Saturday, November 26, 2011

Cranberry ambiguity

This was tested at Thanksgiving, and we couldn't decide whether it was supposed to be a salad or a dessert. I guess it's kind of a fruit salad. Tasty served with barely sweetened whipped cream.

12 oz cranberry
1 can crushed pineapple
6 oz strawberry jello
0.75 cup sugar
0.5 cup chopped cherries
2 tbsp minced orange peel
1 chopped apple
0.75 cup cranberry juice

Pulse the cranberries in a blender until roughly chopped. Mix with the sugar. Stir in the other fruits and the orange peel.

Bring the juice to a boil and add the jello. Cool and pour onto fruit mixture. Place in fridge overnight covered tightly with foil.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Ham and potato soup

I was never a fan of soup, but some of them are ok with nice bread. These days I actually like certain veggie soups, which is why I gave this one a shot. It was a little too bland for me.

8 oz ham
1.5 lb potatoes
1 onion
1 celery stalk
1 carrot
3 cloves garlic
3 tbsp butter
0.25 cup flour
4 cup chicken broth
2 cup water
0.5 cup sour cream
1 tsp paprika
black pepper

Dice all the veggies and the ham into 0.5-inch cubes. Brown the butter in a pot and add the onion, celery, carrots, ham, paprika and garlic. Cook for 5-10 minutes, until onion is translucent. Add the broth, salt and potatoes. Cook until potatoes are soft.

Remove half of the potatoes and puree in a food processor. Add it back to the soup. Add the sour cream and cook for 10 minutes. Season with salt and black pepper to taste.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Apple butter cake

I had a jar of apple butter left from a previous experiment. I think I'm not a fan of apple butter. It made a moist coffee cake, but it was a little bland for my taste.

2.25 cup Bisquick mix
0.75 cup milk
0.5 cup sugar
1 egg
2 tbsp melted butter
2 cups apple butter

1/3 cup sweetened coconut flakes
1/3 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 cup sugar
2 tbsp melted butter

Grease and flour a 9-by-9 inch baking shape. Mix all the ingredients listed above apple butter. Pour two thirds of the batter into the baking shape.

Spread the top with apple butter. Add the remaining dough in dollops.

Mix the coconut, walnut, sugar and butter. Sprinkle over the top.

Bake in a preheated 350F oven for 50-60 minutes, until center is done.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Garlic flatbread

A very soft flatbread with a mild garlic flavor. Perfect for paninis.

3 tsp yeast
1 cup warm water
3 tbsp sugar
3 tbsp sour cream
2 eggs
2 tsp salt
4.5 cup flour
2 cloves garlic
0.25 cup butter
1 tbsp baking powder

Mince the garlic. Melt the butter and add the minced garlic.

Bloom the yeast in half of the water with 1 tbsp sugar. Add the whisked egg, garlic butter, sour cream and the remaining water. Mix the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Add and form a dough.

Knead until smooth. Coat lightly with oil and allow to double in a warm oven. Pinch off golf ball-sized pieces. Form into a ball and coat lightly with oil. Allow to rise for another 15 minutes.

Heat a pan on the stove top. Spray lightly with oil. Roll out the dough balls into 0.25 inch-thick discs. Bake one-by-one in the hot skillet covered with a lid. It will only take 1-2 minutes per side. Flip and continue baking. Cool in a wet towel on a cookie rack. Serve while still warm or store in the freezer.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Stollen bread

This is a simplified version of the Christmas classic.

1 tsp vanilla
1 tbsp yeast
1 egg
1/3 cup milk
1/3 cup water
1/3 cup butter
1.5 cup golden raisins
2.75 cup flour
1/3 cup sugar
0.5 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking powder
0.25 tsp salt

8 oz marzipan

melted butter
powdered sugar

Bloom the yeast with 1 tbsp sugar in warm water. Add the warm milk, beaten egg, vanilla and melted butter. Mix. Add the sugar and mix. Add in the flour, cinnamon, baking powder and the raisins. Knead together.

Roll out into a 0.5-inch rectangle. Take the marzipan and roll into two cylinders. Fold these into the dough as you roll it up. Seal the ends of the loaf.

Place onto a baking sheet lined with baking paper. Preheat the oven for 2 minutes, then turn off. Cover the bread with foil and allow to rise for 40-50 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350F. Brush the bread with milk and bake in the 350F oven for 10 minutes. Lower the heat to 300F and bake for a further 30-40 minutes, until golden brown.

Cool on a cookie rack. Brush with melted butter and dust with powdered sugar. Serve cooled.

Broccoli-kale frittata

Quick and pretty tasty for being so green.

