Today was food bank day. We actually started the day with a neat little presentation at our local Fort Bragg library on bats. We even got to see 3 different live bats at the library. Big Brown Bat, and some Mexican free tail bats. It was pretty cool, we are now hours later still singing the “Echo location” song. “ I find my prey I find my way, Echo location”, I think its pretty cool that we got to see that at our local library. My 5 year old son loved it.
After we got home, I got my bags together to go to the food bank. I got a whole lot of stuff and was loaded down with 3 bags of food, when on the way home I ran into an old colleague of mine, lost in town. That I even have old colleagues is a miracle. I have only had 2 “jobs” in my life, being a camp counselor assistant and a marketing intern, she was my intern boss. She was in town for business and looking for the health food store. So she walked with me all the way home, cause I live right next to the health food store. We got to talk the whole way and catch up, its been about 2 years since I have seen her. I felt pretty proud to give her my new URL, and contact info. To finally be set in a beautiful town, with money and enjoying what I do is something exciting to share.
Anyways, After I got home I took assessment of the bounty from the food bank. I got some more fresh rabe, which I threw into the steamer right away. I got some cherry tomatoes which I put out for snacks and garnish for dinner. I also got some more flour a little bag of about a cup or two. I decided to use that with the flour I had leftover in my jar and make some more pizza dough for dinner. Its quick and easy and I just had enough cheese to pull off a great big one for dinner.
I proceeded to make dough, and let it rise for a while. I was constantly bugged for snacks from the boy, he knows that I get snacks from the food bank, so I grabbed some ritz crackers I got from my bag to give him. I didn’t want to just give him crackers so I grabbed the peanut butter from the fridge. So I gave him a few dollops with about 4-5 crackers.
Smelling the peanut butter and ritz together gave me a crazy idea. I crumbled the rest of the package of ritz with my hands in a bowl. And added some peanut butter to them, I smoothed it out until all the ritz were mixed into the peanut butter, I thought I could make a pretty good pie crust of it. But it was lacking structure, the taste was there, but how could it bake? So I added the last of the waffle mix I had, and hoped for the best. I mixed the waffle mix into into it thoroughly and pressed it into my new stainless steel bar pan. I par baked it at about 350 degrees until it poofed from the waffle mix. It got a golden brown after cooking and I took it out.
Peanut butter pie crust.. what would I do with that? I have been looking at a whole lot of Mississippi mud bar recipes so I decided to try and make a chocolate filling. I melted some butter with some baking pips of chocolate and some sugar and made a sauce, I should have made my sauce thicker with some corn starch, but more on that later.
I poured my sauce over the peanut butter crust and actually tried to freeze it into place.. didn’t work. If I would have had some gelatin I think that the chocolate would have turned out better, or added some corn starch to make it thicker. It didn’t quite set, but I decided to proceed to my last step anyways. Meringue.
I was really trying to make marshmallow cream but I only have meringue makings. I made some meringue and poured it over the chocolate.. and baked it until the meringue was set. I was really confused while it was baking tho, the unset sauce made it seem like the meringue wasn’t cooking. I took it out and let it cool and cut into it.. this happened.
But then I drained some of the chocolate, and proceeded to be able to cut squares that we could eat out of it. Its still very good with melty gooey chocolate layer. Next time I will try and just make it better. My husband loves the taste of the peanut butter crust and really he thinks I am a genius for mixing the two. I am pretty happy with the crunch from the ritz.
Dinner was Broccoli rabe steamed and then put into my casserole dish with some tomato. I made a sauce out of some Pacific organic red bell pepper and tomato soup and sour cream. It tasted great. I made a cheese pizza and a small focaccia out of the rest of the pizza dough I didn’t use.
Overall the food bank blessed us today, and another day of food is a good day. I love good fresh food, and I cannot wait to cook and bake more tomorrow and share with you. We get our food stamps on Friday, so we only have one more day of being creative with food bank food.