Sunday, December 3, 2017

American Sandwich Bread

This simple white bread from Bread Illustrated by America's Test Kitchen is a lovely bread. It has nice crust and soft airy crumb.

Very easy bread to make and bakes up to a lovely loaf. I did reduce the salt though, using only half the amount called for, 3/4 teaspoon instead of 1-1/2 teaspoons. 

I like it's beautiful soft crumbs. Great as a sandwich bread, or spread with your favourite jam and salty butter. It is lovely toasted, spread with a generous dollop of cold salty butter, which will melt onto the hot crispy toast, perfect with a cup of hot steaming coffee!  

American Sandwich Bread
(Bread Illustrated by America's Test Kitchen)
2-1/2 cups (13-3/4 ounce) bread flour
2 teaspoons instant or rapid-rise yeast
1-1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup (6 ounces) whole milk, room temperature
1/3 cup (2-2/3 ounces) water, room temperature
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2 tablespoons honey

  1. Whisk flour, yeast, and salt together in bowl of stand mixer. Whisk milk, water, melted butter, and honey in 4-cup liquid measuring cup until honey has dissolved.
  2. Using dough hook on low speed, slowly add milk mixture to flour mixture and mix until cohesive dough starts to form and no dry flour remains, about 2 minutes, scraping down bowl as needed. Increase speed to medium-low and knead until dough is smooth and elastic and clears sides of bowl, about 8 minutes.
  3. Transfer dough to lightly floured counter and knead by hand to form smooth, round ball, about 30 seconds. Place dough seam side down in lightly greased large bowl or container, cover tightly with plastic wrap, and let rise until doubled in size, 1-1/2 to 2 hours.
  4. Grease 8-1/2 by 4-1/2-inch loaf pan. Press down on dough to deflate. Turn dough out onto lightly floured counter (side of dough taht was against bowl should now be facing up). Press and stretch dough into 8 by 6-inch rectangle, with long side parallel to counter edge.
  5. Roll dough away from you into firm cylinder, keeping roll taut by tucking it under itself as you go. Pinch seam closed and place loaf seam side down in prepared pan, pressing dough gently into corners.
  6. Cover loosely with greased plastic and let rise until loaf reaches 1 inch above lip of pan and dough springs back minimally when poked gently with your knuckle, 1 to 1-1/2 hours.
  7. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Mist loaf with water and bake until deep golden brown and loaf registers 205 to 230 degrees, 35 to 40 minutes, rotating pan halfway through baking,
  8. Let loaf cool in pan for 15 minutes. Remove loaf from pan and let cool completely on wire rack, about 3 hours, before serving.

I'm linking this post with Cookbook Countdown #24 hosted by 

Friday, December 1, 2017

Zucchini Pancakes

It's Potluck week at I Heart Cooking Clubs (IHCC). We are free to choose any recipes from IHCC current or past featured chefs. And I've made Ina Garten's Zucchini Pancakes for our brunch snack. 

Zucchinis are grated using the coarse side of the box grater. Stir the grated zucchinis together with grated onion, eggs, flour, baking powder and salt. I've added red chillies to the batter, deseeded and thinly sliced.  I find that the batter is quite runny and have added a few extra tablespoons of flour. The next time I will squeeze out some of the juices from the zucchini. Scoop heaping tablespoons of the batter and pan-fry in hot oil on both sides until golden.

These may be eaten with sour cream, or with your favourite sauce. I've made one of our favourite and simple dipping sauce, a mixture of mayonnaise and Sriracha sauce, which we love to dip our fritters or savoury pancakes. These pancakes are delicious and makes a wonderful brunch snack.

Zucchini Pancakes
2 medium zucchini (about 3/4 pound)
2 red chillies, deseeded and sliced thinly
2 tablespoons grated red onion
2 extra-large eggs, lightly beaten
6 to 8 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
unsalted butter and vegetable oil

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.
Grate the zucchini into a bowl using the large grating side of a box grater. Immediately stir in the onion and eggs. Stir in 6 tablespoons of the flour, the baking powder, salt, and pepper. (If the batter gets too thin from the liquid in the zucchini, add the remaining 2 tablespoons of flour.)
Heat a large (10 to 12-inch) saute pan over medium heat and melt 1/2 tablespoon butter and 1/2 tablespoon oil together in the pan. When the butter is hot but not smoking, lower the heat to medium-low and drop heaping soup spoons of batter into the pan. Cook the pancakes about 2 minutes on each side, until browned. Place the pancakes on a sheet pan and keep warm in the oven. Wipe out the pan with a dry paper towel, add more butter and oil to the pan, and continue to fry the pancakes until all the batter is used. The pancakes can stay warm in the oven for up to 30 minutes. Serve hot.

