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I wrote a review on my Frigidaire Professional Series Range and Microwave.

A review as if we were sitting at lunch and you asked me in all honesty if I liked my appliances.

I wrote it how I’d answer you.

And then I compared my microwave to a shouty NYC cab driver.

I love them. I really do.

Click through to read the review.

You know how you hear about contests or giveaways or programs and a specific person pops into your head, like “HOLY CRAP SHE WOULD BE PERFECT FOR THAT!”

Well the program was the second round of MomCentral’s Frigidaire Test Drive Campaign and the person who found out was Emily and the person she told was me. New house, borrowed appliances and a strong desire for cooking and baking. I applied immediately and was chosen to be a part of the team in charge of testing Frigidaire’s new professional series range and microwave.

frigidaire professional

I. am. lucky.

I know this.

And I’ve already tested nearly half of bells and whistles on these stainless steel beauties.

There is a button on the microwave that melts butter perfectly.

The oven’s bottom rack slides out as you open the door.

The gas range has five burners, the middle one that can be switched out to a cast iron griddle.

gas. lots of it.

I’ve lived with a hand me down microwave over a decade old for the last four years.

I’ve only baked with the most entry level of stoves and ranges, so entry level in fact that if I stepped away from anything cooking or baking in or on them it would surely end up burnt and sticky. I spent a lot of uneccesarry time parked in front of my oven but for the most part things turned out right.

KITCHEN! MINE! KITCHEN!

The first round of Frigidaire appliances promised moms more me-time, to do other things instead of hang out by our appliances waiting for them to do their tasks (and hopefully properly.) In conjunction with the test drive of these appliances by dozens of different moms, Frigidaire has set up the Spin and Win campaign, where you can spin to win one of several different daily prizes or the grand prize, a new Frigidaire Affinity washer and dryer. Also for each spin Frigidaire will donate $1 (up to $250,000) to Save the Children.

I wrote this review while participating in a Test Drive Campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Frigidaire and received a Frigidaire Range/Microwave to facilitate my review.

So, any challenges for me and my new appliances? My first one? Remember my big fat Ciabatta Fail? IT SHALL BE RECTIFIED.

Today I chose to cook instead of nap after church.

It’s stormy outside and something about my kitchen called to me.

I’m not sure who or what planted the craving for candied nuts in my brain today, but when we came home I set out to produce the perfectly sugared pecan.

making candied pecans

If I were to write a cookbook it would be titled something along the lines of “How to Win Friends with Food” or “How to Cook so People Will Like You.” There seems to be something about making someones favorite food, and making it well, that breaks down any walls they may have built up around them (which is why I have such a soft spot for the ending of Ratatouille.)

I’ve noticed that when I have someone over who is going through a rough time my first instinct is to head to the kitchen. I listen better when I’m cooking. When my sister in law is around it’s grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup. When tiny gramma was out here last time I made lunch as she told me about the huge changes about to take place in her life. As we sat together at the table, my mom and me, eating what I had just made, it hit me that this was one of those moments worth growing up for.

Being able to cook for your mom when she’s going through a rough time.

Being able to produce the perfect tiramisu for a friend’s birthday (even when you think tiramisu embodies everything wrong with food. Soggy cookies? Please no thank you.)

Being able to cook means that even when you can’t do anything else for someone who is suffering or lonely, you can show up with something warm, that proves that they are loved and that someone was thinking about them.

Or it can simply mean having the ability to put together a meal that doesn’t come from a box that will bring your family together around the table after being apart all day.

In the time our new Frigidaire appliances have been in our home they have baked birthday cakes, chicken noodle soup, an Easter ham and many experimental gluten free recipes including a chocolate cake made with garbanzo beans and orange juice. The microwave has heated hot chocolate as well as heating pads. Our stove has satisfied Cody’s long standing craving for authentic buffalo wings and my desire to make things from scratch instead of a warmed up bottle (home made hot fudge sauce FTW.)

Knowing how to cook has Addie by my side at almost every meal. It means she knows the difference between a boil and a saute and even more importantly the difference between a teaspoon and a tablespoon. It means she sees what goes into food instead of which bag it comes out of. It means I use the word morel more than I use the word moron and it means that I’m never going to give into those mall kiosks with the candied nuts again.

candied pecans

Because when you can produce the food you love at home? There aren’t many reasons to pay someone else to do it for you. (Except for dishes. Dishes are always worth outsourcing.)

