Showing posts with label bread. Show all posts
Showing posts with label bread. Show all posts

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Nutella Chocolate Zucchini Bread

Lately, my husband is complaining that I should not hid vegetables in his food.  He thinks I should disclose any added vegetables to his food so he has a choice. So, I figured I would see his reaction when I asked him to try my chocolate zucchini bread. He hesitated in taking the bread and I had to convince him that he would like it. He did and couldn't believe the bread had a vegetable in it. My sister said that she couldn't see any zucchini in her piece. I said it's because I coated it in cocoa powder. I even used two medium zucchinis for this bread.
Nutella Chocolate Zucchini Bread
1/2 cup cocoa powder
2 cups sugar
2 cups zucchini, shredded
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup Nutella
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 cup chocolate chips

Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Spray two bread pans with nonstick baking spray.
  3. Dust the bread pans with cocoa powder and tap off any excess cocoa powder.
  4. In a large bowl, combine the cocoa powder, sugar, and shredded zucchini.
  5. Add the vegetable oil, Nutella, eggs, and vanilla extract. Stir to incorporate.
  6. Add the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Stir until combined.
  7. Fold in the chocolate chips.
  8. Evenly distribute the batter between the two pans.
  9. Bake the bread for 55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
Recipe adapted from All Recipes.

One year ago..........................I made Double Roasted Chicken.
Two years ago........................I made Peacharine Cream Cheese Tart.
Did you already know......................
-Zucchini is native to Central America.
-The largest recorded zucchini weighed 65 pounds.
-Zucchini can be eaten cooked or raw.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Cajun Biscuits

Have you ever been to Louisiana? Maybe you've been to Mardi Gras? Maybe you are heading to Mardi Gras which begins next week? I will admit I've never been to Mardi Gras but it sounds so wild. I have been to New Orleans and walked down Bourbon Street. I enjoy Cajun food so I figured I would make some biscuits with a little heat. I did forget to tell my husband so he was pleasantly surprised.
Cajun Biscuits
2 cups all purpose flour
1 Tbsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp garlic powder
4 Tbsp unsalted butter
1 cup sour cream
1/4 cup milk

Directions:
  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. 
  3. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, paprika, cayenne pepper, black pepper, and garlic powder.
  4. Cut in the butter until it resembles course meal.
  5. Mix in the sour cream and milk until just incorporated.
  6. Roll out the dough about 1 inch thickness onto a lightly floured surface.
  7. Cut out the biscuits into 2 inch circles.
  8. Space the biscuits about 2 inches apart onto the baking sheet.
  9. Bake the biscuits for 10 minutes or until golden brown.
  10. Serve immediately.
Recipe by Jen of Sweet Morris.

One year ago...........................I made Macaroni and Cheese.
Two years ago.........................I made Butterscotch Fondue.
Did you already know..............
-The capital of Louisiana is Baton Rouge.
-In Louisiana, the largest city is New Orleans. 
-Louisiana is divided into parishes and not counties.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Soup Bread Bowls

When I think of bread bowls, I always have images of Boston and San Francisco. I think of a hearty chowder in Boston or the wonderful sourdough bread in San Francisco. My husband told me that he thinks of Maine since he notices it at the local restaurants. When my oldest daughter came home to visit, her boyfriend asked for some lobster chowder. I figured I would make it in bread bowls. My youngest son thought this was the most awesomest thing ever. He could eat his soup and then the bowl. He loved it. 
Bread Bowls
5 cups all purpose flour
1/3 cup white whole wheat flour
1/4 cup dry milk
1 (1/4 oz.) package of instant yeast
2 tsp salt
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
1 1/2 cup warm water

Directions:
  1. In a large bowl, combine 3 cups all purpose flour with the white whole wheat flour, dry milk, yeast, salt, vegetable oil, and the warm water.
  2. Add 1/2 cup of all purpose flour until the dough is no longer too sticky.
  3. Knead the dough for 8 minutes until the dough is smooth.
  4. Allow the dough to rise for 45 minutes.
  5. Divide the dough into 5 balls.
  6. Place the dough onto a parchment lines baking sheet.
  7. Cover the dough with greased plastic wrap.
  8. Place in the refrigerator overnight.
  9. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and allow to sit at room temperature for 2 hours.
  10. Uncover and allow to sit for 30 minutes.
  11. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  12. Gently make several slashes on top of the bread.
  13. Bake the bread for 22 minutes or until the bread sounds hollow on the bottom if tapped.
  14. Allow the bread to cool before hollowing out the center for the soup. 
Recipe adapted from King Arthur Flour

