Sunday, February 4, 2018

Ken Forkish Levain Breads


 Pain De Campagne
620 g   Water 90-95F    2 3/4 C
 740 g   White all purpose flour  5 3/4 C
   60 g    Whole wheat flour 1/2 C+1/2 T
   21 g     Salt 1 T+ scant 1 tsp
     2 g     Instant dried yeast 1/2 tsp
  360g     Levain 1 1/3 C

Levain proportions every day. Remove most of the levain from container.
200 g 90F water
200 g all purpose flour
 50 g  whole wheat flour

Karen's version (3 loaves)
Use 1,000 g of levain rather than 360 g.

Over Night Country Blonde

684 g water  scant 3 C
804 g white all purpose flour 6 1/4 C
 26 g  whole wheat flour 3 T
50 g   rye flour 1/3 C + 1 T
22 g   salt  1T+ 1 tsp
216 g levain

Ken Forkish Saturday Bread

Platedujour's take on techique for this bread.

  720 g   Water (90 to 95F)  3 1/8 C
1000 g   White all purpose flour 7 3/4 C
    21 g    Salt 1T+1 scant tsp
      4 g    Instant dried yeast 1 tsp

2 loaves about 1.5 lbs each. Autolyse for 20-30 minutes. Mix with pincer method. Fold dough three times within the first hour.  Bulk fermentation 5 hours. Form two round loaves and let rise in baskets or linen covered with plastic for 1 1/2 hours. Preheat oven for 45 minutes @475F with cast iron 4 quart dutch ovens with lids inside oven.  Bake with lid on for 30 minutes. Remove lids and bake 17-20 minutes more. Lids trap steam and creat crackly, artisan crust.

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Gingerbread House Dough

5 C all purpose flour
1 tsp salt
2 tsp ginger
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp cloves
1 C shortening
1 C sugar
1 1/4 C molasses
2 eggs, beaten

In large saucepan melt shortening on stove over low heat. While shortening is melting, in a separate bowl stir together flour, salt and spices (f using for cookies, add 1 tsp baking soda). When shortening is jalf melted, remove from heat and continue to stir until completely melted. Add sugar, molasses and beaten eggs.  Mix well and quickly (to prevent egs from cooking).  Add molasses mixture to flour mixture. Mix well. Dough will be soft. Cover and refrigerate until firm enough to handle. Preheat oven to 350F.

Roll dough onto aluminum foil or parchment paper. To prevent aluminum foil from slipping, wipe counter with wet sponge then smooth aluminum foil over dap counter. I rolled the dough out directly in the cookie/jelly roll pan.  Makes two cookie sheets full. Bake at least 12 minutes.

Royal Icing
3 egg whites (room temperature) submerge whole eggs in shells in hot warm to warm up
1 tsp vanilla
1 lb powdered sugar (about 4 1/2 C)
1/2 tsp cream of tartar
Combine all ingredients. Beat at low or medium speed 7 to 10 minutes or until very stiff. Keep icing covered with a damp cloth at all times to prevent crust from forming. This icing holds its shape and decorations can be made days in advance. Add food coloring for special effects.

Friday, November 24, 2017

Lemon Curd

Makes 2 1/2 C.
Prep 15 min. Cook 20 min

2 C sugar
1 C fresh lemon jice (about 6 lemons)
4 large eggs plus 4 large yolks, beaten
1/4 finely grated lemon peel (about 3 lemons)
1 1/2 sticks (6 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into pieces

1. Set a fine-mesh strainer over a medium heatproof bowl next to the stove. In a veavy, medium saucepan, whisk together the sugar, lemon jice, eggs, egg yolks and lemon peel. Add the butter and cook over medium-low heat stirring constantly, for 5 minutes.

2. Lower the heat and simmer, stirring, until the mixture thickens and registers 160F on instant read thermometer, about 5 mintues. Strain the mjixture into the prepared bowl, then press a sheet of plastic wrap directly onto the surface. Let cool to room temperature. Transfer to airtight container and refrigerate for up to 1 month.

Note: Spread on English muffins. Stir into plain yogurt. Use as a crepe filling. Serve with pancakes and French toast. Fold into whipped cream.

Every Day with Rachael Ray

In a medium stainless-steel or enamel saucepan, whisk together until light in color:
3 large eggs
1/3 C sugar
Grated zest of 1 lemon
1/2 cup strained fresh lemon juice
6 T (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
Cook, whisking, over medium heat until the butter is melted. Then constantly until the mixture is thickened and simmer gently for a few seconds. Using a spatula, scrape the filling into a medium-mesh sieve set over a bowl and strain the filling into the bowl. Stir in:
1/2 tsp vanilla
Let cool, cover, and refrigerate to thicken. This keeps, refrigerated, for about 1 week.
Joy of Cooking 998 (1997)

Monday, March 7, 2016

Mango Sweet Sticky Rice

1 (13.5 oz) can coconut cream
1/2 C sugar
1/4 tsp salt
4 C cooked sweet sticky rice
2-3 ripe mangos (sliced)
1 lime (garnish)

Combine coconut cream, sugar, and salt in medium sized saucepan and cook over medium heat until sugar dissolves and mixture is very warm.

