My Life In The Kitchen

May 31, 2010

Berry Crisp

Filed under: 52 Weeks of Baking, Baking, Food, Swap, Swap-Bot — trinichiqn @ 2:20 pm

When looking for a solitary desert, berry crisp is the way to go.

My favourite is blueberry but I also like raspberry and blackberry or even a mixture.

The recipe I use is heavily adapted and changeable depending on my mood and the contents of my refrigerator and cupboards.

1 to 1 1/2 cups berry of choice
Sugar (to Taste)
2 tsp cornstarch OR
3 tsp flour
1 to 2 drops vanilla
1 pk Quaker oatmeal OR
1/2 cup regular oatmeal
1 tbs brown sugar
1 tbs flour (optional)
1 to 2 tbs softened butter
pinch cinnamon

Pre-heat oven to 350. Grease a 2 cup oven safe dish.

In a bowl mix the berries, sugar (1 tsp to 2 tbs) depending on how sweet you want it. cornstarch or flour, vanilla. You can use fresh berries or tawed/untawed frozen berries. Pour into greased dish. In same bowl add oatmeal, sugar, cinnamon, butter. Use a fork or your fingers to make a streusel. Sprinkle over berry mixture. Bake for 25 – 30 minutes.
Serve warm with a sprinkle of powdered sugar.

Sometimes I would add half an apple for a little pectin, in which case I would use less than half of the thickener (cornstarch or flour). Even without the apple you don’t want it to thick a little runny juice is always good.

I prefer to use the quaker packs because I can get it flavoured and it adds a little something to the recipe. Do not use the fruit and cream kind.

Week 9 of the 52 weeks of baking.

May 23, 2010

Baked Donuts

Filed under: 52 Weeks of Baking, Baking, Food, Swap, Swap-Bot — trinichiqn @ 1:58 pm

Many, many years ago I had a great recipe for baked donuts. It was made with applesauce and I remember using different flavours of applesauce to get different flavours of donuts without ever changing the recipe.

This post is not about those donuts. I lost that recipe and never found it anyway ever again. If anyone out there has it I would love to get it back.

These donuts are what I found after years of searching for baked donuts. No applesauce but I still found it to be flavourful and delicious. I can add maple syrup for a second flavour.

Baked Donuts unlike their fried counterparts are healthier (at least that’s what we’ll tell ourselves). Do not require us to stand over a hot pot full of even hotter oil.

Don’t over bake these, if anything, under bake them a bit – they will continue baking outside the oven for a few minutes. You want an interior that is moist and tender – not dry. Also, be sure to cut big enough holes in the center of your doughnuts – too small and they will bake entirely shut. Don’t forget to bake your donut holes.

Remember they rise, and they rise even more when they are baking. These really need to be made-to-order, but you can make and shape the dough the night before if you want to serve them for brunch.

I made them the night before, refrigerated the shaped dough and proofed in the oven (off) with a bowl of hot water before baking.

I just went with a powdered sugar glaze but any glaze or topping that you would use on fried donuts can be used to decorate your baked donuts.

Week 8 of the 52 weeks of baking.

Enjoy ♥♥♥

May 17, 2010

Mac and Cheese All Grown UP

Filed under: 52 Weeks of Baking, Baking, Cooking, Food, Swap, Swap-Bot — Tags: , , — trinichiqn @ 12:53 am

I love mac and cheese, baked or kraft. I have grown up so my mac and cheese has too. I still love Kraft but they have evolved throughout the years so my homemade baked version should too. Enter the Garden Mac.

I have a number of versions of this mac. Creamy Cheesy, Barbecue, Italian.

As it’s name suggest the Garden is vege filled. Artichoke Hearts, Corn, Carrots, Peas, etc. Add or delete as the palette decides. As little or as much of each as you like.

I have also changed my pasta from tiny elbows which is usually best for mac and cheese to penne. It actually does have a different taste. For all those people who said they can taste the differences in pasta shapes and were mocked I apologize. For the size dish I was using and all the add-in about 1-1.5 cups of uncooked pasta.

