Posts tagged ‘baking’

Bubble Corn Bread

I’ve been trying to decide on which bread to make for BBD- Corn-y Breads. First, I was going to try anadama bread, which has been on my to-try list for a while. Then I considered one from Amy’s Bread cookbook, which is shaped like a sunflower… very impressive, but maybe too advanced for me! Then I had narrowed it down to two from Bernard Clayton :  Broa, a soft portuguese corn bead, and this, “bubble” loaf. As you can see, I went with the bubbles! It was quite easy to make and I liked the outcome. Plus its cute how the little round balls puff up and fill the pan, then bulge over the top. And pulling them apart while the loaf is still hot, and smearing some butter on… mmmmm. I halved this recipe to make in a regular loaf pan.

Here is what I did:

  • 2c bread flour
  • 1/2c all purpose flour (or use all bread or all purpose)
  • 1/2 Tbs salt
  • 2 Tbs sugar
  • 1/2 c cornmeal
  • 1 pkt active dry yeast
  • 3/4c water
  • 1/4c milk
  • 1 Tbs butter + additional melted for brushing the top(optional)

Mix 1c flour, salt, sugar, yeast, and cornmeal in a bowl.

Heat water milk and butter till butter melts, and then cool until it is just warm (and you can put your finger and hold it there without being hot).

Add the liquid to the bowl and mix hard with a wooden spoon for a few minutes (or do this in a mixer). Mix in flour 1/2 cup at a time until a dough forms. (I actually needed to add 2 Tbs more water, but ymmv). Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 8 minutes. He says the dough should be smooth and elastic, and feel alive under your hands!!

Cover the dough and rest for 20 minutes.

Butter the loaf pan. Punch down the dough and knead a few times to remove air pockets. Divide into 16-20 equal pieces, by dividing in half with a knife, half each again, and so on.  Roll each dough portion into a ball (I made little roll forms, by bringing the sides of the dough tightly underneat and pinching it shut, but this may not be necessary) Arrange half the pieces in the bottom. It does not need to fill the bottom because it will do that when it rises. Add the other half on top. Brush with melted butter (I didnt do this step). Cover tightly with plastic and rise for 1 hour.  You can also keep this in the fridge for 2-24 hrs. removing 15 minutes before baking.) Preheat oven to 375 or 325 if using convection oven.  Since I halved the recipe, it only needed to bake for 25-30 minutes, but he says to bake for 45-55 minutes. Place on a wire rack to cool and brush again with melted butter(optional).

Sending this to Yeastspotting, Bread Baking Day, and BYOB and also Healthy or Decadent

Apple-Cranberry Crisp

Apple crisp is one of my favorite desserts because its easy, using only few ingredients, and fairly healthy too. Of course, we love to make it less healthy by pairing the hot  juicy apples with ice cream! Hehe. It also makes the house smell fabulous! Usually I use rolled oats for the topping, but since I’m trying to use what I have, I used rye flakes instead. It is still good, but the rye flakes are much harder than oats. Next time I may try to break them up some in the mixie (food processor) first.

Here is what I did:

  • 5 medium apples, peeled, cored and sliced thinly (I used a combo of honey crisp, granny smith, golden delicious, and stayman winesap)
  • 1/3 c cranberries
  • lemon juice – 1/2 lemon or less as needed
  • 1 TBS sugar  *You may want to add more if your apples are very tart or you like things more sweet*
  • generous sprinkle of cinnamon
  • generous sprinkle of cornstarch

Topping:

  • 1/2c flour
  • 1/4c rye flakes (or rolled oats)
  • 2 Tbs brown sugar *This makes it mildly sweet. Add another Tbs if you like*
  • 3 Tbs cold unsalted butter (if your mixture is not crumbly, you may need another Tbs of butter)
  • pinch of salt

Butter a deep pie dish and preheat the oven to 375.

