Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Daring Bakers Challenge- October!

Okay, here is the daring bakers challenge for October... Pizza! I like pizza but only when its home made. I decided to make a shimp pizza and and ancovy pizza (b/c thats my FAVE topping!!!). The dough was good, but I had to add a lot of flour and then rosemary to make it the best dough ever! I even used a little of my new robust, spicy olive oil on the top of the pizzas.
I noted changes in red.
Original recipe from “The Bread Baker’s Apprentice” by Peter Reinhart.
4 1/2 Cups Unbleached bread flour
1 3/4 Tsp Salt
1 Tsp Instant yeast
1/4 Cup Olive oil
1 3/4 Cups Water
1 Tb sugar
Cornmeal for dusting
Chopped rosemary
Day One
1. Mix together the flour, salt and instant yeast in a big bowl (or in the bowl of your stand mixer).
2. Add the oil, sugar and cold water and mix well (with the help of a large wooden spoon or with the paddle attachment, on low speed) in order to form a sticky ball of dough. On a clean surface, knead for about 5-7 minutes, until the dough is smooth and the ingredients are homogeneously distributed. If it is too wet, add a little flour (not too much, though) and if it is too dry add 1 or 2 teaspoons extra water.
3. Flour a work surface or counter. Line a jelly pan with baking paper/parchment. Lightly oil the paper.
4. With the help of a metal or plastic dough scraper, cut the dough into 6 equal pieces (or larger if you want to make larger pizzas).
5. Sprinkle some flour over the dough. Make sure your hands are dry and then flour them. Gently round each piece into a ball.
6. Transfer the dough balls to the lined jelly pan and mist them generously with spray oil. Slip the pan into plastic bag or enclose in plastic food wrap.
7. Put the pan into the refrigerator and let the dough rest overnight or for up to thee days. I only rested it for a couple hours and room temp.
Day Two
8. On the day you plan to eat pizza, exactly 2 hours before you make it, remove the desired number of dough balls from the refrigerator. Dust the counter with flour and spray lightly with oil. Place the dough balls on a floured surface and sprinkle them with flour. Dust your hands with flour and delicately press the dough into disks about 1/2 inch/1.3 cm thick and 5 inches/12.7 cm in diameter. Sprinkle with flour and mist with oil. Loosely cover the dough rounds with plastic wrap and then allow to rest for 2 hours.
9. At least 45 minutes before making the pizza, place a baking stone on the lower third of the oven. Preheat the oven as hot as possible (500° F/260° C).
10. Generously sprinkle the back of a jelly pan with semolina/durum flour or cornmeal. Flour your hands (palms, backs and knuckles). Take 1 piece of dough by lifting it with a pastry scraper. Lay the dough across your fists in a very delicate way and carefully stretch it by bouncing it in a circular motion on your hands, and by giving it a little stretch with each bounce. Once the dough has expanded outward, move to a full toss.
11. When the dough has the shape you want (about 9-12 inches/23-30 cm in diameter - for a 6 ounces/180g piece of dough), place it on the back of the jelly pan, making sure there is enough semolina/durum flour or cornmeal to allow it to slide and not stick to the pan.
12. Lightly top it with sweet or savory toppings of your choice.
13. Slide the garnished pizza onto the stone in the oven or bake directly on the jelly pan. Close the door and bake for abour 5-8 minutes.
14. Take the pizza out of the oven and transfer it to a cutting board or your plate. In order to allow the cheese to set a little, wait 3-5 minutes before slicing or serving.

The Pizza dough, with rosemary added.
Shrimp pizza.
Roasted garlic, Precooked shrimp marinated in spices, Mozzerella cheese

Anchovy and Basil Pizza.

Tomato sauce with roasted garlic, mozz and parm cheese, oregano, fresh basil, anchovy fillets (torn).


Friday, October 24, 2008

Summer catch up.

Well, its been a fair bit snce Ive written a blog. I guess Ill do a summertime overhaul to share with you some good summery foods. Since its October now, Ive been eating a lot of Fall-like foods, so I was craving a salad today. One last summer hurrah, Here we go...

A morel mushroom pilaf. I think you all may have a clue that morel hunting season is months-past, but You know, Im doing the summer clean out to catch you all up! My stepmom collected morels and gave me some, and I was happy to geez... HAVE to think of something to use them in! :) I did a couscous with parm and morels, peas and onions, used chicken stock (homemade, der). Yum, I think I will demand manymany more morels next year!

Lavender blossoms and a watermelon cooler. I beleive this was after a mud volleyball tourney! Watermelon + water (more than you'd think) + sugar + lemon sorbet = yumminess! Just add everything into a blender and bleeend.

Strawberry pie. Sorry, camera skills suck! SO easy and SO good! I was eally suprised by this. The flavo is so intense (with those summertime berries), I got way more than I was expecting. I think I made this pie like 4 times, to rave reviews. Recipe from Gourmet via YumSugar:

Stuffed grape leaves (Dolmades). There is a gapevine at the 'rents house, so I collected 75 and went to town! These are obviously a summer dish b/c I HATE using jarred grape leaves. What a watse! Get the tender leaves, and make sure they are pesticide free! Made with lamb, rice, onion, mint, dill (NO cinnamon or allspice), lemon and served with tzaziki. They were very delicious. Took some time to make, but worth it... especially with the fresh grape leaves.

Molten chocolate cakes. Okay, these arent summery per-se, but I made the for my Daddys bday in summer, so they were summery for me! He turned 52 (but looks 40... please let me get that gene!) and after dinner we did what classy people do. Attacked him with water balloons! Ha! Well, these are REAL molten cakes, not the kind with the truffle in the middle. Melt chocolate, add eggs and sugar and salt and a little flour, bake at 425F for 8 mins, until not done (hey, they are molten chocolate cakes, right?) , remove, turn out, add cream and eat! Yummy, and I dont like chocolate!
Water ballon fight. Daddy, Shelley (step parent), Sarah (little sister). Im behind the cam.

And Ill leave you with this:

AAAHHHHHHHH!!! Happy Halloween! GObama!