Thursday, February 27, 2014

Sourdough Rolls

Yesterday, I made sourdough rolls for the first time. They turned out really fluffy inside and were a perfect "extra" to fill out last night's dinner. The paprika is added for color, but you can leave it out if you would like.

  • 2 teaspoons yeast
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • ¼ cup butter, softened
  • 3 cups flour (I use whole wheat)

Mix all ingredients together in a medium-large bowl. Knead for 5 minutes. Let rise for 1 hour. Shape into 10-12 balls. Place on an oiled baking sheet. Let rise for 45-60 minutes. 15 minutes before rising time is over, preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Lemon Muffins With Honey-Citrus Buttercream

I decided to make these lemon muffins because we had lemon juice and my brother and I were talking about how anything made with lemon was a big treat for us when we lived on the farm. Being far away from stores and growing most of our own food (besides bulk grains), made lemons an exotic food! Sometimes, if our grandmother was sending a package, she would put lemons in it! 

  • 1 cup melted butter
  • 1 cup sugar (I use brown, but that's just because we don't use granulated)
  • 4 eggs
  • ¾ cup lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 3 cups flour (I use whole wheat)
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • Honey-Citrus Buttercream (recipe below)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease two muffin tins (each holding 12 muffins). In a large bowl, beat butter, sugar, and eggs. Mix in the lemon juice and zest. Stir in the remaining ingredients (except the frosting!) Spoon into greased muffin tins. If it doesn't quite fill all the muffin tins, put a few tablespoons of water into the empty tins so that they don't scorch. Bake for 18-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. Top with Honey-Citrus Buttercream, if desired.

Honey-Citrus Buttercream

  • 1 stick butter, softened
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2-3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice or orange juice concentrate

Whip all ingredients together. Use in recipe.

"Blackberry Crisp" Granola

Blackberries were on sale this I decided to make something with blackberries. I wasn't exactly sure what to call this because it tastes like blackberry crisp but is kind of like granola because of the large amount of topping and served with milk. Whatever the name - we enjoyed it! :)

  • 2 cups oats
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 cup melted butter
  • 3 6-oz. Blackberries
Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Wash blackberries and place into a 9x13 baking dish.

In a medium bowl, mix oats, flour, sugar, and cinnamon. Stir in the melted butter. 

Sprinkle over blackberries. Bake for 20 minutes. Serve with milk or yogurt.

Note: Because of the blackberries, it won't keep very long compared to normal granola. (I would use within 3-4 days of making) Also, it should be kept refrigerated.  

Monday, February 24, 2014

Three-Cheese & Garlic Sourdough Biscuits

This is a spin off on Cheddar Sourdough Biscuits, just extra cheesy!! They are best served hot out of the oven with the cheese still melted and you really nice and cheesy! Biscuits like these are the main reason I usually make the 24 hour sourdough starter.
I found a really good "traditional" sourdough starter recipe on King Arthur Flour's website that I've used before. It turned out very well and I was using it for a while. I would definitely make it again. If you've been looking for a good "traditional" sourdough starter recipe go for it! Also, I would mention that I made their recipe with whole wheat flour and it still turned out great! 
Now the yummy cheesy sourdough biscuits made with easy 24-hour sourdough starter...

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ cup Parmesan cheese
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup cottage cheese
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 ¼ cups whole wheat flour

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. In a large bowl, place all ingredients except flour. Mix well. Stir in the flour. Roll out on a floured surface. Cut into rounds. Bake on flour-sprinkled baking sheets for 20-25 minutes. Enjoy hot out of the oven with butter!!  

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Caraway Sourdough Bread

This bread is made with easy 24-hour sourdough starter. It has a crisp crust and a delicious aromatic soft but not dense inside. The loaves were sitting on the table this afternoon waiting for supper and got hacked away at! One loaf is around a third the way gone just from a few "test-tasters". (Yes, there always has to be an excuse) 

  • ½ cup warm water (100-115 degrees Fahrenheit)
  • ½ tablespoon yeast
  • 5 tablespoons softened butter
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon caraway seeds (optional, but I think they're really good in it)
  • ¼ teaspoon paprika
  • 3 2/3 cups flour

Pour sourdough starter into a large bowl. Dissolve yeast in warm water. Mix the water-yeast mixture into the sourdough starter. Add the butter, salt, sugar, caraway seeds, and paprika. Stir in the flour. Knead for 5-10 minutes. You may need to sprinkle the dough with a handful of flour halfway into the kneading time. 

