Monday, March 2, 2020

Recipes Salted Caramel Apple Crisp

Winter is officially in full swing here in the Hudson Valley! which means I’m craving all of the cozy things all of the time. Fuzzy sweaters, scented candles, hot showers, mugs of coffee, and a warm bowl of salted caramel apple crisp can make even the most miserable day more manageable!

One of the best things about this caramel apple crisp dessert is that it’s SO easy! No crust to roll, no dough to chill, no pie to cool. Simply slice some fresh apples, make your topping, pour everything into a baking dish and bake in your preheated oven until the topping is golden.

To serve, add some ice cream or beat heavy cream until nice and fluffy viola – you’ll have homemade whipped cream!

This crisp features everything you love about apple pie, without all of the work!
Tips and Tricks for Recipe Success:

You may use homemade salted caramel sauce or store bought salted caramel sauce for this recipe.
Don’t slice your apples too thin or they’ll become soggy as they bake. Medium-sized slices will yield the best results.

This salted caramel apple crisp is best served warm, the same day it’s made. However leftovers will keep, covered in the fridge, for 3 days.

I love to use a variety of apples in this dessert, but just one type will also work. I find granny smith, jonagold, mutsu, and braeburn are all great baking apples.

For the Apple Filling:
  • 10 cups sliced apples (see post for more on this)
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 and 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar, packed
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
For the Crumb Topping:
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup quick-cooking oats
  • 1/2 cup pecans, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup (4 ounces) unsalted butter, cold and cubed
  • 1 cup salted caramel sauce
  • Flaky sea salt, for sprinkling, optional
  • Ice cream, for serving, optional
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees (F).
For the Apple Filling:
  1. Lightly grease a 9x13 inch baking dish. Place the sliced apples in a large bowl and toss with the lemon juice; set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl combine the flour, granulated sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Sprinkle this mixture over the apples and toss well to coat. Pour mixture into prepared baking dish and set aside while you make the crumb topping.
For the Crumb Topping:
  1. In a large bowl combine the flour, brown sugar, oats, pecans, baking powder, nutmeg and cinnamon.
  2. Using a pastry blender or two forks, cut in the cold butter until the mixture resembles a coarse meal.
  3. Sprinkle over apple mixture.
  4. Bake in preheated oven for 45 to 50 minutes, or until the crumb is golden and the apples are tender.
  5. Drizzle with salted caramel sauce and serve warm, with flaky sea salt and ice cream, if desired.

Saturday, February 8, 2020

Recipes Vegan Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Say hello to the BEST Vegan Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies ever!

Do you have a can of pumpkin in your kitchen right now? Please, tell me you do… because you’ll need it to make these easy pumpkin chocolate chip cookies! And trust me, you’re definitely going to want to make these beauties ASAP.

Because let’s be real: can you think of any better way to spend a chilly Fall afternoon than baking and then devouring these pumpkin chocolate cookies?

Tips and Tricks for Recipe Success:
  1. First of all, let’s talk about texture! These cookies are crunchy on the outside and chewy on the inside. They are NOT cakey pumpkin chocolate chip cookies. But they do come out of the oven VERY soft. So it’s crucial to cool the cookies on the baking sheet for at least 30 minutes before serving. But if you can, I suggest letting them cool a full hour! The longer they sit, the firmer and chewier and they get. The silver lining is that these cookies taste even better with time!
  2. So now that we’ve covered texture, let’s move onto flavor. Because these vegan pumpkin chocolate chip cookies have a lot of it! In addition to real pumpkin puree (be sure not to grab pumpkin pie mix by accident!), these cookies are flavored with brown sugar, vanilla, molasses, and pumpkin spice. Yum ♥
  3. These pumpkin choc chip cookies don’t spread out too much while they bake, so be sure to scoop the dough into mounds, then lightly press down the top of the mound before baking.
  4. I make VERY large cookies with this recipe, and usually get about 1 dozen. However you can make smaller cookies, just be sure to decrease the bake time a minute or two.
  5. For extra pretty – and extra chocolatey – cookies, press a few chocolate chips on top of them right when they come out of the oven. You can also add a sprinkle of flaky sea salt!
  6. If you don’t like coconut flavor, you should use refined coconut oil, which does not have a coconut taste or scent. If you don’t have coconut milk, almond milk or soy milk will work fine!
  7. Finally, be sure not to over bake your cookies! As I mentioned earlier, they will be very soft when you remove them from the oven, but they firm up a lot while they cool.
  8. These are hands down the tastiest pumpkin chocolate chip cookies I’ve ever eaten! Not cakey, plenty of pumpkin flavor, and soooooo many chocolate chips… I mean, what’s not to love? The fact that they’re vegan is really just the icing on the cake 😉 
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, solid (be sure it's not melted at all)
  • 3/4 cups dark brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons unsulphured molasses
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened coconut milk (almond or soy milk will also work)
  • 1/3 cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie mix!)
  • 2 and 1/4 cups all-purpose flour (be sure not to pack your flour)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 and 1/2 cups chocolate chips (use vegan chocolate chips if vegan), divided
  • Flaky sea salt, optional
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees (F). Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl using a handheld electric mixer, beat the coconut oil, both sugars, and vanilla on medium-speed until smooth; about 2 minutes. Add in the molasses, coconut milk and pumpkin puree and beat on low speed until well combined. Turn mixer off.
  3. In a separate bowl combine the flour, baking soda, salt, and pumpkin pie spice; whisk well to combine.
  4. Add the dry ingredients into the wet mixture and, with the mixer on low speed, beat until ingredients are combined. The batter will be very thick! Fold in 1 and 1/4 cups of the chocolate chips.
  5. Scoop three tablespoon sized mounds of dough onto the prepared cookie sheet, leaving a few inches between each cookie. Bake for 9 to 10 minutes, or until the edges are golden and the centers are soft but set. Press remaining chocolate chips on top of warm cookies, and sprinkle with sea salt, if using. Cool cookies on the baking sheet for 30 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack.

