Dean decided to make up for all the years I've been slighted. Really, really make up for it...with the kind of useful gift that I love but which I never get for myself.
I had a refurbished stand mixer. Not something I would have picked myself, but that's my overly-generous husband. Shiny. Handy. I put my spoons away and saved my arm for towel-whipping slow kids.
Unfortunately, the Kitchen Aids don't stand bread kneading too well. Our arms are a little better designed. The lock holding the head down broke and I spent a lot of time babysitting it. The boys would all stand and hold it down for me.
This year I got a Bosch. And a food processor. I've never had one of those either. In my house we used knives or a grater. Since I love making bread this made my eyes light up and my brain explode with possibilities right before I freaked out at the cost.
Never fear, I love it. I'm working out some kinks with wet vs. dry..which gets added first (wet so that the dough doesn't creep up over the top). I make triple or quadruple batches and then freeze the results (which also make sit easier for me to portion myself 1 a day--45 seconds in the microwave). And the food processor--which I thought I would never use--makes GREAT smoothies. The engine is so strong that it really breaks up ice (and frozen fruit) better then any blender I've had.
Simple Strawberry Smoothie
2 cups frozen berries (from your freezer or a bag from the freezer section)
1 cup of apple juice
a couple of blobs of plain yogurt
You can add a little sugar to this but the boys liked it this way and I thought it was plenty sweet. We also did blueberries but the skins are stronger so you get tiny skin pieces. Not quite as fun.