Scoop out 1/2 of the cream mixture to reserve for topping. Turn off heat and stir in cooled sweet rice. Scoop 1/2 C of rice onto plate and top with sliced mangos, and 1-2 T of reserved topping.  Grate lime peel on top.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Yellow Curry

1 lb chicken (1-2 boneless, skinless breasts, sliced; can also use beef or pork)
1 T vegetable oil
2 T yellow curry paste (for hot curry, use 3-4 T)
1 (13.5 oz) can coconut milk or cocnut cream
1 C chicken broth
1 tsp salt
2 tsp fish sauce (more or less to taste)
1 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp Accent (MSG) optional
1 C Thai pumpkin or potatoes (cooked and diced)
1 C peas
1 C red bell pepper, sliced

Brown chicken in hot oil in soup pot.
Add curry paste and cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly.
Stir in coconut milk and chicken broth.
Add salt, fish sauce, sugar, and Accent.
Sitr and cover, simmering for 5-10 minutes.
Add pumpkin, green peas, and red peppers. Cover and turn off heat.

To Prepare the Thai Pumpkin
Scrub, clean and wrap the pumpkin tightly with aluminum foil. Bake at 375 F for 1 hour and 15 minutes, until it's soft when squeezed. Let cool. Clean out seeds and cut into 1 inch chunks including the peeling.

Drunken Noodles

Pad Khee Maou

1 pkg 14 oz Rice Sticks (extra large/extra sticky)
1 T garlic
2-3 bird chilies
2 T canola oil
1 lb chicken, beef, or pork, thinly sliced
1 carrot, thinly sliced
1 yellow onion, sliced
2-3 C mustard greens or collard greens, cut into 2 inch pieces
1 C mushrooms

1 1/2 C chicken broth
1 T fish sauce
2 T brown sugar
2 T white sugar
3 T oyster sauce
3 T black soy sauce
1 T corn starch
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black or white pepper

Boil noodles for 2 minutes, drain, rinse with cool water, and then set aside.
Combine sauce ingredients in a small bowl and set aside
Brown garlic and bird chilies in hot oil.
Add meat and cook through.
Add carrots. Cook 1 minutes.
Add onions, greens, and mushrooms. Stir.
Drain noodles and toss in.
Serve immediately.

Friday, November 6, 2015

Dutch Baby

Dutch baby, German or Puff pancake--these are all names for the same breakfast yumminess which you can top with maple syrup, powdered sugar or jam, even sauted fruit.

Preheat oven to 425 F
1/2 C milk
1/2 C all purpose flour
1/4 sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature

Melt in a 10 inch ovenproof skillet (cast iron is ideal) over medium heat:
4 T (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
Tilt the pan so that the butter coats the sides.  Pour the egg mixture into the skillet and cook without stirring for 1 minutes.  Place the skillet in the oven and bake until the pancake is puffed and golden, 12 - 15 minutes.  Serve immediately for the pancake loses its puff and therefore its drama almost immediately.

DOUBLE: Use a 12 x 9 inch ovenproof glass baking pan in the preheated oven.  Pour in the butter and bake as directed for 15-17 minutes.  Joy of Cooking, 800.

Friday, August 14, 2015


Here are the basics of Quiche Lorraine (One 9" quiche: 4-6 servings)

4 ounces bacon or sausage, chopped and browned
1 sweet bell pepper, sauted
1 onion, sauted
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 1/2 C heavy cream, creme fraiche, or half cream and half milk
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground pepper

Sausage (and any other additions you like--sauted sweet peppers, onions, handful of grated cheese) on pie crust. Pour custard filling into pie crust. Bake until filling is browned and set, 25-30 minutes.

Quiche in a jelly roll pan. I double the the ingredients and even added 2-3 more eggs for a large cookie sheet size quiche.

Zucchini Bread and Chocolate Zucchine Cake

Here's my mom's zucchini bread recipe.  
Zucchini Bread (4-5 small loaves)
3 eggs
1 C oil
2 C white sugar
2 C grated zucchini with peel left on
3 tsp vanilla
3 C all purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp baking powder
2 tsp cinnamon
1 C walnuts, chopped (optional)
1 C choc. chips (optional)
Combine all ingredients. Do not over mix.  Bake at 350F for 45-60 minutes.

