Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Pizza Dough

This had rave reviews from the family! There was silence while we all ate and a few thumbs up signs were flashed. I was asked to make it again too! Hurrah!

I made the dough in the morning before work and let it sit on the counter covered with plastic wrap all day. The dough rolled easily and I baked on a silpat mat.

I used canned tomato sauce that I doctored up with garlic power and Italian seasoning. The grown up pizza had brisket, pepperoni, and red onion. I used a mix of Mexican and mozzarella cheese. The kids decided to turn theirs into calzones and used mozzarella cheese and pepperoni.

Pizza Dough
Adapted from Piecrust and Pasta
Makes 4 half sheet size pizzas 

4 1/2 tsp active dry yeast (2 packets)
1 teaspoon honey
2 cups warm water, 110 to 115 degrees F
6 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus additional for brushing

In the bowl of the mixer dissolve the yeast and honey in the water. Let sit for 5 minutes.
Add the flour, salt and olive oil. With the dough hook, mix on low speed for about 5 minutes. 
Place dough in a well oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap.
Let it rise for at least one hour - two hours and up to the whole day. 

[Note: For overnight, put it into an oiled zipper freezer bag to refrigerate or freeze. Before using, let come to room temperature on the counter. It will expand so if your bag is small, you may want to transfer to a bowl for the duration.]

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
Pinch off a piece of dough the size of your fist. Liberally sprinkle your counter with cornmeal and roll the dough ball with a floured rolling pin to a thin circle about 1/8 thick. Add your favorite toppings and bake 15 minutes or until browned on the edges and the cheese bubbles.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Quick Rise Bread

I was making pasta and sauce for dinner and really wanted some fresh bread to go with it. Since it was getting late in the day I needed bread that would rise quickly and I didn't want something that would be too dense. 

This recipe was perfect! I halved the recipe and then split the dough into 6 blobs. These blobs were put into an oiled jumbo size muffin tin. The bread had a nice crispy crust and the inside was soft.

I'll be making these again!

Quick Rise Bread
Adapted from: Food.com
Makes 12 fist size rolls or 2 loaves of bread

5 cups white all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons yeast
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups warm water (110 F - 115 F)
1⁄4 cup cooking oil

In stand mixer with a dough hook add 4 cups flour, sugar, salt, and oil.
In small bowl combine water and yeast. Let it sit for 5 minutes. 
On slow speed, add yeast mix into the flour mix.
Add the remaining flour in increments until dough is no longer sticky.
Knead for about 5 minutes until dough is elastic and smooth.
Place dough back into bowl and cover with a damp towel and let it rise until double its size- about 1/2 hour. (I put it in my oven on the Proof setting for 35 minutes).
Punch it down and divide dough into two pieces (or into the muffin tins).
Preheat oven to 400F.
Roll pieces long enough to fill two well oiled loaf pans and leave to rise until dough has reached the 
rim of the pan. (I put into the oven once it preheated and didn't wait for it to rise to the rim of the pan).
Bake loaves for 40 minutes. Rolls bake for 20-25 minutes.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Oven Roasted Potatoes

Potatoes are one thing that someday I'll be able to cook without fear! I haven't been able to time the correctly to be ready with the rest of the food. This means I start the potatoes very early so they will be done before I cook the rest of the meal. These are

Oven Roasted Potatoes

Potatoes (1/2 to 1 per person)
a healthy drizzle Olive Oil
2 tsp herbs (Oregano, Italian Seasoning, parsley)
Cracked black pepper
1-2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 cup chicken broth

Preheat oven to 400F.

Wash and scrub potatoes. Cut potatoes into a large dice.

In a large bowl combine olive oil, herbs, and seasoning. Stir in potatoes until all of it is coated. If you need to add more olive oil.

Put in a 9x13 baking dish. Add a splash of chicken broth and bake until fork tender. Depending on the size of the potato that could be between 30-60 minutes.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Rice Pilaf

I grew up eating the boxed rice pilaf and I had a craving for it the other day. The boxed stuff has a lot of sodium so I was curious about making it at home from scratch. This was so easy and I don't know why people use the boxed mix.

I will give you a warning...red onion turns green so you should use the white onion.

Rice Pilaf
Adapted from All Recipes 
Serves 4

2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup orzo pasta
1/2 cup diced white onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup uncooked white rice
2 cups chicken broth or veg broth
1/2 cup slivered almonds (optional)

Melt the butter in a lidded pot over medium-low heat. Stir in almond and orzo pasta until golden brown. Add onion and cook until onion becomes translucent, then add garlic and cook for 1 minute. Mix in the rice and chicken broth. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the rice is tender, and the liquid has been absorbed, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand for 5 minutes, then fluff with a fork.