Dec 27, 2007
VERY surprised to say the least! My amazingly sweet husband ordered this for me for Christmas. It is such a wonderful machine! I had the chance to use is for the first time yesterday and so far I have made pie crusts, corn bread and THE best buttermilk pancakes, all with terrific results! Not to mention I was able to make double batches of all of these without worrying about overfilling the bowl!
This mixer is a Kitchenaid Professional 5 Plus. If you are considering buying one I would highly suggest this model. It has a 5 quart bowl which can mix up to 12 cups of flour (yes, you read that right, TWELVE cups!) The motor is 450 watts and it comes with the spiral dough hook as opposed to the 'C' hook that most of the Kitchenaids come with. The spiral hook is much better at mixing large quantities of heavy dough such as bread dough.
Here's the recipe for the buttermilk pancakes, they are SO GOOD! I made a double batch so we now have breakfast in that freezer that will last a couple of weeks :0)
(adapted from The Joy of Cooking)
3 c. all-purpose flour
6 Tbsp. sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. salt
3 c. buttermilk
6 Tbsp. butter, melted
1 tsp. vanilla
Combine all dry ingredients and mix well. Add buttermilk and eggs. Mix well. Slowly add butter and blend in well. Stir in vanilla. Heat griddle or skillet to medium-high and pour pancakes by the 1/3 cup full. Allow to cook until bubbles form and edges look dry. Flip then cook until the center springs back when pressed down. Serve hot with your favorite pancake toppings. Makes about 18 pancakes.
Dec 22, 2007
Since I probably won't get a chance to be on-line over the next several days, I just wanted to take this opportunity to wish you all a very Merry and Blessed Christmas. We are busy getting ready here and don't have any new recipes to share this year. I am using many of my favorite tried and true Christmas favorites. I do have a new recipe I will be sharing soon after Christmas so stay tuned for that. While I was looking up some of my favorite blogs today I found a fun Christmas Meme over at Chef Paz's blog so thought I would post that today. If you would like, post your own answers on your blog and tag some of you blogging friends. Have a safe holiday and let's not forget the reason for Christmas!
1. Wrapping or gift bags? Wrapping paper! It's more fun to open!
2. Real or artificial tree? I prefer real for the wonderful smeel but we usually have artificial.
3. When do you put up the tree? It all depends. This year we still haven't put up the tree yet!
4. When do you take the tree down? By the end of January usually.
5. Do you like eggnog? Love it!
6. Favorite gift received as a child? Pretty baby dolls with lots of clothes to change them into.
7. Do you have a nativity scene? Yes, that is our main Christmas decor.
8. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? Can't think kof one, I always appreciate gifts!
9. Mail or email Christmas cards? Postal mail.
10. Favorite Christmas movie? The Charlie Brown Christmas Special (Does that count as a movie?)
11. When do you start shopping for Christmas? Usually in December.
12. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Cookies!
13. Clear lights or colored? Colored, and lots of them!
14. Favorite Christmas song? Silent Night.
15. Travel at Christmas or stay at home? STAY HOME!
16. Can you name all of Santas reindeer? Dancer, Prancer.... Rudolph.... uh... I know there are more but don't know their names!
17. Angel or star on the top of your tree? I'd prefer and angel but right now we have a star.
18. Open your presents Christmas Eve or Christmas morning? Depends on the year, hubby often works on Christmas.
19. Most annoying thing about this time of year? People who forget Christmas is about Jesus, not Santa and gifts and spending lots of money.
20. What do you leave for Santa? Nothing. We celebrate Jesus not Santa.
21. Least favorite holiday song? Can't think of one.
22. Specific theme or color? Celebrate Jesus! That is always our theme.
23. Favorite ornament? A pretty colorful silk fish my mom bought in California when I was a child, it is so pretty!
Dec 10, 2007
Mothering From Day To Day tagged me first so here goes...