Let the dough rise for 2 ½ hours. Divide the dough in half and shape into two loaves. Place the loaves into oiled bread pans. Let rise for an hour and a half. 

Preheat oven to 375 Fahrenheit. Bake for 30-40 minutes, until golden brown and sounds fairly hollow when tapped.  

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Sourdough Pizza Crust

I'm pleased with how this sourdough pizza crust turned out. I added a teaspoon of yeast to give it a boost in rising, but I don't think it needed it. I'm still including the yeast in the recipe because it turned out well.  
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ½ cup warm water
  • 1 teaspoon yeast
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt
  • 3 cups flour (I use whole wheat)
In a large bowl, mix sourdough starter, olive oil and warm water. Stir in the remaining ingredients. Knead for five minutes. Let rise for 2 ½ to 3 hours.

After rising (the dough more than doubled for me)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Knead dough on a floured surface for a minute.

Divide dough into fourths. Roll out each ball of dough into a pizza crust. Bake for 10 minutes. 

Top with pizza sauce and desired toppings. I posted a pizza sauce recipe in this post. Bake for 10-15 minutes, until cheese melts and turns lightly golden.

Tonight we are serving this pizza with Cheesy Zucchini.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Cheddar Sourdough Biscuits

These sourdough biscuits with cheddar, hot pepper, and garlic are really good served hot out of the oven with butter!

  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¾ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 ½ cups cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Pour sourdough starter into a large bowl. Mix in the remaining ingredients. Roll out on a floured surface. Cut into rounds. Bake on flour-sprinkled baking sheets for 20 minutes. Enjoy hot with butter!!!
Note: This is a fairly large recipe - makes around 25 biscuits - so you might want to cut the recipe in half if you have a smaller family. 

24 Hour Sourdough Starter

When I was around twelve, I made this really often, in fact almost every day I was making a new recipe with it. This sourdough starter isn't exactly the same as the traditional sourdough, but it is still very good - easy and not intimidating! It can't be used in every sourdough recipe because it doesn't have enough yeast to completely rise bread, but bread can be made with it if a teaspoon or so of yeast is added. I would recommend using this only in recipes that I post (that call for this sourdough starter), because I made the recipe with this and know it'll work in the recipe. I plan to be posting sourdough recipes in the coming days.

  • 2 cups filtered water
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 quart jar

Mix water and flour in the jar. Cover with a towel. Let sit for 24 hours. Stir once after 12 hours. That's it!
After 24 hours

After 24 hours

After using in a recipe, there are three options:
1. Add 1 ½ cups water and ¾ cup flour. Let sit for 24 hours. Then use in a recipe.
2. If you're not going to use it after 24 hours are over, you can go through step one and then place it in the fridge. The night before you want to use it, take out of the fridge and add a ¼ cup of flour and a ½ cup of water.
3. If you're not going to use it after 24 hours are over, just don't keep the starter going and make a new batch when you want it. (This is my recommendation) After all, you don't want a sourdough starter sitting in the back of your fridge for weeks and then just have to through it out when it gets too old.

Use in:
Three-Cheese & Garlic Sourdough Biscuits
Sourdough Rolls
Caraway Sourdough Bread
Sourdough Pizza Crust
Cheddar Sourdough Biscuits
And more recipes to come!

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Cheesy Zucchini

Right after this came out of the broiler, it was swarming with "flies", that is, a bunch of my younger siblings were snitching piece after piece. My five year old sister said she (only) had nine pieces, besides eating her whole portion at the dinner table. This is seriously so much better than any other way we've had zucchini! 

  • zucchini
  • olive oil
  • Parmesan cheese
  • garlic powder
  • salt & pepper
Slice zucchini and place one-layer deep on a broiler-proof pan. (I use a jelly roll pan) Brush zucchini with olive oil. Lightly sprinkle garlic powder, salt, and pepper on it. Sprinkle with Parmesan fairly generously. (or not so generously, if you so desire) Broil on medium broil for 5-10 minutes, until cheese is golden and zucchini is softened. Serve hot!

I shared this on some of my favorite blog hops

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Chocolate Chip Cheesecake with Easy From-Scratch Chocolate Crust

The from-scratch chocolate crust is incredibly easy. I would go so far to say that it's easier than a graham cracker crust made with store-bought graham crackers! After all, five simple dry ingredients can be placed into a bowl faster than you can crush graham crackers. And as for the rest of the cheesecake - it's creamy and studded with chocolate chips! Who doesn't love chocolate?

