In the words of yesterday’s post, ba domp bom. Wait, that’s not right.
It should be ba da ba da ba da ba da ba da. Did that sound like a drum roll or more like a baseball heckler badly enunciating swing batter batter batter? No matter either way, I’m totally going to knock this post out of the park.
Ba domp bom.
Okay, now that was right.
Today marks the culmination of three feats here on Midwestern Bite. One, since it’s the last day of January, it’s my final January Blog a Day post. The last day of the month also always means Foodie Pen Pals and the Chopped Challenge. That’s number Two. Three, it’s giant plastic rat day.
I promised you a giant plastic rat and I am a woman of my word.
Let’s start with number Three. Technically, it’s not my fault I now own a giant plastic rat. It’s a well orchestrated combo of Supermom who invited me to go thrifting with her and John and Sherry of Young House Love fame who dared us to go thrifting in the first place.
The challenge was to spend 20 bucks or less at the thrift store and score some fabulous finds, including but not limited to clothing with fringe, an all pink outfit, moccasins, a velour jumpsuit, house slippers, a brown leather jacket, a keyboard, a kneeboard, shoes with velcro, luggage, a plaid button up shirt, flannel zebra jammies, PJs with built-in socks, a telescope, and a big a$$ coat.
I interpreted that to mean giant plastic rat. If I paint him pink he’ll have an all pink outfit. It’s been decided, I am painting the rat pink. Does that mean he is a she? Update to come on this later.
Here’s the loot that came home with me from Goodwill. All together now.
All separate now.
1. GLEE Valentines. My bestest blogger friends will be receiving these and I am all kinds of happy. I’ll be keeping the stickers, though, thank you very much.
2. Large wooden shoe. If I added some velcro to this It’d be challenge worthy but as it stands now it’s just humorous. Supermom and I were sharing a cart at the good ol’ GW and I told her it was going in the cart and one of us was taking it home. I was the lucky one. I think it needs a good coat of spray paint to funkify it and them some good ol’ fashioned shelf sitting.
3. Ice cube tray. For homemade crayons.
4. Curvy blue plate. I was having buyers remorse about this one until I saw how pretty the trees were reflected in its surface.
5. Hot plate aka cute little round surface for bloggable food. For bloggable food.
6. Cute little bloggable bowl. For blogging.
7. Solid cherry bowl. After a trip to Hobby Lobby this will be turned into a clock for The Husband’s Man Cave. Saweeeeeet.
8. Yet another cute little bloggable bowl aka rat feeding trough. What? Rats have to eat too, even plastic ones.
9. Giant plastic rat. To be painted pink. For funsies. And because Supermom thought it was so ridiculous it made me want Ratsy all the more. That’s his or her name by the way. Ratsy.
That’s my take on the Young House Love thrift store challenge, completed in just seventeen dollars and thirty four cents.
A bargain, really. The only thing that has me concerned is I texted a few people about my giant rat purchase and no one seemed surprised. Cinnamon went as far as to suggest it was “par for the course.” Now, I don’t golf, but it would seem my friends actually expected me to buy the giant plastic rat. Concerning. I need to step up my game in the future. Perhaps if I had brought home one of the duds instead.
Nothing says sexy like used Victoria Secrets jammies. Giant elephant statue anyone? Would this have been better or worse than the giant rat? Special prize for anyone who can tell me what the eff is in picture three. I have no clue and it’s killing me. The special prize might just be an insect repelling tablecloth in natural botanical fragrance.
Now that I’ve exhausted the Young House Love Challenge, let’s discuss feat numba Two, Foodie Pen Pals and the Chopped Challenge.
Foodie Pen Pals is a program started by The Lean Green Bean where you get paired up with others to send to and receive a fifteen dollar box of goodies. I spin it and and use my entire FPP box to create one recipe or meal. It’s pretty awesomesauce.
This month Jeanette sent me a Trader Joes bonanza complete with Pumpkin Butter, Cocoa Baton pillowy cookies, sweet chocolately coffee grinder, tea and two bags of plain straight up pasta.
