Gobble Gobble

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I made you a Google Doodle to celebrate!

It’s official – I go home in less than 40 days. The whole thing is pretty bittersweet. I miss home, my family, my friends, obviously, but I really could stay in Hong Kong forever. That being said… I have no Asian food to talk about this week! Terrible, I know. It’s not that I didn’t eat any, of course, just nothing blog-worthy. Although I did go back to that Japanese place, Miso Cool, and had some melt-in-your-mouth eel.

On Sunday I went to the horse races in Sha Tin. Since I obviously know absolutely nothing about horse races, I decided to bet on the horses with the coolest names: Dreams Maker and Forest Fountain. I wanted to bet on Super Pistachio, but that race wasn’t until much later in the day and we didn’t want to stay that long.

Well, Dreams Maker did not make my dreams. Neither did Forest Fountain. But I only bet about $5USD, so it was okay. The guys I was with did win, though, so of course they had to gloat.

On Monday I walked around TST looking for a new lens for my camera. Everything is all decorated for Christmas already! I swear, Christmas starts earlier every year. They’re building an ice skating rink right by the school, but I don’t understand how it will stay frozen since it’s outside. Outdoor ice skating rinks in Pittsburgh make sense. Pickwick in Burbank works because it’s inside. An outdoor rink in Hong Kong? How is that possible? Anyway, I walked all the way to Harbor City, a ridiculously expensive mall, and they had a huge Toy Story Christmas display. They Toy Story section of Disneyland just opened up a couple weeks ago, and I am so excited to go!

Of course, Christmastime doesn’t really start until after Thanksgiving. Depressed over missing out on a huge dinner, most of the Americans went last night to Outback Steakhouse, the most American restaurant within walking distance from the dorm (besides McDonald’s). It was the least Thanksgivingy Thanksgiving I have ever had, and it was great.

We got a Bloomin’ Onion, of course, which was inhaled in about three minutes.

Instead of my usual Tofurkey, I had shrimp and mushroom alfredo. That’s what the Pilgrims ate, right?

For dessert, no pumpkin pie. Instead, the Chocolate Thunder From Down Under, the most ridiculously named brownie a la mode ever. Also inhaled within 3 minutes.

It was a pretty great evening, I must say. Plus, in case you couldn’t tell, I got to use my new lens! It’s 50mm f/1.8. I’ve been having tons of fun with it. There are honestly about 3 camera shops per block in Hong Kong, so no shortage of new toys to buy… I might end up coming home with a couple more.

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Toffee Fudge Swirl Ice Cream

I think I might be a genius. I had bought a carton of heavy cream, but after making two batches of (delicious) ice cream, there wasn’t quite enough for a third. But I really wanted some, so I dug around the fridge. We also had an almost-empty carton of milk, and an almost-empty tub of nonfat Greek yogurt. So what did I do? I mixed them together.

I was afraid this would fail miserably. What makes ice cream creamy is all the fat. A lot of recipes call for heavy cream and whole milk, but I’ve been getting by with 2% just fine. But add nonfat yogurt into the mix? I was afraid it wouldn’t freeze right or taste as good. I was wrong.

I decided to go with just plain old vanilla, that way I wouldn’t be too bummed if it didn’t work out. This WAS an experiment, after all. But once I realized it was fine, I did some improvising. It’s amazing what some toffee chips and “fudge topping” can do.

I adapted this from the little recipe booklet that came with my Cuisinart ice cream maker.

Ingredients:
3 cups  milk/yogurt/heavy cream (I had about 1 C cream and 1/2 C yogurt)
3/4 cups granulated sugar
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
Pinch salt
Toffee chips
Fudge topping

Special Tools:
Ice cream maker

The ice cream base.

The mix-ins. Keep in mind, you can always use other things like chopped nuts, chocolate chips, or nothing at all!

Instructions:
1.
 Put everything except toffee and fudge into a large bowl. Use a hand mixer on low speed or a whisk to combine, making sure the yogurt is completely incorporated and the sugar is dissolved.

Look at that chunky yogurt!

2. At this point, Cuisinart says you should chill the mixture in the fridge for 1-2 hours. You can if you want, but I didn’t. I mean, almost everything in there came from the fridge – what’s putting it back gonna do?
3. Freeze in your ice cream maker.

It frothed up a bit at first… Never seen that before.

4.  When it looks almost done, throw in the toffee. I don’t know how much, just do it until it looks like enough. You can never have too much toffee.

5. Beginning with ice cream, alternate layers of ice cream and fudge in whatever bowl you’ll be storing this in, kind of like marbling a cake. If that makes no sense to you, basically just throw in a little bit of fudge on top of every scoop of ice cream. Make sure the fudge isn’t too thick; you can spread it out with a spoon if you need to. This will give you some nice fudge swirls when you scoop it out later to serve.

6. Throw this baby into the freezer for a couple hours so it will get a better consistency. Or eat it now, if you’re impatient. I won’t judge.