One year ago....................................I made NY Style Cheesecake.
Two years ago..................................I made Stove Top Mac-n-Cheese.
Did you already know........................
-In 1630, Boston was founded by the English Puritans. 
-In 1636, Harvard University was founded.
-In 1716, the first lighthouse was built in Boston.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Vatrushka

I have seen this cheese bread shown often during the Olympics. I figured I would have to make it since I love cheese. I actually thought it would be similar to our cheese bread. No, it is not like our gooey Italian cheese bread. My husband was very surprised and said it's sweet. It is actually sweet like a danish but not as sweet as the danishes found in the store. I've seen recipes that call for yeast but I decided to go with this version. Some recipes have raisins in them. Others have the bread topped with sprinkles and powdered sugar. It would be an easy addition to serve at a meal.
Vatrushka Russian Cheese Bread
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
2 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp vinegar

1 egg yolk whisked for the top

Cheese filling:
1/3 cup ricotta cheese
1/2 cup sugar
1 Tbsp sour cream
1 egg
pinch of salt

Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. 
  2.  In a large bowl, combine the milk, vegetable oil, sugar, and egg.
  3. Add the flour and salt. Mix to combine.
  4. In a small cup, combine the baking soda and vinegar.
  5. Immediately add the baking soda mixture to the flour mixture. Mix until a form of dough forms.
  6. Divide the dough into 8 balls.
  7. Place the balls of dough onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  8. With the bottom of a floured cup, press the cup into the ball of dough to form a well. 
  9. Lightly brush the edges of the dough with the egg yolk.
  10. In a medium bowl, combine the ricotta cheese, sugar, sour cream, egg, and salt. Mix to incorporate. 
  11. Add the cheese mixture into the center of the dough. Do not overfill.
  12. Bake the dough for about 18 minutes or until golden brown.
Recipe adapted from hep-i-book'a.

One year ago................................I made Macerated Strawberries.
Two years ago..............................I made Mexican Chocolate Cake.
Did you already know.................
-Vatrushka often have raisins and other dried fruit in them.
-Vatrushka is popular in Eastern Europe.
-Vatrushka derives it's name from 'vatra' which means fire.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Pirozhki Meat Pies

If you had told me that I would like a cabbage egg filled pastry, I would not have believed you. I would rather eat beets over cabbages and hard boiled eggs. Pirozhok (plural for Pirozhki) remind me of hot pockets. They take awhile to make but they make a lot. I'm going to freeze any leftovers so we can just reheat them for a quick supper one night. I also made a hamburger filling but the cabbage egg filling was more popular in my house. Sometimes I read a recipe and wonder how well my family will like me tonight if I make it. I'm glad I decided to do it. If you aren't brave enough to try the filling, the dough is delicious.
Pirozhki
2 cups milk, warm
1 Tbsp sugar
1 (1/4 oz) package of active yeast
2 Tbsp melted butter
1 egg
1 tsp salt
6 cups flour
1 Tbsp butter
1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
1/2 medium cabbage, finely chopped
6 hard boiled eggs
salt and pepper to taste
1 egg yolk, whisked

Directions:
  1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside. 
  2. In a small bowl, combine the warm milk, sugar, and yeast. Set aside for 10 minutes.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the melted butter, egg, salt, and 1 cup flour.
  4. Stir in the yeast mixture.
  5. Add one cup of flour to the milk mixture until the ball of dough forms.
  6. Cover and allow to rise for 1 hour.
  7. In a large skillet, melt the butter.
  8. Add the onion and saute for 5 minutes.
  9. Add the cabbage and saute for 5 minutes.
  10. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  11. Remove the skillet from heat.
  12. Chop up the 6 hard boiled eggs.
  13. Add the boiled eggs to the skillet and combine until incorporated. Set aside.
  14. On a floured surface, roll out the dough about 5 inch diameter.
  15. Add the filling in the middle and fold over. Pinch the edges to close.
  16. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  17. Place the filled dough onto the baking sheet about 3 inches apart.
  18. Brush the top of the dough with the egg yolk.
  19. Bake the Pirozhok for 20 minutes or until golden brown.
Recipe adapted from Allrecipes.

