Sunday, October 31, 2010

Oh So Awesome Breadsticks

Today's delightful delectable is one of Aunt D's favorites.  I know a few other people who are partial to them as well.  Of course, they are best straight out of the oven but they reheat well, too. 

1 cup water
3 tbsp sunflower oil
3 cups bread flour
3 1/2 tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt
2 tsp yeast

Add the ingredients to your bread machine in the order listed (unless your bread machine calls for dry ingredients to go in first).  Choose the dough setting on your machine then sit back and relax while it does most of the work.

When your dough is ready, separate it into sections one handful at a time.  Roll each lump of dough between your hands until you have a piece of dough about 12 inches in length and then place on a non-stick baking sheet.  Leave a little space between the unbaked breadsticks to allow for rising.

Brush with melted butter and top with freshly grated Asiago (Parmesan or Romano work well, too).  Bake at 350 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes.  Remove from the oven when the tops are golden brown.

Be ready to bake more because the family will devour these in record time!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Whole Wheat Oat Bread

After three weeks of almost constant travel, Aunt D is back in the kitchen and so happy to be there.  My friend Brianne requested my apple pastry recipe and I will definitely be sharing that really soon.  It just isn't on the menu this weekend.  Hang in there, Brie, it's definitely worth the wait.

The bread I'm making today is a bit of an experiment.  Have you ever found a recipe that looks really yummy only to discover that you are missing a vital ingredient?  Well, that's what happened with today's bread.  Being the creative type that I am, I found a second recipe that was really close and used it to fill in the gaps.

I am pleased to report that the experiment was a success.  Here is the recipe:

1 cup water
1 egg
2 tbs butter
2 tbs sugar
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups bread flour
1/2 cup oats
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tsp yeast

Add water, egg and butter to your bread machine in that order.*  I use stick butter and cut it into tiny pieces before adding it to the water.  In a separate bowl, combine the bread flour, oats and whole wheat flour and mix well.  Add the oat/flour mixture to the bread machine forming a dry layer on top of the wet ingredients.  Add the sugar and salt in opposite corners of the bread machine.  With your finger, make a hole in the center of the dry ingredients making sure that you don't reach the wet ingredients.  Pour the yeast into the hole.  Set your bread machine to the dough cycle.

When the dough is ready, remove it from the machine and put it into a bread pan.  You may need to lightly grease the pan.  Flatten the dough with your hands and push it into the corners to fill up the bottom of the bread pan.  Sprinkle wheat flour and oats over the top and cover with a damp cloth.  Place the covered bread in a warm dry place to rise for 45 minutes to an hour. 

Before baking, gently slice the top of the loaf with a serrated-edge knife.  Bake at 350 for 25 - 30 minutes.   After baking, remove the bread from the pan and let it cool completely on a baking rack. 

*If your bread machine calls for dry ingredients to go in first, then follow those instructions instead of mine.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Almost Veggie Pizza

This makes for a super yummy (and relatively quick) dinner when you are in a hurry.  I tend to do my shopping after work on Fridays, which puts me at home a little later than normal.  The pizza is a fast, easy and healthy way to keep Michael from starving to death on shopping day.

  • 1 Pizza Crust (This one was store bought, but I often bake my own)
  • Pizza Sauce (Ragu makes a really good one.  There is also a really good one at Earth Fare, but the name escapes me at the moment.)
  • Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
  • Fresh Veggies (I used mushrooms, green bell pepper, onion and tomatoes. Be creative and use whatever you find in the fridge.)
  • Salami (You can skip the meat or use a different type if you want.)


Spread two large spoonfuls of sauce onto the crust.  Sprinkle a handful of shredded mozzarella evenly across the sauce.  Chop your vegetables (and the meat if you are using it) into bite-sized pieces and spread them evenly on top of the cheese.  Sprinkle another handful of cheese evenly across the top of the pizza.  Bake at 450 until the entire pizza is warm and the cheese is fully melted.

This is one of my most versatile recipes.  You can improvise as much or as little as you want.  Give it a try and let me know what you think!