Wednesday, June 29, 2011

The Cheese Straw Girls

My grandmother is visiting and today we enjoyed my newest bread...just us girls.

#49 Cheese Straws

Today's recipe seemed like it would be super-easy.  It called for a package of pre-made puff pastry.  A little paprika and freshly shredded parmesan.

As much as I hated zesting oranges at Easter, grating this cheese was about 10 times more awful than that.

Other than the zesting that took forever, this was an easy one.  Mostly folding and flattening.

I had to make these in two batches, so here's a before and after.  Not sure why they untwisted, though.  That said, I don't care that much.

They tasted kind of like Cheez-it.  Which was better than I expected.  I thought they might taste like all the cheese straws I've been served before and be disgusting.  Prior to this, I would say I hate cheese straws.  My grandma loved them!

Here's some cheesy music for you.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Jurassic Paratha!

"The lack of humility before nature that's being displayed here, uh... staggers me. "

#48 Paratha

Another Indian bread.

No leavener.  It was (weirdly) filled with a mix of raisins, chili peppers and spices.  I really don't like golden raisins but they keep showing up in these recipes.  I guess they are called for instead of regular raisins since the golden ones brown and the brown ones burn during baking, but it doesn't make them taste as good as regular.

"Oh my God. Do you know what this is? This is a dinosaur egg. The dinosaurs are breeding. "

Ok really they're Parathas.

I didn't really like this bread, but in researching Paratha to write this post I have found a few recipes that sound like they might taste really good.  I have one I'm going to try and I'll write about that too, hopefully it's better.

"Yeah, but your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn't stop to think if they should."

In case you forgot what Jurassic Park was about...

All quotes from Jurassic Park.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Anyone can cook aloo gobi, but who can bend a ball like Beckham?

Ok, I didn't make aloo gobi, but I did make a new bread!

#47 Naan Bread

Here's a song featured in Bend It Like Beckham that should make your day brighten a little.

According to Paul Hollywood, "Authentic naan needs to be baked in a specially made brick oven", but his recipe called for shallow pan-frying.

"At least I taught her full Indian dinner, the rest is up to God. "

This was a really easy recipe and it took no time at all.  Mixed it up, waited an hour, flattened and fried.  

And it was pretty tasty.  Nice and fluffy with the only downside being that it was greasy.

I'm out of here, but hopefully I'll make a few more breads this week.

"All I'm saying is, there's a reason why Sporty Spice is the only one without a fella!"

All quotes taken from Bend It Like Beckham.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Chewy Vegan Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Today I made cookies.  Their purpose was to cheer me up.  No big deal, just a little down.

Here's a great song by one of my favorite artists.

I started with this recipe:  Cookie Madness - Chewy Vegan Oatmeal Raisin Cookies.

I made a few changes.

I used whole wheat flour.

I used dark brown sugar.

I used Cracker Barrel Maple syrup (which is 55% maple 45% cane).

I didn't drain the applesauce.

I used canola oil for the vegetable oil.

I didn't plump the raisins, but I did add the optional walnuts (chopped).

I used parchment paper instead of Silpats and ended up with only 15 cookies.

They were delicious.

I bid you adieu.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Girls Just Want to Have Bread

"Oh, I like this. Sort of Rebel Without a Cause meets Sound of Music... you're taking a fashion risk. I like that. Just don't do it on camera!"

#46 Olive and Sun-dried Tomato Bread

Dairy-Free bread!  This one was supposed to have black Greek olives, but those were ridiculously expensive and I already had Kalamata olives.  The recipe also, obviously, called for sun-dried tomatoes, but it said sun-blushed tomatoes could be substituted.

So I made sun-blushed tomatoes.

In the mixing of the olives and tomatoes I, of course, struggled but since there were two loaves I attempted the mixing the way it was supposed to go with one and the other I basically made a little pouch.

"Velcro. Next to the Walkman and Tab it is the coolest invention of the 20th century!"

I wish the ingredients stuck together better, but these are the pre-last-rise loaves.

"Eat flame, Bozo!"

So yummy!  The "mixed-in" one lost a lot of its "mix-ins" so there wasn't much flavor added.  The bread part was good, though.

I leave you with some sweet 80s dance moves!

All quotes from Girls Just Want to Have Fun.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

I Want A New Bread

I've been feeling a little icky lately.  I suppose it's because of all the dairy over the weekend.  So I'm doing a little cleanse-type thing.  Only not really because I'm not drinking copious amounts of water and juice and only eating veggies.  I'm just eating vegan for a week, so here are two recipes I made today to snack on while I'm going animal-free.  Notice how I didn't grease the pan well enough?  It still tastes good.

Vegan Pineapple Bread

1/2 cup unsweetened apple sauce
1/4 cup canola oil (or oil of your choice)
1 cup white sugar
1 cup crushed pineapple with juice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups white bread flour (you can use whatever flour you have)
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease one 8.5x4.5x3 inch loaf pan.
Beat eggs slightly. Add butter and sugar. Beat smooth. Stir in pineapple and vanilla.
In separate bowl put flour, baking powder, soda, salt, and walnuts. Stir well and pour into pineapple mixture. Stir to moisten. Pour into greased 9x5x3 inch loaf pan.
Bake in 350 degree F (175 degree C) oven for 1 hour. Test with toothpick. Let stand 10 minutes. Remove from pan. Cool and wrap.

Vegan Banana Nut Muffins

1 1/2 cups white bread flour (you can use whatever flour you have)
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cup mashed bananas
3/4 cup white sugar
3 tablespoons canola oil (or your favorite)
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/4 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Spray muffin tins with non-stick cooking spray or use muffin papers.
In large bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, soda, and salt.
In a medium bowl, stir in bananas, sugar, oil, and lemon peel. Add to flour mixture, stirring just until combined. Stir in walnuts. Fill muffin pan cups 2/3 full.
Bake for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until tops are lightly browned. Remove muffins from pan.

Have a good day and be safe out there!