One year ago.....................................I made Chicken and Sausage Gumbo.
Two years ago..................................I made Mushroom Soup.
Heart Shape for Valentine's Day!
Did you already know......................
-Pirozhki is a pastry filled like a pirogi, turnover, and dumpling.
-Pirozhki can have savory or sweet fillings.
-Historically, pirozhki were filled with duck, goose, and rabbit meat.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Oatmeal Batter Bread

Yesterday, the ground hog saw his shadow. When I told my husband how we are going to have 6 more weeks of winter, he said we always do. We do live in Maine after all. Now, my children love winter. They put on all their winter gear and head outside to play. I actually think they play outside more in the winter than the summer. When their cousins visit, all four kids head outside. They make a snowman one week then the next week they destroy him. Today, I have scattered piles of snowman all over the yard. I would rather stay inside during this time of year. One of the best ways to warm the house is to bake some bread.
Oatmeal Batter Bread
5 cups all purpose flour
1 cup ground oats flour
2 (1/4 oz.) envelopes of quick rising yeast
1/3 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups water
1/2 cup butter
2 cups quick cooking oats
2 tsp salt
2 large eggs

Directions:
  1. In a large bowl, combine 2 cup all purpose flour, oat flour, yeast, and sugar. Set aside.
  2. In a small saucepan, heat the water and butter to 100 degrees F. 
  3. Add the butter mixture to the flour and mix until incorporated.
  4. Add 2 cups of all purpose flour, quick cooking oats, salt, and the eggs. Mix until incorporated.
  5. Add the remaining flour and mix until a soft dough forms. (More flour may be needed if the dough is too sticky.)
  6. Place the dough into a greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap. 
  7. Allow the dough to rise for 40 minutes or until double in size.
  8. Divide the dough into 2 greased 1 1/2 quart souffle dishes.
  9. Allow the dough to rise for another 30 minutes uncovered.
  10. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  11. Bake the bread for 30 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through.
  12. Remove the bread from the oven and pan. Allow to cool on a wire rack.
McCall cooking school cookbook

One year ago.................................I made Cookie Dough Cupcakes.
Two years ago...............................I made Buttermilk Corn Bread.
Did you already know....................
-In 1891, Quaker Oats became the first company to feature recipes on its products.
-The first flavored instant oatmeal was Maple and Brown Sugar.
-The trademark man on the Quaker Oats box is known as Larry.

Friday, January 31, 2014

Pepperoni Cheese Bread

The Superbowl is this weekend. Will you be watching? Or will you be watching the commercials? I suggested we should have a Superbowl party and my husband said not this year. I think if it was his team then it would be sure but it is only my favorite team playing. Either way, we always watch it. I was thinking about some typical football foods like wings, nachos, pizza, etc and decided to make this bread. My oldest daughter taught me how to make this delicious bread. It is like pizza in a bread with no sauce. If you miss the sauce so much, you can always use it as a dipping sauce. I think this is the type of food to share in a group to make sure I'm not the only one eating it all.
Pepperoni Cheese Bread
1 pizza dough
6  Tbsp softened unsalted butter
1 Tbsp oregano
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp salt
6 oz. Mozzarella cheese
30 pepperoni slices

Directions:
  1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside. 
  2. Roll out the pizza dough into a long rectangle on a lightly floured surface.
  3. In a small bowl, mix the butter, oregano, garlic powder, and salt.
  4. Spread the butter mixture over the dough.
  5. Cover the butter mixture with the cheese.
  6. On top of the cheese, place the pepperoni. The pepperoni should be slightly overlapping.
  7. Roll each side of the dough into the center of the dough to form a long strip. Place the seam underneath the dough.
  8. Take one end of the dough and roll the dough into the side of the dough towards the other end to form a large circle. The dough should not be lifted off the counter. 
  9. Carefully, transport the circle to the parchment paper. 
  10. Allow the dough to rise for 30 minutes.
  11. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
  12. Bake the bread for 20 minutes or until cooked through.
  13. Allow to rest for a few minutes before serving.
Recipe provided by Allie of Sweet Morris.

One year ago....................................I made Homemade White Loaf.
Two years ago..................................I made Baby Back Ribs.




Did you already know.......................
-The Superbowl was watched by more than 164 million people last year.
-The winner of the Superbowl receives the Vince Lombardi Trophy.
-The sterling silver Vince Lombardi Trophy is made by Tiffany & Co.

