[FHCx352] National Maple Syrup Day

IT’S NATIONAL MAPLE SYRUP DAY!

Someone had the grand idea of mining trees and eating tree goop. And then people decided that it worked really well on pastry-like breakfast foods. What could possibly go wrong?

We like maple syrup. SP probably more than AK, but we do like it. High sugar content and delicious flavor make for a good food, right? Even more of a fan than SPAK is SPom, who seeks out legit Grade B maple syrup. Wait, not Grade A? Isn’t A better than B?

NO!

Actually they’ve changed the demarcations and classifications of the grading of syrup. Used to be that Grade B just meant darker and bolder than the golden A. So to make it less confusing, the U.S. Department of Agriculture is now changing things up into 4 different kinds of Grade A syrup:

  • Grade A: Golden color with delicate taste
  • Grade A: Amber color and rich taste
  • Grade A: Dark color and robust taste
  • Grade A: Very dark and strong taste

Ok. That’s totally less confusing.

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Tomorrow is National Roast Suckling Pig Day. Been waiting for that one for quite a while!

-SPAK

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[FHCx333] National French Toast Day

In France it’s just called, “toast,” right?

IT’S NATIONAL FRENCH TOAST DAY!

Actually in French it’s called pain perdu, because you use “lost” (i.e., stale) bread to make this delicious treat. But considering how ancient the recipe is, over time we’ve learned that we can still use decent bread.

If we had our way, we would have made a special trip to The Buttered Tin in St. Paul because they make an unbelievably good Bananas Foster French Toast. Heck, SP would have settled for having his Jimmy Dean French Toast Griddler at breakfast like olden times before stores stopped carrying it. Instead, AK was kind enough to demonstrate the basics of making french toast.

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Add in the milk, cinnamon, and vanilla.

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Bread into egg mixture. The word AK used was “plorp.”

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Plorp the other side.

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Fry it up!

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Delicious eggy sweet bread.

In the scheme of things, most breakfast foods are equal in our minds. That is, pancakes/waffles/french toast. But depending on the quality, french toast can really be amazing.

Tomorrow is National Lemon Creme Pie Day!

-SPAK

[FHCx271] National Chocolate Milk Day/National Corned Beef Hash Day

IT’S NATIONAL CHOCOLATE MILK DAY AND NATIONAL CORNED BEEF HASH DAY!

Corned beef hash can be great or not great. Great is the kind you get from Mel’s Diner in San Francisco, or homemade by SPad. We chose not great (but still okay) from Hormel.

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We doctored ours up with some salt and pepper. And later, some ketchup.

But to help us sleep, some chocolate milk!

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Unfortunately, the sugar free syrup makes the milk look a bit more purple than brown…

Still a nice treat.

Tomorrow is National Strawberry Cream Pie Day and National Drink Beer Day!

-SPAK

[FHCx270] National Pancake Lovers Day

PAAAAAANCAAAAAAKES

IT’S NATIONAL PANCAKE LOVERS’ DAY!

For the first several years of his teaching career, SP had a particular morning routine. Breakfast had to be easy, tasty, filling but not too hefty, and fast to make. He used to regularly eat these Jimmy Dean French Toast Griddlers until the number of grocery stores that carried the item dwindled to zero. So what to do? Kodiak!

So now every week, SP cooks up some pancakes, puts a bunch in the freezer, and has them ready to microwave to warmth in the morning. He is most certainly a pancake lover. We love pancakes.

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The mix!

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Containers for pancakes!

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Brefes is served.

Tomorrow is National Chocolate Milk Day and National Corned Beef Hash Day!

-SPAK

[FHCx79] National Poultry Day/Maple Syrup Saturday/National Chocolate Caramel Day/National Corn Dog Day

HOW CAN THERE BE FOUR ON ONE DAY

IT’S NATIONAL POULTRY DAY AND MAPLE SYRUP SATURDAY AND NATIONAL CHOCOLATE CARAMEL DAY AND NATIONAL CORN DOG DAY, ALL AT ONCE!!

Well we combined at least two of these together. When I heard that poultry day aligned with the 3rd Saturday of March – Maple Syrup Saturday – my first thought was obvious:

Chicken and Waffles.

Specifically, the best Chicken and Waffles (hate all you want) that they serve over at Bulldog Northeast. They make these amazing sourdough waffles… but the magic is in the syrup and the chicken. The syrup is thyme-infused, which gives it a bit of that herby aftertaste that meshes well with the chicken. The chicken itself is crispy and delicious, and carries out the most important function of frying chicken which is to preserve moisture of the meat.

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As long as you’re at the Bulldog, do yourself a favor and order some Togarashi tots.

