Monthly Archives: April 2005

IMBB #14: Cheese (Wisconsin Odyssey Part I)

Ok, so I clearly did not make this cheese (nor are any but the middle cheese especially orange. . .). I regret that my aspirations to make carrot soup for my second IMBB submission did not pan out with my time this weekend. (Though I am geared up to make it soon). This weekend was […]

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Evan Petrie - Hey Gemma, those look tasty! Was the Cheese and Fireworks store near Beloit per chance? I think I remember seeing something along those lines when visiting Sarah last summer. It had some giant mouse on the front and I think it was holding cheese and fireworks… I always thought it was kind of goofy.

chronicler - I was hoping someone would do cheese! I love that cow! He’s adorable. What an excellent way to begin a cheese hosting. Now just invite a few friends over and get to it!

gemma - Evan, yes it was. We were having difficulty determining exactly what the mouse was holding in its right hand. We eventually decided on sausage, but you might be right. It was quite a place. We even found a pabst beer bottle and a football shaped sausages! Oh, Wisconsin.
Chronicler, we also bought tons of mustard and beer(to be posted about soon). We will have to have a gathering at our house quite soon as I doubt the four of us will be able to consume all of that cheese. I just looked at your site and the tangerine sorbet looks excellent!

SHF #7: Molasses Snaps and Banana Ice Cream

This is my first participation in a sugar high friday (and quite a late entry at that). I made molassas snaps with banana ice cream/smootie. Here is the recipe: Molasses Snaps Preheat oven to 350 F In a pan on low heat combine 2 oz sugar, 2 tbl molasses, and 2 oz butter. When melted […]

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Dreska - Oooh! I like that easy-step banana ice-cream. Will love it over the weekend. Thanks.

keiko - Gemma – I’m curious about this recipe, has it got crunch from the snaps? It sounds really tasty!

gemma - Dreska, I like your site. The drawings are great! Having a camera is super fun too though.
If I had had some on hand, I would have used real banana ice cream, but this was a good fix for being in a pinch. The banana works really well with the molasses snap flavors, however the banana ice cream as it ended up was really just a last minute thing. It worked out well and I might do it again in a pinch, but it was nothing I would rave about. . ;)
Hi Keiko, yes the snaps are super crunchy. They are baked flat and thin and then rolled into shapes while they are still warm. When they cool they become very crunchy. I sort of made this recipe of after reading other recipes. Here is a picture of a large bowl shaped brandy snap that might help you imagine them better (as my picture turned out a little crummy.) Traditionally they are made in the smaller form and wrapped around a wooden spoon handle to mold.

Gemma: Fox & Obel

My first experience at Fox & Obel was kind of horrible. I went during my lunch break from work one day to poke around and perhaps buy something unique. I’m all for shelling out too much money for something that I have never seen before and that looks like an exciting kitchen addition, however I […]

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Anonymous - I was not impressed with F & O either.

gemma - I am glad I am not alone in this opinion. I will have to give them another try when I return to Chicago.


My friends and I had been itching to grill for quite a while.  Finally, we had the perfect day.  I marinated portabella mushroom caps and we brought brats and veggie burgers. John and some others also made chili which smelled excellent.  We grilled parsnips which were delicious and I also slit a zucchini, stuffed it […]

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chefsf - wow….I just caught up with your blog and I’m jealous of all the cool stuff you’ve been doing. I’ve been really bad about updating my blog lately. School is just so damn busy now. 1 more week to go and then summer. I also envy you for the bakery you have in the neighborhood.

Evan Petrie - I like that picture of John a lot. It prompted me to go look for his beer reviews that used to be on his website, but alas, I could not find them! Do you know if they are still online somewhere?

gemma - Hi Sera, your life is definitely busier than mine at the moment. I wish I was getting a summer this year though! Hopefully you will have some free time then to relax.
I’m not sure where his beer reviews went Evan. I just looked and could not find them either. I will ask him tonight and let you know. I like that picture too. As I was taking it someone commented that it was going to look trashy, but I think it turned out nicely. He looks so happy. (As he should be, that was super tasty beer he made).

kasia - hey, where are you guys getting the seeds or baby plants to grow? Or are you doing some kind of tricksy growing from the actual vegetable? I’ve been wanting to plant some basil and cilantro, and I can’t find plants/seeds in HP for the life of me.

gemma - Kasia, Ben goes to a gardening store on the Northside. I don’t have the name but I am sure he could give you more information about it next time you see him.
We are planting from seeds, though some plants are being started in the greenhouse. We didn’t plant cilantro, but we will have two interesting kinds of basil and Jack (Ben’s father) has planted a massive plot entirely full of basil. Point being, we can probably hook you up.

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Mindy was visiting her family in Minnesota a few weekends ago and she brought me back this fresh butter (and some lard which we will have to put to use soon.) It is from Bongard’s Creamery and is delicious. I love fresh butter, plain old store-bought (especially in the city) just doesn’t compare. Thanks Mindy!

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