Go Broncos!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Breakfast Cookies

I figured I would try to make something a little different for breakfast. Something we could eat in a hurry before school. I was hesitant to tell the children these are called cookies since they would use this logical against me later. Mom, you've let us have cookies before so why not now? How could I win against that logic, right? So, I just told them to try them. My daughter first wanted to know why there are carrots in it. After some persuading, the kids tried them and liked them. Normally, I have to persuade my husband to try new recipes but he loves carrots so gladly took one. He really liked them. They are soft like a muffin. They are a nice change for breakfast. I used a food processor to grind the oats into a flour consistency.
Breakfast Cookies
1 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup ground oats
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp salt
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup brown sugar
3 Tbsp sugar
1 egg
1/4 cup pureed carrots
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup rolled oats

Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, ground oats, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, combine the butter, oil, brown sugar, and sugar for about 1 minute. 
  5. Add the egg, carrot puree, and vanilla. Mix for another 30 seconds.
  6. Add the flour mixture and the oats. Mix until incorporated.
  7. Scoop about 1/4 cup of the batter onto the cookie sheet. Space about 3 inches apart.
  8. Bake the cookies for 12 minutes and cooked through.
  9. Allow to cool slightly before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
Recipe adapted from Ellie Krieger.

One year ago.................................I made a Bagel Sandwich.
Two years ago...............................I made Orange Chicken.
Did you already know....................
-The largest carrot recorded weighed about 19 lbs.
-Carrots come in a range of color from white to purple.
-Carrots are healthier cooked than raw.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Homemade Stove Top Stuffing

My sister loves Stove Top Stuffing. I mean love as in (why can't the stuffing by itself be my meal) love. I would say it is one of her favorite foods. Now, I make homemade stuffing like my Mom did for Thanksgiving. When my sister comes for Thanksgiving, I will make homemade stuffing plus Stove Top Stuffing just for her. Yes, I love her that much. Well, she told me how her mother-in-law makes a homemade version that tastes a lot like Stove Top. I had to give it a try. It is good. My youngest son loved it. The best part about this stuffing is it is made on the stove top. 
Homemade Stove Top Herb Stuffing
6 slices of bread
1/4 cup dried parsley
1 Tbsp onion, grated
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground sage
1/4 tsp dried thyme
1/4 tsp dried rosemary, crushed
3 Tbsp butter
1/2 cup chicken broth

Directions:
  1. Toast the bread and then cube.
  2. In a medium bowl, place the toasted bread with the parsley, onion, salt, sage, thyme, and rosemary. Toss gently.
  3. In a medium pan, melt the butter in the chicken broth.
  4. Once the butter is melted, gently stir the herb bread to the pan.
  5. Remove the pan from the heat and cover.
  6. Allow the pan to rest for 5 minutes. 
  7. Fluff the stuffing with a fork before serving.
Recipe adapted from Gail.
One year ago................................I made Turkey Pot Pie.
Two years ago..............................I made Poultry Seasoning.
Did you already know..................
-In 1972, General Foods introduced Stove Top Stuffing Mix.
-In 1990, General Foods merged with Kraft.
-At Thanksgiving, Kraft sells more than 60 million boxes of Stove Top Stuffing.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Homemade Croutons

Since I know October seems to be the month of candy, I try to fight against it with additional vegetables. Salads are always an easy solution. Usually, I do not make my own croutons but I had purchased a baguette and we didn't eat it. It was pretty hard so I had to think of some ideas for the baguette. Some thoughts were using it to hit a pinata. Let the kids use it as a sword. Put it in the freezer which it would have been forgotten until years months later. I figured it would make great croutons which it did. I cut the bread into triangles so they looked like teeth.
Shark's Teeth aka Homemade Croutons
1 baguette, cut up into bite size pieces
1 Tbsp olive oil
2 tsp dried oregano
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1/2 tsp sea salt

Directions:
  1. Preheat broiler to high.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
  3. In a bowl, toss the bread with the olive oil, oregano,cheese, and salt.
  4. Spread the bread in one layer onto the baking sheet.
  5. Toast the bread for about 5 minutes or until the bread is golden brown.
  6. Remove from oven and allow to cool before serving.
Recipe by Jen of Sweet Morris.