Put the apple slices in the pie dish and sprinkle them with lemon juice so they do not turn brown, and I like the tartness the lemon gives also. Toss them around and add the sugar and cinnamon, then the cornstarch and toss around again. Sprinkle the cranberries over the top. Cornstarch will make the juices released from the apples to thicken, and so will the pectin in the cranberries. The cranberries also give another level of flavor which I really enjoyed, especially with the sweetness of the ice cream we had it with.

Mix the ingredients for the topping in a bowl, using your fingers to break up the butter and squish it into the rye/flour making a crumbly texture. You may also use a fork or a pastry cutter for this.  Pour the mixture evenly over the top of the apples in the pie dish.

Place the pie dish on a metal baking sheet to prevent any possible spill overs. Bake in the oven for about 30 minutes or until the topping is golden and the apples are bubbling up.

Let it cool at least 10 minutes before eating, but its best while still warm!  Especially with vanilla or cinnamon ice cream!

Sending this to Hearth and Soul and to Decidely Healthy or Horribly Decadent
Hearth n' Soul Blog Hop at A Moderate Life

Molasses Wheat Sandwich Bread with Rye Flakes

Don’t ask me how rye flakes ended up in my pantry. Sounds healthy enough, but I have no idea what to do with them! I read that they can be interchanged with oat so I was thinking I could put them in bread, since part of my goal this month is to bake my own breads. I took a nibble, and it didn’t taste too strong so I went ahead with it. I even ventured to make up a bread recipe loosely based on other ones I found that were not quite what I wanted. A bit of a risk since Im a novice bread baker. But to my surprise it turned out really good!  The rye flakes themselves give a pleasant grainy flavor and texture to the bread, but I have to say, they are much firmer than oat meal which more or less disappears into the bread. We liked the added bite it gives. I read about soaking whole grains to bring out their sugars and flavors. So I did that, not sure if it made a difference.

Here is what I did:

  • 1c white wheat flour
  • 1/3c rye flakes
  • 3/4c hot water

Combine the three and keep in the fridge overnight. Take out about an hour before starting the rest of the dough so it comes to room temperature.

  • 1/4c warm water

    Check out the crazy franken-yeast!

  • 1 packet active dry yeast
  • 1 tsp sugar

Combine and let bloom for 10 minutes till frothy.

Mix yeast water with the soaked flour above. I used my hand to get it well incorporated. Then add:

  • 1/4c molasses (or a mix of molasses and honey for a milder sweeter taste)
  • 3TBS melted butter or oil

Stir well then add in:

  • 2c bread flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt

Put the salt on top of the flour and mix it in. I did this to minimize salt contact with the yeast, since salt can kill yeast (and Im paranoid about that).

Knead the flour making a soft dough, add more flour if necessary. Knead for 10 minutes. Place in a greased bowl and roll around to coat the outsides. Cover with a damp cloth and keep in a warm place for 1-1.5 hrs till almost doubled.

After I had already shaped my loaf, I found this wonderful video with very helpful hints.(It is more clear than my explanation)

Press the dough into a rectangle shape and fold it into thirds. Let rest 10 minutes then take the small rectangle with the narrow edge in front of you and roll it very tightly, keeping surface tension on the outside of the dough. Pinch together the end. Roll your hands over it a few times to even it out.(mine was uneven, so I wish I had seen this in time. Still tasted fine!) Then place in a greased 9×5 loaf pan, cover loosely and let rise till it crests above the rim of the pan(mine took almost 2 hours in the cold weather). (Most recipes say to cover with plastic wrap but I never buy that. This time what I did is use the plastic bag from some tortilla wraps that we had finished and it works really well. I just put the whole loaf pan inside and sealed it.) Slit down the middle with a very sharp knife (optional).

Preheat oven to 350 during last half hour of rising time.  Bake 40-45 mins until golden, pulled away from sides of pan, and sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom. Cool on a wire rack.

Taken the next day in better lighting

I’m sending this to Yeastspotting on Wild Yeast Blog!

I’ve also joined forces at the breadmaking blog to Bake my own bread in 2011 (BYOB)! What a wonderful concept.

