Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Apple Crescent Loaf, a honeyed bread

I bought a book called Cooking with Honey and saw a recipe I wanted to try. It wasn't easy, but it honestly wasn't all that hard either. After making this once, I have thought of a few additions that would improve the recipe, and will be adding them here. And although this turns out looking like a pastry, you must remember when tasting it that it is a bread. Your eyes can fool your taste buds. And as with most honey recipes, this tastes better a day after it has been baked.
By the way, the baby was able to play on the floor, trying to crawl, throughout most of my making this recipe. It's easier now that she's over 7 months old!


Yeast Dough:
1 Tbsp yeast
1 cup scalded milk, cooled to lukewarm
1/4 cup honey
3 Tbsp oil or melted butter
1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs, beaten
2 cups unbleached white flour
1 1/2 cups whole wheat graham flour
3 Tbsp melted butter
1/2 tsp cinnamon-sugar

Apple Filling:
4 apples, peeled and sliced
2 Tbsp water
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 cup honey, warmed slightly
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
dash of ground cloves

To scald milk, put it in a pot and cook it on medium heat until bubbles start to form around edges. Let cool in a bowl before adding the yeast; hot milk will kill the yeast. Soften the yeast in milk with 1 teaspoon of the honey in a bowl. Add the milk/yeast mixture and then stir in the two flours with a wooden spoon until most of the dry bits are formed into a dough. Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth. Roll into a ball and place dough in a lightly oiled (use cooking spray) bowl and cover for an hour.

Stew the sliced apples in 2 Tbsp water with a shake or two of cinnamon until they have softened. In another medium bowl add raisins, walnuts, cinnamon and cloves. Add the apples (drained) once they have cooked. Mix all together.

Roll the dough out into an oblong shape a maximum of 1/4 inch thick. Brush melted butter over the top.

Empty apple-raisin mix onto the dough sheet and spread around. Drizzle the warmed honey on top, then roll the dough up like a jelly roll. Place on a greased cookie sheet and pinch the ends shut, twisting the tube around into a crescent shape. Cut slits in the middle to expose the filling, then baste the rest of the melted butter on top. Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.

Bake at 375 F for 25-30 minutes. Cool on a cookie rack.

Monday, April 19, 2010


The older the baby gets, the easier it is to entertain her. All i had to do is clean the kitchen floor so it was safe, then give her some plastic ring links and set her on it. She can sit there for quite awhile banging the rings on the linoleum floor.

Anyway, I thought burritos would be fun to make, and after seeing some amazing ones at a restaurant on the Travel channel I tried to make some hearty stuffed ones of my own. This is a pretty cheap meal; for about $10 or so you can feed at least 5-6 people.


about 1 lb lean ground beef (or you can use any ground meat)
1 can black beans
Medium salsa
1 packet McCormick Burrito Seasoning (not necessary, but it does add a nice flavor to the meat)
1 cup brown rice
1 large ripe avocado
1/4 tsp garlic salt
light sour cream
shredded cheddar cheese
large flour tortillas

Prepare the rice as directed (usually 1 cup rice to 1 3/4 cups water, boil, then simmer at least 30 minutes on low). About halfway through the rice cooking, start browning the meat in a large frying pan.
While that cooks, cut the avocado in half and pit it, then peel it and chop the avocado. Mash in a bowl with the garlic salt. This is your guacamole.

Once meat is mostly done browning, add the can of beans, 3/4 cup of water, and the seasoning packet (cut out the water if you're not using the seasoning packet). Mix all together well and cook on low until the rice is done.

Heat a tortilla on a plate in the microwave for about 12 seconds. Top with meat/bean mix, then some rice, then salsa, guacamole, cheese and sour cream. Try not to fill it too much or the tortilla won't close. Wrap it up as tightly as you can and eat! Very tasty.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Fried Cod and Sweet Potato Baked Fries

My own take on fish n' chips, making due with whatever ingredients I had available. I got some frozen "True Cod" for about $3 and add in the 60-cent sweet potato and I've got a really cheap meal! My daughter sat next to the kitchen trying to scoot forward on her butt while I made this.

Sweet Potato Fries:

1 large sweet potato, peeled and cut into thin strips
1/2 tsp seasoned salt
3 Tbsp olive oil

Cut potatoes then toss in a bowl with the olive oil. Spread on a large cookie pan and sprinkle the seasoned salt over all. Bake at 425F for 20 minutes, then turn fries over and bake an additional 8-10 minutes.

Fried Cod:

2 large cod fillets
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1 Tbsp parsley flakes
1/4 ts ground black pepper
1/4 tsp seasoned salt
1/8 tsp garlic powder
1/2 cup (or so) olive oil*

Mix dry ingredients together in large bowl. Heat oil in large skillet on medium heat.Once oil is hot, rinse fish under water and dip into dry mixture. Drop carefully into the frying pan and fry about 2-4 minutes on each side, or until golden brown.

Feeds up to 3 people. Yum!

*Please remember that in every recipe where I use "olive oil", I mean Extra Virgin Olive Oil. The brand doesn't really matter.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Stuffed Bell Peppers

I got lucky...I put the baby down for a quick nap and managed to get all this put together while she slept. Except the rice...I had to start that early since it takes 40 minutes to simmer. And I recommend you buy at least 5 peppers...my 3 were not nearly enough for the amount of stuffing I had.


1- 1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
1 cup brown rice
1/2 sweet onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
5 varied colored bell peppers
1 can tomato puree
1/4 tsp seasoned salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 tsp oregano
1 tsp basil
1 Tbsp dried parsley
shredded mozzarella (I forgot to buy and had to pull apart a cheese stick)

Prepare 1 cup of rice (1 cup dry rice, 1 3/4 cups water, bring to a boil then turn down and simmer 40 minutes). When rice is almost done cooking, brown the ground beef in a large skillet. Push meat aside after it starts to brown and throw the onions and garlic in the pan as well.

Once meat is browned, combine ingredients from frying pan with rice in a large bowl. Add tomato puree and all spices; mix well.

Cut off tops of bell peppers and scoop out the insides.

Fill each pepper bottom with the stuffing mixture, then top with a bit of cheese. Bake at 350F on a large cookie sheet for 20 minutes.