Saturday, February 1, 2020

Recipes Slow Cooker Beef Curry

The only problem is that my kids and all their friends are still at the age where when someone pelts them with a water balloon, they start screaming that someone threw a water balloon at them. Yeah, kid, that’s the point. Try explaining this logic to a 5 year old.

And then 2 hours before the party the kids tore a hole in our blow-up kiddie pool. That’s because I always let them play in it, even when the pool is empty, because watching kids play ‘pirate ship’ in an empty kiddie pool is kind of hilarious. (We have to dump the water out of the pool every time we’re done with it, otherwise Valentine (who is not quite 2) would be perpetually wet for the entire summer.)

So we had no kiddie pool, half the kids are screaming, and I had to bribe Truman with Otter Pops to get him to play relay races with me.

Also, when I ended up being the only adult in a swimsuit, my entire extended family  decided it was fair game to do water balloon target practice on me. I definitely got more wet than any of the kids.

Ah well. Summertime, right? It was actually really fun. I’m sure this will be a golden memory for my kids 10 years from now. Right? Right???

  • salt and pepper
  • 2-3 tablespoons oil
  • 2-3 pounds cheap steak or roast*, chopped into chunks
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons good quality beef bouillon**
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 and 1/2 tablespoons yellow curry powder
  • 1 tablespoon garam masala
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • cilantro, to garnish
  • chopped red onion, to garnish
  1. Heat a large, high-sided skillet (or a wide-bottomed pot), over medium high heat.
  2. Salt and pepper the beef chunks.
  3. Add about a tablespoon of oil to the pan and swirl. It should start to shimmer if the pan is hot enough.
  4. Add 1/3 of the seasoned meat to the pan. Place the pieces of meat so that they are not touching each other (You don't want them to steam--see photos). Turn the pieces with tongs to brown all sides. Remove the beef to the slow cooker and repeat 2 more batches, adding more oil as necessary.
  5. Once all of the beef is browned and in the slow cooker, turn the heat on the pan down to medium. Add the water, tomato sauce, garlic powder, salt, beef bouillon, black pepper, curry powder, and garam masala.
  6. Stir with a wooden spoon until the mixture is bubbly and the bouillon has dissolved. It should thicken up a bit.
  7. Pour the mixture over the beef in the slow cooker.
  8. Add the chopped onion and stir it all together. Cook on low heat for 6-7 hours, until the beef is fork tender
  9. Garnish with chopped cilantro and hot rice!
  10. I love to serve this curry with lots of cilantro, Coconut Jasmine Rice and Homemade Naan! It's the best combo! You could even throw in a Strawberry Lassi to sip with it, if you wanted to get really fancy!
Recipe Notes:
  1. I always buy the pre-cut stew beef they have in most stores. Then I don't even have to chop it.
  2. I always (always!) use Better Than Bouillon Beef Base. It's 100x better than anything else out there.
  3. You can also make this recipe on the stove. Once you have removed all the meat and made the sauce in the pan, add the beef back in to the sauce. Cover with a tilted lid (so steam can escape) and set it to a low simmer. Let cook for 2-3 hours, stirring every 20-30 minutes. It is done when the meat falls apart (you should be able to break up a piece with your wooden spoon.)