One year ago.........................I made Brown Butter Funfetti Cookies.
Two years ago.......................I made Stomboli.
Did you already know............
-Croutons are small toasted pieces of bread.
-Croutons are similar to crostinis which are larger. 
-The word croutons derive from the French word croute which means crust.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Roasted Apple Bread

For some reason, my children love green apples. My son says they are yellow apples. Since I ate all my red apples, I needed a way to use up these yellow apples on my counter. I suggested to the kids to eat them but they still continued to be neglected. I was feeling a little bad for those neglected apples so I made some bread. This bread isn't overly sweet besides the pockets of the filling. My children agree this is a great way to use up those apples. Also, you can make toast with it the next day. This bread is started the night before you want to make it.
Roasted Apple Bread
3 apples, chopped
1 tsp ground cinnamon
3 Tbsp sugar
3 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 cup white whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 (.25 oz) package of instant yeast
1 3/4 cups cool water
3/4 cups chopped walnuts, slightly toasted
1/4 cups roasted salted sunflower (more for topping the bread)

Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. Spread the apples onto the parchment paper.
  4. Bake the apples for 10 to 15 minutes. The apples should be fork tender and not mushy. 
  5. Remove the apples from the oven and toss with the cinnamon and 2 Tbsp sugar. Set aside.
  6. In a large bowl, mix the flours, 1 Tbsp sugar, yeast, and water until a sticky dough is formed.
  7. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap that has been sprayed with nonstick cooking spray. The sprayed side should be facing the dough.
  8. Allow the dough to rest at room temperature for at least 8 hours or overnight.
  9. Spray an approximately 9x5 bread pan with nonstick baking spray and set aside.
  10. After the dough has rested, lightly flour a clean surface. 
  11. Turn the dough onto the floured surface and work in the apples, walnuts, and sunflower seeds.
  12. Shape the dough into a log and place in a bread pan. 
  13. Sprinkle a few sunflower seeds on top.
  14. Cover the top of the bread pan with parchment paper. 
  15. Place the bread pan into a cold oven.
  16. Set the oven to 425 degrees F. and bake the bread for about 40 minutes.
  17. Remove the parchment paper from the top of the bread and back the bread for another 5 minutes or until the bread is a deep brown color.
  18. Remove the bread from the oven and allow to cool for about 5 minutes before removing from pan.
  19. Allow the bread to cool slightly before slicing.
Recipe adapted from King Arthur Flour.


One year ago......................I made Chocolate Chip Pecan Cookies.
Did you already know.........
-Apples come in red, green, and yellow shades. 
-In the U.S., the first apple trees were planted by the Massachusetts Bay colonists.
-It takes an apple tree 4 to 5 years to produce fruit.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Banana Muffins

Since I have company staying with us, I have been buying more fruit. Well, I guess lately bananas are not our first pick. What to do with lots of ripe bananas? Well, my sister requested banana bread. I figured banana muffins would be easier for the kids since they could eat them for breakfast, snack, or dessert. Yes, they wanted to eat them again right after supper. I guess when colorful muffin wrappers are used helps.
Banana Muffins
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
5 ripe bananas, mashed
1 egg
1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup white whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup sour cream
1 Tbsp vanilla extract

Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Line a muffin tin with 12 muffin liners.
  3. Cream the brown sugar with the butter until fluffy.
  4. Add the mashed bananas and mix well.
  5. Add the egg and combine well.
  6. Add the flour, baking power, baking soda, and salt. Mix until just combined.
  7. Fold in the sour cream with the vanilla extract until combined.
  8. Evenly, divide the batter into the muffin liners about 3/4 full.
  9. Bake for 25 minutes or until golden brown.
Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart.

One year ago.....................I made pickles.
Did you already know.......
-A bunch of bananas are called a hand.
-Phloem Bundles are the strings on the peeled fruit.
-The strings carry nutrients to the fruit.

Friday, February 22, 2013

No Knead Bread

Have you ever read The Story of the Little Red Hen? When I cook, sometimes I feel like the little red hen. Who will help me make supper? Any volunteers? Who will help me clean up? Any volunteers? Sometimes it is better to delegate. I will admit my little ones help more in the kitchen than my oldest. Since I think it is a great skill to know, I will ask for their help. They do like to help cook so it is easy. So, I asked who wants to help me make some bread. My youngest daughter volunteered. I found this recipe awhile ago on Steamy Kitchen but just hadn't made it. She has great instructions on her blog with her four year old son demonstrating how to make this bread. She even has her son kiss the bowl good night. Well, I really thought my nine year old would give me a crazy look when I suggested this move. Nope, she just giggled and kissed it good night. The best part of making this bread was her sense of accomplishment. At supper, she told everyone that she had made the bread. It has a nice crunchy crust with a soft inside. Oh, it is very good. It does need to be started the night before but it is quick. 
No Knead Bread
1 1/2 cups warm water (around 105 degrees F)
1 package of instant yeast
1 tsp sugar
3 cups bread flour
2 tsp salt
2 Tbsp dried rosemary

