The Weekend Scramble

This is my brain:

This is my brain after the weekend:

Any questions?

I’m sure you do. There are parts of my weekend I have questions about too. Mainly where all of our bruises came from and how I lost my voice – bull-riding being the likely answer to both. You see, it was my girlfriend’s bachelorette party in NYC this weekend. And for those of you that have ever been bombarded by or involved with a bachelorette party, God help you, you know the extent of damage that can be caused. It’s like a pack of hyenas coming upon a fresh kill - “First the pack spreads out, surrounding its prey in a impenetrable circle. Watch, as they slowly close in, warding off all unwanted visitors with blood curdling yelps and screams”. It’s eerily similar actually. And it was a blast!

I laid the foundation for my weekend at Choptank Friday night, where I gorged myself on Old Bay chips and crab dip, fluke ceviche with corn nuts, Maryland style peel and eat shrimp and a big old crab cake. My foundation was served to me by a handful of Georgetown Prep guys, or so they appeared, all of who had delightful manners, provided excellent service and fit their whole Maryland theme quite well. I almost didn’t mind their double popped collars. I also didn’t mind their spacious back deck, which will be perfect for a weekend brunch of their Chesapeake Benedict: jumbo lump crabmeat, artichokes, and spicy hollandaise sauce with a side of boardwalk fries. Yum. I’ll leave the Meathook’s Scrapple served with Anson Mill grits and a fried egg to an indigenous Marylander. Yee haw!

The rest of the night was spent on various dance floors in the Lower East Side. It was fun, it was drunk and it’s a blur. What wasn’t fun was the smell of Mt. Gay rum at 11am the next day while I made a Rum Raisin Tiramisu. Normally, cooking is my therapy - a source of peace and love. And while I am not a dessert person, I was excited to try my hand at this particular dish, as it’s the bachelorette’s favorite and it required no baking. Because I don’t bake. I don’t like to measure things, I rarely follow directions and I think rules are meant to be broken – which doesn’t bode well for baking, a science more than an art. This dessert is more a compilation of ingredients than anything. It’s easy and probably pretty fun to make if you’re not holding back the pukies. My only criticism could be a result of my tender state, but I think the recipe calls for too much rum. When the bachelorette party finally got interested in dessert, circa 4:30am, we were overwhelmed by the rum flavor, to say the very least. Granted, we were eating it in fist full’s (hence the carnage in picture two, above) and in between bites of meatball pizza from Vezzo, but next time I will cut the rum in half. I loved the addition of semi-sweet chocolate curls on top, but recommend microwaving the chocolate before shaving – and being sober while using your Titan Peeler. Yikes.

Rum Raisin Tiramisu (adapted from Ina Garten's recipe)
  • 3/4 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup Mount Gay rum, divided in half, 2 tablespoons set aside
  • 6 extra large egg yolks at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 16oz marscapone cheese
  • 3/4 cup fresh squeezed orange juice, divided
  • 1 1/2t. good vanilla extract 
  • 1 vanilla bean (thanks to Gourmet Garage for charging me $17 for one)
  • 24 to 30 ladyfingers
  • semi sweet chocolate, shaved

  1. Place the raisins and 2 tablespoons of rum in a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and place in the microwave on high for 1 minute. Uncover and set aside to cool.
  2. Beat the egg yolks and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment on high speed for 5 minutes, until very thick and light yellow. Lower the speed to low and mix in the mascarpone until smooth. With the mixer still on low, add 1/4 cup of rum, 1/4 cup of orange juice, the vanilla extract, and the seeds from the vanilla bean. Stir until combined.
  3. Pour the remaining 1/4 cup of rum and remaining 1/2 cup of orange juice in a shallow bowl. Dip one side of each ladyfinger quickly in the rum mixture and place them in one layer in a 9 by 11 by 2-inch rectangular or oval dish. Break the ladyfingers in smaller pieces and dip them in the rum mixture to fill the spaces. 
  4. Sprinkle half the rum-soaked raisins evenly on top. Pour half the mascarpone mixture over and spread evenly. 
  5. Repeat the layers of dipped ladyfingers, rum-soaked raisins, and mascarpone mixture. 
  6. Smooth the top, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 6 hours, but preferably overnight.
  7. Before serving, sprinkle the top with the shaved chocolate and serve cold.
  8. Splash a little soda water in with the remaining Mount Gay and a squeeze of lime and have yourself a cocktail. 

Tastes best with friends,
- The Heat


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