Monday, February 4, 2013

Supah bowl

Well, the Niners lost. Big bummer. On the plus side, I'm at the airport waiting for a flight to Geneva, from whence I will be picked up by Ms. Hartz and whisked to Annecy, a lakeside town in the French Alps. So I've got that going for me.

This year we made every effort not to repeat last year's very fun but very crowded Super Bowl bonanza. We still wound up with a full living room, but everyone had somewhere to sit and could see the tv. Improvement. Knowing that Mike would be making queso, I took the opportunity to make two other kinds of cheese products.

The first was fromage fort, per this Smitten Kitchen recipe, served on toasts. I used a mix of camembert, manchego, and a hard orange cheese with a parmesan-like texture and a name too French to remember. Since we had a keg of homebrew IPA on hand, I used that in place of the wine called for in the recipe, and it turned out very well.

The second cheese spread was obazda, a German beer cheese, which I served with homemade pretzels. This was my first attempt at pretzels, and they were so beautiful it brought a tear to my eye.

They're simple to make (I used the baking soda approach laid out in this recipe rather than the lye - anything that requires gloves and goggles does not seem right for eating). For the obazda, which I've also seen spelled obaster and obazta, I cobbled together a few recipes from across the intertubes, namely this, this and this. I flatter myself to think that we made everyone feel very fat.

Next missive will be from France; woohoo!

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