Recipes Salisbury Steak with Mushroom Gravy (30 Minutes)

I love how we’re taking ground beef and frying it and getting away with calling it “steak.” I made an earlier version of this recipe for my family a few weeks ago, and we got to talking about where exactly Salisbury Steak came from, anyway.

We were throwing out ideas, I said German? My mom said, English? My brother Nathan and I both said, no way, it’s too delicious to be British. (Don’t hate me if you are from the UK. Just set me straight. Send me a delicious British recipe. I’m serious. Make sure there is no blood sausage involved, or you will confirm all of my biases.)

For the steaks:
  • 1 cup finely chopped mushrooms
  • 1 medium or large onion, chopped and divided
  • 1 and 1/2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons whole grain mustard
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon liquid smoke (optional)
  • 1 and 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt                            
  • 3/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon oil, for frying
For the gravy:
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 and 1/2 cups sliced mushrooms
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2 and 1/2 cups beef broth
  • 2 and 1/2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 teaspoon whole grain mustard
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • parsley, to garnish
  • Creamy Mashed Potatoes, to serve with
  1. Start by chopping the onion and mushrooms. Chop the onion, then take about 1/4 cup of it and finely chop. Add the 1/4 cup to a large bowl. Set the rest aside for the gravy. 
  2. Finely chop one cup of mushrooms and add to the large bowl. Slice about 2 and 1/2 cups mushrooms and set aside to use for the gravy. (I bought 1 pound of mushrooms for this recipe and used about 3/4 of it.)
  3. In the large bowl with the 1/4 cup finely chopped onion and 1 cup finely chopped mushrooms, add ground beef, 1 egg, panko breadcrumbs, tomato paste, whole grain mustard, 1 teaspoon garlic (I used the jarred kind), 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce, 1/4 teaspoon liquid smoke, 1 and 1/4 teaspoons salt, 3/4 teaspoon pepper, and 1 teaspoon onion powder.
  4. Use your hands to combine the meat. It's feels weird but just do it; using a spoon takes longer and you end up with tougher steaks usually. (This is true for meatloaf and meatballs as well.)
  5. Shape the meat mixture into 6 oval shaped patties.
  6. Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add 1 tablespoon oil and swirl to coat. When the oil shimmers, add as many meat patties as will comfortably fit on your pan. Don't crowd them too much or they will steam instead of sear. I cooked the meat in 2 batches. 
  7. Sear the meat for about 2 minutes, and when they are nice and browned use a spatula to flip them over. Sear the other side until browned, about another 2 minutes. It's okay if the patties are not cooked all the way in the middle. 
  8. Remove the patties (or "steaks") to a plate and repeat with the other patties. 
  9. Remove the patties and add 1 tablespoon butter to the hot skillet. Add the onions and sliced mushrooms that you prepared earlier. Saute for about 5 minutes. Add garlic and saute another minute.
  10. In a glass measuring cup, whisk together the beef broth and flour. 
  11. Add the broth mixture to the skillet. Add 1 teaspoon mustard and 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce. Stir and cook for a couple minutes until the mixture begins to simmer.
  12. Add the steaks back to the pan. Turn the heat to a low simmer and cook for another 5 minutes or so, until the salisbury steaks are cooked through. 
  13. Sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve with my Aunt Shirley's Famous Creamy Mashed Potatoes! You cannot beat this combination!
Recipe Notes:
  1. For odd tomato paste measurements like this, I love to buy tomato paste in a tube (like this) that is kept in the fridge. That way you don't have to deal with half a can of leftover paste.

Friday, January 31, 2020

Recipes One Skillet Shepherd's Pot Pie

So we went on a big extended family vacation last week, and Eric and I managed to get away for a few minutes while grandma watched the kids. We went to the pool, sat on the edge and sunbathed for a while before jumping in. We swam some laps, enjoying our freedom, when all of the sudden Eric gives me this panicked look, and then starts climbing out of the pool. “What is it??”
“My phone is in my pocket.”  Dun dun DUNNNN

Why do they put pockets in swim trunks, why??? And even though I shouldn’t have, I had to laugh. Sorry Eric. It’s just too funny!!

