Three quarters of the country is covered in snow. You saw it coming, so you hit the grocery store, stocked up on milk, bread, and eggs. As one Food Channel Facebook fan in the Midwest said, “Food. Check. Food. Check. Food. Check. Ready for the storm.” We like the way she thinks.
And now it’s here. You are snowed in. Snowbound. Unable to run out for an item you’ve forgotten. What now? To help you out, we’ve prepared our Food Channel Top Ten list of Food Tips for a Snow Day:
1. Schools are closed; you can’t get to work. So take the time for a relaxing breakfast with your family. Pull out the pancake griddle or the waffle iron and the real maple syrup. Broil grapefruit with a little sugar sprinkled on top. Make real oatmeal. Do something that you don’t normally take time for. For some great recipe ideas, see these:
Applewood Smoked Bacon and Egg Breakfast Pizza
Apricot Cranberry Oatmeal with Walnuts
2. Prepare for boredom by baking. Sure, the first few hours are OK, but being snowbound has its limits. So assemble your baking supplies and try something new. Everyone’s spirits will be lifted by the smells and tastes—and, since you have a little more time than usual, you can experiment with a new recipe or two. We suggest you try our January cheesecake, the New York-Style Cheesecake with Orange-Grapefruit Syrup. Or check out the new Best Recipes from the Food Channel – 100 Great Desserts, available on Kindle.
3. Clean out your cupboards and your freezer. You may discover an interesting canned good that will work with a recipe you’ve been wanting to try, or some meat that really does need to be thawed and prepared in a new way. And the organization will make you feel better about your kitchen when things return to normal.
4. Make soup. After all, you found all kinds of miscellaneous vegetables and broths while you were in the freezer, didn’t you? This is the time to put them all in a big pot, add some seasonings, and get ready to serve up something warm and delicious. Chili is great, too, especially if you have some great toppings—corn chips, avocado, tomatoes, onions, cheese, sour cream all make it a special occasion. Here are a few recipes to think about:
Roasted Butternut Squash Soup with Smoky Bacon
Tuscan Vegetable and Bread Soup
5. Bake bread. Go ahead. You know you want to. Pull out that unused bread machine, or find the unexpired yeast packets and take out any frustrations on the dough. It will go great with that homemade soup! Try one of these – you might even find this is the time to be brave and try your hand at a sourdough starter.
Sourdough Bread (with starter)
6. If you want to bundle up and hit the great outdoors, go out with purpose: collect fresh snow and make snow cream. Try Paula Deen’s recipe (click here) or skip the real snow and create your own by making Alpine Apple Snow, a fabulous topping for anything you bake.
7. After that, you’ll need hot chocolate. It’s as simple as putting milk, cocoa and sugar in a saucepan or microwave, but you can also dress it up with peppermint, marshmallows, cinnamon, whipped cream and more. Here are a few ideas:
8. If you lose power, pull out the gas grill (if you can find it under the snow). Do “hobo packets” with meat, veggies and seasonings and you can still have a hot meal, plus use up those things that may be unintentionally thawing.
9. Pull out a great cookbook, or any book that will whet the appetite. This is the time to peruse that cookbook you got for Christmas (or maybe check online for the next cookbook you want). It might be a good time to check out cookbooks such as Hot Dish Heaven, for example. Look for inspiration and even a little fantasy. If you have children at home, look for the Button Soup (also known as Stone Soup) book and use the day to combine food and a great lesson in giving.
10. At the end of the day, even if you worked virtually, it’s time to relax. So pull out the popcorn and pop up a big supply, then throw on some fun seasonings, then plop yourself in front of a great movie. Try our Three Point Popcorn for a little variety. After all, you aren’t going anywhere.
For a perspective from the man’s point of view, check out Andy Ford’s Blizzard Buffet.