Directions:
  1. In a large cup, combine the water with the yeast and 1 tsp of sugar.
  2. Allow to proof for about 5 minutes to check the yeast.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the yeast water with the flour, salt, and rosemary until the dough comes together.
  4. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and allow to sit at room temperature for 12 to 20 hours.
  5. After sitting, dump the dough onto a floured surface. With greased hands, fold the ends of the dough over a few times.
  6. Place the dough onto a piece of parchment paper.
  7. Lift the parchment paper with the dough in the center of it and place into a large bowl.
  8. Cover the dough and allow to rest for 2 hours.
  9. When the dough has rested for 1 hour and 30 minutes, slip an oven safe pot (Dutch oven) into the oven and preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
  10. Carefully, remove the preheated pot from the oven and place the dough into the pot.
  11. Cover the pot and bake for 30 minutes.
  12. Uncover and bake for another 15 to 20 minutes. The crust should be golden brown and the middle of the loaf has reached 210 degrees F.
  13. Carefully, remove the bread from the pot and allow to cool on a wired rack.
Recipe adapted from Steamy Kitchen.

One year ago..............................I made Fruit Smoothie.
Who will make the bread? I will said my youngest.
Did you already know................
-The Little Red Hen is thought to be a Russian folk lore.
-The moral of the story: if you don't help then you shouldn't be rewarded.
-The story has been used by political leaders for the economy.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Ground Hog Day

Tomorrow is Groundhog day. I wonder who thought to watch a rodent come out of a hole to predict spring. I will admit I will watch the news tomorrow to find out if he saw his shadow. Won't you? My sister saw a robin lately and maybe it is a sign of an early spring? I actually watch for the arrival of Mr. & Mrs. Mallard to return since there is a pond near us. In celebration of Groundhog Day, I thought it would be fun to make homemade bread in a porcupine/ground hog shape. It is also a great way to warm up the kitchen. It was record highs yesterday so maybe it is foreshadowing an early spring.
Homemade White Loaf
2 cups warm water (about 105 degrees F)
1 envelope active dry yeast
1 tsp sugar
4-5 cups white bread flour
1 Tbsp salt
1 egg, beaten with a little water
2 Tbsp rosemary
  1. In a small bowl, add the water, yeast, and sugar. Set aside to proof.
  2. In a large bowl,  combine 4 cups of bread flour and salt.
  3. Add the yeast water and mix until a dough forms. If the dough is too sticky, add about 1 Tbsp of flour at a time.
  4. On a clean surface dusted with flour, knead the bread for about 10 minutes. 
  5. Form the dough into a smooth ball.
  6. Grease a large bowl and add the dough to the middle.
  7. Oil the top of the bread and cover with oiled plastic wrap. 
  8. Allow to rise for about 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
  9. When the dough has doubled in size, punch down the dough and divide in half.
  10. Form two balls and allow to rise for another 1 hour on a greased cookie sheet.
  11. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  12. Gently slice the top of the dough to make crisscross patterns.
  13. Brush a little of the beaten egg onto the dough and sprinkle with rosemary.
  14. Cook for 25 minutes or until cooked through. Tap the bottom of the loaves and it should sound hallow.
Recipes adapted from The Ultimate Bread & Baking Book.
One year ago........................I made Coleslaw.
Did you already know..........
-Another name for a groundhog is woodchuck.
-Groundhogs hibernate from late October to February. 
-There are many recipes online that include groundhogs (which I probably will never try unless tricked).

Friday, January 25, 2013

The Boss

Yesterday, I told my son to tell his sister to wear a sweater or sweatshirt to school. He said she wouldn't listen to him. So I replied, "Tell her you are the boss." Well, I guess I shouldn't have said that but I wanted her to listen to him. Excited, my son told both of his older sisters that he is the boss and they better listen to him per Mom. My younger daughter was not happy especially when her older sister confirmed that I made the youngest person in the house the boss. My son was more excited about just being boss since he didn't boss his sisters around. So last night, my youngest daughter was complaining that she is never the boss so I told her she could be boss today. She then informed us all that we better listen to her since she will be boss. Then I had to clarify that I was making her the leader. My children told me leader and boss was the same thing. I said it wasn't. I asked them what a leader was and I like my son's definition of a leader. To quote my son, he replied, "A leader guides the team through an adventure." What a great way to look at life. Guess what? My daughter has already reminded us that she is boss today. It will be an adventure.
My children told me these are the best biscuits they've had.
Baking Powder Biscuits
2 cups all purpose flour
3 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp fine sea salt
1/4 cup shortening
1/4 cup butter
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
3/4 cup buttermilk
  1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. 
  2. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder,  baking soda, and salt. Cut in the shortening and butter into the flour until it resembles coarse crumbs. ( I use my fingers with my daughters help but you can use a pastry blender or forks.)
  4. Mix in the cheese. 
  5. With a spoon, stir in the buttermilk until the mixture leaves the sides of the bowl and there is a soft, moist dough. (Add more milk if needed.)
  6. On a floured surface, roll out the dough to about 1/2 inch thickness. 
  7. With a floured 2 inch round cutter (or top edge of a glass), cut out the dough pieces and place on the baking sheet.
  8. Bake for 8 to 12 minutes or until light golden brown. 
  9. Serve warm.
Recipe adapted from Pillsbury The Complete Book of Baking cookbook.
One year ago................I made Petite Pavlovas.

