Sunday was a day of total sweetness, as evidenced by the treats above. It all felt like an appropriate reflection of a man who fully embraces what I believe a true father should be. While he strongly protects and guides his sons, he's also very tender and sweet at heart, and in turn they adore him and respect him. Each time I watch him do something like teach Mateo how to keep his eye on the ball, or prepare his tool box to teach a woodworking class to Nico and his friends, or connect each and every morning with their teachers to make sure they're successful at school, or make hilariously loud lion noises for the hundredth time in reading The Lion & The Mouse, and countless others, I am heartened. It all makes me feel so very grateful to have him as my partner, and for him to be such the gift that he is to our children. Happy Father's Day my dear Matt, and to all the lovingly dedicated dads in the world.
Brown Butter, Brown Rice Crispy Treats
1 stick best unsalted butter you can find
6 cups brown rice crispy cereal
1 7oz. bag of marshmallows (preferably the non-gelatin kind, usually found at healthy markets)
Maldon Salt (or other sea salt variety)
In case you need a refresher on how to make these (I did): Plop butter in a small sauce pan and melt over medium/high heat until the butter begins to brown, about 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Do not leave butter unattended during this process since it can easily scorch and you'll have dark bitter butter, instead of nutty brown butter. Take pan off the heat. Add marshmallows to the pan, and stir off heat, until they are fully melted and incorporated with the butter. Add in cereal and stir. Scoop out into a buttered, square cake pan and flatten to desired thickness. We liked ours to be about 1/2 an inch thick. Lightly sprinkle sea salt over the top. Let cool, cut and try your hardest not to eat the entire pan.
Buttermilk Doughnuts with Maple Glaze
(adapted from The L.A. Times)
4 1/4 cups (18 ounces) flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
Pinch grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1 egg yolk
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup buttermilk
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, grated nutmeg and cinnamon.
2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, or in a large bowl using a hand mixer, beat together the eggs and egg yolk with the sugar and vanilla until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes.
3. In a large measuring cup, stir together the buttermilk and butter.
4. Alternately beat the dry ingredients and buttermilk mixture into the egg mixture, one-third at a time, until all of the ingredients are combined and a dough is formed. It will be soft and sticky.
5. With floured hands, remove the dough to a floured board and gently roll out until the dough is one-half inch thick. Using a doughnut cutter, or 2 biscuit cutters (a larger one measuring 3 to 3 1/2 inches in diameter, and a smaller one measuring about 1 inch in diameter), cut the dough into doughnuts, spacing the doughnuts as close as possible. Collect the scraps and roll out to form another batch of doughnuts (note that this batch may be a little tougher than the first as the dough has been worked).
6. Meanwhile, fill a deep fryer with oil, or a large pot to a depth of at least 3 inches, with oil, and heat to a temperature of 350 degrees.
7. Gently place the doughnuts in the oil, being careful not to crowd. Fry the doughnuts on each side until puffed and golden, about 1 1/2 to 2 minutes on each side.
8. Drain the donuts on a rack and cool slightly, then frost and decorate as desired.
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons (3/4 stick) butter
1 pound powdered sugar, sifted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup maple syrup, preferably Grade B
1. In a small saucepan heated over medium-high heat, melt the butter and continue to cook until the butter browns, being careful not to burn . Remove from heat and set aside.
2. Place the powdered sugar into the bowl of a stand mixer or a large bowl. Using the whisk attachment or a hand mixer, beat in the melted butter and browned bits along with the vanilla. Slowly beat in the maple syrup. When all of the ingredients are incorporated, briefly beat over high speed to remove any lumps. Use immediately or cover and refrigerate until needed (bring back to room temperature and beat briefly before using).