Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Not my Grandma's Pizza but Grandma's Pizza nonetheless

A couple of Saturday's ago, while I was sitting watching my fave cooking show 'America's Test Kitchen' they made this pizza. They called it 'Grandma's Pizza'... I missed why. Regardless of the name, it looked relatively easy and I was hungry so I set off into my kitchen to give it a go. I loved loved loved this pizza. Brad (who is a dominos only kind of guy) also said that he thought it was really good. This coming from someone who doesn't like thin crust and who's favorite kind of pizza is Hawaiian (he really doesn't deviate much from this truth) really surprised me. Needless to say, I will definitely be making this again soon. I have been thinking about it every since. This recipe calls for bread flour. I didn't have any on hand so I used regular white flour. While I was still happy with my results, next time I think I'll definitely try the bread flour to see if I can't get a slightly chewier dough as mentioned by the experts at American's Test Kitchen. sorry about the poor quality of the image. I took this with my phone. Serves 4 If the dough snaps back when you press it to the corners of the baking sheet, cover it, let it rest for 10 minutes, and try again. Ingredients Dough 3 tablespoons olive oil 3/4 cup water 1 1/2 cups (8 1/4 ounces) bread flour - I used regular white flour) 2 1/4 teaspoons instant or rapid-rise yeast 1 teaspoon sugar 3/4 teaspoon salt Topping 1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes 1 tablespoon olive oil 2 garlic cloves, minced 1 teaspoon dried oregano 1/4 teaspoon salt 8 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded (2 cups) 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil Instructions 1. FOR THE DOUGH: Coat rimmed baking sheet with 2 tablespoons oil. Combine water and remaining 1 tablespoon oil in 1-cup liquid measuring cup. Using stand mixer fitted with dough hook, mix flour, yeast, sugar, and salt on low speed until combined. With mixer running, slowly add water mixture and mix until dough comes together, about 1 minute. Increase speed to medium-low and mix until dough is smooth and comes away from sides of bowl, about 10 minutes. 2. Transfer dough to greased baking sheet and turn to coat. Stretch dough to 10 by 6-inch rectangle. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in warm place until doubled in size, 1 to 1½ hours. Stretch dough to corners of pan, cover loosely with plastic, and let rise in warm place until slightly puffed, about 45 minutes. Meanwhile, adjust oven rack to lowest position and heat oven to 500 degrees. 3. FOR THE TOPPING: Place tomatoes in colander and drain well. Combine drained tomatoes, oil, garlic, oregano, and salt in bowl. Combine mozzarella and Parmesan in second bowl. Sprinkle cheese mixture over dough, leaving ½-inch border around edges. Top with tomato mixture and bake until well browned and bubbling, about 15 minutes. Slide pizza onto wire rack, sprinkle with basil, and let cool for 5 minutes. Serve.

Monday, December 30, 2013

Hot Corn Dip

NOTE- Pic is not mine. Credit to Ourbestbites.com I made this dip for our family Christmas eve get together. I was in the mood for dip and for some reason corn sounded good so I started perusing Pinterest and found this little lovely. It didn't take too much time to prepare, I had the majority of the ingredients on hand and well it just looked and sounded like something I wanted to eat. It did not disappoint. It was creamy and delicious. It wasn't too heavy and wasn't greasy at all. I am definitely going to be making this again. Only problem with this dip is you want to either take it with you somewhere or have allot of people over to help you eat it otherwise it would be easy to sit and devour the whole thing alone!! I have a BIG weakness for dip!! Enjoy =) Ingredients •2 Tbs butter •3 1/2 cups corn kernels (I used WF sweet white corn) •1/2 tsp salt •1/8 tsp freshly ground black pepper •1 cup finely chopped yellow onions •1/2 cup finely chopped red bell peppers •1/4 cup chopped green onions (green and white parts) •1 jalapeno, seeded and minced- (I omitted this) •2 tsp minced garlic •1/2 to 1 cup mayonnaise - 1/2 C was plenty for mine •4 ounces Monterey jack shredded •4 ounces sharp cheddar, shredded •1/4 tsp cayenne (I omitted this) •Tortilla chips or a sliced baguette, for dipping directions •1-Preheat the oven to 350°. •2-Melt 1 Tbs of the butter in a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add the corn, salt, and black pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the kernels turn deep golden brown, about 5 minutes. Note that if you’re using frozen corn it probably won’t get golden brown. Just cook for about 5 minutes as the recipe states. Transfer to a bowl. •3-Melt the remaining tablespoon of butter in the skillet. Add the onions and bell peppers and cook, stirring often, until the onions are wilted, about 2 minutes. Add the green onions, jalapeno, and garlic and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes, or until the vegetables are softened. Transfer to the bowl with the corn. •4-Add 1/2 C mayo, cayenne pepper, half of the Monterey jack and half of the cheddar and mix well. If you need more mayo to hold the mixture together then add it, but I found that 1/2 C was plenty, and I even added a little extra cheese. •5-Pour into an 8-inch square baking dish, or something equivalent and sprinkle the remaining cheese on top. Bake until bubbly and golden brown, 10 to 12 minutes. Serve hot with tortilla chips or Fritos or sliced baguette.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Lemon Bars

So many of the recipes I post come from Mel over at melskitchencafe.blogspot.com. I love her food, her writing and I have never had a recipe that she has posted fail me. This one is no different. Our family was invited to a little get together on Monday night to meet some of the new neighbors in the neighborhood where we are building our new house. I wanted to contribute something to the evening...I never really feel comfortable arriving at the home of someone kind enough to have us over empty handed. I saw this recipe on Mel's page and thought they looked pretty and summery. They did not disappoint. The crust is especially phenomenal. They were light, creamy, sweet but not sickly and we thoroughly enjoyed one...ok maybe three of them. Don't mind the pics. I literally took them in the car on the way to our get together. Lemon Bars INGREDIENTS For the Crust: 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour 2/3 cup powdered sugar, plus extra to sprinkle on bars 1/4 cup cornstarch 1/2 teaspoon salt 12 tablespoons butter (1 1/2 sticks), at cool room temperature, cut into 1-inch pieces For the Filling: 4 large eggs 1 1/3 cups granulated sugar 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest, from 2 large lemons 2/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, from 3 to 4 large lemons 1/3 cup milk Pinch of salt (about 1/8 teaspoon) DIRECTIONS Place an oven rack in the middle position and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9X13-inch baking pan with foil or parchment paper and lightly grease the foil/parchment. Stir together the flour, powdered sugar, cornstarch, and salt (this can be done in a food processor or in a large bowl by hand). Add the pieces of butter and cut the butter into the dry ingredients using a pastry blender, two knives or your fingers (taking care not to melt the butter too much - you might try freezing the butter and grating it into the dry ingredients on the large holes of a box grater) or process in the food processor for 8 to 10 seconds and then as needed until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Sprinkle the mixture into the prepared pan and press into an even layer on the bottom and about 1/2-inch up the sides of the pan. Refrigerate for 15-30 minutes. Bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes. For the filling, whisk together the eggs, sugar, and flour in a medium bowl and then stir in the lemon zest, juice and milk to combine. Pour the filling onto the warm crust (it's important that the crust is still warm!) and reduce the oven temperature to 325 degrees. Bake for about 18-20 minutes until the filling feels slightly firm to the touch. Cool the bars to room temperature, sprinkle with additional powdered sugar and cut into bars.