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How to Soften Butter & other Food Dilemmas

Posted Mar 08 2011 8:19am

How do you get out of a salad rut? Like this!

I’ve been loving salads lately.  I used to stick to the basics quite often… mixed greens, tomatoes, carrots, etc, but have branching out into all sorts of deliciousness.  First there were fruit-topped salads , then there was one topped with a bean medley, peppers, celery & goat cheese,

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not to be outdone with mixed greens topped with tuna, boiled egg whites, celery, sweet pickle relish and balsamic.

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Even though spring hasn’t fully bloomed yet, I’m loving these fresh salads!  Salad rut… broken.

Now I told you yesterday that my shopping cart was a bit off from what I usually buy because I’m bringing dinner (which consists of an entree, a side and a dessert) to a family on Wednesday.  Yesterday, I made the dessert…

but disaster hit when I was ready to bake cookies and realized I didn’t take the butter out of the fridge- argh!

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What’s a gal in a hurry to do?  I debated nuking it, but know that that results in flat cookies.  I tweeted it, and got a couple fun ideas- one to put the butter in a plastic bag and dunk it in warm water… anyone ever done that?

But out of fear of flat cookies, I resorted to googling, and found out some fun info.  The reason you take the butter out early is for it to soften.  So, if you can soften butter quickly, it makes no difference!

So how do you soften butter? You’ll need 2 sheets of wax paper and a rolling pin.

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Place the butter on a wax sheet, then top it with the other wax sheet.

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Then, evr-every-everybody get yo’ roll on! ( get your roll on – what !) <- warning… video contains explicit lyrics… and reminds me of high school spring break.

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Kind of like an ink blot… I see a beautiful butterfly!

And ta-da… soft butter!!!

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How did it work?

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Besides the great baking soda mishap… which totally isn’t the butter’s fault

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I’d say it worked perfectly!! Mmm… hello dark chocolate chips and walnuts… healthy ;)

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Now another question that I’m asking your help with.  A reader wrote me yesterday asking for help.  She’s going on a trip to the mountain with friends and everyone is bringing lots of food and drinks.  As a health conscious person, she’d like to bring snacks that the whole group will enjoy, but won’t be fatty and high calorie, like so many fun snacks and dips are. 

Here’s the criteria:

  • must be portable (she can bring a cooler)
  • must be group friendly (AKA, nothing that non-health-focused people would be scared of)
  • must not take up all the space in the fridge (after all, there will be a few beers that need to share that space)

Have a suggestion?  If so, list it below! Have a recipe? Link to it!

One of my favorite dips that you can make ahead is Texas Caviar !  And it’s always a group favorite and very portable… just make it ahead of time.

Thanks for playing :)

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