Monday, February 27, 2012

Rosemary Garlic Bread

3c whole wheat flour
2c white flour
2 pkg dry yeast
2 tsp salt
2 tsp ground pepper
2c hot water
1/4c olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4c finely chopped fresh parsley
3 Tsp minced fresh rosemary (or 1 Tsp dried rosemary)
course salt and rosemary to top loaves

Mix 1c of whole wheat flour, 1 c white flour, yeast, salt and pepper until well blended. Add hot water and olive oil. Use hot water, NOT boiling water. Boiling water will kill the yeast. Beat with a wooden spoon until smooth. Stir in garlic, rosemary, and parsley. Mix in the remaining 2 cups of wheat flour, 1/4c at a time. Then mix in the remainder of the white flour (1/4c at a time) until the baytter becomes dough. Knead by hand for 8 minutes, occasionally slamming the dough on the counter. Put the dough in a greased bowl and cover with a clean kitchen towel (or plastic wrap). Allow the dough to rise until it has doubled in size. (This is about 30-60 minutes depending on room temperature.)

Punch down the dough and shape into two balls. Let the dough rest for five minutes. Press each ball into an oval and place in the bread pan, seam side down. Cover with kitchen towel until the dough doubles in size. (about 1 hour) The dough will reach the height of the bread pan. Brush the dough with olive oil and sprinkle with rosemary and course sea salt.

Bake in a pre-heated oven at 400°F for 35-40 minutes. Place the bread on the middle shelf for even baking. The bread is done when the loaf sounds hallow when tapped on the bottom. The crust will be hard.

**This bread can be eatten with stews or as a snack with butter. It's also really yummy toasted for breakfast with a cup of tea.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Blueberry Banana Smoothie

1c milk
1 banana, peeled
2/3c frozen blueberries
1c blueberry yogurt

Combine all ingredients in a blender. Cover and blend on high until smooth. Serve immediately. (In a military family, there is always a wine glass from past Battalion formals. They are a nice touch for serving this yummy treat.)

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Cherry Strudel

My grandmother sent us 5 or 6 jars of food that she canned over the summer. She sent us homemade pickles (which I'm rationing so the kids don't devour them in one sitting). She sent some plums and cherries, too. She told me they were ready to eat out of the jar. I didn't think my kids would eat them out of the jar. They are funny about cherries. I decided to make a strudel. (I didn't think I had enough to make a pie.) Yummy! Well, I think I outsmarted myself because while I was pitting these cherries, Kaitlyn was sneaking into the kitchen and stealing them as fast as I could pit them!

Two things about this recipe. First, the cherries I used were yellow, but that's just because those are the ones Grandma canned. This recipe works fine with red cherries, too. Second, I had to pit my cherries because they were home-canned. I used a knife to slice the cherry in half and popped the pit out with my finger. It might be more difficult with fresh cherries, but because the cherries were canned it was really easy. I've read that you can pit cherries using a fountain drink straw or even forceps, but it didn't really come to that.


1 can (14 1/2 oz) pitted tart cherries
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup dried cranberries or raisins
3 Tbsp cornstarch
1 1/2 cups chopped walnuts
1 package frozen pie crust, thawed
1 egg, lightly beaten

Drain cherries, reserving 1/3 cup of the juice. In a large saucepan, combine the cherries, sugar, cranberries, and butter. Cook and stir over medium heat until heated through. Add cornstarch and reserved juice to the pan. Bring to a boil. Cook and stir about 2 minutes or until the mixture has thickened. Remove from heat and stir in walnuts.

Unfold the pie crust. Put half of the cherry mixture on the lower half of your pie crust. Be sure to keep the cherry filling away from the outer 1 inch of the pie crust. Fold the top half of your pie crust down and pinch the edges. Place the strudel on a greased baking sheet. Repeat this step with the other pie crust. With a sharp knife, cut diagonal slits into the top of the strudels. Brush with egg and sprinkle with sugar. Bake at 400°F for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown.

**Stay tuned! I haven't decided what to make with the plums.