You know, I’ve had this blog going for almost 2 years, and I have yet to present a giveaway. I feel left out, I feel cheap, I feel like the kid in the lunchroom with the sandwich that will no one will trade for. OK, that’s overreacting to the 100th degree. Let’s just say that I have tons and tons of goodies, most of which I’ll never use, that I’d like to share with you all.
Well, I’ll get to that part after I touch on these luscious, decadent buttermilk puddings with a strawberry-red wine sauce, and fresh, succulent berries. The pudding sounds really fattening, doesn’t it? I mean, some perceive buttermilk to be loaded with butter -but it’s not. It’s the sour liquid that remains after the butterfat has been removed from whole milk or cream by churning when making butter. However, most commercial buttermilk is now produced by other means, mainly cultured – aka cow’s milk with lactic acid bacteria added to it.
Alright enough with the scientific mishmash. This pudding tastes like cheesecake – I mean it, creamy, rich cheesecake pudding, but again..it’s not..it’s actually low in fat, and even lower if you use low fat milk! I had half a quart of buttermilk left from some muffins I made (coming soon) and I’m so bad when it comes to buttermilk – a certified buttermilk ‘waster’. I buy it for one recipe (yes, I know, milk plus lemon juice or vinegar, but sometimes I feel like using something that is what it is), then it sits in the back of my fridge until it becomes it’s own life form..bacteria babies multiplying like bunny rabbits, then starting their own families, and so on and so forth.
When I dare to look, it’s actually moving and chunky. One sniff and well, I don’t think I need to elaborate any more than that. Down the drain it goes, with a teeming shower of steaming hot water to melt the chunky parts. Have I grossed anyone out yet? It wasn’t my intention, but if you ask anyone who knows me, I’m not one to hold back when it comes to saying what’s on my mind..chunky bits or not.
Darn shiny glasses and fake lighting – couldn’t avoid the glare.
With that said, this time I wasn’t going to waste the damn buttermilk. I surfed to epicurious.com, typed in buttermilk, and this was the first recipe that came up. Usually, I need to sift for a while, but nope, this was right up my alley, especially after all the rich holiday food still clogging every artery, organ, pore etc. I was not disappointed – you have to try these, and it’s truly, truly nowhere near as fattening as it tastes. INDULGE!
Now to the fun part – my GIVEAWAY – YAY! I’m starting slow, as I don’t want to overdo it since it’s my first one. This isn’t stuff sent to me by a company to plug, this is from my humble, little kitchen. It’s simply something I want to give away because, well, friends and family give me a lot of food and kitchen related stuff as gifts, and as mentioned above, I’ll never use it all…so who better to pass it on to than my fellow food fanatics?
To put it simply, most of my giveaways will be akin to you coming over and while we chat, eat, cook/bake, play Twister, whatever, I keep piling stuff on you
“Here, take this, you’ll love it!”. ..”Oh, look, 10 different kinds of flavored oils, 9 of which I’ll never use..take them..please!”.
Granted, everything is brand spanking new..I’m not one of those types. I once worked with a woman who actually saved half a sub sandwich she didn’t eat (2 days old), a little nibble off the corner, and brought it into work to pawn off on someone because she didn’t like to waste food. If Wordpress had a disgusted/WTH?? emoticon, you’d see it right HERE. That was the look on all of our faces when she decided we were no different than her dog.
OK, onto the haul. I have enough panko breadcrumbs to bread enough food to feed almost all of Manhattan..seriously – SO, one, lucky reader..please take these! Oh, here’s the cool part..they’re flavored panko, fusion panko! We’ve got South West panko, Garlic panko, and Teriyaki panko..a three pack – NO mustard or plain. Just leave a comment and I’ll use that random integer thingamahjig to choose a winner. The winner will be announced one week from today. By the way, this is not just limited to the USA..I will ship anywhere in the world. Fair is fair, and whatever number comes up is where it goes!
Adapted from Gourmet Magazine via Epicrurious.com
- 1½ teaspoons unflavored gelatin
- 1 cup whole milk, divided
- ½ vanilla bean, split lengthwise
- 6 tablespoons sugar
- 1 cup well-shaken buttermilk
- ¼ cup dry red wine *
- ¼ cup water
- 3 tablespoon sugar
- 1 (3-inch) strip lemon zest
- 1 (3-inch) strip orange zest
- 1 Turkish or ½ California bay leaf
- 1 cup quartered strawberries
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 2 cups mixed berries (I used raspberries, blackberries and blueberries)
- Have ready 4 (6-to 8-ounce) bowls or wide glasses
- Sprinkle gelatin over ¼ cup milk in a small bowl and let soften 1 minute.
- Scrape seeds from vanilla bean into a small heavy saucepan and add pod. Add remaining ¾ cup milk and sugar and bring just to a boil over medium heat, stirring until sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat. Add gelatin mixture to hot milk mixture, stirring until dissolved. Quickly chill in an ice bath, stirring occasionally, until cold but not thickened, about 5 minutes.
- Stir in buttermilk, then strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a large glass measure, discarding solids. Pour into bowls and chill until set, at least 8 hours.
- Bring wine, water, sugar, zests, and bay leaf to a boil in a small heavy saucepan over medium heat, stirring until sugar has dissolved, then boil until reduced to about ⅓ cup, about 10 minutes.
- Add strawberries and simmer 5 minutes. Discard zests and bay leaf, then puree strawberry mixture in a blender until smooth (use caution when blending hot liquids). Force through clean fine-mesh sieve and discard solids. Stir in tablespoon of lemon juice.
- Chill sauce, stirring occasionally, until cold, about 1 hour.
- Spoon sauce over puddings and top with mixed berries.