Monday, May 30, 2005

Dump Cake

the name of this cake might turn you off, but trust me, it's the easiest, most delicious cake ever. it gets it's name from the fact that you dump all the ingredients in the pan. no mixing, no measuring, no nothin'.

here's what you need:

one can crushed pineapple
one can cherry pie filling. this is very important. you don't want a can of cherries, you want the pie filling.
one box of vanilla cake mix
1/2 stick of butter or margarine.

here's what you do:

open both cans of fruit. dump the cherries in the bottom of a ungreased glass pan, making sure you cover the bottom. dump the pineapple right on top of the cherries, covering the bottom layer.

remember...this isn't a pretty cake, so it doesn't have to look beautiful.

then sprinkle the vanilla cake mix on top of the pineapple. again, this can just be dumped on. don't worry about the lumps!

cut up the butter or margarine into small pieces. if you'd rather shred the butter using a cheese grater, go for it. this is what my mom used to do when i was a kid. i don't have a grater, so i had to cut the butter into little chunks.

spread the chunks over the top of the cake mix. remember, it doesn't have to look pretty!

put the cake in a preheated 350 degree oven. cook for about 20-25 minutes or untill the cake is brown and the cherries bubble at the side. the liquid in the pineapple and cherries makes the cake moist and the butter gives the cake a crumbly topping. you don't want to overcook it though. just enough to brown the cake mix on top.

this cake tastes delicious with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top. or cool-whip, whatever you prefer!

dig in!

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

New Restaurant Review - Trattoria Toscana

Phillip and i have had dinner there twice since it opened a few weeks ago. the first time was great, the second time, even better. i'm notoriously picky when it comes to italian food, because most of the time i figure i can just make it at home and spare myself the grief of getting a dish that i can't stomach. but this place...

the first dish i got was rigatoni in a pesto shrimp sauce. it was so delicious. i'm super picky about my pasta (it has to be al dente) and this place got it perfect. the pesto wasn't overly garlic-y either, which was excellent. phillip had the lasagna bolognese, and he said it was the most delicious lasagna he's had in years. very cheesy with just the right amount of sauce.

tonight we went for dinner again. i ordered the tortellini and prosciutto in a cream sauce. oh man. it was incredible and totally reminded me of sunday dinners at my grandparents house. the tortelini was cooked al dente as well and the prosciutto was done just right (and there wasn't TOO much of it. sometimes that can be overwhelming). phillip had the spaghetti with cherry tomatoes. he's very picky about his spaghetti, too. usually he likes a TON of sauce on it. this dish comes with no sauce, just the tomatoes. and it was so good, he kept commenting on it. i had a bite of it and yes, it was delicious.

the place is small, but very clean and inviting. it would be a great place to go on a romantic date for two. the waitstaff was very pleasant and attentive. we did not order wine, since we weren't in the mood for it, but they do have a small list of wines. they also have italian pasteries for dessert, but we didn't order any. maybe next time.

i seriously recommend Trattoria Toscana if you like dishes from northern italy. the price is reasonable, the service is great, and the food is out of this world.

Trattoria Toscana (across from Brown Sugar)
130 Jersey Street
Boston, MA 02215
Phone: 617-247-9508

Sunday, May 15, 2005

Meatless Meatballs and Ziti

since phillip works nights (A LOT) i'm left cooking for one. in the past, i'd run to mcdonalds or the pizza place to grab something fast. but that's obviously not good for me (or anyone) so i had to stop. in fact, today is the one year anniversary of me being McDonalds Free! i haven't set foot in a McDonalds for one whole year! i decided to give up fast foods (mcdonalds in particular) after seeing the movie Super Size Me. i have not been in a wendy's in a year, either. but i won't lie. on two occasions over the past year i bought 2 fish sandwiches from Burger King. i just had a craving and i couldn't get rid of it till i had one. but 2 times in a year ain't bad! so i'm happy to say that i can live the rest of my life without McDonalds!

ok, on to tonight's dinner.

since i am cooking for one, i decided to cook up some pasta. the only choices we had in the house were angelhair or ziti. i chose the ziti. so i cooked up some ziti and heated up some sauce. i then threw in some of these awesome meatless meatballs i found at whole foods today:

they are really good. i popped them in the oven for 10 minutes and then added them to the sauce. after about 3 minutes (and when the pasta was ready) i tossed it all together and, voila!

sorry i didn't take a picture of it before i dug in. it just smelled so good that i couldn't wait!