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Middleburg, FL, United States
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Wednesday, February 17, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Frosted Wonderland, greetings from Jack Frost

     What a sight! This is what awaited us this morning as we opened the door
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                                       Jack Frost nipping at the door!
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Sunday, February 14, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Ah, a nice cup of Latte…. (3. HBin5 -Chocolate Espresso dough-)

It’s Valentines day and what better way to start it than with a nice cup of latte.
                                      Happy  Valentines day to all of you!
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  This latte started out with the determination to finish this month bread braid which was to use Chocolate Espresso WW Bread dough to make some chocolate tangerine bars.
So I got ready and filled my espresso maker with espresso coffee and water and set it up on the glass top oven.
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A good Latte, made with some fresh espresso and some milk foam on top is one of my all time favorite drink and I was shattered when I discovered after moving to Germany that the type of stove (glass top) in the place we rented would make this a thing of the past for a while. See how the element heats up?
So the reasons why I rarely make Espresso now are the possibility of burning the handle of the pot or causing damage to the heating element.
Today however I threw all those fears out the window and went ahead and had myself a nice hot cup of latte.
Well, that and of course the need to make one of the main ingredients for the Chocolate Espresso WW bread dough.
This dough has  1/2c of cocoa powder to 3c of flour. Quite a bit I thought. The first bit of dough I made into the bars by adding some chocolate chips, dried cranberries and the zest of an orange (no tangerine) to the dough and filling it into a square pan.
It’s Fasching season (Mardi Grass) and Rose Monday is tomorrow so I added some colorful sprinkles to those bars.
Now the word bars are very deceiving here because when I think of bars I think of something sweet. These are good but more for breakfast, after all they are made using bread dough.
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What do you do when you still have some marzipan leftover from your Christmas bakery and are in dire need to use it up?
You put it in some chocolate dough, that’s what you do.
I simply rolled some marzipan and put it in the middle of some flattened dough, rolled it up length wise and twisted it into a bagel type form. It came out round after baking.
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I Also wanted to do something more Valentine’s day’isch so I spread some of the dough in these cute heart shaped spring forms.
DSCF0978                topped it with some Nutella and some more dough and voila.
                                 I wish you all a Happy Valentines Day.
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Friday, February 12, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Red beets anyone? (3 HBin5 –Red Beet dough-)

February is flying by and Valentines day is right around the corner.
When I think of Valentines day I think red and Michelle from big black dogs who is hosting the HBin5 challenge seems to think red too. 
Our assignment for this part of the challenge has us using red beets and onions in some bread. When I read through the ingredients I knew right away that I would
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be using this  package of red beets and some roasted onions.
The fiasco with the wet apple filling from earlier this month was still fresh on my mind and the beets where nearing the expiration date and needed to be used.
I love the taste of roasted onions in bread and knew this would make a great compliment.
I was still wondering though how this bread would fare taste wise with the beets in it.
The dough came together nice and was just right in it’s consistency.
The question of “what now” came up the next day and with lunch time right there I thought some pan fried “Naan” style bread would be nice with that bowl of chili I was going to have.
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No sooner than this thought had finished some of that dough was frying away.
                     I liked the taste a lot. It was pretty dense though.

The rest of the dough was formed into a loaf and turned into some sandwich style bread.
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We had some of that  sandwich loaf for breakfast the next day. Topped with some butter, cheese, ham and eggs it was a perfect start into a new day.
I am very happy with the results of this bread. Nice crumb, moist and not dense at all.
The loaf is still as moist and fresh almost a week later. That is a winner in my book any day of the week.
If you want to make this bread (I am urging you to make it) open page 180 in the HBin5 book.
You will find this recipe and all the other breads we are yet to bake there. Now off to see how my dough is coming along for the next part of this challenge.

Next up is some bread using chocolate and espresso.
Yum, I am so looking forward to this one. I already have some things in mind of what to do with this dough. I have a heart shaped small springform and I will be using that for this part of the challenge.
Until tomorrow, happy baking!
Tuesday, February 2, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Pizza, that’s what’s for dinner!

We had Pizza the other night and I thought I post about it. There is just something about Pizza, it reminds me of Family and good times.  I am still searching for the perfect crust recipe but until I find it I am using Barbara Kingsolver's.
It uses a bit to much yeast so if you plan ahead you can get away with less.
Since our oldest son moved to the states in the Fall there is currently only three of us living here.
My husband and 15 year old son eat b.i.g pizza’s so this recipe makes three pizza’s for us. Two big ones and one small one for me.
If your family is big on sauce and likes lots and lots of toppings put your crust on some parchment paper or you will end up with a big spill trying to get the pizza in the oven.
I have a superpeel and love it, it avoids that spill. I tried with the regular peel and flour or cornmeal but with as much topping as my guys place on it, it was hopeless until the superpeel.
Top your pizza with your favorite pizza sauce.
I make a sauce using crushed tomatoes, Italian herbs, garlic powder, salt and pepper. You can cook this ahead, freeze it and always have some on hand when the call for Pizza gets loud.
Than have each family member top their pizza the way they like it.
I can make two pizza’s at a time in my oven. I bake one on a pizza stone and the other on a hot cookie sheet.

DSCF0812                             Here is my pizza (ham, spinach and olives)

PostHeaderIcon Easy Potato Rolls as seen on “The kitchn”

I finally have found my go to Potato rolls recipe. These rolls are so good that I am on my third batch since discovering the recipe less than two weeks ago. They are so nice and flaky just like a potato roll ought to be.

                                 You can find the recipe here at Thekitchn.com

When I make my dough I mix all of the ingredients together at the same time. One less step and it works just fine.
If you are unsure about how your yeast performs you might want to go ahead with that extra step and get it activated first.
To get the potato water I simply keep some of it in freezer bags after cooking potatoes and I keep those bags in the freezer until needed.
I like to use as little processed food as I can and would not recommend using the potato flakes. The potato water is free since most of us dump it out after the potatoes are cooked. All you have to do is think ahead and save some in your freezer.
The dough is very wet so the time in the fridge is a must because that is what makes this dough workable with very little extra flour and I think that is also what creates the nice texture. Might be all the bubbles it creates during that fermentation period. 
I shape 12-15 rolls and place them 3 in a row in a 9x13 pan. Like this than cover it to proof. My pan came with a cover so that is what I use.
DSCF0805 During the winter (it’s so cold here) I place it on a radiator in my dining room otherwise it could take hours for it to double.
DSCF0806 After they about double I brush them with milk or some milk/cream mixture and bake them.Mommy's Kitchen
DSCF0807 These are seriously addictive. So do yourself a favor, cook some potatoes for dinner and whip yourself a batch up tonight and serve them tomorrow.

Update: I linked these rolls to Mommy's Kitchen on March 7
                   

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