Monday, April 4, 2011

Cookies!!!

I have no creative name for this post. I've sort of kind of forgotten about this blog for a few weeks. It's been hectic. Last week, I pulled my first real all-nighter in college.  I've come close before, but this time I did it. Between 2 papers in a less than 2 days (plus classes and everything), I spent 17 hours writing.  I've stayed up all night before, but the whole using my brain thing made a big difference for me.  I was a little delirious, and then I got a big rush of energy and felt really jittery, even without caffeine! I hadn't really eaten either. I felt a little crazy!!




Enough about how I may or may not be mentally unstable. I haven't been posting recipes, so I'm just going to show you the last one I made, this past Friday.  I wasn't really sure what ingredients we had, since I forgot to check (of course). I was hoping someone had bought oats, because we were out before! I decided to go with basic oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. These are the only chocolate chip cookies that ever get made in my house - do not even think about making cookies without oats around my mother!

I didn't ask her for the recipe we always use, but I found a similar one. And then, I was we still had lots of carrots and a few apples.  One of my favorite restaurants in Heidelberg, Cafe Rossi, used to make apple carrot and ginger juice. It was our favorite thing to sip on in the summer.  And then, lo and behold, I looked in the butter dish and there was fresh ginger!! I made a double batch of the cookies and made half regualr chocolate chip and half apple carrot ginger.
I doubled the recipe, and it made A LOT. So I froze the chocolate chip cookies for next week.



chocolate chip dough

Ingredients

  • 1 cup shortening
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips - I didn't measure the grated apples and carrots I used, but it was about 2 cups. I also added about 1T grated fresh ginger and 1t cinnamon. We didn't have any ground ginger or I would have added some for more flavor!

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a large bowl cream shortening, brown sugar and granulated sugar. Add eggs and mix thoroughly.
  3. Combine the baking soda, salt and flour and stir into creamed mixture
  4. Add oatmeal and chocolate chips and stir until well blended.
  5. Drop by teaspoonfuls onto greased cookie sheet. Bake for 15 minutes.

carrot dough
The chocolate chip cookies turned out a lot flatter than the carrot ones - I think the extra moisture made a difference. They also baked weird, but I think that was just the pans and oven I was using.  Everyone loved the carrot cookies, so hopefully the other ones will be as good!



Thursday, March 17, 2011

Triple (Chocolate) Threat

The Friday before spring break, I made triple chocolate cookies that were so good! It was perfect for an intense chocolate craving like the one I was having. Heck, like the one I have every day! I honestly cannot remember which recipe I used, but this one comes close.


Ingredients:
2-1/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup Dutch process cocoa or unsweetened baking cocoa
1 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
2/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 large eggs
6 ounces white chocolate bar, chopped 1/2 inch pieces (or 1 cup chips)
6 ounces dark chocolate bar, chopped 1/2 inch pieces (or 1 cup chips)
Preparation:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease (spray and wipe off) or line baking sheet with parchment paper or baking mat. In a medium bowl, combine flour, soda, salt and cocoa with a wire whisk. In large bowl, cream butter and sugars. Stir in vanilla. Add eggs one-at-a-time. Combine completely. While mixing add flour mixture 1/2 cup or so at a time. Hand stir-in chopped chocolates. Drop by tablespoonsful onto prepared baking sheets. Bake for 9 to 11 minutes. Cool on cookie sheets for 2 minutes. Remove to wire racks for cooling completely. Makes about 4 dozen cookies.
For bar cookies: Lightly grease 9x13 pan. Spread dough into pan. Bake for 20-25 minutes.

St. Patty's Day

Sorry I've been MIA for a while! St. Patrick's Day seemed like a good day to get back to bloggin'.  While the rest of campus is pretending it's a weekend I'm in my room suffering from intense stomach pain and finishing homework. I know you want to hear about my personal discomforts!

