Artisan Bread

Ingredients: 3 cups lukewarm water 1 1/2 tbsp granulated yeast (1 1/2 packets) 1 1/2 tbsp kosher or other salt 6 1/2 cups unbleached flour This is enough for 4 1 lb loaves – you can easily modify amount

Directions:

  • Add yeast & salt to water in large container w/lid
  • Mix flour all at once – mix until uniform – don’t knead
  • Cover with lid
  • Let rise for 2 hours
  • At this point you can refridgerate the dough until you’re ready to bake, at which point:
  • Scoop out enough for a loaf, and shape/stretch the dough into a round loaf – you may need a little flour on your hands to prevent it from sticking – just keep tucking the dough ball towards the bottom until you have a nice, round ball – the bottom may have a number of “overlaps” – don’t worry. Return remaining dough to refridgerator.
  • Place ball on pizza peel which has been sprinkled with corn meal. Allow it to rest for 40 minutes.
  • You may sprinkle flour on the top of the ball, and lightly score the top in whatever pattern floats your boat
  • Pre-heat oven to 450 with a baking stone on middle rack and empty broiler pan on lower rack
  • After dough has rested 40 minutes, slide off pizza peel onto baking stone. Quickly add 1 cup hot water to bottom broiler pan.
  • Bake for 30 minutes.
  • Remove bread from oven and allow to cool before serving.

Note: Be careful not to spill water on stone when adding to broiler pan – it can [from experience] break the stone. You can vary the recipe by substituting some of the unbleached white flour with rye flour, whole wheat flour, oatmeal, etc. Subsequent loaves (made from refridgerated dough) will be a little “denser” the the first loaf, but is quick and easy to make.

Source: Artesan Bread in Five Minutes a Day; Jeff Hertzberg and Zoe Francois (I would recommend getting this book – it has a number of recipes for a variety of breads. All fast and easy)

Mexican Chicken/Lime soup

Nathan gave us this recipe – I don’t know it’s source.

Ingredients:

  • 3 medium onions, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 package cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2 chicken breasts or equivalent in thighs
  • 2-3 cups chicken bouillon
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1 can (or equivalent frozen) corn
  • fresh cilantro
  • 1 lime, halved (1 half quartered)
  • chili powder
  • sour cream
  • tortilla chips

Directions

  • Cook chicken in oil and garlic. When chicken is just done, remove from heat and shred with forks (this can be done in advance)
  • Saute onions until transparent
  • Add chili powder to taste
  • Add shredded chicken, corn, beans and bouillon
  • Chop fresh cilantro, reserve sprigs and stalks. Tie stocks together and add to pot
  • Squeeze one half lime; add rind to pot
  • Add cherry tomatoes
  • Add fresh chopped cilantro

Garnish with lime wedges, sour cream, tortilla chils, and fresh chopped cilantro

Roasted Beet Salad with Pears, Hazlenuts and Goat Cheese

  • 2 large red beets, roasted (below)
  • 1 ripe pear, cored, sliced thin
  • 1/2 cup toasted hazlenuts
  • 2 tbsp balzamic┬ávinegar
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 cups baby arugula leaves
  • 4 oz goat cheese

In a small bowl, whisk together vinegar, oil, salt and pepper.

Arrange beets and pears on four serving plates. Drizzle with dressing. Scatter cheese and nuts over, and season with more pepper, if desired. Serve immediately.

Roasted Beets

Set oven to 425 degrees. Rub beets with olive oil, wrap in foil. Place on a baking sheet; and bake about 45 minutes to 1 hour depending on their size. Cool, then remove foil and remove skins.

Mushroom Crostini

Ingredients: 3 tblsp butter 1/2 lb fresh shitake mushrooms, chopped 4 oz crimini mushrooms, chopped 2 garlic cloves, minced 1/2 cup whipping cream 1/2 cup blue cheese 1/2 cup prosciutto, chopped 18 baguette slices parsley, chopped

Directions:

  • Melt butter, add garlic & mushrooms, saute 10 minutes
  • Add cream & boil 2 minutes until liquid absorbed
  • Add blue cheese & mix in prosciutto
  • Season with salt & pepper
  • Pre-heat oven 3750
  • Place generous tblsp on each baguette slice
  • Bake 6 minutes
  • Sprinkle with parsley & serve

Source: Anne Starr

Seared Scallops with Spinach, Bacon and Cider Vinaigrette

scallops and spinach

Ingredients:
1 cup apple cider
2 tsp sugar
4 slices bacon
1/4 cup shallots chopped
1 tbsp cider vinegar
1/4 tsp pepper
1 1/2 cups Granny Smith apples, thinly sliced
1/3 cup red onion, thinly sliced
1 (6oz) package fresh baby spinach
Salt
1/4 tsp curry powder
1/8 tsp red pepper
2 tsp olive oil
20 sea scallops
Directions:
  • Simmer cider and sugar until reduced to 1/4 cup
  • Cook bacon until crisp – remove, drain and crumble
  • Pour off all but spoonful bacon fat
  • Saute shallots in fat 1 minute
  • Stir in cider mixture and cider vinegar, 1/4 tsp salt and black pepper
  • Mix spinach, bacon, apple, onion in large bowl
  • Heat oil in non-stick pan
  • Sprinkle curry and red pepper to cover scallops
  • Saute scallops until done – around 3 minutes per side
  • Drizzle cider mixture over spinach, toss and server on individual plates
  • Top spinach with scallops on each plate
Note: You can substitute vidalia onions for red onions, and paprika for red pepper; I served this with brown rice
Serves 4
Source: Cooking Light; March 2008

Steamed Dumplings

This recipe came from the Lokens – the kids have always loved it.

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 lb ground pork
  • 1/2 tbsp corn starch
  • 1/2 tbsp dry sherry
  • 1 tbsp tamari (light soy)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2+ green onions, chopped
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 pkg wonton wrappers

Directions:

  • Mix all ingredients except wrappers
  • Place fat tbsp mixture in middle of wonton wrapper
  • Pinch corners of wrapper together to form dumpling (or use dumpling press)
  • Steam in steamer for 15 – 20 minutes

Serves 4 – 6

Notes:

  • I use a bamboo steamer – it helps to spray oil on steamer rack(s) to prevent sticking
  • It helps to have a small dish of cornstarch and water, with which you paint the edges of the wonton wrapper prior to assembly
  • You can use a ravioli press to make the dumplings
  • I serve with several dipping sauces: – a mixture of hoisin sauce, sesame oil, a little vinegar; – soy sauce, minced garlic, brown sugar, vinegar, sesame oil – duck sauce
  • We often serve this with sweet + sour red cabbage and sesame noodles

Chinese Noodles

Another recipe from the Lokens:

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb pasta – I’ve used both rice noodles, vermicelli, etc
  • 3 1/2 tbsp sesame oil
  • 3 1/2 tbsp tamari (soy sauce)
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar 2 tsp salt (optional)
  • 1 tbsp hot chili oil (optional)
  • 5 – 6 scallions, minced

Directions:

Cook pasta per instructions until al dente

Mix ingredients above

Serves 4 – 6 as side dish