FYI, from now on I am ignoring all tea in FPP boxes. I’ve received tea in the last who knows how many and a challenger can only cook with tea so many times before it’s just not fun anymore. And the Chopped Challenge is all about fun. So the tea is reserved for drinking and drinking only. Hopefully not anytime soon though, because I only drink tea when I’m sick.
The interesting thing about this box is it arrived rather late in the month. As in Monday. Late Monday. The 28th. For a post that needed to be planned, executed, photographed and written about for the 31st all while in the middle of a daily blogging challenge and the toddler tornado that is Sweetey Petey. Yes, I finally understand the phrase toddler tornado.
I needed a plan. A plan of attack devised before the box arrived and ready to be executed in the time I had available. Coming down off a dessert high from a recipe of Nutella Ice Cream I found on Supermom’s blog, I decided on a whim over the weekend I was making ice cream. No matter what was in the box, I was making ice cream. Come tomato sauce or beef jerky or mushroom soup, I WAS MAKING ICE CREAM!
The ice cream maker was chilling in the freezer. I had a half carton of whipping cream, a Nutella Ice Cream mustache and a dream. A dream of Foodie Pen Pals Ice Cream.
Jeanette is a cupcake loving girl so I figured there’d be plenty of sweets in the box, but the pasta threw me for a temporary loop. No matter. I’d just make the ice cream and figure out the pasta later.
Since I’ve recently declared that CANNED PUMPKIN IS NOT SEASONAL and neither is my love of it, I think it’s fitting to present to you:
Pumpkin Butter Ice Cream
1 and ½ cups heavy whipping cream
1 cup skim milk *
½ cup whole milk *
½ cup sugar
½ cup TJ’s Pumpkin Butter
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup coarsely chopped Cocoa Baton cookies
Sugar, Chocolate and Coffee Bean Grinder for garnishing
* Feel free to sub in 1 and ½ cups of whatever kind of milk you have on hand
This ice cream recipe is easy peasy. In a large bowl stir together the sugar and pumpkin butter till combined. Over medium low heat cook the heavy whipping cream and milk together till barely simmering. Pour a half cup of the warm milk mixture over the pumpkin butter mixture and whisk till incorporated. Add in the remainder of the milk mixture and the cinnamon. Whisk, whisk, whisk.
Refrigerate till cooled or overnight. Whisk once more and then pour into your ice cream maker and freeze according to manufacturer recommendations. Mine is electric and takes about a half hour. Add in the chopped cookies at the very end and mix just till incorporated. The ice cream will be soft serve consistency at first but will set up in the freezer.
Scoop into newly thrifted bowls, pose with a giant plastic rat so you can combine several challenges successfully in one blog post and garnish with a few turns of the Sugar, Chocolate and Coffee Bean Grinder.
There you have it. Creamy, stick to the roof of your mouthy, pumpkin piey, fudgy centered chocolate cookiey explosion homemade ice cream that will beat out most anything you can buy at the store.
That does still leave the pasta that I stuck into the ice cream to make for a pretty, pretty picture though. Turns out that dry Rigatoni pasta is more than decorative, it’s also quite practical. You know the ice cream soup left in the bottom of the bowl? Rigatoni makes an excellent straw.
I believe it’s time for a ba domp bom again.
Ba domp bom.
Today’s January Blog a Day challenge topic Favourite (yes, that is spelled correctly) is an easy one. Foodie Pen Pals posts are my top blog hits! It seems they are your favourite to read just as much as they are my favourite to write. Also, Ratsy is my new favourite pet.
If you saw what our Lab, The Destroyer, did to one of our interior doors the other day you’d understand this.
There you have it, Young House Love meets Foodie Pen Pals and the Chopped Challenge meets January Blog a Day.
Thanks to everyone who has been reading along with me! It’s been a blast. For the first time in a month, I will NOT be seeing you tomorrow. Give me a few days to recuperate and I’ll be back Monday-ish. In the meantime you can drown your sorrows in a bowl of Pumpkin Butter Ice Cream.
To catch up on my January Blog a Day posts:
Say buh-bye Ratsy.
Question of the Day: Were you surprised I bought a giant plastic rat? Are you going to miss me everyday? Stroke a girl’s ego here, people. Also, did you know The Husband is OBSESSED with Young House Love. He searches any and all home repairs on their site before attempting it here.