Anyways, here's a sneak peek at what I did for Spring Break! I, of course, forgot my camera (ever since it broke in India I seem to have forgotten I even own a camera!), but my friend took is an awesome photographer.  I met some awesome people on this trip and it was definitely more fun and relaxing than the typical college spring break in Florida (or SC this year) that I've done with the track team the past 2 years - not that they aren't awesome too. And I didn't have to spend 24 hours on a bus! More pictures to come later
dogsledding!

I also made Irish soda bread on Tuesday for the co-op in honor of St. Patrick's Day. It turned out really well, even though I forgot to add salt (whoops!). It was also the first day it was warm enough for us to eat outside!  This is a recipe from my mom's collection:
6 c. flour
1 T baking powder
1 1/2 t. baking soda
2 t. salt
4 t. sugar
2 1/2 c. buttermilk
2 T butter
1 1/2 c. raisins - I used a mix of golden and regular. And I made a small walnut loaf, since I knew some people didn't like raisins. I wasn't sure if the flavors would mix well, not the non-raisin-eaters said it was good!

Combine flour and next 4 ingredients in a large bowl.  Set aside.  Combine buttermilk, butter, and raisins; add to flour mixture, stirring until moistened (don't overstir).  Turn dough out onto a well-floured surface and knead until smooth - about 5 minutes. Place on greased cookie sheet and press evenly into a 1 1/2 inch thick circle.  Bake at 325 for 1 hour or until bread sounds hollow when tapped.  Cool 5 minutes.  Cut into wedges.

source
It was sooo good!


Thursday, March 3, 2011

Days 27 and 30!!!

day 27. a photo of last summer
visiting my grandma in Canton, NY
I'm skipping 29. Cuz I want to
day 30. a photo of you when you were happy

I love to ski. Have I mentioned that? 

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Basic whole wheat bread

I didn't do a post on the desert I made last week because it, um, didn't quite turn out.
But, I made up for it by making delicious bread today! I just decided to make a basic whole wheat bread. I didn't even make any substitutions! This recipe makes 1 loaf, so I doubled it and made 2.



Ingredients: 
1 cup warm water (110-115 degrees F)
1 tablespoon milk
2 tablespoons oil
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (see additional notes for a 100% whole wheat version)
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
2 teaspoons instant active dry yeast (active dry yeast will work also
Instructions: 
1. Combine first 6 ingredients in a large mixing bowl; stir.
2. Add flours and yeast, and knead until dough is smooth and elastic, about 10-15 minutes. Place dough in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover with a clean towel and let rise until doubled, about 40 minutes.
3. Punch dough down; knead for a few minutes until smooth and then form into a loaf. Place in greased loaf pan and cover. Let rise in a warm place until almost doubled in size, about 30 minutes.
4. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes. 
5. Remove bread from oven and allow to rest in pan for a few minutes. Remove to a wire rack and cover with a cloth. Slice and enjoy while still warm! Leftover bread can be stored in an airtight bag or frozen until needed.

I also made brownies today (yes, from a mix. The Ghirardelli double chocolate kind). It's my favorite from-a-mix brownie. Maybe even better than my homemade brownies - they're the one thing I seem to always have bad luck with. Anyways, I made them because I want to put them in random people's mailboxes. It's part of my whole random acts of kindness thing I decided to start just now. But I better give them away soon - I've already eaten 3! and I'm going to count this as day 28 of the photo challenge: a photo of what you ate today
mmmmmmm

Days 23-26:

I'm just going to finish the rest of this photo challenge right now, mostly because I want to move on to other stuff. Also, it's almost my spring break so I won't be able to blog (woohoooooo spring break!!!)
day 23. a photo of your friend as a baby
my friend Lacey
this is her now


day 25. a photo of a night you loved
last night in India - sad but really fun! 
day 26. a photo of your favorite weekend
How am I supposed to choose something like this? 
winter retreat in the Texas hill country 2008 - they were so fun!