1. I have been married for 8.5 years.
2. I have an college degree in General Studies.
3. I have no pets!
4. I love to read!
5. I am addicted to cooking and quilting.
6. My favorite dessert is anything with chocolate.
7. I rarely go on summer vacation but I can't wait to take my kids to Disneyland!
The second meme tag comes from Moomettesgram's Musings.
Here are my answers...
1. My favorite foods are anything ethnic. I love bold flavors and brightly colored foods that are fun!
2. The things I miss most are having time ALONE with my dear hubby (as in before our lovely babies were born) and having more spare time to quilt (also B.K. (before kids)). I love my kids but time is something I often long for :)
3. Some places I have never been to are Europe, Africa and Australia. I would love to visit them all some day.
4. Some favorite places I have been to are Cancun Mexico, Canada, California and Vermont.
5. My unluckiest moments... I long believe in luck, but one of my saddest moments was when I moved away from home when I got married because I am very close to my family and I really missed them.
6. My luckiest moments... Well, again, I don't believe in "luck" so I will tell you my most blessed moments. Meeting my husband, the birth of each of my children and the most blessed moment of all was when I accepted Jesus Christ as my personal Lord and Savior.
7. Now that I'm older... I am MUCH wiser than in my younger days and I praise God daily for blessing me with His grace!
I don't have any particular person in mind to tag, so if you are reading this consider yourself tagged! Post your replies on your blog and link back to me then leave a comment and let me know that you answered the questions. Tag as many of your blogging pals as your like and let's keep the meme moving! :)
Nov 29, 2007
It's been a while since I have posted a new recipe. We've all been sick here over the past couple of months so our Thanksgiving was a quiet and simple one. Praise God we are doing fine now!
As most people do, I tire quickly of turkey after Thanksgiving. So, I recently brought out some of my favorite cookbooks to find some nice warming family meals that do not involve turkey. I found this one in The Joy of Cooking. I have yet to be let down by one of their recipes and this is no exception. Reminiscent of chicken enchiladas, this casserole is warm, soothing and was a quick hit with my whole family.
King Ranch Casserole
(adapted from The Joy of Cooking)
12 corn tortillas, cut into quarters
4 cups cooked, cubed chicken
1 large onion, chopped
12 slices American cheese, sliced diagonally in half
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can cream of mushroom soup
2 c. chicken broth
1 can diced tomatoes, drained
1 can green chilies, drained
Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees. Spray 9 x 13 in. dish with cooking spray. In a bowl, mix together soups, broth, tomatoes and chilies. Layer in the pan as follows: 1/2 tortillas, 1/2 chicken, 1/2 onion, 1/2 cheese, 1/2 soup mixture. Repeat layers. Bake for 50 minutes or until well browned.
Oct 26, 2007
Oct 20, 2007
I have always loved banana bread. However I find it very hard to find a banana bread that I like. Moist loaves seem to be too dry, to "burnt" tasting, too browned on the outside, to bland, too sweet or just lacking in banana flavor. I have tried several recipes over the years. I do enjoy my recipe for Easy Banana Bread when time is short, but this recipe here is my absolute favorite. It is so moist, flavorful and so pretty too. The flavor and color of the bananas really shine through. I adapted this from The Joy Of Cooking.
Makes 1 Loaf
3/4 stick (6 Tbsp.) butter, softened
1 cup mashed ripe bananas (about 2 bananas)
1/4 c. plain or vanilla yogurt
2/3 cup sugar
1 1/2 cup all-purpose unbleached flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
In a large bowl, combine butter, eggs, banana, yogurt and sugar. Mix well. In a small bowl combine flour, salt and baking powder. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix until just combined well. Spoon into a well greased loaf pan. Bake at 350 degrees for one hour or until golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool in pan about 20 minutes before removing. Cool completely then slice.
Oct 19, 2007
Oct 16, 2007
While blog hopping last night, I read on my buddy Paz's blog that today is World Bread Day. I had no idea such a day existed! :0) I decided right away that I must try a new bread recipe in honor of this special day ;0). This is one I have been wanting to try for some time now. I found the original recipe in Southern Living Magazine and modified it to fit what I had on hand and to work with a bread machine. These turned out fabulous!