BYOB

Pesto Pizza with Semolina Dough

This is my favorite pizza dough recipe so far. The dough is so easy to work with and gives a nice chewy texture. I found the recipe here and have not really changed it, but sometimes I add italian herbs to the dough.

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 c warm water
  • 1 packet yeast
  • 1 1/3 c all-purpose flour or bread flour
  • 2/3 c semolina flour
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 3 TBS olive oil

To make the dough, stir sugar and yeast into warm water and let it activate for 5 minutes.

Mix flour and salt in a bowl and add the yeast and olive oil to it, making a soft dough. Knead on a well floured surface for several minutes until the dough becomes smooth. Lightly oil the dough and bowl and cover with a damp towel. Keep in a warm place and let it rise until doubled.

Roll the dough to desired shape (mine was rectangular). I like to fold the edged up and over in toward the center to create a “lip” on the crust. Pinch the folded edge together. Let this rest while preparing the toppings. In the meantime preheat the oven to 425 F.

Toppings I used:

Spread a layer of pesto onto the dough. Top with shredded cheese, then sundried tomatoes, then zucchini. Sprinkle with herbs and salt and pepper or whatever seasonings you like. Then crumble the feta cheese over the top.

Bake for 12-15 minutes until golden.

Im sending this to Yeastspotting

and to Vegetarian Foodie Fridays.

Orange Cranberry Chocolate Chip Scones

Whew, thats a mouthful! Today I was craving for something sweet, but not too decadent. Something with orange flavor(I’ve been into oranges lately). And maybe chocolate (when is not a good time for chocolate?). I had some cranberries in the fridge and white chocolate- cranberry is a great combination. So is orange-cranberry. I like dark chocolate better than white… so throw those in as well. And thats how I came up with this recipe. 🙂 It was perfect!

  • 2 c flour
  • 1 TBS baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 5 TBS cold butter
  • zest of one orange
  • 1/4c sugar
  • 1/2c dried cranberries
  • 1/4c semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/4c white chocolate chips (trader joes are the best for these!)
  • 3/4- 1 c any of the following or a combination: milk, buttermilk, cream, yogurt(thinned with milk), kefir
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Glaze: (double this if you like to cover them.. this is just enough for a drizzle)

  • 1/4c powdered sugar
  • orange juice to make a thick consistency (less than half an orange)
  • another orange zest

Preheat oven to 400

Zest an orange and mix with the sugar. Keep aside.

Mix flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl. Cut the 5 tbs of butter into horizontal slices, then cut the slices in half vertically. Turn on their sides and then cut vertically into thirds. You will have small cubes, which is easier to blend with the flour. Cut into the flour with a fork, pastry cutter, food processor, or your hands (be careful not to “melt” the butter with the heat of your hands). There should be small crumbs with no large clumps of butter. Stir in the sugar, cranberries and choc chips. Measure 3/4c of  the liquid(milk) and add the vanilla. Stir into the flour. You may need to add more a TBS at a time. The dough should be slightly sticky. Do not knead the dough, just bring it together in a ball. Using a little extra flour as needed, pat into a 1.5 inch thick round. Cut the round into 8 triangles. Place the triangles slightly apart on a baking sheet (I line it with parchment paper). Bake for 15 mins until the tops are starting to turn slightly golden on the edges.

To make the glaze, just mix the powdered sugar with orange zest and juice. Keep it thick because it will “melt” onto the scones and become thinner. Pour or drizzle the glaze on while still hot.

I’m sending this to Bake Off at Versatile Kitchen.

Spicy Rosemary Parmesan Crackers

I’ve been wanting to try to make crackers at home for a while now.  I don’t eat a lot of crackers, but they seem like fun to try to make and good for the afternoon munchies. I saw a recipe from Barefoot Contessa which looked pretty and very buttery, but as usual I looked around the web for more ideas. I have some rosemary so I knew I wanted to use that, and parmesan in a cracker sounds perfect to me. So I came across these which looks so delightful! I also thought  I would prefer a thin crisp cracker, and it also uses olive oil…. olive oil and rosemary… YUM! I decided to add in spicy chili powder and black pepper. Next time I will try with some cumin seeds too.

