This month’s Daring Bakers challenge was traditional pizza which is kind of funny because I have been making flatbread pizza by modifying last month’s recipe for lavash crackers. This dough was very easy to work with and shape even though I used about half whole wheat flour. I failed on getting a picture of me tossing the dough but I honestly didn’t get much height. I topped one pizza with tomato sauce, a bit of goat cheese and fresh mozzarella. I’m a little obsessed with goat cheese on pizza. It really adds something to the flavor of fresh mozzarella. I topped the other with sautéed onions, fresh thyme and goat cheese. When it came out of the oven, I added sliced pears and a slightly sweet balsamic vinegar reduction (I added a little brown sugar and reduced the vinegar over low heat). This was sooo good. It was one of those combinations that just tastes like it was meant to be when you bite into it.
~ BASIC PIZZA DOUGH ~
Original recipe taken from “The Bread Baker’s Apprentice” by Peter Reinhart.
Makes 6 pizza crusts (about 9-12 inches/23-30 cm in diameter).
4 1/2 Cups (20 1/4 ounces/607.5 g) Unbleached high-gluten (%14) bread flour or all purpose flour, chilled – FOR GF: 4 ½ cups GF Flour Blend with xanthan gum or 1 cup brown rice flour, 1 cup corn flour, 1 cup oat flour, 1 ½ cup arrowroot, potato or tapioca starch + 2 tsp xanthan or guar gum
1 3/4 Tsp Salt
1 Tsp Instant yeast – FOR GF use 2 tsp
1/4 Cup (2 ounces/60g) Olive oil or vegetable oil (both optional, but it’s better with)
1 3/4 Cups (14 ounces/420g or 420ml) Water, ice cold (40° F/4.5° C)
1 Tb sugar – FOR GF use agave syrup
Semolina/durum flour or cornmeal for dusting
I posted the recipe for these delicious burritos previously. I had cooked the ground bison and froze it until I was ready to make them. I used whole wheat tortillas (Many’s brand). First, I spread the refried beans on the tortilla, then add the meat and cheddar cheese.
I fold up the tortilla and seal it with some of the refried beans. I crisped up the burrito in a small pan with olive oil. There were no ripe avocados to be had in the store today so we ate them with salsa and sour cream.
Little Phoebe was very interested in the process and hopeful for some bits of meat to fall her way. Her patience paid off as J couldn’t help sharing a tiny bit of his.
Around these parts, we are very fond of the Godiva Dark Chocolate Raspberry Bars. They were the inspiration for these Easter cupcakes. I used an adjusted recipe for Lemon Cake from the Barefoot Contessa as the basis for this recipe.
1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter at room temperature
2 1/2 cups granulated sugar, divided
4 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup of finely crush freeze dried raspberries*
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
*I use the Simply Fruit brand. It can be found at health food stores. I have also made cupcakes using Simply Strawberries. I place the berries in a ziplock plastic bag and crush them to a powder.
Cream the butter and 2 cups granulated sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, the key to great cakes is beating the butter and sugar until the mixture’s until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. With the mixer on medium speed add the eggs, (break the eggs into a dish before adding to the batter to avoid a bad egg or shells in the batter) 1 at a time. Sift together the flour, to make sure there are no lumps, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. Separately, combine 1 tablespoon lemon juice, the buttermilk, and vanilla. Add the flour and buttermilk mixtures alternately, beginning and ending with the flour.
Line baking tins with paper liners and evenly divide the batter. I made 28 cupcakes from this recipe.
For the ganache:
Melt 8oz bittersweet chocolate over a double boiler (Boil water and place a heat proof bowl above it). Stir in heavy cream (about ½ cup) until the mixture is shiny and the chocolate is fully melted.
I served them with a fresh raspberry on top as shown in my new super cool banner designed by J. Although it is decadent to the point of obscenity, I ate mine with a dollop of whipped cream. It cuts the bitterness of the chocolate, and I highly recommend it.
Here is another pancake recipe. These pancakes may be the best ever. Seriously. Even my husband, the pancake purist, loves them. I recommend using large chunks of banana; they will almost melt when they hit the heat.
1Cup White Whole Wheat Flour
1/2 Cup All Purpose Flour
½ Cup Quick Cook Oatmeal (not instant)
2 ½ tsp Baking Powder
Pinch of salt
1 1/2 Cups of Milk
2 heaping tbs sour cream (I use reduced fat)
2 Tbsp Melted Butter
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
1 tsp Vanilla Bean Paste (found at Williams-Sonoma)
¼ tsp almond extract
1/4 tsp Cinnamon
1 Banana, Crushed
Combine the dry ingredients and wet separately with the exception of the butter. Blend the wet and dry together, do not over stir. Fold in the melted butter.
Cook over medium heat in a pan with melted butter, add the banana pieces and cook until lightly brown on both sides. Serve with hot maple syrup and sprinkle of cinnamon.