Oatmeal Dinner Rolls
2 c. water
2 c. quick cooking oats
3 Tbsp. butter, softened
1/3 c. firmly packed brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp. salt
3 1/2 c. bread flour
1/2 c. whole wheat flour
2 tsp. quick rise yeast
Combine all ingredients in your bread maker in the order suggested in the manual. Select the DOUGH cycle. Divide dough into 16 equal pieces. Put into two greased 9-inch round cake pans. Allow to rise for 30 minutes or into double in size. Bake at 375 degrees for 15 minutes.
Oct 15, 2007
For the Broth...
3 qt. water
1 medium onion, chopped
3 medium tomatoes, chopped
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
2 tsp. dried oregano (crush in the palms of your hands to maximize flavor)
For the meatballs...
2 lbs. ground beef (use fresh beef, defrosted beef will make the meatballs look uncooked inside)
2 cloves garlic, minced fine
1 tsp. salt (or more to your taste)
1/2 tsp. pepper (or more to your taste)
4 Tbsp. masa harina (corn masa flour, found in the Mexican food isle - if you can't find this, use regular flour, do not use corn meal!)
3 fresh mint leaves, minced or 2 Tbsp. dried crushed mint
1/2 c. uncooked long grain white rice
In a large stock pot, bring water to a boil. Chop cilantro, onion and tomato. Mix together along with oregano. Add to water. Mix ground beef, salt, pepper, garlic, eggs, mint and masa harina. Make into meatballs the size of walnuts. Add to broth, reduce to a simmer. Cover and simmer at least 30 minutes, skimming scum as needed. Serve with warm tortillas or fresh bread. We like to top ours with cheese and a dollop of sour cream or a spoonful of salsa. Corn chips would be great with this as well!
Sep 5, 2007
1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup white sugar
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
1/2 cup white sugar
2 teaspoons fruit juice
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and 3/4 cup sugar until smooth. Mix in egg. Combine the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt; stir into the creamed mixture until just blended. Press dough into an ungreased pizza pan. Bake in pre-heated oven for 8 to 10 minutes, or until lightly browned. Cool. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese with 1/2 cup sugar and fruit juice until light. Spread on cooled crust. Arrange desired fruit on top of filling, and chill.
Aug 29, 2007
Oh, and I also updated the Soft Fluffy White Bread recipe. I forgot to include yeast when I first typed it up! You'll have to forgive my "mama brain", we are quite busy around here these days :0)
Here's the oatmeal recipe.....
1/4 c. light olive oil (vegetable oil or canola oil works too)
1/2 stick butter, cut in small pieces
1/2 c. brown sugar
3 c. old fashioned rolled oats
2 tsp. baking powder
1 c. milk
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
chopped nuts, raisins, chopped apples or other dried/diced fruit (optional)
Combine all ingredients and spread into a greased 8 x 8 inch pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Serve with milk, hot or cold. Makes enough to feed three hungry children and one hungry mom on a busy school morning :0)
(Note: I mix this up at night, put it in a bowl in the fridge and put it in the pan and bake it in the morning, works great!)
Aug 20, 2007
Aug 9, 2007
I have been looking for a good recipe for white bread since I got my bread machine back around Christmas time. All the recipes I have found are tasty but don't have that store bought fluffiness that my husband loves. Although I know white bread is not really healthy, my hubby loves it so I have been on a quest to find the perfect recipe. After much trial and error I have finally succeeded. This bread is nice and soft and so much better than store bought. I usually make a second batch of dough while the first is rising so we have enough for about 2 days.