They came out unbelievably flaky and airy. With the first bite you get the small punch of woodsy rosemary, which I love! Then there is the buttery parmesan aftertaste and just a hint of the chili. They’re really good!

Here is what I did (adapted from eat make read and the original from Mark Bittman with video)

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour, more as needed (I used 2/3c all purpose and 1/3 whole wheat pastry flour)
  • 1/2 tsp red chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1tsp freshly ground black pepper ( I wanted it peppery, use less if you like)
  • 1/3c  grated fresh Parmesan cheese (I used some grana padano in that)
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh rosemary,very  finely chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 TBS butter
  • 3 TBS cream, more as needed

In a bowl, mix the flour with salt and spices. Cut in the butter with a fork until you can only see small crumbs. Stir in the cheese then add the oil. Stir well to distribute then add in the cream. Form a nice dough which should not be sticky. (You can also do this in food processor) Keep in the fridge to chill for 10 mins while you preheat the oven.

Roll the dough with extra flour until it is 1/8 inch thick. You can then transfer the dough to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or cut the crackers then transfer to the baking sheet(thats what I did). Cut into any shapes you like. I did diamonds. This made more than 50 crackers.

Bake for 10 minutes until lightly browned. I recommend do not let them get too browned or they have a slight “burnt flour” taste.

I am just in time for Global Kadai – Crackers and Straws hosted by  Ria and Cilantro!!!

Donna’s Delectable Honey Oatmeal Bread – with raisin cinnamon swirl

My good friend Donna gave me this recipe and its one of the best breads I’ve tried! This time I decided to add the raisin cinnamon swirl and it went perfectly together, no added sugar needed. I do think I should have been a little more patient on the second rise, and maybe should not have used a larger pan, so the bread would have had more height. I also read that “bark” spices like cinnamon can inhibit the yeast. With or without the raisin cinnamon swirl, this bread is really tasty. Soft and slightly sweet, great reheated, and fun to know you can make bread this easily!

Here is the recipe as she gave it to me:

  • 1c old fashioned oats
  • 1c boiling water
  • 1/3c honey
  • 1/4c/4tbs/half stick of butter, melted
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 envelope/.25 oz quick rise yeast
  • 1/4c of warm water (105-115 degrees F)
  • 3.5- 4 c flour (I use half bread flour when I have it)
  • 1t milk and 1Tbs oats for topping the bread, optional

Combine oats with the boiling water and let it sit 5 mins. Add yeast to the warm water, and let it activate, also 5 minutes or so. To the oats (you can do this in the bowl you will mix the dough in itself) add honey and butter and salt. Then pour in the yeast mixture. Then add 3 c of flour and blend it in. Knead in an additional 1/2-1 c of flour as needed to make a soft dough. Knead until smooth for 6-8 minutes. Cover and let it rest 10 minutes (I did a traditional “double rise”(let the dough rise to double its size in about 1-2 hours) because I was going out, so if you let it rise longer thats also fine. She says the short rest works for her too).  Grease a 9×5 bread pan. Roll the dough out to a 8×15 inch rectangle. (This is when I added the swirl. I just sprinkled raisins on top of the dough and pressed them in firmly. Then I sprinkled some cinnamon powder. Thats it!) Roll it up from the 8 inch side jellyroll style. Pinch the ends and tuck them under the bread. Place it seam side down in the loaf pan. Cover with a damp cloth and let it rise to double its size (at least 45 mins).

Preheat oven to 375.  Brush a tiny bit of milk over the top and sprinkle on the oats – optional but it will look pretty. I forgot to do this. Bake for around 40 minutes, until the top is golden brown and the bread sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom. Remove from the pan and place on a cooling rack. Try to resist the urge to cut into it while hot, hehe.  You can reheat this in the microwave or toast it and have with butter, that’s how I like it.

I am submitting this to BBD#34: Breads with Grains hosted by Swathi and originated by Zorra

Also submitting this to Yeastspotting.

And to Tasty Tuesdays.

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