is pears, and the sauce is chocolate.

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SP is a fan of the Anjou pear

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This ice cream is less than half of the calories/points of others and is still really tasty. It’s still full-fat, just not with added sugar.

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Et voila

They were pretty good. We think we like the raspberry sauce on peaches better than chocolate on pears. And maybe SP‘s poaching left something to be desired, but it just didn’t achieve the level of awesome that we expected. I guess we’ll just have to travel to France and have a descendant of Escoffier make some stuff for us.

Tomorrow is National Artichoke Hearts Day!


[FHCx61] National Peanut Butter Lover’s Day/National Fruit Compote Day

Time to go dig through the compost…


We already talked about peabnut bubber. It was overshadowed by Lobster Thermidor. And for the people who just couldn’t get enough of peanut butter, the folks at Peanut Butter Lover’s Day have created a second holiday after just 5 weeks to re-celebrate peanut butter.

Rather than re-hash our last peanut butter adventure, we wanted to address the elephant in the room of springtime:

Girl Scout Cookies.

Yeah, they go door to door and you’ve rehearsed all your lines but gosh DARNIT there is no way out. You think “Maybe I’ll just offer a donation to the troop” or you’ll tell them you already bought a box from some other little green person. Well such happened but it’s easy when you know the good hiding spots. AK still doesn’t know where SP keeps the GSCs and SP has not snuck a single one outside of AK‘s presence since purchase.

People go on about Thin Mints or Samoas, and more specifically how in some places the cookies are made differently and go by different names. Samoas vs Caramel deLites? Honestly, Girl Scouts of America, who thought Caramel deLites was easier to say or more fun at all?

And why the hell did Tagalongs become this monstrosity?

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Oh well. Still tasty.

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Dark orb of chocolate peanut butter

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How AK prefers to eat hers

SP was tasked with making fruit compote for today. For him, the food is a reminder of Passovers of years past, where a certain relative just could not bring herself to eat the fruit compote. Family inside jokes, am I right?

From a Weight Watchers recipe, SP made this:

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1 Honeycrisp apple, 1 Anjou pear, 1/4 cup dried cranberries, cinnamon, nutmeg, brown sugar

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1 more apple, 1 more pear, water

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Orange zest and segments of a Sumo Mandarin, 1 more pear, 1/4 cup more cranberries

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AK doesn’t like the texture of cooked fruit. This “food texture hypersensitivity” is apparently a real thing, much to SP‘s chagrin. Despite this, we both enjoyed it and compared it to the insides of a fruit pie. And for very, very low points. Unlike most compotes, this doesn’t include a cup of sugar to make a very thick syrup. The fruit itself was the best part, as Honeycrisps and Sumos are non-negotiable staples of the SPAK home.

Tomorrow is Banana Cream Pie Day! I’ve been waiting all year for this.