Did you already know..........
-According to Psychology Today, leaders are made.
-It also says extraverts tend to make better leaders.
-There are many different leadership styles and ways for one to improve on being a leader.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Pretzel Dogs

Near our house, there is a bike path for bikers and walkers. While I was out walking, I passed a tiny woman pushing a stroller. Inside the stroller, there was a Pit bull bigger than her. I couldn't help but smile. He is one spoiled puppy.
Every year, I make the mummy hot dogs for my children. This year I wanted to try something different. So, I made Pretzel buns with bratwurst inside. I knew my husband would love it and I was right. I just wasn't sure about the kids. I shouldn't have worried since they have asked for me to make these mummies again. I will say I was surprised by how sweet the bread tasted but it was still a nice combination.
 Pretzel Buns with Bratwurst aka Mummy Dogs
1 cup milk
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 Tbsp honey
1 packet active dry yeast
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
2 cloves garlic, grated
3 cups all purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1 cup bread flour
8 links of Bratwurst sausage
3 Tbsp water
1/2 tsp vegetable oil
coarse sea salt, for sprinkling

Directions:
  1. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside. 
  2. In a small saucepan, heat the milk, 1/2 cup water, sugar, and honey until the mixture reaches between 105 to 110 degrees F.
  3. Slowly, add the milk mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer.
  4. Sprinkle the yeast mixture over the milk mixture and let rest for 15 minutes for the yeast to bloom.
  5. Wipe out the small saucepan. Add the butter and garlic over medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes. 
  6. In another bowl, combine the all purpose flour with the bread flour.
  7. Add the flour to the yeast mixing bowl with the melted garlic butter.
  8. Mix the flour and garlic butter into the milk mixture on medium speed for about 5 to 7 minutes. The dough should be smooth and elastic plus pulling away from the sides of the bowl.
  9. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured clean surface and form a ball.
  10. Cut the dough into 12 equal pieces. Roll each piece into a ball and place onto the parchment paper lined baking sheets. Cover and place in a warm place to rise for 15 minutes.
  11. Roll out each ball into a log and place onto the baking sheet to rise for another 30 minutes. Make sure to cover and place in a warm place. 
  12. While the buns are rising, heat the bratwurst in a small skillet over medium heat with 3 Tbsp water and 1/2 tsp vegetable oil until golden brown. Set aside to cool. 
  13. Cut each bratwurst in half and set aside.
  14. With a sharp knife, slowly and carefully cut each bun down the middle vertically but leave one bun alone.
  15. Place the cooled Bratwurst in the center of the bun and press the dough together. Continue with all the buns until the one bun is left.
  16. Take the last bun and cut off about 1/2 tsp of dough. Roll the dough into long, vertical pieces. Continue making long pieces until all the dough of the last bun are just pieces of dough like . Secure the pieces of dough over the buns with the Bratwurst inside. Cris-cross the dough over each other and press down to flatten. 
  17. Sprinkle with the sea salt if desired.
  18. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Place one oven rack high and the other in the low position.
  19. Place the baking sheets into the oven for about 15 minutes or until golden brown. Make sure to rotate the baking sheets halfway through baking so the top sheet is on the bottom rack and the bottom sheet is on the top rack.
Recipe adapted from Jeff Mauro of the Foodnetwork

One year ago...........................I made Chicken Enchiladas.
Did you already know...
-Other names for the Pit Bull is the American Pit Bull Terrier.
-The Pit Bull usually weighs between 22 to 78 pounds.
-Some dog associations do not accept blue eyed or merle coats for a Pit bull into the registry. 
-The Pit bull was first bread to be an all around farm dog.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Macaroni Grill Bread