Soft Fluffy White Bread
1 2/3 c. water
2 Tbsp. sugar
2 Tbsp. light olive oil (NOT extra virgin, it is too strong of a flavor for this bread)
1 1/2 tsp. salt
4 c. bread flour (don't try to use all-purpose, it won't work... not enough protein in the flour)
1 heaping Tablespoon Vital Wheat Gluten (I buy this at Wal Mart right near the yeast and flour)
2 tsp. quick rise yeast
Put the ingredients into your bread maker in the order suggested in the manual. Select the DOUGH cycle. When the dough is done, punch it down, divide it in half, form it into loaves and put it into buttered loaf pans. Cover it and let it rise about 45 - 60 minutes. Heat your oven to 350 degrees. Bake bread for 45 minutes. Remove loaves from oven and cover with a kitchen towel for about 10 minutes or until you can easily shake the loaves out of the pans onto a cooling rack. When bread is cool enough to handle, put into plastic bags and tie shut, or you can slice the bread with an electric carving knife at this point and then put it in bags.
* NOTE: For added nutrition, you can substitute 1 c. of whole wheat flour for one cup of the white flour. You will still get a nice soft loaf, but it will not be completely white.
Some people seem to have had problems with this recipe. I'm not sure why because it always works great for me. However, to offer all of you readers an alternative recipe. If you purchase a bag of Bob's Red Mill Brand All Purpose Flour there is a GREAT recipe on there for white bread that is just as soft and fluffy as this one, maybe more! I use it all the time and love it. Just a note, it is intended for a bread machine. However, I make it in my Kitchen Aid mixer and use 1 pkg. of yeast per loaf. Works GREAT! I make 4 loaves at time with no problems. Happy Bread Baking!
Jul 11, 2007
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Jul 3, 2007
1 lb. ground beef
1/2 package taco seasoning (or use a combination of salt, pepper, garlic, oregano, cumin and chili powder to your taste)
1/2 c. water
4 cups refried beans (I used homemade but you can use canned, just make sure to heat them up with a little milk mixed in to loosen them up)
1 bottle taco sauce (or you could use salsa)
1 small can tomato sauce
1 can diced tomatoes
1 lb. cheddar cheese, grated
9 no-boil lasagna noodles
Brown ground beef with taco seasoning and water. Mix taco sauce, tomato sauce and tomatoes in a bowl. In a 9 x 13 pan, spread a little of the taco sauce mixture. Next add 3 lasagna noodles, then 1/3 of the refried beans, 1/3 of the meat and 1/3 of the cheese. Repeat layers starting with the taco sauce mixture and ending with the cheese until all the ingredients are used. Cover dish with a double layer of foil. Bake at 425. for 1 hour. I always set a cookie sheet on the bottom oven rack in case of any drips. Serve with diced scallions, chopped cilantro and sour cream.
Jun 12, 2007
Jun 2, 2007
1 (28 oz. can diced tomatoes) preferably organic or fire roasted for maximum flavor
1/2 can of diced green chilies
2 cloves garlic
2 handfuls fresh cilantro (use leaves and stems)
juice of one key lime or half a regular lime
1/2 tsp. ancho chili powder
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1/8 tsp ground cumin
1/8 tsp. black pepper
salt to taste
Put all ingredients in the food processor or blender and process until slightly chunky but mostly smooth. Refrigerate until ready to serve. This is always better the second day as it gives the flavors time to develop as it rests in the refrigerator.
Jun 1, 2007
Chicken with Creamy Dill Sauce
(adapted from Eating Well's Healthy In a Hurry Cookbook)
1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, trimmed of fat and pounded to 1/2 inch thickness
1/4 c. plus 2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour, divided
3 tsp. extra virgin olive oil, divided
2 shallots, minced (I used 2 tsp. dried shallots from Penzey's)
1/2 c. dry white wine
1 (14 oz.) can chicken broth (or use homemade)
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
1/3 c. sour cream
1/2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp. dried dill
salt and pepper
Season chicken with salt and pepper then dredge in 1/4 c. flour. Heat 2 tsp. olive oil in a heavy skillet and cook chicken about 4 minutes on each side, until nicely browned over medium high heat. Place chicken on a plate and keep warm. Add remaining olive oil and shallots to the skillet and saute until golden. Put remaining flour in skillet and stir until combined. Add broth, wine and lemon juice. Stir well and bring to a simmer. Place chicken back in skillet. Add sour cream and Dijon mustard and stir well. Allow to simmer about 7 more minutes, until heated through and chicken is no longer pink in the center. Sprinkle with dill. Serve.