We were on a cruise, so there was no way to get it fixed or do anything besides order dry rice from room service. (Turns out that even 4 days packed in rice doesn’t solve an iPhone 6 being underwater for 10 minutes…what gives, Apple?? ;)

And so we’re going a week strong now with only one phone between us. I probably have to go through the thought process 30 times a day, “I should text Eric about…Oh wait.” Seriously, how did people live before text messages. Sometimes I think about my little great-grandchildren gathering around me as an ancient, “So tell me granny, what was it like back then? Before phones? Before the INTERNET??

Well, we had to talk to each other. It was horrible.”
We are home now but I am still on cloud nine. I’m having such a time getting back into the swing of things. Not only because no one is offering me free ice cream every day (all the food on a cruise is free, right??) but because we all got sick right at the end.

Not just a cold either, a doozie of a flu with chills and fever and the works. Our kids probably think it’s summer vacation by now with all the school we’re missing!

For the pie crust:
  • 1 and 1/2 cups flour, spooned and leveled
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 cup shortening (I like Butter-Flavored Crisco)
  • 1/4 cup ice water
For the filling:
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped (about 1 and 1/2 cups)
  • 2-3 carrots, peeled and chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 cup cold beef broth*
  • 1/2 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1 cup frozen diced hash browns (diced in little cubes, not shredded)
  • 1 and 1/2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded (Or use sliced)
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 2 tablespoons shredded cheddar cheese, to top pie crust
  1. Begin by making the pie crust. (Of course you can skip this step and use a pre-made pie crust from the store!)
  2. In a medium bowl, stir together flour and 3/4 teaspoon salt.
  3. Use your hands, a fork, or a pastry cutter to cut in the butter and shortening. Work it together until it resembles coarse crumbs. There should be butter chunks the size of peas.
  4. Add 1/4 cup ice water and combine with a fork until it has mostly come together. Dust your hands with flour and knead it together in the in bowl a couple times, until it has come together. Stick it in the fridge while you make the filling.
  5. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F.
  6. In a 10-inch cast iron skillet, heat 2 teaspoons olive oil over medium high heat.
  7. Add the onions and carrots and saute for about 6-8 minutes, until the onions are translucent and the carrots are beginning to soften.
  8. Add the ground beef and continue cooking over medium high heat for another 5-8 minutes, until the beef is well cooked and crumbled.
  9. Tilt the pan and use a spoon to drain the grease from the pan. Or whatever method you like to use to get ground beef out of a skillet.
  10. In a small bowl, stir together 1 cup COLD (or at least room temperature) beef broth and 1/2 tablespoon cornstarch until dissolved. (The broth cannot be warm when you add the cornstarch, or it will get lumpy.)
  11. Stir the broth mixture into the ground beef, continuing to stir over medium high heat.
  12. Add 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
  13. Once the mixture has started to bubble, lower the heat to medium and cook for another 3 minutes, until the mixture has thickened a bit.
  14. Add in 1 cup each frozen peas and hash browns (no need to thaw) and stir together. Turn off the heat and spread the beef mixture evenly in the skillet.
  15. Sprinkle 1 and 1/2 cups cheddar cheese over the top of the beef mixture, don't stir. The second time I made this I used a few slices of cheddar cheese instead of shredding it, and I liked that even better!
  16. Roll out the pie dough you already made onto a floured surface. Roll it into a circle that will cover your skillet, plus about 2 inches to hang over. (Mine was about 14-15 inches across.)
  17. Have the tablespoon of milk, a pastry brush, and 2 tablespoons shredded cheddar ready to go.
  18. Working quickly (because you want your pie dough to go into the oven as cold as possible) cover the skillet with the pie dough. Fold the edges underneath and use your fingers to quickly crimp the edges however you like.
  19. Brush the top of the pie and the edges with milk. Sprinkle with a little bit of cheese. (Don't use too much, you want to be able to taste the flakiness on top of the crust. I used too much in the version I photographed.) Use a sharp knife to make 2-4 slits in the top of the pie to vent.
  20. Place the skillet on a baking sheet just in case it bubbles over.
  21. Bake in the oven at 375 degrees for about 30 minutes.
  22. After 30 minutes, you may need to cover the edges of the dough so that it doesn't get too brown. Fold a large square of aluminum foil in half twice, then cut a circle out of the center. Unfold the foil and you should have a cover for the edges of your crust but not the center. Cover the edges of the crust well and continue baking for another 5 minutes or so, until the center of the crust is starting to turn golden.
  23. Let the pie sit for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

Recipes Leftover Roast Beef, Carrot, and Creamy Potato Pie

The other day after school pickup we were walking back to the car. I told the kids to run up ahead of me to get in our minivan. They charged ahead full force and wrenched open the door, clambering in.

