Archive for the ‘Good Pintentions’ Category

Zucchini Mushroom PastaThis recipe immediately caught my eye; there’s always been a special place in my heart (and stomach!) for pasta and mushrooms. A chance to have them both AT THE SAME TIME was irresistible.

First of all, this recipe only requires a few ingredients that I don’t usually have on-hand: zucchini, cremini mushrooms, and heavy cream. It made shopping for this dinner relatively painless, and anything perishable will happily keep in the fridge for a few days, in case you or your family decide on something else to eat that night.

That being said, once you do decide to whip this up, it’s stupidly easy and tastes incredible. I’ve made this dish twice now, and having recognized what I needed to refine after the first batch, the second batch was even better — and I didn’t think that was possible.

My tips and observations for making this ambrosia even incredible-er:

  • Use just 4 cups of water. It’s more than enough, and you don’t want to have to drain anything later.
  • When putting everything in the pot to boil, put the pasta in first, then the veggies.
  • Everything else will work its way down into the water once it starts boiling.
  • Don’t be afraid to add a little extra cream (if you tolerate dairy well).
  • If you’re cooking in a metal pot, transfer everything to a plastic bowl or non-stick pot before adding the Parmesan cheese; otherwise, it will all stick to the pot instead of the food. (This life lesson cost me some elbow grease.)

My conclusion:

   Eat this dish, and eat it often.  

This pin touts that shaving your legs with baby oil gel (or I suppose even regular baby oil) will make shaving a religious experience that will make your legs so soft and smooth that baby angels will follow you around singing hymns for a week.

OMG, you guys. This was the worst idea EVER. EH. VERR.

How was it horrible? Let me count the ways:

1. Baby oil gel is a bitch and a half to remove. You thought regular baby oil was bad? Oh, ho ho, my friend… You oil up your leg, then you can’t hold on to any bathroom fixtures — or even your razor.

2. The act of shaving your legs with baby oil gel on them will seriously gum up your razor. I had to use the hottest water my plumbing could produce along with the pulse setting on the shower head to clean that sucker out every few strokes.

3. Once that crap is flushed out of your razor, it sticks tenaciously to everything else, especially the walls and floor of the tub, and therefore the bottoms of your feet.

4. During and after shaving, my bathtub could have hosted the fucking IceCapades, y’all. No lie. I almost died.

5. There aren’t that many cleaners that will cut through that shit on their own. Be prepared to break out the big guns and a ton of elbow grease. Or you can just burn your house down and be done with it.

{Edited to add:}

6. I didn’t notice a huge difference after the fact. My legs were oily for a while afterward, and I was concerned about accumulating blanket fuzz and dog hair until the oil was completely absorbed. My legs didn’t feel noticeably smoother, and any moisturizing boost I may have gotten by using this method was short-lived. The end did not justify the means, by far!

My two cents?

   No. No, no no no, no no. No. Do not ever try this.   

Peter and I tried this a couple months ago, and here’s the rundown:

Inspired to kale chips, this recipe claims that a little olive oil, a few herbs, and some time in the oven will reveal the best thing since sliced bread: spinach chips!

I didn’t have and couldn’t find the McCormick Italian Herb Seasoning Grinder anywhere, so I made do with some generic Italian seasoning and a pinch of garlic powder. I tasted one of the leaves before I laid them out to bake, and OMG…amazing!! I couldn’t help but think that after baking, these babies would be unbelievably delicious and my taste buds would explode with joy.

I tasted the baked leaves, and…meh. I personally found the raw seasoned leaves MUCH tastier. After baking, the spinach leaves also became very thin and fragile, falling apart if you picked them up by anything but the stem and almost dissolving on your tongue as soon as you put them in your mouth. Eating them was actually a bit like eating seasoned air…kinda weird eating a pile of something so insubstantial.

My impression:

   A Big Ol’ “Meh”   

This is another of the first Pins I tried, because I love things that smell amazing. Basically, all you have to do is find a Downy Unstopables scent you like and sprinkle a small handful in an oil warmer. Pop in a lit tealight, and wait for the amazing smell to permeate your home.

I went with the pink “Shimmer” scent, since that’s what appealed to me the most in the laundry aisle at the supermarket. It has a nice sweet, heady floral scent that fills the air nicely when warmed.

The downside to this Pin, besides the fact that Downy apparently can’t spell “unstoppables,” is that you may experience some fallout from any sensitive pets you may have.

We have two guinea pigs that live on the ground floor, about 10 feet from where my oil warmer is stationed. Our little Mona did not do well when I was using this stuff every day — she stopped eating and became listless, which is crazy because she’s kind-of a spaz and normally eats like there’s no tomorrow.

Peter connected the dots and realized that she started not feeling well right about the same time I started doing this, and we agreed to put the kibosh on the Downy for a week and see if she bounced back. She did, so be aware that the critters you share your home with might not do so well with this Pin. I mean, it’s meant for the washing machine, not an oil warmer, so how good can it be for you or your pets to breathe in all the time, anyway?

My conclusion:

   Smells Good != Good For You   

I repinned this a few weeks back, and since then I’ve made two batches of these little beauties. They’re billed as “the fluffiest, chewiest, most amazing chocolate chip cookies —  all thanks to a very special ingredient.” And do you know what? They’re not wrong.

The “special ingredient” is corn starch, believe it or not, and it makes a heck of a difference. These cookies are airy and chewy, even after they’ve cooled, and if you catch one while it’s still warm from the oven, they are downright heavenly.

There’s not much more I can say about this recipe, except that I reduced the amount of corn starch in my second batch from 2 teaspoons to 1.5 teaspoons, and it improved the end result even more, in my opinion (and that of my official taste-tester, Peter).

My conclusion?

  Om nom nom nom!!