I'm linking this post with I Heart Cooking Clubs (IHCC), theme for this week
November 2017 Potluck

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Christopher's Oven-Baked Potato and Red Pepper Tortilla

This recipe is from Joanne Chang's cookbook, flour, too, one that has been in my possession for quite sometime, but have never made anything from it before. Time to try some of the recipes and  I've selected this Oven-Baked Tortilla for our lunch.

The potatoes are first boiled until cooked through, then peeled and cut into 1/2 in slices. 
Yellow onions, red bell peppers are cut into pieces, then sauteed with some olive oil together with minced garlic until the vegetables soften, a few minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer  the vegetables to a bowl. In the same skillet, heat some oil, then add the cooked potatoes, sprinkle with paprika, season with salt and pepper, and cook until the potatoes are brown in some places, do not turn the potatoes for three or four minutes. Turn the potatoes and brown the other side. Remove the skillet from the heat.

Whisk together the eggs, milk, Parmesan, scallions and parsley. Season with salt and pepper.

Spread the vegetables over the potatoes, pour the egg mixture and bake for 16 to 20 minutes until puffy and brown. Remove from oven and let cool for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

A slice or two served with some greens makes a delicious lunch.

Christopher's Oven-Baked Potato and Red Pepper Tortilla
(from flour, too by Joanne Chang)
serves 6 to 8
2 large or 3 medium Yukon gold potatoes
6 large eggs
3/4 cup (180ml) whole milk
1 cup/100gm freshly grated Parmesan cheese
4 scallions, white and green parts, minced
3 tbsp chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
3/4 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
5 tbsp/75ml extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, cut into 1/2in /12mm pieces
1 medium red bell pepper, cut into 1in/2.5cm pieces
3 garlic cloves, smashed and minced
1/2 teaspoon smoked Spanish paprika (pimenton)
Special equipment : ovenproof 12-inch skillet

In a medium saucepan, combine the potatoes with water to cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until the potatoes are cooked through and can be easily pierced with a fork; the timing will depend on the size of the potatoes. Drain and transfer the potatoes to a bowl. Set aside until cool enough to handle, then peel (the skins should come off quite easily) and cut crosswise into slices 1/2 in/12mm thick.
Preheat the oven to 450F/230C, and place a rack in the centre of the oven.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, Parmesan, scallions, and parsley. Season with 1/4 tsp each of the salt and pepper. Set aside.
In the skillet, heat 1 tbsp of the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the yellow onion, bell pepper, and garlic and sweat for several minutes, or until the vegetables soften. Season with 1/4 tsp salt and 1/8 tsp pepper. Transfer the vegetables to a bowl and set aside.
In the same skillet, heat 3 tbsp of the oil over high heat. Carefully add the potatoes and reduce the heat to medium. Sprinkle evenly with the paprika, the remaining 1/4 tsp salt, and the remaining 1/4 tsp pepper. Do not turn the potatoes for 3 to 4 minutes. Once the potatoes are nicely browned on the first side, flip them over and drizzle the remaining 1 tbsp oil into the skillet. Let the second side brown for a few more minutes. Don't worry, if not all of the potatoes get browned, the point is to get a nice crust on some of the potatoes. Remove the skillet from the heat.
Spread the vegetables mixture evenly over the potatoes, then carefully pour the egg mixture evenly over the potatoes and vegetables. Bake for 16 to 20 minutes, or until the egg puffs and browns and the middle is just barely set when tested with a knife tip. Remove from the oven and let cool in the skillet for 5 to 10 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature. The tortilla can be made up to 2 days in advance and stored in an airtight container in the fridge. Bring to room temperature or warm in a 300F/150C oven for 15 minutes before serving.

I'm linking this post with Cookbook Countdown #23 hosted by