10-15 kale leaves
8 eggs
2 tbsp heavy cream
1 clove garlic
0.25 cup nutmeg
0.25 pound broccoli florets
black pepper
2 tbsp olive oil
4 oz sharp cheddar

Preheat a cast iron skilled on medium heat. Add half of the olive oil. Add the broccoli florets and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add the kale leaves and wilt. Add the garlic and turn off the heat. Allow to cool.

Beat the eggs with the cream, nutmeg, black pepper and salt. Pour onto the cooled veggies. Bake in a 350F oven until the middle just sets. Top with freshly shredded cheddar and broil until cheese is lightly bubbly.

Serve with fresh tomatoes and toast.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Deep dish pizza

I love America's test kitchen. This recipe is from them.

1.5 cup + 2 tbsp flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1.25 tsp yeast
0.25 cup cornmeal
0.5 cup + 2 tbsp water
1.5 tbsp melted butter
2 tbsp butter

1 tbsp butter
0.25 cup grated onion
dried oregano
0.25 tsp salt
1 clove minced garlic
14 oz crushed tomatoes
0.25 tsp sugar
2 tbsp cut basil leaves
1 tbsp olive oil

2 tbsp olive oil
2 cups shredded mozzarella
1 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese

Mix the dry ingredients for the dough, add in the warm water and melted butter. Knead for 10 minutes. Coat with oil and allow to rise for an hour in a foil covered bowl.

Meanwhile, allow the 2 tbsp butter to equilibrate to room temperature.

Prepare the sauce by adding to grated onion and the butter to a pan. Cook until browned lightly. Add the garlic for 30 seconds, then add the canned crushed tomatoes, sugar, salt and oregano. Simmer for 30 minutes on low. Add the basil and cook for 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, mix in the 1 tbsp olive oil. Set aside.

After the dough has risen, roll it out into a 7.5x6 inch rectangle. Spread with the room temperature butter. Roll up like a jelly roll and flatten with a rolling pin, seam side down, into a 9x3 inch rectangle. Fold up into a ball. Coat with oil and allow to rise in the fridge for another 1-2 hours.

Add 2 tbsp olive oil to a 9-inch pan. Coat evenly. Roll out the crust to a 13-inch disc. Press into the oiled pan, preparing a 1-inch-tall edge.

Add in the cheese, some pepperoni if desired, and brush the sauce on top. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake in a preheated 425F oven on the lowest rack for 20-30 minutes, until golden brown.

Allow to cool for 10-15 minutes before serving. Serve with a light salad.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Dinner rolls

These turned out to be beautiful and amazingly tasty. I particularly liked them with organic, honey-sweetened peanut butter and strawberry jam.

0.25 cup water
0.75 tbsp yeast
0.25 tbsp sugar
1 egg
0.75 cup warm milk
0.25 cup melted butter
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp maple syrup
2 tbsp sugar
3.25 cup flour

Bloom the yeast with 0.25 tbsp sugar and warm water. Mix in the melted butter, maple syrup, beaten egg and warm milk. Add in the flour, sugar and salt mixture gradually, until elastic dough forms. Knead for 5-10 minutes.

Allow to rest for 5-10 minutes on a floured surface, while you prepare a baking sheet.

Cut dough into eight pieces, roll into tubes. Tie a knot on each tube, then fold the upper end under the knot and the lower end on the top. Tuck the ends in. Place onto the baking sheet.

Allow to rise covered with a clean kitchen towel in a warm oven (set to preheat for 2 minutes, then turn off). After 25 minutes brush the rolls with milk. Preheat the oven to 375F. When the oven preheated, brush with milk again. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until golden brown. Cool on a cookie rack.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Roasted eggplant pizza

This was surprisingly tasty and filling.

1 portion pizza dough
1 medium eggplant (0.75-1 pound)
olive oil
1/3 cup mozzarella
2 oz grated parmesan
0.25 cup marinara
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp minced garlic
0.5 tsp dried pepper flakes

Wash the eggplant and cut it into 1/3-inch thick slices. Salt lightly and allow to sit for 10 minutes. Drain and pat dry.

Brush with olive oil and lay slices onto a cookie sheet. Season with salt.

Broil 3-4 inches from the broiler, until golden brown. Turn and broil other side as well. Heat 2 tbsp olive oil and cook minced garlic and pepper flakes until fragrant (30 seconds).

Spread pizza dough and cover with tomato sauce, concentrating the sauce more on the edges. Sprinkle some cheese on top. Layer with eggplants and brush with the garlic oil. Sprinkle remaining cheese on top. Bake in a 425F oven until cheese is golden brown.

Serve cooled slightly, it tastes much better that way!