I wrote this review while participating in a Test Drive Campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Frigidaire and received a Frigidaire Range/Microwave to facilitate my review.

Three weeks gluten free.

And you know what?

It’s not so bad.

I really like to cook. Thankfully I know how to cook. And even better I have had the opportunity to have my new Frigidaire Professional Series Range and Microwave to help me along.

When I eat glutenous things now, I get an almost immediate tummyache. But even more interesting? Bread doesn’t even taste good anymore. I’ve tried twice. Yuck.

I’d say for every three tasty gluten free dinners I’ve made there’s been one big fat fail. Like my whole “I’LL LEARN TO MAKE JAPANESE FOOD! JAPANESE FOOD HAS HARDLY ANY GLUTEN!”

Yeah. Japanese food isn’t something you just start cooking. Dried fish flakes? Kelp? Cabbage pancakes? Yeah, Japanese food isn’t for the desperately hungry. Maybe I’ll try again in a year.

I’ve eaten enough asparagus that uh, it’s really obvious that I’ve eaten a lot of asparagus.

When cut properly, leeks look a lot like toenail clippings.

There’s a Japanese root vegetable that looks like semen when it’s grated.

And quinoa? Yeah, quinoa still looks like tiny little condoms.

See?

quinoa. aka teeny little condoms.

But by far my biggest accomplishment in this whole gluten free cooking thing is this thing with quinoa that I came up with after modifying another nasty looking recipe.

1 cup quinoa

2 cups broth/stock (or 2 cups water with 2 teaspoons bullion, I usually do beef, but chicken or vegetable would be just as tasty.)

Cook the quinoa in the broth until it’s done (aka looks like little tiny condoms.)

1 medium onion finely chopped.

2 cups mushrooms, stems removed, coarsely chopped.

Saute them in a bit of olive oil and garlic until they the onions are translucent.

the makings of gluten free goodness.

Combine the cooked quinoa and vegetables together and add a half cup of heavy cream, a bit of either dried or fresh thyme and parsley. Add salt and pepper to your personal taste.

Nom nom.

final gluten free goodness.

This has no meat and yet Cody thinks it’s delicious and wonders why we can’t have it more often.

Eating out for now has lost its luster. I like being home. I like buying and seeing and knowing what is going into my food.

I have started making as many things as possible from scratch. Salad dressings and whipped cream for example.

I used to always make fun of my sister for being all crunchy and healthy.

Now I’m one of those people.

I can taste fake stuff in food, well, maybe not taste it, but food with fake stuff in it doesn’t taste as good.

Somewhere in LA Jessica Gottlieb is screaming all sorts of “I TOLD YOU SO” obscenities at her screen.

In my grandest of ambitions I’m going to try and post a weeks worth of gluten free recipes that are easy to make and actually taste good.

Just try it for a week.

Have your kids help you cook. Gather everyone around the table for dinner.

Promise you’ll notice a difference after a week, even if it’s not the one you were expecting.

I wrote this review while participating in a Test Drive Campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Frigidaire and received a Frigidaire Range/Microwave to facilitate my review.

Emily and I are working on something EPIC with our new appliances.

She received the same Frigidaire range and microwave to review.

Call me crazy but Emily strikes me as the type that would use her oven as storage and the range as a surface for sorting mail. Or maybe a good place to hold pizza boxes.

Her exact words from January 5, 2010?

I seriously should not be allowed to operate a stove. Or a microwave. And especially not a crock pot. -Emily “I am officially and idiot.

Part of you will die when you read the above linked post.

THAT WAS INNOCENT FOOD. That she “cooked” and KILLED.

Being a generous soul I am going to attempt to teach her to cook (not kill) at least one thing from one state away.

And you guys? After our first few discussions? I have my work cut out for me.

The only reason I *think* I can do this?

Because I know she has a good consistent oven and microwave.

So if she screws up? It’s her screwing up, not an old dumpy oven or microwave leading her astray.

Just as research I have tried on purpose to ruin food on and in my new range and microwave.

IT CAN NOT BE DONE.

You hear me Emily?

