Thursday, September 15, 2011

Eagle-Eye Cherry Bread

#67 Orange, Lemon, and Cherry Bread

This bread was so simple to make!  A little zesting of oranges and a lemon, some mixing and voilà!...Bread!

I did have a few issues.  The recipe called for sour cherries and in my research I found out that the season for sour cherries is only a few weeks long and the last time I saw sour cherries in the grocery store was a few weeks ago.  I decided to go with dried tart cherries instead.

In the shaping of the loaf I had another issue.  It was supposed to be a two-strand "braided" loaf, but as it rose it came un-wrapped.

This is what I ended up with:

It didn't look that great, but it tasted amazing!  I had to force myself to stop eating.

Save tonight!

Shallow HALloumi

This bread was something else.  My kitchen smelled like toothpaste for a few hours.

#66 Halloumi and Mint Bread

Halloumi is a sheep's milk cheese from Cyprus and the bread is a "traditional Cypriot bread".  It is a weird cheese.  It doesn't melt.  It actually browns and gets a crispy crust when cooked.  The taste isn't really anything special, though.

"You Had Me At "Get Lost"."

I couldn't get the cheese and mint to mix in properly (which was no surprise), and I forgot to put the cuts in the top of the loaf before baking.  I didn't have high hopes for this bread anyway.  I mean, cheese and mint?

"She takes the whole bakery, Hal."

Here's what the final product looked like:

Crispy, brown cheese nuggets.

The cheese that doesn't melt.

The bread was not very good.  I'd rather be that poor kid from the pool than try it again.

Hasta Luego!

Quotes and video clip from Shallow Hal.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

"You've got a date with justice, One-Eyed Bart!"

#65 Potato and Dill Bread

This bread was pretty easy to make and not that time-consuming even though the dough had to rise overnight.  Unlike most of the other overnight breads the dough was completely finished before it rested.

The most time-consuming part was cooking the potatoes.  I had to boil potatoes then let them cool.  Next, I had to cut the potatoes into quarters.  Then, I had to fry them in a little olive oil and butter (I actually used Earthbalance Original, making this recipe vegan).  Finally, I had to let the potatoes cool again then put them onto the dough.

The dill was sprinkled on top of everything.

"F.A.O. my Schwartz!"

While the bread was cooling on the stovetop, I decided to taste-test the potatoes that fell off during the baking process.  They were delicious!  The triple-cooking method made them crispy on the outside and soft on the inside.

Here's the bread:

It was very good!  It was my dinner tonight.  I tried the the second piece with hot sauce, barbeque sauce and sweet hot mustard and it really just got better tasting.  The bread was nice and crusty  with a super-soft inside.  I didn't look anything like the picture in the book, but I really didn't care because it tasted so good.

Good Night, all.  And remember, "Hay un amigo en mi".

All quotes are from Toy Story 3.

Friday, September 2, 2011

One a penny, Two a penny

Hot Cross Buns!

#64 Hollywood Hot Cross Buns

This is one of the first songs a person learns when they are learning to play an instrument as a kid.  I still sing it pretty regularly.  It is pretty catchy.

In case you are not familiar with the song here it is:

This dough had a key problem.  Also, a completely predictable problem.  If you guessed mixing things in, you got it!  And thanks for reading more than one post here.  I had trouble mixing in the oranges, peaches, apples, and cinnamon, but I persevered.  I figured that I would at least have a couple that looked good enough for the blog.

Here are the ugly ones:

Not so cute...

Here are the ones that look the way they are supposed to:

That shiny-ness is from an apricot jelly glaze.  I had not had apricot jelly before, but I was not looking forward to it since my experience with dried apricots has been so negative.

I was wrong, though.  These things were so delicious!  With and without the glaze.

If you want to learn a slightly more difficult song tonight, try this one:

(Animal) Crackers

"Pardon me while I have a strange interlude."

I should have made these crackers in the shape of animals.

#63 Cheese Crackers

So...this was not a difficult recipe to mix.  3 different flavors of crackers.  Poppy seeds, Gruyère cheese and caraway seeds.  The most difficult part was grating the cheese.

As expected, the part I had problems with was rolling out the dough.  It was grainy (kind of like pie crust) and crumbled at the touch making it difficult to cut into discs so some of the crackers were hand-shaped.

I had another problem crop up when I heated up the oven because usually the oven temperature is listed fahrenheit first  and celsius second, but this was reversed.  I heated the oven to 220º and put the crackers in.  About 10 minutes into the 15 minute bake-time I realized my mistake and cranked up the heat to 425º (the right temp).  I just watched the crackers to keep them from burning.  The second pan went much better.

Here are the pretty ones:

The ones on the left are the Gruyère, the middle are the poppy seeds and the right are the caraway.

These were so yummy!  They were a little crumbly, though.  The cheesy ones tasted kind of like Cheez-it and the others were pretty great, too!

I tried them plain and with some cheese on them.  The cheese was incredible!  I tried Cabot Seriously Sharp Cheddar, and I cannot recommend it more highly.

I leave you with a cute little song about Animal Crackers...

Quote and first two videos from Animal Crackers.  Third video from Curly Top.