Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Alternate Reality

My sincere apologies to my 5 devoted fans out there for my long absence...

Well it has been an interesting week...
Wednesday night, after having some lovely friends over for dinner (where I prepared pork chops with onion marmalletta, roasted fingerling potatoes, sauteed broccolini with raisins and pine nuts, and a rosemary cornmeal cake with a candied balsamic drizzle- which made a lackluster dessert but a fabulous snack with tea the next day), I decided to browse on Craigslist to search for the ridiculously expensive high chair that I am wanting for baby Samuel. I then decided to force myself to stay awake a few more minutes to, on a whim, look through Craigslist's TV/Film postings. It was fate. Let me preface this with the fact that two days before, I called out (for the first time) to God/The Universe/Budda/The Magical Cat in the Sky that I was completely satisfied and at peace with myself, and ready to accept a new road/challenge/opportunity..... And there it was. FOX listed a posting for a new reality show to be called Master Chef hosted by Gordon Ramsey, and the audition would be Sunday. I. Couldn't. Sleep.

For the audition I would need to prepare a dish to be plated and presented to judges, and it would need served to the proper temperature. Lest I be forced to lug a cooler or purchase a warming bag, I knew instantly that I would create a Mississippi Mud Cake with Homemade Marshmallows. Wes, Baby Samuel, a Central Market bag carrying my heart and soul, and myself, left the house to make it to the Dallas audition. We stood in line for an hour in the crazy cold with what would end up being several hundred hopeful home cooks. I presented my slice of the cake with 3 fluffy white marshmallows cut in the shape of stars for garnish and dusted the white plate with powdered sugar. The novelty effect of the marshmallows was instant and the producer I spoke with seemed to light up during our brief conversation. He thanked me for coming in, and unsure of the casting proceedings, I wondered if it was all over before it began. I began packing up, and he came back. "See this man", he said pointing, "on your way out. He has your application." YES! YES!! YES!!! I made it to round 2... A Screen Test.

The next day (no food required), I went back to Dallas to The Melrose, with my mini fan club (Wes & Sammie), and waited anxiously in the lobby for the call to go on up. Walking into room 501 I felt great, and the two ladies with the questions and the camera seemed to genuinely enjoy their time interviewing me. I LOVED knowing their was a camera pointed at me and I must have a shot at the very least, because before I left they handed me a background check/workbook as thick as a dictionary to complete. Because they still have other cities to tour, no final decisions will go out until the beginning of February....

I am hopeful!!!


In a bowl sift together 1/4 cup cornstarch and 1/2 cup powdered sugar, set aside.

Pour 1/2 cup water into the bowl of a stand mixture and sprinkle 1 1/2 TBS gelatin over the water, whisk together and let soften for 5 minutes.

Whisk in 1/4 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp Cream of Tarter

Fit the mixer with the whisk attachment and beat on high till fluffy, 2-3 minutes.

Pour 1/2 cup water into a small saucepan and add 1 1/4 cups sugar and 1 TBS corn syrup. Place over medium-high heat and bring to a boil, cooking without stirring until the mixture reaches 250 degrees on a candy thermometer.

Turn the mixture on medium speed and drizzle the hot sugar syrup into the gelatin mixture, aiming between the beater and the side of the bowl, be careful it's very hot!

Increase the speed to medium high and whip the mixture until its white and thick, about 5 minutes. Add 1 tsp vanilla and beat until the mixture is cool, 20-25 minutes.

Line a 11x9 inch baking pan with foil and lightly coat with canola oil. Sift 1/4 cup of the sugar/cornstarch mixture into the pan and shake it to coat the sides.

Pour marshmallow mixture into the pan. Dip an offset spatula in cold water and use it to flatten the mixture down into the pan, making it even. Allow to sit for an hour to let a skin form on the surface. Dust with another 1.4 cup of the sugar/cornstarch mixture and let rest overnight at room temperature.

Dip a star shaped cookie cutter in powdered sugar and cut out your marshmallows, ENJOY!

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