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Monday, November 10, 2014

Recipe Review from 11/2/2014

First snow of the season lightly kissed the ground this past weekend, making everything seem to glow in the full moon. Unfortunately, we're also being told to expect 8-10" on Monday night...  ((sigh))

The nice thing about cooler temps is we can bake bread again!  Previously, if you recall, was homemade English muffins.  This past week was Irish "freckle" bread - a white bread made with potato and craisins.  Yum!

Meal plan was a bit wonky  - the chicken masala didn't make as much as I would have hoped, even when served over rice, so some quick end of the week meals were necessary.  I picked up an unexpected yoga class on Wed, so that was take-out pizza night; thawed some whitefish I had bought previously and the Husband cooked that with some Swiss Chard and Kale; then Friday I grabbed a rotisserie chicken and a box of scalloped potatoes while grocery shopping. 

The Meal Plan:
Sun (L) leftover Vegetable Stew  (S) Buttered Chicken (Chicken Masala)
Mon (Yoga) chicken masala
Tues - chicken masala
Wed (AM Yoga) - take-out pizza
Thurs (yoga) - whitefish and greens
Fri- rotisserie chicken

Lunches - Carrot Soup, apples, luna bars, nut cups, yogurt and granola

Irish Freckle Bread  (Complete Book of Bread by Bernard Clayton)
The Husband found this recipe and made it Sunday morning.  The "freckles" come from the craisins (recipe called for raisins or currants) throughout the bread.  The recipe used a potato and the water the potato was boiled in.  For what reason, the recipe wasn't clear, but it sure made a very tasty bread!  It had a lovely texture, slightly sweet but not sweet-sweet, and a beautiful crust.

Makes two loaves.
photo from scifiwithpaprika.blogspot

1 potato, peeled and quartered
1 1/2 cups water
5 cups bread flour or all-purpose
2 packages dry yeast
1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp salt
2 eggs, room temp
1/2 cup butter (1 stick) melted and cooled
1 cup dark raisins, currants (or craisins!)

1) Cook the potato until done (20-30 mintues) and set aside to cool 1 cup potato water (till 120-130*)

2) Pour 1 1/2 cups flower in the mixing bowl, add the potato, yeast, sugar and salt.  Pour in the cup of potato water and mix until smooth.

3) Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and set dough aside to rise and become puffy, about 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

4) Stir down batter and add the eggs, butter, and raisins (currants or craisins).  Stir to mix thoroughly.  Add more flour, 1/2 cup at a time to make a soft, elastic ball of dough.  Don't add to much flour - the dough should be quite soft.  If it is sticky, add sprinkles of flour. Knead until dough becomes smooth, about 10 minutes. 

5) Allow to rise 1 to 1 1/2 hours.  Shape.  Clayton recommends dividing the dough into four pieces, let rest 5 minutes and then placing in the pans.  They will rise together and look like two half loaves.  

6) Let rise 45 minutes or until dough reaches edge of pans.  Bake in a preheated 375* oven for 30 - 35 minutes.  Remove from pans and let cool on a wire rack. 

Carrot Soup (Vegetarian Slow Cooker)  vegetarian, gluten free
This is a very simple soup to throw together.  Chop, a quick saute to release flavors, then everything goes into the pot.  I thought the addition of the brown rice was a good one - it adds a bit of nutty background and backbone to a pure vegetable dish.  Per a recommendation from America's Test Kitchen and my own experience slow cooking with brown rice, use instant rice.  This has been pre-cooked and will actually soften in the slow cooker, unlike regular brown rice.  Nothing worse than opening up the slow cooker after 6 hours to find uncooked rice.

2 leeks, white part with just a bit of green, diced
1 lb carrots, peeled and diced
2 stalks of celery, diced (my addition)
2 tsp dried tyme
1 large bay leaf 
4-6 cups vegetable broth
1/2 cup (instant) brown rice
optional - 1/2 cup chopped parsley
optional - croutons 

1) Saute leeks, carrots, celery, until leeks are soft.  Add thyme.
2) Combine everything in the slow cooker, and cook 6 hrs on low or 4 or high.
3) Remove bay leaf.  Using an immersion blender (or working in batches with a blender) puree until smooth.

Easy Crockpot Butter Chicken  (from Blog)
This was simply awesome.  Best homemade "Indian" food I have ever made.  And easy!  EASY!  The ingredient list looks intimidating, but it's really not.  I used chicken thighs with good results. I am totally making this again. 

I would make two changes - you can easily double the meat.  Plenty of sauce.   I would also half the garam masala and increase the sweet curry by one more teaspoon. 

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 hours
Total Time: 5 hours
Serving Size: 4 

1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into bite size chunks
1/2 onion, finely minced
2 tablespoons butter
3 cloves garlic, minced or grated
1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
2 teaspoons curry powder
1-2   (3) teaspoons curry paste
2 tablespoons 1 tablespoon  garam masala
1/2-1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or to taste)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
1 (14 ounce) can coconut milk, regular or lite (I used regular).  
1/2 cup greek yogurt (I used 0%)
1/4 cup half and half or heavy cream
cooked white [or brown] rice, for serving
Optional  - Naan.

  1. In a large glass measuring cup or bowl mix together the coconut milk, greek yogurt and cream. Stir in the tomato paste, garlic, ginger and all the spices. Mix well.
  2. Spray the inside of your crockpot bowl with cooking spray or grease with olive oil. To the bowl sprinkle the onion over the bottom. Add the chicken and then pour the coconut milk mixture over the chicken so the chicken is completely covered. Add the butter and place the lid on the crockpot. Cook on high for 4 hours or on low for 6 to 8 hours. I like to stir mine once or twice during cooking, but it is not necessary. When ready to serve taste and season with salt and pepper if desired. Serve over rice with a big piece of fresh naan. 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You are SO organized. I'm in awe of you.

I'm trying very, VERY hard to eat more meals at home.

Your freckle bread sounds interesting.

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