Mustard. A key component, it makes a difference especially in the Creamy Cheesy version but it goes great in all three, it adds a nice tang I think. I especially love Honey Mustard, but have used the one pictured above as well as Dijon.

Cheese. I think a variety really is the spice of life. More than one flavour of cheese spices up a mac. Try not to go overboard with textures and flavour. I use four now that I have found this great cheese that has four in one but before I used two or three as the budget allowed.

A great way to get a creamy texture – Roasted Squash Puree.

I usually mix all my add-ins in the same pot I boiled the pasta in after draining it. A little butter,about a quarter cup milk or tomato sauce (never both), mustard, veges, half the cheese, and mix. Transfer to a lightly greased casserole dish, sprinkle over some breadcrumbs, salad toppers are also a nice touch they give a little crunch to the meal. Top with the remaining cheese. Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes. Let it sit a while to firm up but if you are like me you may not want to wait.

Enjoy!!!

My submission for week 7 of the 52 Weeks of Baking.

May 9, 2010

Challah and Meatloaf Sandwhich

Filed under: 52 Weeks of Baking, Baking, Bread, Food, Swap, Swap-Bot — Tags: , , — trinichiqn @ 10:27 pm

Honey Challah Bread with Craisins (although the recipe called for currants) and mini turkey meatloaf.

The Bread:
My camera battery died so I don’t have pictures of everything)

Tip: I learned that the best challahs have a 1:1 ratio of eggs to flour. One egg for every cup of flour.

Mine had 4 cups of flour and 4 eggs or should I say 3 egg yolks and 1 whole egg.

Tip: The best way to get all your honey out of a measuring cup, oil it first.

Good thing my recipe called for oil, I just measured the oil first and then measured the honey. It poured right out.

Tip: Braiding challah takes patience. I don’t have any.

I started off well enough but I went wrong somewhere. I used to be able to do this, back when I now started making bread around 12. I was a little show off, I made big, small, regular loaves with just a top braid. Ahh the days, back then I had the patience and the drive. I used to get up at 3 to knead the dough, go nap for 45 minutes and get up for 1st and 2nd rise then roll out dough to make the best bread for breakfast and lunch sandwiches.

My love for baking was pure and fresh. Bread was my passion and I took the time to make it right.

The Meatloaf

I brought out my arsenal to give this loaf a killer flavour combo. Believe it or not these do actually go together you just have to find the right balance. A little of this and not too much of that.
I would usually add an egg but I skipped that because of all the wet add in I used I felt I had enough binding. To hold it all together the perfect amount of breadcrumbs. I used Parmesan Breadcrumbs but any flavour would do, also cornflakes is a great sub, a little sweet with your savoury.

Tip: Do not overwork your meat. Pre-mix all your mix-in if need be then add you meat.

My turkey meatloaf recipe is actually a very modified version of a recipe I received from a swapee. Her recipe for Baked Meatballs is on my recipe page.

My sandwich was delicious and a perfect lunch.

May 3, 2010

Cranberry Orange Scones

Filed under: 52 Weeks of Baking, Baking, Food, Swap, Swap-Bot — trinichiqn @ 5:08 pm

This is the second time I am making this, the first time it tasted great, was edible but not the best. This time it was definitely better. The texture was fabulous and it all but melted in my mouth.

Tip #1 – Use cold ingredients.

I am no expert but I do know that the hot oven and cold dough creates steam which makes for a better scone.

Tip #2 – Do NOT overwork the dough.

Besides making the dough warmer (bad), overworked dough tends to become stiff. (Very bad)


Tip #3 – Make sure wedges are properly separated. I find they cook better when they are. I had two completely different results between the two times I have made this.

Tip #4 – Do Not Over-bake. The recipe calls for 12 minute and 12 minutes is more than enough time. Do not tell yourself the scone doesn’t look baked enough, properly cooked or any of those little things we tell ourselves.
Want to know the difference between 12 minutes and 14 minutes???? A moist delicious scone and a dry, okay tasting scone.

This is my submission for Week 5 of 52 Weeks of Baking.

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