May 23, 2007
Garlic-Olive Oil Bread Dip
1/2 c. extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1/4 tsp. course grind black pepper (or freshly ground)
3 cloves garlic, smashed and coarsely chopped
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
1/8 - 1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
Combine all ingredients and mix well. the longer this is allowed to set the more intense the flavor. It can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator, but let it come to room temperature before serving. Serve with nice crusty bread or any Italian type bread. It is also wonderful drizzled over pizza or spaghetti.
May 17, 2007
I have been sticking to old stand-bys mostly when it comes to dinner. The other day we had a recipe I haven't made since before I started this blog. I'm not quite sure why because we all loved it and it was really easy too. The recipe is listed below.
I also found a cool new (to me anyhow) food blog that I really enjoyed so it's been added to my list of favorite food blogs. Take a look at Cooking Is Medicine.
Pacific Island Chicken
1 1/2 lbs. chicken breasts (I have made this with boneless-skinless, bone-in or chicken tenders, all work well)
1/2 c. soy sauce
1/4 c. brown sugar
1 can pineapple chunks (including the juice)
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 c. cold water
3 Tbsp. corn starch
Place chicken in crock pot and top with soy sauce, brown sugar, pineapple chucks, garlic and ginger. Whisk corn starch into cold water then pour over all. Cook on low for 6 hours or high for 4 hours. I serve this with broccoli seasoned with salt, pepper and shallots and Jasmine rice.
May 14, 2007
May 4, 2007
Crock Pot Lasagna
1 box farfelle ("bow tie") pasta
1 lb. ground beef, browned and drained
( season beef to taste with salt, pepper, minced onion, garlic powder and Italian seasoning)
1/2 bell pepper, diced
2 c. grated mozzarella cheese
2 jars spaghetti sauce of your choice
Spread a small amount of pasta sauce in bottom of crock pot. Layer ingredients in crock pot in thirds as follows: pasta, sauce, meat, bell pepper, cheese. Top last layer with pepperoni. Set on low and cook 3 - 5 hours.
Apr 15, 2007
Thanks everyone for your well wishes and prayers!
New recipes will resume in a couple of weeks (give or take). In the meantime, here's one of my favorite sites for recipe inspiration.
Apr 7, 2007
I recently had the chance to pick up a new very cool looking product to try. Have you seen Philly Cream Cheese's new Ready-To-Eat Cheesecake Filling. Awesome idea for people like myself (my whole family actually) that LOVE cheesecake in any form. The tub of filling costs a little under $5 which is comparable to the amount you would probably spend when buying the ingredients to make your own cheesecake filling. I first planned to just purchase (or make) a graham cracker crust to serve this new found confection, but when I remembered a recipe I had seen on The Baking Sheet for Homemade Graham Crackers, I couldn't resist making them. We made "Cheesecake Sandwiches" with them and the new Philly filling and were they good! If your grocer offers this product I highly suggest you give it a try :0)
Here's the Graham Cracker recipe...
Homemade Graham Crackers
(from The Baking Sheet)
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 3/4 cups whole-wheat flour (I used Organic Graham Flour from Hodgson Mill)
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup cold butter, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoon molasses
1/4 cup cold water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
In a food processor, mix together the flours, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Add the cold butter and process until the mixture resembles coarse meal, about 30 seconds or so. Add the honey, molasses, water, and vanilla. Mix until the dough starts to come together in a ball, another 30 seconds. Scrape dough out of the mixer.
Between 2 sheets of waxed or parchment paper, roll the dough 1/8-inch thick. Chill for at least 1 hour, until firm (I chilled for several hours).
Preheat oven to 350F. Retrieve dough and roll it a bit more if it is not yet 1/8-inch thick. With a sharp knife or pizza cutter, cut into 2-inch squares. Arrange the crackers on parchment lined baking sheets. With a toothpick, prick several holes in each cracker.
