Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Super Yummy Rolls

There are approximately 6,572 delicious roll recipes out there. I have tried about 300 of those trying to fins one that was yummy enough to make all the time, you know...the 'go to' roll recipe. I believe I have found it! And I am sharing it with you.

Cuz I'm cool like that.

Adapted from

Mix in an electric mixer. (I have a bosch - perfect for dough making)

Throw into mixer (which is turned off at this point) the following:
-5 C flour (I usually use white, but you could do half and half or straight whole wheat, but if you do that then throw in some extra gluten - baking isle)
-1/2 C sugar
-1 tsp. salt
-5 tsp. instant yeast (I use dry active yeast - it does not need to be proofed)

Give it a little shoosh to mix the dry ingredients. then warm up the following in a microwave proof bowl:
-3/4 C. milk
-3/4 C. water
-1/2. C butter or marg. (I've used both to the same results, I'm not a butter snob)

then crack 2 eggs in a bowl and temper them with the warm liquid. (Tempering eggs: The technique used to blend uncooked eggs into hot liquid or sauce. Eggs are beaten and a little of the hot mixture is stirred into them to warm (temper) them. Tempering slowly raises the temperature of an egg, without curdling it and without heating it too fast) then pour the eggs into the warm mixture.


If you are not used to making rolls, bread, etc, please read this!! If you are pro, them skip and proceed.

*Your liquid must be warm to wake up the yeast and get it working to rise your bread/rolls. If it is too hot, then it will kill the yeast and no rise. To check to see if it;s the right temperature, then stick your finger in the liquid. It should feel warm to hot and you should be able to leave your finger in the liquid. if it is too hot for your finger, it is too hot for the yeast.*

add liquid/eggs to the flour mixture in the mixer. crank it and let it knead. You may or may not need to add more flour depending on the humidity of the day. Tonight I needed to add about 1/3 C. more flour. It has enough when it scrapes the sides clean. Let it knead for about 8-10 minutes.

Oil a big bowl and throw the dough into it, turn to coat. It should feel more sticky then dry. Use some oil on your hands if it has stuck to the bowl at all. Cover with a damp kitchen towel and stick in the oven (not on) with the oven light on. Let it raise until double.

hand knead a little and form into 24 rolls (or 12 HUGE ones). I like to put them in my muffin tins. Let them raise again for 20 minutes or so.

Bake at 400 for 15 minutes or so.

Eat until you need to go workout.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Spicy Peach Glazed Pork Chops

adapted from

Okay, so I have made this twice in the last 2 months and it is my new favorite!!!! If you don't want pork chops, then I would imagine this would work just as well on chicken, and a couple days ago I just sliced up some pork loin  to make it. 

sprinkle on chops, ground ginger, salt & pepper, and a pinch of cinnamon. Go a little heavy on everything except the cinnamon. Sear in a pan with some oil on VERY high heat. take out and put on a plate. add 1/2 cup chicken broth to pan and deglaze. (dissolve cooking juices or solid food in (a pan) by adding liquid and stirring) 

Once little bits are scraped up from bottom of the pan, add 1 C. peach preserves, 1 1/2 TBSP worcestershire, and  1/2-1 tsp. chile paste. heat until it's all melty and delicious. add the chops back to the pan and finish cooking through.

*note* pork is easy to overcook which results in a dry, tough piece of meat. Ideally pork should still be a little pink in the center when it is done, if it is white all the way through, it has been overcooked. It should NOT feel like a cooked chicken breast, it's softer than that.

Serve with glaze on top (I like serving it with rice with extra glaze on top of the rice) add a salad and some rolls, and BOOM. you are done.

Go make this.

You will not regret it.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Homemade 3 Cheese Ravioli

I wish I had taken a picture of this one, but it's gone already.

Pasta Dough
recipe adapted from The French Laundry Cookbook
1 1/4 C. all purpose flour (maybe a little more if sticky)
6 large egg yolks
1 large egg
1 1/2 tsp. olive oil
1 TBSP milk.

make a well with the flour and throw the rest of the ingredients into the center, swish it around until all the flour is incorporated. It should not be sticky and should be a tiny bit flaky. Knead for 10 minutes. You can NOT over knead pasta dough, so don't be scared. getting sticky? throw some more flour on the board. When it's ready, you should be able to punch your finger in the dough and the dough will try to bounce back. Wrap in saran wrap and rest for 30 m. to 1 hour. (you can refrigerate overnight, but it will need to be at room temperature to roll)

run through your pasta machine. Don't have one? Get one HERE.

place 1 tsp. size fillings (recipe below) and put another sheet on top. boil for 5 minutes (or simmer) until pasta is cooked. Top with your favorite marinara.

should make about 35 ravioli's, depending on the size.