Chocolate Zucchini Cake
Cream together:
3/4 C oil
2 C white sugar
3 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
1/2 C cocoa powder
1 T baking powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp orange zest
1/2 C milk
2 C grated whole zucchini (skin on)
2 1/2 C all purpose flour (May substitute 1 C whole wheat flour for 1 C of the all purpose flour.)
Do not over mix. Pour into greased bundt pan and bake at 375F for 45 minutes.

Chocolate Frosting
4 3/4 C powdered sugar, sifted
1/2 C unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 C butter, softened
1/3 C boiling water
1 tsp vanilla
Mix powdered sugar and cocoa.  Add butter, boiling water and vanilla.  Beat with mixer on low until combined. Beat on medium for another minute.  Cool for 20-30 minutes till it's spreading consistency.  This will frost the tops and sides of two 8-9 inch cake layers.

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Crisco Pie Crust

Place into a food processor
2 2/3 C. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. salt
1 C. shortening
Pulse processor until shortening is cut in (looks a little like cornmeal texture). Add
7 1/2 to 8 T. of cold water (I mix ice cubes into a cup of water.)
Pulse processor until mixture clumps into a mass. Don't over process.  You want this pie crust flaky.  This recipe is sufficient for two 10" pastry rounds. Or this recipe will make 4 scimpy 8" pie crusts.

Chicken Won Ton Salad

2-3 chicken breasts, cubed and cooked (or use pieces of a deli chicken)
2-3 whole green onions, chopped
1 pkg won tons
1 can water chestnuts, sliced
1/2 C sesame seeds, toasted
1 head of lettuce (I like Romaine.)
Won ton dressing recipe, below
2 T sugar
1/4 C oil
1 T sesame oil (This is essential to the flavor of the dressing.)
3 T rice vinegar
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tsp MSG, optional
Cut won tons into strips and fry in oil until golden brown. Alternatively, brown small 4" won tons and crush by hand over the salad. Toss all of the ingredients together. Add wonton strips to the other ingredients just before serving.

Julie McBrides' Oatmeal Cookies

2 C butter
2 C white sugar
2 C brown sugar
4 eggs
4 C flour, all purpose
1 tsp vanilla
5 C oatmeal
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 C chocolate chips
6 (6 oz) Skor bars broken up or 1 pkg of Skor bits
Cream sugar and butter. Add eggs and remaining ingredients, except for oats and Skor bits. Mix well and then add oats and Skor bits. Drop by tablespoon onto cookie sheets and bake at 375F for 12 minutes.

Blueberry Pie Filling

2/3 to 3/4 C sugar
3 T cornstarch
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 C water
5 C fresh blueberries, divided
1 T plus 1 1/2 tsp butter or margarine
1 1/2 tsp lemon juice
Combine sugar, cornstarch, salt, water and 3 C of berries in saucepan. Cook on medium heat until mixture thickens and begins to boil. Remove from heat. Cool slightly. Add the remaining 2 C of fresh berries and butter to the pie filling when added to the crust.
Click here for the Crisco pie crust recipe.

Crab & Portobella Mushrooms with Smoked Paprika

Daniel has been waxing creative in the kitchen. Lately, he has been watching "Diners, Drive Ins & Dives" on Netflix.  If he has his fresh garlic cloves and smoked paprika he's ready to go.  Today he created this recipe which if paired with a salad is a lovely one-skillet meal.
1 C crab, imitation
1/2 C sliced portabella mushrooms
3 crushed garlic cloves or to taste
1/4 C grated cheddar cheese
4-5 eggs
salt & pepper
Daniel heated olive oil in a 12" skillet and then added the crab pieces. They browned a bit and then he added the mushrooms and crushed garlic. After about 90 seconds he added the cheese and eggs and mixed slightly.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Grab your favorite salad and bon appetit.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Buttercream Icing for Decorations

1/2 C shortening
5 T milk or water
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp butter flavoring
1/2 tsp vanilla, clear
1/2 tsp almond flavoring

Mix at high speed for 4 to 5 minutes, then on low speed for 2 minutes. Stir by hand to stir/press the bubbles out of the frosting before piping.

Royal Icing with Meringue Powder or with Raw Eggs

Royal Icing with Meringue Powder
3 T, level of meringue powder
1/2 minus 1 T luke warm water
3/4 t cream of tartar
1 lb. powdered sugar

Combine all ingreadients. Beat on low or medium speed until icing holds a peak and has a dull finish. The icing will not be as strong if beaten on a high setting. This may take up to 15 minutes of beating.  Keep covered at all times with a damp cloth (while you're piping on the cake). To restore texture simply rebeat the icing.  For a lighter icing add a T of water and continue beating. This makes a more brittle flower, however. Add food coloring for special effects.