  • 2 cream cheese, softened (let sit on counter for no more than 30 minutes)
  • ¾ cup sugar (I use brown)
  • ½ tablespoon vanilla
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons flour (I use whole wheat)
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 ¼ cups chocolate chips
  • Chocolate crust (below)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Prepare crust. In a large bowl, cream sugar and cream cheese until smooth. (don't try to beat lots of air into it though) Add vanilla, eggs, flour, and salt. Mix until smooth. Stir in the chocolate chips.
Pour into prepared crust and smooth top. Bake for 40-45 minutes, until firm but not browned. It can be a touch jiggly. Cool at room temperature for one hour. Refrigerate for at least 6 hours before serving. I like to make it the day before and chill overnight.

Easy Chocolate Crust
  • 2/3 cup flour (I use whole wheat)
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup cocoa
  • dash salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ cup melted butter

Mix dry ingredients in a small bowl. Stir in the butter. Press into a greased spring-form pan. Use in recipe.  

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Apple Breakfast Cookies (ABC cookies)

  • 2 sticks softened butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • ½ tablespoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 ½ cups flour (I use whole wheat)
  • 1 apple, chopped
  • 1 ½ cups chopped pecans or walnuts

Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar. Stir in eggs and vanilla. Mix in the baking powder, salt, and flour. Stir in the apple. Shape into balls and roll in nuts. Bake on ungreased cookie sheets for 18-25 minutes. When you gently touch them, your fingerprint shouldn't show.


Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Cranberry-Walnut Broccoli Salad

It's easy to eat lots of broccoli with this salad! 

  • 3 heads broccoli, cut into small florets
  • ¾ cup dried cranberries
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts
  • 2/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • dash salt

Mix mayonnaise, brown sugar, vinegar, and salt in a small bowl. In a medium serving bowl, mix the broccoli, cranberries, walnuts, and dressing. Serve!  

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Oven Fries

These baked potato fries are really easy, versatile, and tasty! Although they don't exactly taste the same as their deep-fried cousins, they are so much healthier and taste very good.  I like serving them with chicken pieces baked in homemade BBQ sauce.
On the homestead, we made these a lot with our homegrown Yukon Golds – those were probably the best potatoes I've ever had! Although we grew several types of potatoes, Yukon Golds were definitely our favorites. During potato harvest, we harvested boxes and boxes of potatoes. With so many potatoes and a fairly large family, we usually made ten to eleven pounds of potatoes into oven fries at a time! 
These baked fries also work well with red and russet potatoes.

  • Potatoes (washed)
  • olive oil
  • salt
  • pepper
  • garlic powder (optional)
  • cayenne pepper (optional)

Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Cut desired amount of potatoes into sticks. Place into jelly roll pans. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with desired seasonings. Mix, making sure that the potatoes get coated with olive oil. Roast for around one hour. They should be crisp on the outside and soft on the inside.  

Friday, February 7, 2014

Baked Oatmeal

This baked oatmeal is so delicious and easy! It can be served warm or made ahead and served cold or at room temperature. We like baked oatmeal with applesauce and milk, but it is also great on its own. 

  • 3 cups oats
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • ½ tablespoon cinnamon
  • ½ tablespoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ tablespoon vanilla
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 stick butter, melted
  • ½ cup chopped nuts
  • 8 oz. frozen blueberries
Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. In a large bowl, mix the first five ingredients together. Stir in the remaining ingredients and pour into a buttered 9x13 inch casserole pan. Bake for 35-40 minutes.

I doubled the recipe and still used one baking dish, but baked it for an hour.  

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Chocolate-Vanilla Marble Cake

  • 2 sticks butter, softened
  • 1 ½ cups sugar (I use brown)
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 cups flour (I use whole wheat)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons milk
  • ½ cup cocoa
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease and flour two 9 inch cake pans. This handy pan (and it's twin) was a gift from my grandmother. I think it's such a good idea! No trying to get a stuck cake out with a spatula!  

In a large bowl, cream butter for 1 minute with a hand-held mixer. Add sugar and cream with butter for 1 minute. Mix in the vanilla and eggs on high speed for 1 minute. Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a medium bowl. Blend half of the flour mixture into the butter mixture. Add ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons milk and mix until smooth. Repeat, adding the rest of the flour and ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons milk. Mix for 1 minute.
Divide the dough into two bowls. To one bowl, mix in the cocoa and 2 tablespoons milk. Place dollops of both plain and chocolate batter into the pans. 

Swirl with a table knife. 

Bake for 30-35 minutes, until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Let cool.

