As I write this post I'm listening to the TV rant on and on about the impending hurricane Sandy.
Is it a hurricane or is it a tropical storm? Some say it's a hybrid of the two.
The weatherpeople add in too much hype mixed in with some facts.
They bring up the perfect storm of 1991 desperately trying to compare Sandy to the perfect storm.
Not going to happen--two different animals indeed.
They finally switch over to an interview with an old captain from the perfect storm of 1991who gladly shares out advice. Captain Ray Leonard skipper of the 32-foot vessel Satori that rode out the perfect storm. Some of you may remember him and his crew were part of the movie The Perfect Storm.
On Oct. 30, 1991, Leonard and two crew members were several days into their voyage when they were caught in the union of the three weather systems that made up the perfect storm. The vessel Satori was about 60 miles south of Martha's Vineyard, off the coast of Massachusetts.
One of the crew issued a mayday, and were plucked from the Atlantic Ocean by a Coast Guard helicopter. The book portrays Leonard as "sullen and silent."; he didn't participate in the book or the movie, has always insisted that the boat, which later washed ashore intact, was never in any real danger.
The advice Captain Leonard gives is:
"Don't be rash, I would be sure that I had a vehicle that was pretty substantial. I would be sure I had a decent supply of fuel and water -- and Graham crackers."
Why Graham crackers?
"Well, I LIKE Graham crackers. But you COULD have Oreos. A storm like the one coming -- and like the perfect storm, whatever that was -- people tend to think that, `Someone will come help me. Someone will come take care of me. In other words, they don't look to be self-sufficient. But evacuating also carries its hazards. There's great danger on highways and everywhere else..... landlubbers should get out while they can do so calmly. Because if this does hit, you're going to lose all those little things you've spent the last 20 years feeling good about. Living on a boat is one thing during a disaster. But living in a house in a city is a different thing completely."
Sound advice. Love the graham cracker advice as well.
It's important to point out that this retired captain doles out this advice today from his home in Florida;.
as we sit here on the east coast waiting it out....
As of today, here on cape cod, we still aren't sure what to expect with this storm; they say minimal rain and high winds. I don't worry so much about the rain or loss of power--you get used to that over the years.
For me, it's the high winds that scare the crap out of me. Winds can do a LOT of damage. Take away houses kind of damage.
We've had a lot of trees removed from our property just for this reason.
But there still are a few left that are fairly close to the house.
I try not to watch too much TV during these times as the hype gets the best of me, instead I prefer to create new recipes......like pumpkin fritters.
It's really easy to throw together. The only hard part (if you want to call it that) is the deep frying.
You only need about 3-5 inches of canola oil in a deep pot; heat over medium-high heat.
See you don't need a lot of oil to fry in. Just watch the temperature of the oil. Not too hot. Do a test fritter first to see if it fries right away (perfect temp) or sinks (oil too cold) or smokes up (oil too hot).
For the glaze, use cinnamon spice like I did or use pumpkin pie spices.
pumpkin fritters with cinnamon glaze
2 cups flour
½ cup white sugar
2 ts baking powder
¾ ts salt
½ - 1 ts pumpkin pie spice
2 large eggs
3/4 cup whole milk
3 TB melted butter, cooled
7.5 ounces of pumpkin puree, plain (+ 2 TB) (so half a 15 ounce normal can plus 2 TB)
2 – 4 TB whole milk
2 TB butter
¾ cup powdered sugar
a small pinch of salt
¼ - ½ ts cinnamon (or whatever spice you prefer)
Cooking notes: I am not a big fan of pumpkin pie spice—it’s just too strong for me. So I added a small amount of it to the batter. You might want to add in more. Do a taste-test of the batter before frying to see if you like it.
For scooping out the dough into the fryer I used a medium ice cream scoop. Or you could use small size too.
In large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, pumpkin pie spice, and salt.
In a separate bowl, mix the eggs with milk and pumpkin puree then add in cooled melted butter; mix well.
Fold in the dry with the wet ingredients; only mix till just combined. Lumps are exactly what we want here. If you overmix you will have tough chewy fritters—that’s a no no.
Heat about 3-4 inches of canola oil over medium to medium-low heat.
When it gets hot, drop a little drop of batter into the oil. If it sizzles immediately and rises to the top, the oil is ready; if it burns quickly, turn down the heat.
Drop oversized tablespoons of batter (using an ice cream scoop, medium size, helps a lot, if you don’t have an ice cream scoop you can use two spoons to roll out the scoops of batter) into the hot oil. Only do about 3 -4 fritters at a time.
They cook fast about 1-1 ½ minute per side or if you want extra crispy about 2 minutes per side—if that? Make sure to flip them.
Remove and drain on a paper towels or brown paper bags. Let these cool a bit before the glaze.
For the glaze:
Put all the ingredients in a small saucepan on medium heat. Whisk until smooth and barely bubbly. This is a thick glaze; so if you want it thinner, just add a bit more milk. Using a rack with cookie sheet underneath (or parchment paper), place fritters on top and drizzle the glaze over the tops of the fritters. You could dunk the fritters in the glaze, but for me, that just makes the fritters a bit soggy. Let them rest on wire rack a bit.
Should make about 12-15 fritters? (all depending on size)