Monday, February 28, 2011

Day 22:

a photo of your town - all 4 I've lived in (if you count 4 months living somewhere. I had an address at least!)

Austin: 1990-2008 and it's still my permanent address! I love Austin!
congress avenue - looking at the capitol

360 bridge at sunset
source



Heidelberg: 2003-2005 oh how I miss you
castle and old bridge
source
Beloit: 2008-2012
the river
Auroville: Fall 2010
from above with the matrimandir in the middle

the village I worked in



Saturday, February 26, 2011

Day 21:

a photo of you standing up

Another picture of me hiking in Honey Valley! What can I say, I loved it there (except the whole food poisoning part). Luckily, this was taken before that. Can you even believe this is in India?!?

Friday, February 25, 2011

Day 20:

a photo of something you enjoy doing:
How do I choose! Since I just got back from indoor conference, here's a picture of me pole vaulting.



Thursday, February 24, 2011

Day 19:

a photo of you on a school trip:
I went to Winter Park in 10th grade with school! It was so much fun!!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Rosemary Cheese Rolls

As usual, I'll post the original recipe and make notes where I changed it.  I doubled the recipe, and it made 32 small rolls. I'd say one recipe really only makes 8 servings.
source


Prep Time 2 Hours
Cook Time 40 Minutes
Servings 16Difficulty Easy

Ingredients

  • FOR THE BATTER:
  • 2-¼ teaspoons Active Dry Yeast (1 Packet)
  • 1-¼ cup Sifted All-purpose Flour, Divided
  • ¼ teaspoons Baking Soda
  • 2 Tablespoons Granulated Sugar
  • ½ teaspoons Kosher Salt
  • 2 Tablespoons Freshly Grated Onion - I used onion powder - I was too lazy to check if we had onions or to cut one up
  • 1 Tablespoon Dried Dill Weed (OR Crushed/dried Rosemary, OR Dried Thyme) I used about 3T rosemary for 2 recipes
  • ¼ cups Very Warm (120 Degrees F) Water
  • 2 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter, Softened
  • 1 cup Cottage Cheese, At Room Temperature - we only had ricotta, so I used half that and half sharp cheddar
  • 1 whole Egg, Lightly Beaten
  • 1 cup 100% White Whole Wheat (like King Arthur)
  • _____
  • FOR THE TOPPING:
  • 1 Tablespoon Unsalted Butter, melted
  • 1 pinch Kosher Salt (a Hefty Pinch!)

Preparation Instructions

1. In a large mixing bowl, mix together yeast, 1/4 cup all-purpose flour, baking soda, sugar, salt, grated onion, and dill weed. Combine warm water and butter, then add to yeast mixture. Beat 2 minutes at medium speed, scraping bowl occasionally.
2. Add lukewarm cottage cheese, beaten egg and 1/2 cup of the all-purpose flour. Beat at high speed for 2 minutes. Beat in remaining all-purpose flour (1/2 cup) and the white whole wheat flour until well incorporated. Batter will be stiff.
3. Cover with plastic wrap and a clean kitchen towel. Let rise until doubled in bulk, about 1-1 1/2 hours.
4. Stir down batter and transfer to a well-greased 2-quart round casserole dish. Since it seemed like so little dough, I made rolls instead of a loaf. It would also form into a loaf without a casserole dish. Cover with plastic wrap that has been sprayed with cooking spray. Let rise until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.
5. Brush melted butter on the batter, and sprinkle with a generous pinch of kosher salt.
6. Bake in a preheated 350-degree oven for 35 to 40 minutes.
7. Remove from oven to a wire rack. Cool bread completely in the casserole dish before removing to slice.