Bake for 15 minutes, until lightly browned at the edges. Remove from the oven and let cool on the pan.
Yield: 48 crackers
Apr 5, 2007
I went for my 37 week prenatal appointment a few days ago and was told by my doctor that my blood pressure is high. So it looks like I will be winding things down here on the blog for a while. I am scheduled to be induced on Tuesday. Baby girl will be here two weeks earlier than we expected!
This afternoon I baked two quiche for the freezer to add to my "post-baby food stocks" :0) So far I have pancakes, pinto beans, chili, pepper steak, and baked beans all frozen and ready to go. It sure does make a difference if you don't have to cook after arriving home with a new little bundle of joy!
I have a couple of recipes I plan to post over the next couple of days but after that if I seem to disappear for a while you'll know why.
I'm so excited to meet our new baby girl! :0)
Mar 26, 2007
(adapted from Penzeys "ONE" Magazine)
1 stick butter, softened
1/2 c. brown sugar
1 c. white sugar
1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
1 1/8 c. peanut butter
2 tsp. baking soda
4 1/2 c. quick oats
1/2 c. chocolate chips
1/2 c. M&M's
Preheat oven to 350°. In a large bowl, cream together eggs, butter, sugars and vanilla extract. Mix in the other ingredients by hand to form a stiff dough. Make sure the oats are the quick cooking variety, as they make the cookies fluffier than regular oats. Bake tablespoons full of dough on a greased cookie sheet for about 10 - 12 minutes.
Mar 13, 2007
2 c. all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. sugar
1/2 c. milk
1 c. water
Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl and stir until well combined. Heat 3 Tbsp. oil or butter in a skillet over medium - medium high heat. Drop batter by large spoonfuls into the skillet. As soon as bread begins to set enough that you are able, turn them with a spatula and press down on them to flatten a bit. Lower the heat and cover the skillet and allow them to steam to cook the inside. Keep a close eye on these, the outsides will burn easily!
Mar 3, 2007
PINA COLADA BREAD PUDDING
12 thick slices day-old bread
1/4 c. softened butter
1 box banana pudding mix
1/2 c. brown sugar
1 (15 oz.) can crushed pineapple in juice
1 c. grated coconut
1 cup coconut milk
2 1/2 cups milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 c. sliced almonds
Spread butter on bread slices. Place in a 9 x 13 in. dish, overlapping slices. Beat eggs with brown sugar in bowl. Add pineapple, coconut, coconut milk and milk. Blend well. Add vanilla extract and pudding mix. Blend well again. Pour over and in between bread slices. Sprinkle with almonds. Allow to soak 15 minutes. Bake 45 minutes at 350 degrees. Allow to cool before serving. This would be wonderful served with whipped cream or ice cream on top!
Feb 3, 2007
Chicken Sour Cream Enchilada Casserole
1 lb. chicken breast (boneless/skinless) cooked and diced (I use a food processor)
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can Progresso brand cream of mushroom soup (If you can't find Progresso, use any brand with 1/2 soup can of milk added)
1/4 c. sour cream
1 can diced green chilis, drained
2 c. grated cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese
1 onion, minced
18 corn tortillas
Heat oven to 350 degrees. In a blender, combine soups and sour cream plus 1/2 c. of the cheese. Pour soup mixture into a sauce pan and heat through. Ladle a small amount of the soup mixture into a 9 x 13 in. pan. Add a layer of 6 corn tortillas, spread out to cover the bottom of the pan. Next add a layer of 1/3 of the chicken. Then add a layer of 1/3 of the onions. Then add a layer of 1/3 of the cheese. Then add a layer of 1/3 of the soup mixture. Then sprinkle with 1/3 of the green chilis. Repeat layers twice. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until hot and bubbly and the cheese is melted.
Feb 2, 2007
1 package active dry yeast
1 1/3 cups water
1 tablespoon honey (I use Agave nectar)
1 tablespoon butter or margarine, melted and cooled
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
3 1/4 - 4 cups bread flour
1/4 cup cold water
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1. Sprinkle yeast over the warm water in a large mixing bowl; stir and let stand 5 minutes.