Royal Icing with Egg Whites
3 egg whites (room temp.)
1 t vanilla
1/2 tsp cream of tartar
1 lb. powdered sugar

Combine all ingredients. Beat on low or medium speed 7 to 10 minutes or until very stiff. Keep icing covered with a damp cloth at all times to prevent crust from forming. This icing holds its shape and decorations. Can be made days in advance. Add food coloring for special effects.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Strawberry Freezer Jam

Whitney prepared the strawberries for freezer jam.  That's a huge help, but while the fruit sat in it's sugar and dissolved the sugar crystals I ran to Walmart to get more pectin.  Ball Company has a pectin calculator online. This was handy to rediscover the amount of sugar necessary for the freezer jam before I left to grab more pectin. Here's the recipe:


      1. COMBINE prepared fruit* with lemon juice in a large bowl. Add sugar, mixing thoroughly. Let stand 10 minutes.
      2. COMBINE water and Ball® RealFruit™ Classic Pectin in a small saucepan. Bring to a full rolling boil that cannot be stirred down, stirring constantly. Boil hard for 1 minute, continuing to stir.
      3. ADD cooked pectin mixture to fruit mixture stir for 3 minutes.
      4. LADLE freezer jam into clean Ball® freezer jars leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Apply caps and let jam stand in refrigerator until set, but no longer than 24 hours. Serve immediately, refrigerate up to 3 weeks or freeze up to 1 year
        *To Prepare Strawberries: Hull and crush one layer at a time using a potato masher. 

        Wednesday, March 11, 2015

        "That's a Big Piece of MEAT!"

        Aynie was asking about Sunday roasts. I remember that roasting meat was something I never learned how to do before I was married.  My mom did all the roasting, I did all the grilling.  She is a pro at Sunday dinner.

        She would put a chuck roast in the crock pot along with 1/2 cup water, potatoes, onions, carrots, salt and pepper, and it was done when we got home from church (if our three hour block was from 1pm -4pm.  Sometimes my mom would brown the chuck in oil on it's two large sides before putting it in the slow cooker.  This can add to the flavor, but is not necessary.  If you forget to put the chuck roast in by 9 am you might has well forget about roast for dinner. It takes about 8-9 hours in the crockpot to cook a chuck roast.
        A chuck roast from my freezer.

        The meat dept's call the same cut of meat all different names.
        The names of cuts of meat change through the decades, too.
        Sunday dinner is not lost if you forget to put the chuck in the pot by 9am.  There are other cuts of meat that are great for Sunday dinner.

        The beef round bottom round cut of beef is relatively quick cooking.  Sprinkle generously with Montreal Steak seasoning and dry roast it in a 9 by 13" casserole dish. Add about 1/8 C of water to the bottom of the casserole dish.  Roast, uncovered, on 350F for about 1 hour 20 minutes for a 3 lb. cut of meat.  Save the carmelized, crusted bits in the bottom of the casserole dish for gravy.

        The beef round tip roast cap is also a quick cooking cut of meat. It usually as strings tying the large flap of meat into a broad, flat cylinder shape.  Dry roast this cut like the above cut of meat.

        So, you're tired of beef and you've remembered to put the meat in the crockpot by 9am.  Pork shoulder country style ribs, boneless, are a great change from beef.  Pop them in the crockpot for 8-10 hours on medium or high setting along with a chopped onions and Montreal Steak seasoning and 1 C of water. Let them cook.  If you're a real go-getter you can brown the pieces of shoulder in oil on a couple of sides and then put them in the slow cooker. Top with your favorite barbecue sauce when they are done cooking.

        If you find a deal on meat or you shop at Costco, remember these cuts of meat freeze very well.

        Umami in a Jar: Balsamic Vinaigrette Paste

        I ran out of the balsamic vinaigrette I buy at Costco and discovered at my next grocery trip that they are not stocking it at the moment. "Shoot!" It was good. I didn't want the bacon dressing they had and I am tired of ranch dressing, although Costco's is very flavorful; so, I researched a bit, took a basic vinaigrette recipe, added a tad of this and some snippets of that and I have my own balsamic vinaigrette recipe. I like it, a lot. You can leave out the anchovy paste and the oyster sauce, but it's better with it. Maybe a little Kikomann's soy sauce would be a good addition--something to increase the umami:)
        8 servings
         1/2 cup olive oil
         1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
         3 drops sucralose or 1 tsp. sugar/honey
         1 tsp anchovy paste
         1 tsp oyster sauce
         1 teaspoon Dijon mustard or American mustard
         2 T or 4 g Romano cheese, grated (or Parmesan)
         1 T chives or onion minced
         3 clove garlic, minced
         salt and ground black pepper to taste (about 1/4 tsp salt & 1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper)

        Yes, it's a bit thick. I think the Romano cheese caused that.  Thin down to your tastes with olive oil and more balsamic vinegar or white vinegar.

        NOTE: Find out a little about "umami." Click here.