April 16, 2014

Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Bread


The recipe is easily doubled, and it would probably be easier to mix that way. It could do with more cinnamon flavor, so maybe double that or incorporate into the dough somehow.

Make this for Easter breakfast. Enjoy!

Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Bread

Yield: 1 loaf
Ingredients
    Dough
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 10 1/3 oz bread flour
  • 1 3/8 oz nonfat dry milk powder
  • 1/6 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tablespoon yeast
  • 6 oz warm water (110 degrees)
  • 1/2 egg, beaten
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • Filling
  • 3/4 cup raisins
  • 1.5 tablespoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Egg Wash
  • 1/2 egg, beaten
  • a pinch of salt
Cooking Directions
  1. Cut butter into 16 pieces and toss with 1/2 tablespoon flour; set aside to soften while mixing dough.
  2. Whisk remaining flour, milk powder, sugar, and yeast together in bowl of stand mixer. Using stand mixer fitted with dough hook, add water and 1/2 an egg and mix on medium-low speed until cohesive mass forms, about 2 minutes, scraping down sides of bowl as necessary. Cover mixing bowl with plastic wrap and let stand for 20 minutes.
  3. Adjust oven rack to middle position and place metal loaf or cake pan on bottom of oven.
  4. Remove plastic from mixer bowl, add salt, and mix on medium-low speed until dough is smooth and elastic and clears sides of bowl, 7 to 15 minutes. With mixer running, add butter, a few pieces at a time, and continue to knead until butter is fully incorporated and dough is smooth and elastic and clears side of bowl, 3 to 5 minutes longer. Add raisins and mix until incorporated, 30 to 60 seconds.
  5. Transfer dough to large greased bowl, and using a bowl scraper or rubber spatula, fold dough over itself by gently lifting and folding edge of dough toward middle. Turn bowl 90 degrees and fold again. Turn bowl and fold dough 6 more times (for a total of 8 folds). Cover tightly with plastic and transfer to middle rack of oven. Pour 3 cups of boiling water into loaf pan in oven, close oven door, and allow dough to rise for 45 minutes.
  6. Remove bowl from oven and gently press down on center of dough to deflate. Repeat folding step (making total of 8 folds), re-cover, and return to oven until doubled in volume, about 45 minutes.
  7. Whisk filling ingredients together until well combined. Set aside. Grease a loaf pan.
  8. Transfer dough to lightly floured surface. Pat into a 6 x 11 inch rectangle. With short side facing you, fold long sides in like a business letter to form a 3 x 11 inch rectangle. Roll dough away from you into a ball. Dust with flour and flatten with rolling pin into 7 x 18 inch rectangle with 1/4 inch thickness.
  9. Using a spray bottle, spray dough lightly with water. Sprinkle half of filling mixture evenly over dough, leaving 1/4 inch border on 18 inch sides and 3/4 inch border on 7 inch sides. Spray filling lightly with water. With short side facing you, roll dough away from you into a firm cylinder. Turn loaf seam side up and pinch closed, then pinch ends closed. Dust loaf lightly on all side with flour and let rest for 10 minutes.
  10. Cut loaf in half lengthwise and turn halves so cut sides are facing up. Gently stretch each half into 14 inch length. Line up pieces of dough and pinch 2 ends of strips together. Take the piece on the left and lay over the piece on the right. Repeat, keeping cut side up, until pieces of dough are tightly twisted. Pinch ends together.
  11. Transfer loaf, cut side up, to prepared loaf pan; pushing any exposed raising into the seams. Cover loosely with plastic, return to oven, and allow to rise for 45 minutes.
  12. Remove loaf and water pan from oven. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Allow to rise at room temperature until almost doubled in size, about 45 minutes longer. The top of the loaf should rise about 1 inch over lip of pan.
  13. Brush loaf with egg mixture. Bake until crust is well browned, about 25 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees, tent loaf with aluminum foil, and continue to bake about 20 minutes more (until internal temperature reaches 200 degrees).
  14. Transfer pan to wire rack and let cool for 5 minutes. Remove loaf from pan, return to rack, and cool to room temperature before slicing, about 2 hours.

April 02, 2014

Chicken Liver Pate

The onion could be doubled, increasing the deliciousness. Otherwise, keep as is.


Chicken Liver Pate

Ingredients
  • 1 lb chicken livers, cleaned
  • 1/2-1 stick cold, unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons capers
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 cup whiskey, cognac, or brandy
Cooking Directions
  1. In a large pan, melt 1/2 stick of the butter over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring, until soft, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for about 30 seconds. Add the chicken livers, 1 tablespoon of capers, the bay leaves, thyme, salt, and pepper, and cook, stirring, until the livers are browned on the outside and still slightly pink on the inside, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add the whiskey and cook until most of the liquid is evaporated and the livers are cooked but still tender.
  3. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly. Take out the bay leaves.
  4. In a food processor, puree the liver mixture. If desired, add the remaining butter in pieces and blend. Add the other 1 tablespoon of capers. Adjust the seasoning to taste.
  5. Pack the pate into a bowl. Cover with plastic and refrigerate until firm, at least 6 hours.