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Ughghhghhhhh

We walked away in a stupor trying to think of how the rest of the day could possibly match up. Well for our chocolate caramel fix, we ended up with Grandma Edna’s.

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Chocolate and caramel

It’s one of the best sweets combinations that we know. Like peanut butter and jelly is to sandwiches, chocolate and caramel are to the dessert world. We need more people like Grandma Edna!

Lastly, we had to celebrate Corn Dog Day. National Corn Dog Day takes place on the first Saturday of the NCAA tournament. We opted for a different direction than State Fair style, and got some corn dogs from Morningstar Farms, our favorite meatless product company.

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We did it! And now for the coma.

Tomorrow is Bock Beer Day (though you can’t buy alcohol on Sundays in MN) and Ravioli Day!

-SPAK

[FHCx71] National Eat Your Noodles Day/National Oatmeal-Nut Waffle Day

Eat those freakin’ noodles, already!

IT’S NATIONAL EAT YOUR NOODLES DAY AND NATIONAL OATMEAL-NUT WAFFLE DAY!

Whether we are talking about Italian or East Asian foods, noodles are incredibly important. As AK has an undying love for spaghetti, and Spaghetti Day could not ever be enough, we had to acquire more. So we went to the first place that came to mind on Noodles day… Noodles & Company!

 

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AK‘s spaghetti and meatballs, with her cute Haunted Mansion nails

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SP got the pad thai with chicken.

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The face of a man who needs more noodles

Noodles are great, and to have someone say “eat your noodles” makes it sound like this holiday might be difficult to celebrate. Hopefully you’ve found a way to eat your noodles, whether via the avenue de Macaroni and Cheese or by walking up Pho street. Or maybe you took der spaetzle boulevard?

For dinner we put together Oatmeal-Nut Waffles using our favorite Kodiak mix with some Quaker oats and chopped pecans. This is now the third holiday we’ve used Kodiak (after Blueberry Pancake Day and Pancake Tuesday) and this time it’s for waffles. Same kind of mix, and they make phenomenal waffles, too!

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1 cup of mix often makes more than 1 waffle. So in total we used 2 cups of mix, 2 cups of water, 1/4 cup of oats and 1/4 cup of pecans. Made 2.75 waffles.

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This waffle is about to be devoured.

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Delicious, fluffy interior.

We love this mix because it’s so incredibly good for you while maintaining how good it tastes. All the protein really helps keep you full as well. 380 calories for 1.375 full-size Belgian waffles? Yes, please. For comparison, an IHOP waffle is 500 calories. Doesn’t taste as good as Kodiak, either.

Tomorrow is National Baked Scallops Day!

SPAK

 

[FHCx39] Oatmeal Monday/National Molasses Bar Day

Hearty foods upon us!

TODAY IS [OAT]MEAL MONDAY AND NATIONAL MOLASSES BAR DAY!

First up, the oatmeal. Apparently Oatmeal Monday – the second Monday in February – was a creation of the “ancient Universities of Scotland” back in the 17th century. Students were fairly poor and their diet was fairly standard, and today’s holiday is an ode to them. Nowadays, those same universities won’t afford their students an Oatmeal Monday Holiday.

SPom made us some of her famous cranberry-maple crock pot oatmeal for today! You know when you get food from mom in one of these that you’re in for the good stuff.

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Depending on how much water you use to reheat it will of course change the consistency.

Quick ‘n dirty recipe:

  • 8 cups water
  • 2 cups steel cut oats
  • 2/3 cups dried cranberries (low sugar kind, please!)
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Throw it all in a slow cooker and cook on low for 6 hours. It’s amazing. You can throw a little brown sugar over the top if you wanna.

As for the molasses bars, AK took care of those. Not knowing much about molasses bars going into it, we weren’t sure what to expect. Taking a recipe from the interweb, we found that we had to start by boiling molasses and shortening together. Combining all the ingredients made a thick kind of sludge. Bake ’em and you’ve got a chewy molasses treat.

AK didn’t like them, as they were too chewy and not very sweet. SP loves molasses and it was a nice departure from decadence. Go try some of your own!

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SP is gonna take the rest to work tomorrow to share with coworkers. That’s usually the best way to keep baked goods from getting devoured in the house. It’s always hard to throw it away, but way easier to give it away to people who love free food. And for those of SP‘s coworkers who are also being weight-conscious, one bar won’t make much of a dent.

Tomorrow is a TRIPLE THREAT. International Pancake Day (Shrove Tuesday), Bagels and Lox Day, and Pizza Pie Day. Tune in tomorrow to find out how we’ll manage it all!

-SPAK