Now, I’m thrilled to introduce our special guest, Robin Newman, author of The Case of the Missing Carrot Cake.
Robin Newman has been a practicing attorney and legal editor, but she prefers to write about witches, mice, pigs, and peacocks. She lives in New York with her husband, son, goldfish, and English cocker spaniel.
In The Case of the Missing Carrot Cake, Captain Griswold and Detective Wilcox are two hardboiled policemice and MFIs—Missing Food Investigators. When Miss Rabbit’s carrot cake goes missing the day before her big party, Griswold and Wilcox must investigate a farm full of fun, colorful suspects—and it will take smarts (and a delicious dose of humor) to crack the case.
“A Tisket A Tasket What’s Inside My Basket?”
Today’s secret ingredient is Watermelon.
Here is a recipe for my “Red, White, and Blue Watermelon Salad.” I invented this recipe at my 4th of July cooking demo, and it turned out fantastic!
1 qt. blueberries
2 white peaches, diced
2 Creole tomatoes, diced
3 banana peppers, diced
1/2 large watermelon, sliced into 1 inch round slices
1 pt. yogurt cheese
1/2 tsp. jalapeño, minced
3 tbsp. basil, chopped (I used a mix lemon basil, blue basil, and Christmas basil)
1 tsp. lemon thyme
In a large bowl, mix together blueberries, peaches, Creole tomatoes, and banana peppers. Place enough of the mixture to cover a whole slice of watermelon. In a smaller bowl, mix together yogurt cheese, jalapeño, and herbs. Drizzle yogurt cheese dressing on top of fruit mixture. Cut watermelon salad into slices like pizza. Serves many.
“Figure Out This Food!”
I have a game on my Facebook page called “Figure Out This Food.” I post a close-up of a food item and the first three guesses get a shout-out here. Congratulations to Shannon Breaux, Betsy Sanders Long, and Stacey Lewis for guessing “Figs.”
It’s Snacktivity Time! Here, I give you fun easy breezy snack ideas. Today’s Snacktivity is… “Oven-Steamed Fresh Corn.” This is a foolproof way to make perfect corn every single time.
4 ears fresh corn on the cob, in husk
A sink full of water
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Soak corn, inside husk in a sink full of water for 30 minutes. Roast in oven for 40 minutes. Peel husk and serve. Serves 4.
This is a recipe for “Mollie Katzen’s Carrot Cake.” This recipe is courtesy of Robin Newman. It’s from her book, The Case of the Missing Carrot Cake.
This is an easy cake that is very moist.
You can have fun grating a peeled, fat carrot on a hand grater for this, if you’re careful to watch your knuckles. You can also have someone help you safely grate a carrot with a food processor (grating attachment) or simply buy carrots already grated.
You will need four bowls for this. Make sure they are big enough so you can enjoy mixing without worrying about spills. Unwrap the butter up to an hour ahead of time and place it directly in the bowl to soften.
Non-stick cooking spray
1/2 c. (1 stick) butter, softened in a big bowl
1 c. (packed) light brown sugar
2 lg. eggs
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 1/2 c. (packed) grated carrots
6 tbsp. buttermilk
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (or 325 degrees, if using a glass pan) and spray a 6 X 9-inch baking pan (or its equivalent) with nonstick spray.
Begin beating the butter with an electric hand mixer on medium speed. After about a minute, sprinkle in the sugar and beat at medium speed again, until the sugar is all mixed in.
Break one egg into a bowl and slide it into the butter bowl. Beat again until it’s mixed in, then do the same with the second egg. When it’s combined, add the vanilla and beat at high speed for about 2 minutes or until very fluffy. Use a rubber spatula to scrape the sides of the bowl a few times, so you can include all the bits.
Measure the flours and other dry ingredients into the third bowl and mix slowly by hand for just a few seconds until all combined.
Combine the carrot and buttermilk in the fourth bowl and stir to completely combine.
Add about 1/3 of the flour mixture to the butter-sugar mixture, stirring with a spoon until it is pretty much mixed in. Then add about half the carrot mixture and mix that in too. (No beating necessary at this point, just spoon-mixing.)
Stir in another 1/3 of the flour, followed by the remaining flour, mixing after each addition. You can use a rubber spatula, in addition to the spoon, to scrape the sides of the bowl.
Transfer the batter to the prepared pan, spreading the mixture evenly into place. Bake in the center of the oven for 25 to 35 minutes or until the top is springy to the touch (careful!) and the edges are lightly golden. Carefully remove from the oven and cool completely before cutting into squares and enjoying.
Makes 8 to 10 servings.
Cooking and baking demand careful attention. Neither the author nor publisher assumes responsibility for any accident, misadventure, or over-eating from the use of this recipe.
Here is a fun kitchen-related craft. Today’s kitchen craft is how to make an “Ocean in a Bottle.”
Empty 2L bottle
Canola or vegetable oil
Blue food coloring
Step 1: Fill 1/3 of bottle with water.
Step 2: Add a few drops of food coloring. Close bottle top onto bottle and shake well.
Step 3: Fill remaining space in bottle with oil.
Step 4: Turn bottle up and down, watching the “ocean waves” roll by!
That’s all for this week!
Kid Chef Eliana