March 19, 2014

Osso Buco with Beef


Osso Buco is a classic Italian dish that usually uses veal shanks. We wanted to see if we could create the same flavors but with a less expensive meat. Blade steaks were used because they're comparatively inexpensive and are a tough cut. Tough cuts like veal shanks and blade steaks are perfect for braising, which is exactly how osso buco is cooked. By the end, the meat became tender and fell apart easily and soaked up much of the flavor of the braising liquid. It was extremely easy, and I would make it again as-is any time. Enjoy!


Osso Buco with Beef

Yield: 4 servings
Ingredients
  • 1.5 pounds blade steak
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, crushed and diced
  • 15 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1 cup broth
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • salt and pepper to taste
Cooking Directions
  1. Trim and season the blade steaks with salt & pepper.
  2. Preheat oven to 300 F.
  3. Heat skillet or dutch oven on medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of oil.
  4. Drop the steaks in pan and sear it thoroughly, using a pair of tongs to turn it. When a nice brown crust has developed on all sides of the meat, remove it from the pan to a bowl.
  5. Pour in most of the wine and scrape the pan to remove the browned bits. Remove to the bowl with the steaks.
  6. Add the carrots and onions and cook for 5 minutes or so, or until the onion is slightly translucent. Add the garlic and after 30 seconds, add the rest of the wine and scrape the pan again.
  7. Add the remaining ingredients and mix. Add the steaks and juice from the bowl. The liquid should cover 3/4 of the steaks.
  8. Cover and put in oven at 300 F.
  9. After 40 minutes, flip the steaks and cook uncovered for another 40 minutes.
  10. Replace cover, reduce heat to 250 F, and cook for 1 hour.
  11. Serve with polenta, rice, or risotto. Serve with gremolata if desired.

March 05, 2014

Sourdough Waffles

The lightest, crispiest waffles you may ever make at home. Slightly tangy from the sourdough and perfect for a lazy weekend morning. Enjoy!


Sourdough Waffles

Yield: 6 Belgian waffles
Ingredients
  • 1 cup sourdough starter
  • 450g warm water
  • 325g all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • optional: 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • optional: 2 tablespoons sugar
Cooking Directions
  1. The night before you want waffles, mix the sourdough starter with the warm water. Then mix in the flour. Some lumps are fine and will even out overnight. Let sit covered in a warm place for about 12 hours.
  2. In the morning, remove one cup of the batter and set aside. This is your starter now. Save it for next time.
  3. Mix in an egg, oil, and milk, if using, into the batter.
  4. In a separate small bowl, combine the salt, baking soda, and sugar, if using.
  5. Heat your waffle iron to the second-highest setting highest setting.
  6. Once preheated, sprinkle the salt/soda mixture over the batter. Fold (don't mix) to incorporate.
  7. Cook according to waffle iron manufacturer's instructions.

February 19, 2014

Sandwich Bread from Sourdough Starter

Sandwich bread can be made with a sourdough starter. The result is a bread with a softer texture, stronger crumb, and a slightly tangy taste. The sour taste can be changed depending on how long the dough ferments and the amount of sugar used. Either way, you'll get a beautiful loaf that is easy and healthier than almost anything you'll find in the stores.

Check below the recipe on how to make your sourdough leaven. Enjoy!


Sandwich Bread from Sourdough Starter

Yield: 2 loaves
Ingredients
  • 2 cups sourdough leaven
  • 256 g all-purpose flour
  • 400 g whole wheat flour
  • 398 g warm water
  • 4 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 80 g brown sugar, optional
Cooking Directions
  1. In a stand mixer with the mixing paddle, mix the sourdough leaven with the water, oil, salt, and brown sugar, if using.
  2. Mix in the flour with the same attachment.
  3. Let sit 12-36 hours. The longer the fermentation time, the stronger the sourdough flavor. I recommend 24 hours at first, then adjust from there next time.
  4. Over the 12-36 hours, fold and turn dough over itself 2 to 4 times.
  5. About an hour before baking, split into two lightly greased loaf pans. Allow to double in size. Score if you like.
  6. Bake at 350 F for 60 minutes.
  7. Let rest 5 minutes in the pans before removing to a wire rack. Allow to cool completely.

2 cups sourdough leaven:

4 tbs sourdough starter
202 g warm water
144 g all-purpose flour

Mix together (but leave some lumps). Let sit overnight to 24 hours. Put 4 tbs back with the other starter in the morning.