2. When the yeast is working a bit stir the honey, lard and salt into the yeast mixture.
3. Add 2 1/2 cups flour.
4. Mix at low speed and then beat at medium speed until the dough is very elastic, about 5 minutes.
5. Gradually stir in as much of the remaining flour as needed to make a soft dough.
6. Knead on floured surface until dough is smooth in texture and very elastic, 15-20 minutes (use a dough hook on your mixer and knead for about 10-15 minutes).
7. Place dough in a greased bowl, turn the dough so all surfaces have a sheen of oil.
8. Cover and let rise in a warm place until it has doubled in size, about 1 hour (I turn on the light in the oven and place the dough in there to rise, do NOT heat the oven!).
9. Punch the dough down and knead briefly on a floured surface.
10. Divide dough into 10 pieces and roll into balls.
11. Work with the palms of your hands and start at the center of each ball to roll out into ovals.
12. Each piece should be about 5 1/2" long and 2" in the middle, tapering to each end.
13. Place rolls on a greased baking sheet, cover and let rise until almost doubled, about 25 minutes.
14. Meanwhile heat oven to 375F degrees.
15. Mix cornstarch and cold water, heat stirring constantly to boiling, boil until thickened and clear about 2 minutes.
16. Brush each roll with the cornstarch mixture.
17. Slash each roll down the middle stopping about 1/2" from each end and cutting about 1/2" deep.
18. Bake until the rolls are brown and sound hollow when tapped, about 30-35 minutes. Remove from baking sheets and cool on racks.
19. Serve warm & fresh from the oven.
Our little container garden that I spoke about a couple posts ago has died out on us. The unexpected cold snap did not give the plants a good start at all. We are planning to replant them directly outdoors at the end of this month when the weather is a little warmer. Stop back by and I will continue to post our progress.
My oldest daughter's birthday was last week and she put in a special order for a cheesecake :) She created this cheesecake herself, "Mama" was just the chef. Here's a picture of her special birthday creation.
It is an orange flavored cheesecake with dulce de leche swirled in... chocolate chips and strawberries on top and whipped cream of course! I can hardly believe my baby is 7 years old!
Jan 19, 2007
Jan 16, 2007
This week our homeschool studies have tended towards learning about plants so what better time to get started on our seedlings. In our growins zone (AZ9) it's really important to get the seeds planted in January because the intense summer heat can start as early as April or May.
This year we have seeds started for tomatoes, cucumbers, squash, Anahiem chilis, okra, mini bell peppers, cilantro, basil, dill, chives, garlic chives and flat leaf parsley. We planted all of these about a week ago and so far the cucumbers, basil and squash are peeking out of the soil. In a few weeks I will be transplanting them into 5 gallon buckets and setting them out on tht patio. We are also planning to start (directly from seed) some oregano, rosemary and a couple different kinds of flowers.
If all goes well I should have some more pictures to share in a week or two when all the seeds have sprouted :)
Jan 13, 2007
All the recipes have turned out very well expect I think I will reduce the olive oil for the pizza dough next time when I make it in the bread machine. The dough was very sticky and hard to work with. The recipe I used (I doubled it for the machine) would have made 4 pizzas but we ended up with three because I botched the first one due to the extra sticky dough. I'm not quite sure why it works fine when done by hand but not in the machine. I'm sure I will figure it out sooner or later :)
Today I found a couple lonely baked potatoes in the fridge, just begging to be used for something. So of course, I had to try a recipe I saw in one of my cookbooks for Potato Rolls. They turned out great!
Here are the recipes for the Classic Country Bread and Potato Rolls. Sorry for the lack of a photo for the Country Bread, but the kids ate it too quickly!
