Monday, September 15, 2014

Pan Crust Pizza

Foolproof, no knead crust!

for the dough: (makes 2)
2 1/2 cups bread flour
1 and 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon instant yeast
1 cup plus 3 tablespoons water

for the pizzas:
2 tablespoons canola oil (do not use extra virgin olive oil), divided
pizza sauce
mozzarella cheese
any toppings you want
(this pizza: turkey pepperoni, bell pepper, olives)

Combine flour, salt, yeast, and water in a large bowl. Mix with hands or a wooden spoon until no dry flour remains. The bowl should be at least 4 to 6 times to volume of the dough to account for rising. Cover bowl tightly with plastic wrap, making sure that edges are well-sealed, then let rest on the countertop for at least 8 hours and up to 24. 

Transfer the risen dough to a well-floured work surface. Divide dough into two pieces and form each into a ball. * note: If you only want to bake one pizza at a time, you can transfer 1 ball of dough to a sealed zipperlock bag or container and store it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.*

Pour 1 tablespoon of the canola oil into a 10 to 12 inch cast-iron skillet. Repeat with a second skillet (you can use any skillet that is oven proof up to 500 degrees). Swirl to coat the bottoms of the pans. 

Place 1 ball of dough in each pan and turn to coat evenly with oil. Use the palm of your hand to gently flatten the dough. It will not spread to the edges yet, but that is okay. It will during this second  rise. Cover the pan tightly with plastic wrap and set out at room temperature -undisturbed- for 2 hours. 

Preheat oven to 500 degrees. Remove plastic wrap from the pans with the pizza dough in them. The dough should now have spread itself to the edges of the pan, if not use your fingers to spread. If there are any large air bubbles, nudge them down with the back of a knuckle. Lift the edges of dough to pull toward the sides of the pan. This will help loosen any trapped air under the dough as well.

Spread the sauce (leave a half inch border for the crust and brush this part with olive oil), sprinkle the cheese, and add the toppings on each pizza.  

Put into the hot oven and bake for 12-20 minutes. Remove the pizzas and transfer to a cutting board. Let rest for 5 minutes before slicing into wedges.

Source: Foodie with Family
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Friday, September 12, 2014

Mini Carrot Apple Cupcakes

These are fun and tasty cupcakes to bake with your little ones. Clearly, my son had a great time frosting them.
for the cupcakes:
1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 packed cup brown sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/4 cup apple juice
1/3 cup dried currants
1 small carrot, peeled and finely grated 
for the frosting:
4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1/3 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup chilled heavy whipping cream
For the cupcakes: Place an oven rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. Line two 12-cup mini muffin tins with mini baking papers.
Whisk the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt and allspice in a medium bowl to blend. Using a handheld electric mixer, beat the butter in a large bowl until fluffy. Add the brown sugar and beat until blended. Beat in the eggs, one at a time. Beat in half of the dry ingredients, then the applesauce and apple juice. Beat in the remaining dry ingredients. Fold in the currants and grated carrot.
Drop 1 well-rounded tablespoon of batter into each paper liner. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cupcakes comes out clean, about 17 minutes. Cool the cupcakes in the tins for 5 minutes. Transfer to a rack and cool completely.
For the frosting: Combine the cream cheese, powdered sugar, and whipping cream in a deep medium bowl. Beat until the frosting is thick and smooth. Cover and chill for at least 1 hour until firm.
Frost each cupcake with 1 heaped teaspoon of the frosting. 

Source: Giada
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Friday, September 5, 2014

Black Bean Quinoa Salad with Orange Vinaigrette

This was a delicious summer time salad with lots of fresh veggies and a very tasty orange dressing.

1 cup quinoa
1 (15 oz) can mandarin oranges, drained
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 jalapeno, seeded and diced
1 cup black beans, drained and rinsed
1 (10 oz) can corn kernels, drained and rinsed
1/3 cup red onion, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
for the orange vinaigrette:
1/4 cup olive oil
zest of 1 orange
1 tablespoon sugar (I only put half this amount)
1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
Bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Add 1 cup quinoa and return to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 25-30 minutes until cooked. Fluff with a fork and set aside.  
To make the vinaigrette, whisk together the olive oil, orange zest, sugar, orange juice, and apple cider vinegar.
In a large bowl, combine the quinoa, oranges, bell pepper, jalapeno, black beans, corn, red onion, and cilantro. Pour HALF the vinaigrette over the salad and gently toss to combine. Taste and add more dressing if needed.
Source: adapted from Damn Delicious
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Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Strawberry Peach Mango Salsa

A yummy and addicting sweet salsa with a kick! I brought this salsa to a baby shower that I went to last weekend and it was a great hit. Everyone loved it and I am sure you will too.
1 pint strawberries
1 peach
 1 large mango
 a handful of fresh cilantro, chopped
1/4 red onion, minced
1 whole jalapeno, minced (seeds removed if you prefer less heat)
juice of 1 lime
1 tbsp honey, or more to taste
Chop up the strawberries, peach, and mango into very small bits. Place in a bowl with the cilantro, minced red onion and minced jalapeno. Add honey and lime juice and stir well. Serve with pita chips.

Source: adapted from Damn Delicious
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