3 Cheese filling
recipe courtesy of me

1 C. mozzerella
1/2 C. shredded fresh parmesean
1/3 C. or more of mascarpone cheese
garlic powder
basil (fresh or dried)
mix together until it all sticks together

taste it to see if it's yummy. add seasonings to taste.

Stuffed Tomatoes

I was struggling with what to make for a side dish to go with some steaks and remembered the bag of tomatoes I had that would go bad if I didn't do something, so I made roasted stuffed tomatoes!

scoop out insides and get rid of all the seedy parts but keep the rest of the guts. Chop up guts and put them in a bowl. add to bowl 4 strips of cooked bacon, cut up. (or bacon bits, whatever) Add about 1 C. bread crumbs. ( I made my own from homemade bread. just shopped them in the food processor) Add about 1/2 C. parmesean cheese. Seriously, I just threw stuff in a bowl. I also added some italian seasoning. mix together and add enough olive oil to make it a little sticky. stuff the tomatoes. I did about 6 large ones. top with a small drizzle of olive oil and bake at 350 for about 20 minutes until the tops are goldeney.

Dave asked for another tomato for dessert. From a guy that doesn't like tomatoes. I'm just saying.

recipe courtesy of: me

Shrimp Etouffee

If you are not a seafood person, then please make this with leftover cooked chicken instead (please use dark meat, it tastes better). The complexity of the broth is fabulous. I This one is an absolute keeper.

Shrimp Etouffee
• 6 tablespoons unsalted butter(needed a little more fat, so added 2 TBSP of oil, much smoother. it just needs to be smooth and not crumbly)

• 1/2 cup all-purpose flour

• 4 cups chopped onions

• 2 cups chopped green bell peppers

• 2 cups chopped celery 
(didnt' have any, didn't use)

• 2 tablespoons minced garlic

• 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes 
(I used 3 fresh tomatoes, seeded)

• 2 bay leaves 
(I used three)

• 2 teaspoons salt 
(I cut this competely - trust me!! you can add it at the end if you need it!)

• 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper 
(please use this. you can lower a little, but it is a cajun dish here. my 5 year old loved it)

• 2 tablespoons Essence, 
 (I used 1 TBSP of Tony's cajun seasoning - it was enough. you can always add more later)

• 1 quart shrimp stock 
(after looking at 4 different grocery stores and not finding it, I used chicken stock)

• 3 pounds medium shrimp (21 to 25 count per pound), peeled and deveined
 (I only had 2 lbs.)

• 1/4 cup chopped parsley leaves 

• Steamed white rice, for serving

• 1/2 cup thinly sliced green onion tops, for garnish 


Melt the butter in a large Dutch oven set over medium heat. Add the flour and stir continuously to make a roux. Stir the roux over medium heat until the color of peanut butter, 5 to 7 minutes
.(I had a jar of peanut butter next to me, but I still think it could have gone darker and tasted more like etouffee. and it took me about 17 minutes) Add the onions, bell peppers, celery, and garlic to the roux, and cook, stirring often, for 10 minutes. Add the tomatoes to the pot and season with the bay leaves, salt, cayenne, and 1 tablespoon of the Essence. Cook the tomatoes for 2 to 3 minutes and then whisk in the shrimp stock.

Bring the mixture to a boil, and reduce to a simmer. Cook the etouffee, stirring occasionally, for 45 minutes. Season the shrimp with the remaining tablespoon of Essence
(I did not do this, I really don't think it needs it) and add them to the pot, stirring to evenly distribute. Cook the shrimp for 5 to 7 minutes, or until they are cooked through. Add the chopped parsley to the pot and stir to combine.

Serve immediately over steamed white rice and garnish with sliced green onion tops

Recipe adapted from Emeril.

White Bean and Garlic Soup

This is awesome. Seriously. My husband could not stop eating and battled me for the leftovers.

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 shallots, chopped
  • 1 sage leaf
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans cannelloni beans, drained and rinsed
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 4 cloves garlic, cut in 1/2
  • 1/2 cup cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 slices ciabatta bread
  • Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling


Place a medium, heavy soup pot over medium heat. Add the butter, olive oil, and shallot. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the shallots are softened, about 5 minutes. Add the sage and beans and stir to combine. Add the stock and bring the mixture to a simmer. Add the garlic and simmer until the garlic is softened, about 10 minutes. Pour the soup into a large bowl. Use hand blender to soupify. (or use a blender if you don't have one. CAREFUL! it's hot) add the cream and the pepper.
eat and hoard the leftovers from your husband.
my kids were in love with dropping chunk of bread in the soup and eating it when it had soaked up the yumminess.
Recipe courtesy of: Giada