(Originally from Old World Breads - modified for ingredients I had on hand)
1 c. milk
2 tsp. canola oil
2 tsp. sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 small potatoes, baked then mashed (boiled would work well too I'm sure)
3/4 tsp. salt
2 c. bread flour
1 c. whole wheat flour
Add ingredients to bread machine in the order suggested by manufacturer. Set on "dough" cycle. When dough is ready, remove from machine and cut into 12 equal pieces. Form each piece into a ball and place balls into a greased muffin pan. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and allow to rise for 45 minutes. Bake in a pre-heated 350 degree oven for 20 minutes. For a golden crust, brush with butter or margarine before baking. Makes one dozen rolls.
Classic Country Bread
1 1/2 c. water
2 Tbsp. canola oil
1/3 c. molasses
2 1/4 tsp salt
2/3 c. oatmeal (I used Bob's Red Mill 5 Grain Cereal)
1 1/3 c. whole wheat flour
2 1/2 c. bread flour
2 tsp. quick rise or bread machine yeast
Put all ingredients in bread machine in the order suggested by the manufacturer. Set on "dough" cycle. When dough is ready, split into two equal pieces and form into loaves. Please each loaf into a greased bread pan. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and allow to rise for 45 minutes. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 50 minutes. Remove from pans to wire racks and allow to cool before slicing. Makes 2 loaves.
Jan 6, 2007
I did a lot of research before I chose this breadmaker. I needed to find one in my price range but that had good ratings among consumers so I wouldn't have to replace it after a few months like some of the appliances I have had in the past. I finally settled on the Sunbeam Bread Maker. It makes 1.5 and 2 lb loaves and had 12 different settings. It can dely baking up to 13 hours. It can even be used to make jam! A word of caution... if you ever purchase this model, the manual has many recipes but from all I have read on-line the proportions are incorrect and the loaves turn out awful. So be sure to find a good bread machine cookbook or find recipes on-line from reputable websites if you buy this model.
I made my first loaf today and I must say I am in love with this machine. It is so easy to use, easy to clean and quiet. I found this recipe on-line and tweaked it a bit to fit what I had on hand. Here's the recipe. I'm sure it would turn out very well made by hand as well. It is moist and delicious.
Whole Wheat Flax Seed Bread
1 1/3 c. warm water (I microwave room temp. water for 20 seconds)
2 Tbsp. canola oil
1 Tbsp. honey
2 Tbsp. molasses
1 1/2 c. bread flour
1 1/3 c. whole wheat flour (I prefer King Arthur brand)
1/2 c. ground flax seed
1 1/2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. bread machine yeast (fast acting or quick rise yeast will work fine as well)
Add ingredients to bread machine in order suggested by manufacturer. Select basic setting and light crust. Makes one 1.5 lb. loaf.
Jan 5, 2007
Crock Pot Potato Soup
8 potatos, peeled and diced
2 carrots, diced
2 leeks or 4 scallions, sliced
1 stalk celery, diced
2 onions, diced
1 c. diced ham or crumbled cooked bacon
5 c. water
4 tsp. chicken boullion
1 Tbsp., dried parsley
1 Tbsp. chives
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. dill
1/2 tsp. pepper
1/4 c. butter or margarine
1 (13 oz.) can evaporated milk
1/2 c. shreded sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 c. sour cream
Add all ingredients except milk, cheese and sour cream to crock pot. Cook 6-8 hours on high or 10 - 12 hours on low. During the last hour add the milk, cheese and sour cream, stir well then cover again and allow to cook until cooking time is done.
Jan 4, 2007
I got a new cook book yesterday and wanted to share a review with you.
Years ago I had picked up an old copy of The Joy of Cooking at a second hand bookstore. It was (and still is) my very favorite cookbook. Dispite the lack of color photographs that all the new cookbooks seem to have in abundance, the wealth of knowledge contained in this book is beyond measure. If I could choose only one cookbook to own it would be this one. In it you will find recipes for everything from simple things like boiled eggs to very elaborate dishes, menues, cooking techniques and ingredient and nutrition information.
My original copy was ruined when a storage closet in our old apartment was flooded by the hot water heater. So I was very excited to see this new 75th Anniversary Edition available. It is just as good as my old copy... in fact better! It contains over 4500 recipes and is an invaluable tool for anyone who enjoys cooking.