Day 18:

a photo of one of your classes:
I don't have my full senior picture but this is a picture of all the seniors in band! Class of 2008!
senior recognition football game - Fall 2007


Monday, February 21, 2011

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Bread Pudding

We had a lot of leftover bread that was just drying out in the co-op fridge, so I decided to make bread pudding with it for dessert. Even though it was a seedy whole wheat bread, it was still really good. We were also missing several ingredients, as usual, so I'll make notes on my substitutions. I don't think you can really go wrong with bread pudding!
source





Ingredients:
- 2 cups whole milk or half and half (there was barely any milk so I used some sour cream and water-it was the only dairy we had!)
- 1/4 cup butter (we had a few tablespoons honey butter, so I used some oil, but it kind of floated to the top. I wouldn't recommend it)
- 2/3 cup brown sugar (light or dark, depending on taste preference)
- 3 eggs
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 cups bread, torn into small pieces (french bread works best)
- 1/2 cup raisins (optional) (I used dark and white chocolate chips instead)
source


Directions:
1. In medium saucepan, over medium heat, heat milk (or half & half) just until film forms over top. Combine butter and milk, stirring until butter is melted. Cool to lukewarm.
2. Combine sugar, eggs, cinnamon, nutmeg, and vanilla. Beat with an electric mixer at medium speed for 1 minute. Slowly add milk mixture.
3. Place bread in a lightly greased 1 1/2 quart casserole.
4. Sprinkle with raisins if desired. Pour batter on top of bread.
5. Bake at 350 degrees F for 45 to 50 minutes or until set. Serve warm.
The recipe also included a sauce you can pour on after, but since I was out of the main ingredients, butter and cream, I made a glaze of leftover powdered sugar and cinnamon from Mexican wedding cakes someone had made. The pudding turned out a little tough, but like I said, it was really dry! I could hardly tear some of it to begin.

Day 16:

a photo of the last party you went to:
the last real party I went to was probably a New Years' Party that my friend, Claire and her boyfriend put on. But here's a picture of our party from New Years 2010!

setting up the food! Claire's on the far left

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Day 15:

a photo of you and someone you love:
I feel like I've posted enough pictures of my family, so I'm doing something different with this one.  This is the group from my study abroad program in India last semester, and I love them all!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Seeduction Bread

It's Tuesday again! Today I made pretty much a basic whole wheat bread with nuts and seeds. It reminds me of a bread my local bakery makes. This was actually the name of the recipe! I had to tweak it a bit because of the ingredients we had, but the original recipe is here.


Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 cups warm water (105 degrees to 115 degrees)
  • 2 tablespoons molasses
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 (.25 ounce) envelope active dry yeast
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons raw sesame seeds
  • 4 tablespoons raw sunflower seeds
  • 1 tablespoon pine nuts
  • 2 tablespoons chopped walnuts
  • 1 egg white, beaten (we were out of eggs so I just used butter - it turned out fine!)
  • 1 teaspoon oats, sesame seeds and sunflower seeds, mixed
source


Directions

  1. Gently stir together the warm water, molasses, honey, and yeast in a large bowl and let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes. Pour oil into the yeast mixture.
  2. In a separate bowl mix together all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, salt, seeds and nuts. Stir the flour and seed mixture to the yeast mixture until it pulls together. Turn the dough out of the bowl onto a lightly floured surface. Knead for 7 to 8 minutes, adding additional flour as needed. Place the dough in a large oiled bowl, cover and let stand in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour. Grease a 9x13 baking sheet. A bread pan works fine too.
  3. Punch down the risen dough and turn out of the bowl onto a lightly floured surface. Form into a round or oval loaf shape and place onto the prepared baking sheet. Cover the dough and allow to rise until doubled in size again, about 40 minutes.
  4. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C) toward the end of this second rise. Slash the top of the loaf diagonally with a sharp razor blade or serrated knife, carefully brush with the beaten egg white, and sprinkle mixed oats, sunflower and sesame seeds over the top.
  5. Bake in preheated oven until the bread sounds hollow when thumped on the side, 40 to 45 minutes.
  6. source