Did you realize that Father's Day is this Sunday? Are you doing anything special with your Father? Do you take him golfing or fishing? Do you buy him a gift? I am unable to see my Dad this Sunday. It is so sad. It's sad because he has decided to visit England for the next two weeks with my oldest daughter. Instead, I will spend Father's Day with my husband and his Dad. It will be fun.
One of the things my husband likes is homemade bread. He tends to have his favorite but he is willing to try other ones. I made this copy cat recipe and he loved it. The best thing about this recipe would be it yields two loaves. We had half a loaf left the next day so my daughter made BLT sandwiches after toasting a few slices. I will say it was the best BLT sandwich I have ever had. I have eaten at Macaroni Grill but it has been awhile so I can not say if it taste like the restaurants but it is so good.
Macaroni Grill Rosemary Bread
1 1/2 Tbsp active dry yeast
1 Tbsp sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water
4 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp salt
3 Tbsp dried rosemary, chopped
2 Tbsp butter, melted
coarse salt for sprinkling on top

  1. Directions:
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. In a large cup, combine the yeast, sugar, and water. Allow the yeast to proof for five minutes.
  4. In a large bowl, combine the salt, 1 Tbsp rosemary, and 3 cups of flour.
  5. Add the yeast to the flour mixture and mix. 
  6. Slowly, add the remaining flour to the mixture until the dough is slightly tacky and holds it shape. The dough should be soft and smooth.
  7. Transfer the dough to a lightly greased bowl and cover with greased plastic wrap. Allow the dough to rise for about 1 to 2 hours or until the dough has doubled in size.
  8. Punch down the dough and divide in half.
  9. Shape the loaves into two smooth, ovals and place one on each end of the baking sheet.
  10. Brush on the melted butter on top of each loaf.
  11. Sprinkle the tops of the loaves with the remaining rosemary.
  12. cover the loaves with lightly greased plastic wrap and allow to double in size again about 1 hour.
  13. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  14. Sprinkle each loaf with the coarse salt.
  15. Bake the loaves for 18 minutes or until browned. the loaves need to be baked through. 
  16. Transfer the loaves to a wire rack to cool.
Recipe adapted from Mel's Kitchen Cafe.
Did you already know...
-Romano's Macaroni Grill Restaurants were founded by Philip Romano.
-The first restaurant was opened in 1988 in Leon Springs, Texas.
-There are over 200 restaurants world wide.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Baguette Bread

Oh, I love baguette bread. Since I made lasagna this weekend, I figured I would make up some bread to go with it. I actually made the dough the night before and refrigerated it until I was ready for the second rise.
The crust was crisp with a soft inside. This bread accompanied the lasagna nicely. The left over bread we placed in the freezer to make some croutons at another date. Next time, I'm going to knead some herbs into the dough before baking.
The Almost No Knead Baguette
3 cups lukewarm water
5 cups all purpose flour
3 cups white whole wheat flour
1 Tbsp salt
1 Tbsp instant yeast

Directions:
  1. Spray a large bowl with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. In another large bowl, add the water and yeast. Allow to rest for 5 minutes to make sure the yeast proofs.
  3. Add the flour and salt to the yeast water and stir to combine. 
  4. Mix the dough until no dry spots remain and the dough is fairly soft.
  5. Knead the dough by hand for a few minutes. The dough will be sticky.
  6. Add the dough to the greased large bowl and flip.
  7. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
  8. Divide the dough in half and shape into a slightly flatten oval. 
  9. Fold the dough lengthwise in half. 
  10. Seal the edges of the dough with the heel of your hand.
  11. Flatten the dough slightly and fold in half lengthwise. Seal the dough with the heel of your hand.
  12. With the seam side down, gently roll the dough into desired size.
  13. Place the dough seam down on a lightly greased of a baking sheet or a baguette pan.
  14. Roll out the other half of the dough.
  15. Cover the dough and allow the dough to rise for about 1 1/2 hours.
  16. When ready to bake, heat the oven to 450 degrees F.
  17. Slash three or four times onto the baguette diagonal.
  18. Spritz the dough with warm water and bake for about 25 minutes or deep golden brown. 
  19. Remove the bread from the oven and allow to cool.
Recipe adapted from King Arthur website.
Did you know...
-The bakers of Vienna invented the steam ovens and were the first to begin to bake hard crusty breads.
-In France around 1920, a law went into affect that did not allow bakers to begin work before 4 am. The bakers needed a bread for their customers. Since the baguette baked faster, the baguette bread became popular with bakeries.