I’m a little upset right now because I wrote a fun, comprehensive, and, if I may, brilliant post about our New Year’s Eve fun… and I could have sworn that I posted it. Alas, it’s nowhere to be found :(… so I’ll do my best to recover from my memory all the cleverly worded anecdotes, but I’m afraid I’ll never, as no one ever does, live up to my preconceived, mostly imaginary, genius of the past.
Our friend Rachael planned a super fun get together for New Year’s Eve that was based on the TV show “Chopped”. On the show, competing cooks have to make something brilliant using a specific set of four different ingredients, and they’re graded on how well they “transform the ingredients” into one tasty dish.
Candice and I were assigned the following ingredients: 1) semolina, 2) Asian pears, 3) rose water, and 4) Werther’s Original hard candies. Our sole competition was the formidable Team Piehl (Tiffani and Curby)… let’s be honest, if they’re awesome enough to fly over on a whim and visit us on New Years, they’re probably awesome enough to make a killer “Chopped” dish.
Here’s Candice showing off our tasty creation. We made a “maple cheesecake on a Werther’s and semolina shortbread crust topped with roasted, rose water glazed, Asian pears.
And here’s the competition, “Werther’s toffee, apple, and pear crumble with semolina and ginger topping and rose water and pear ice cream.”
In the end, the judges decided to give the gold to Team Piehl instead of Team Bullard (lookout panel of judges! we WILL have our revenge!). While I am properly outraged at their decision, I actually agree that the competing dish was hard to beat. Overall, there are several things that we would do differently with our recipe the next time around. First of all, we were mistaken to trust in Martha Stewart for the original cheesecake recipe… it was “no-bake”, which I was wary of to begin with, but I trusted in her assessment that it was just as good. Let me just say, I’m sick of people telling me that “no-bake” cheesecakes are “just as good.” There is nothing as delectable as a genuine, original, don’t-mess-around-with-a-classic, baked cheesecake. No.thing. This is the last time I trust Martha Stewart… in the New Year, I’m putting my trust in Jesus (who is, in many ways, like cheesecake).
The rest of the night was as fun as the cooking competition. Rachael and Ben (a.k.a., The Organizers) made a really good gumbo for the main course, and after we were all stuffed, we chatted and traded fun stories until the fireworks went off in London (they were spectacular, by the way, I think because the Olympics are this year). Just look at this smiling bunch, how could you not have fun?
Here’s one with the guys added in, not nearly as pretty as the above picture, but fun nonetheless.