Frost and garnish as desired. I made vanilla frosting and added cocoa to half of it. Then I marbled it when I put it on the cake. (using the same principle as in the cake)  

I shared this on some of my favorite blog hops

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

1 Hour Dinner Rolls

These rolls are great if you decide  that you want rolls at the last minute! When you suddenly hear that company is coming unexpectedly, they're a great go-to! Plus - they're tasty! 

  • 4 teaspoons yeast
  • 2 tablespoons sugar (I use brown sugar)
  • 1 ¼ cups warm water
Step 1. Mix the three above ingredients in a large bowl, let sit for five minutes. While this mixture sits, brush a glass 9x13 inch baking dish with butter. Take out the remaining ingredients.
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons salt
  • 1 egg
  • 3 cups flour (I use whole wheat)
Step 2. Quickly stir the olive oil, salt, egg, and flour into the yeast mixture. Knead for a couple minutes. Allow yourself five minutes for this step.

Step 3. Shape the dough into 12 balls and place into the prepared baking dish. Try to do this in five minutes.

Step 4. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Let the rolls rise for 20 minutes. Near the end of rising time, brush the rolls with melted butter.

Step 5. Bake for 20 minutes. Enjoy!

Now the math: 
Step 1 - 5 minutes
Step 2 - 5 minutes
Step 3 - 5 minutes
Step 4 - 20 minutes
Step 5 - 20 minutes
= 55 minutes
Which gives you 5 extra minutes in case there are any delays!

I shared this on some of my favorite blog hops

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Chocolate Banana Bread

This quick bread is really tasty! My taste-tester said that it's worthy of a blog post so...
  • 1 1/3 cups sugar (I use brown)
  • 2 sticks butter, melted
  • ½-¾ cup cocoa (¾ cup cocoa for a deeper chocolate flavor)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 3 eggs
  • 6 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 3 ¼ cups flour (I use whole wheat)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup chopped pecans or walnuts (optional)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Blend the melted butter and sugar in a large bowl. Beat in the cocoa, vanilla, and eggs. Add mashed bananas. Stir in flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and nuts. Mix well. Pour into two greased bread pans. Bake for 45-55 minutes, until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

I shared this on some of my favorite blog hops

Monday, February 3, 2014

Sesame Breadsticks

  • 1 ½ cups warm water
  • 1 ½ tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon yeast
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil (plus a little to drizzle the dough with)
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons salt
  • 3 cups flour (I use whole wheat)
  • 3-5 tablespoons sesame seeds
In a large bowl, dissolve yeast and sugar in warm water. Stir in remaining ingredients, the dough should be fairly soft. Drizzle with a little olive oil. Knead for 3-5 minutes. Let rise for 45-60 minutes.
Punch down dough and knead for a minute on a flour-sprinkled surface. Roll out into a 15x8 inch rectangle. 

Cut into strips, around ¾ inch wide. (I used a pizza cutter for this)

Put sesame seeds into a baking dish or jelly roll pan. Place a strip of dough onto sesame seeds and gently roll it, coating it with sesame seeds and smoothing it into a breadstick shape. 

Repeat with all the strips of dough. Place on baking sheets and let rise for 25-30 minutes. 15 minutes before baking, preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Bake for around 20 minutes, until lightly golden.

I shared this on some of my favorite blog hops

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Vanilla-Blackberry Swirl Cheesecake

We all really enjoyed this!

  • 2 8-oz. blocks cream cheese
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 1 cup sugar (I use brown)
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 2 tablespoons flour (I use whole wheat)
  • 3 eggs
  • ¾ cup seedless blackberry jam
  • 2-3 tablespoons water
  • graham cracker crust (recipe below)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Prepare graham cracker crust. Place cream cheese, vanilla, sugar, salt, flour, and eggs into a large bowl. Beat on medium-high speed until well blended. Pour into prepared crust. In a small bowl, mix the water and jam until smooth. It should be like a thick syrup. Spoon the jam onto the cheesecake in 6 places, in each place put enough jam mixture to let it sink in deep. Take a table knife and swirl the jam throughout the cake. Bake for around 40-45 minutes, until firm, perhaps a touch jiggly, but not soupy. The top shouldn't be more than slightly golden.
Let cool at room temperature for 1 hour, then cover and place in fridge. Let cool for at least 6 hours before serving. As desired, garnish with whipped cream and blackberries. Enjoy!

Graham Cracker Crust
  • 1 box graham crackers, crushed (around 3-4 cups)
  • 1 stick butter, melted

Mix graham crackers and butter in a medium-sized bowl. Butter a 9 inch spring-form pan. Press crust into pan. 

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