The simmer burner simmered butter and cream into a perfectly melted caramel sauce.

The convection setting perfectly crisped my shortbread. (Which to be honest I thought was going to be a giant fail-the dough was totally off-but it was DIVINE. You know, as long as I took an allergy pill first.)

And have I ever mentioned that the microwave has a MELT CHOCOLATE BUTTON? And a SOFTEN CREAM CHEESE BUTTON? It also has a melt butter and soften ice cream setting (that actually work.)

Oh you guys. I could go on and on.

And if attempting to teach Emily that spaghetti sauce isn’t supposed to come from a jar (or a sauce tree as she called it) fails?

There’s also frozen pizza, chicken nugget and “hand held snack food” pre set buttons for her.

I wrote this review while participating in a Test Drive Campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Frigidaire and received a Frigidaire Range/Microwave to facilitate my review.

We had guests (okay, the missionaries) over for dinner tonight. I decided to get fancy with dessert after Cody rolled his eyes when I busted out the box cake mix (I think he believes I’m getting lazy in my old age.)

In my Martha cookbook is a Caramel Banana Cake with Mascarpone Frosting.

All you foodie people are all “ooh! ahh!”

Well guess what? I’m not giving you the recipe because the cake was kind of nasty. But everything about it’s creation was perfection. Why perfection? Because this was my first fancy cake with my fancy new Frigidaire Professional Series oven.

I have cooked and baked and loved to cook and bake for years.

I have won awards for baking.

This is the first time I did some serious cooking with a high end stove.

[Read more…]

 MII: Welcome to Moosh in Indy Talks Food.

Today’s guest is Oreo Cheesecake.

Oreo Cheesecake, say hello to everyone.

meet Oreo Cheesecake

MII:Everyone, say hello to Oreo Cheesecake.

warm welcome 

MII:Why don’t you tell us a little about yourself Oreo Cheesecake?

OC: Well, my mom made cheese in Philly and my dad is an egg farmer from central Utah. I’m about 12 hours old, but I’ve done a lot of traveling in that time. So far I’ve been to Kitchen-aid, Mixer; Kenmore, Oven and Frigidaire, Refrigerator. And now I’m here, Kitchen, Counter. It’s so great to be here.

Postcard 

MII: Well we’re really hungryhappy you’re here. Now there’s a bit of controversy about your origins? Some say box, some say divine creation. Which do you believe?

OC: Oh, I definitely believe in Creation. My creator is a beautiful loving woman, looks much like yourself actually. She took a dash from here and cup from there and made me in six minutes, she rested the seventh minute because she had been playing volleyball earlier. But I know she’s out there and I know she’s the only one who could make me what I am today.

missionary Cheesecake 

MII: That’s some pretty strong knowledge to have for someone so delicious young. Do the other baked goods give you a hard time?

OC: Yeah, the boxed cakes and brownies are a rough bunch. They swear they’re every bit as good as me, that I just get more credit because someone like me doesn’t come along all that often. But I know my creator makes all baked goods with equal amounts of love and care, and I know we’ll all end up in the same place, despite our origins.

Gangs of Chocolate 

MII: Well, Oreo Cheesecake. You know what happens next on this show. “Share a piece of you with the moosh!”

(WILD APPLAUSE)

OC: Oh, yeah, that. That’s why I’m here right? Well, let’s get to it I guess.

Oreo Blood 

MII: Well, what do you think the moosh?

the moosh tries 

the moosh approves 

 MII: The moosh confirms it, Oreo Cheesecake is one of the best guests we’ve ever had on the show! Thank you for being with us Oreo Cheesecake.

OC: Uh, thanks, uh, what’s that big knife for? No! Wait! I haven’t seen Living, Room or CHEVROLET, TRUCK YET! No! NO! Noooooo!

Death of a cheesecake 

MII: Well ladies and gentlemen, that’s it for Oreo Cheesecake. *burp* Thank you for being here and don’t forget to join us next week for “Angel Food: truly a saint or grossly misunderstood?” And we’ll uncover the conspiracy behind Hank & Willie’s Slander of the Best Damn Brownies Ever.

If you or someone you know should be eaten on a guest on Moosh in Indy Eats Talks Food. Please email us at mooshinindy at gmail dot com. Transcripts available by hitting “print”.