I headed to the other side of the car, carrying the baby. And then I FREAKED OUT when I see some DUDE sitting in the driver’s seat! That’s when I realize that this is not my car. Definitely not my car, but I can see my kids inside the car through the window, totally confused.

They have a lot of different flavor combinations, but the idea of a pot roast inside a pie captured my heart pretty quickly. Picture this: flaky bottom crust. Tender, moist roast beef from a pot roast. Bright, flavorful carrots. A ridiculous amount of creamy, cheesy potatoes. Then MORE flaky pie crust. It. is. so. good.

I didn’t add gruyere, instead I did Parmesan. In fact, the second time I tested this I skipped the cheese altogether (because I just forgot!) and I still thought it was amazing.

For the crust:
  • 3 cups flour, spooned and leveled
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) cold salted butter, cut into chunks
  • 1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon butter-flavored Crisco
  • 1/2 cup ice cold water
  • 1 and 1/2 to 2 pounds leftover roast beef, shredded
  • 1/3 to 1/2 cup beef gravy
  • 2 cups (or more) cooked carrots
For the potatoes:
  • 1 and 1/2 pounds Yukon gold potatoes, sliced thin
  • 2 and 1/2 cups cream
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed and minced (jarred kind is ok)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese, optional
  • 2 teaspoons milk, for brushing pie crust
  1. If you already have leftover roast beef and carrots (and/or leftover potatoes) you can skip ahead to the assembly below. If not, you are going to want to start by making this recipe for Easy Fall Apart Pot Roast with Carrots. This recipe will give you the beef, carrots, and gravy that you need for this pie.
  2. Begin by making the crust. In a large bowl, whisk together flour and salt.
  3. Use a pastry cutter or fork to cut the butter and Crisco into the flour. When the mixture resembles coarse sand but still has some chunks of butter about the size of a pea, stop.
  4. Add half of the ice water. Use a wooden spoon or your hands to moisten the dough. Add the rest of the water and use your hands (dust them in flour first) to knead the dough just a few times to make it come together in a ball. Don't knead more than necessary.
  5. Dust a work surface with plenty of flour. (I love to use my pastry cloth for rolling out any kind of dough.)
  6. Divide the dough in half. Use a rolling pin to roll out half the dough into a large circle. Transfer the dough into a 9 inch pie pan. (I like to gently roll the dough onto the rolling pin and then lift it into the pie pan, and then unroll.) Place the other half of the dough in the fridge, covered.
  7. Layer the roast beef into the pie dish. You can use anywhere from 1 to 2 pounds. Make sure you shred or chop it so that it's easier to take bites of your lovely pie.
  8. Top with some beef gravy. If you followed my pot roast recipe, you should have some. You can make your own or use a canned variety.
  9. Top with the cooked carrots.
  10. Meanwhile, start the potatoes. Scrub them clean, (don't peel) then use the slice attachment of a food processor to slice the potatoes very thin, think between 1/8 and 1/4 inch. You can also slice them by hand of course. It takes literally one minute to do it in the food processor, so use it if you have one.
  11. In a high sided skillet (or a wide pot), add the potatoes and cream. Turn the heat to medium.
  12. Add the garlic, salt, pepper, nutmeg, and cayenne pepper.
  13. Bring to a low simmer over medium heat. You want to reach the point where there is a very gentle bubbling situation going on, but don't let it come to a hard boil. Let this simmer, stirring gently and adjusting heat as necessary, for about 20 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender or almost tender. The cream will have reduced a bit, but there should still be a thick sauce.
  14. Spoon or pour the potatoes on top of the carrots in the pie dish, adding all that lovely liquid. Just keep adding it to the center. I know it looks like a ridiculous amount. IT IS. YOU WILL LOVE IT. Pile it on baby.
  15. Now you can sprinkle the Parmesan cheese on top of the potatoes if you like.
  16. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  17. Roll out the other half of the pie dough. Transfer to the top of the pie. Fold the crust underneath itself and seal the edges by pressing together. Then if you want, you can use the photo above to see how I crimped the edges. I use one index finger, and then the two first fingers on my other hand and push them against each other....look at the picture, hopefully you can see what I mean.
  18. Use a pastry brush to brush the top of the pie with milk. This is optional.
  19. Use a sharp knife to cut slits in the top of the pie so that it can vent.
  20. Place the pie on a baking sheet, and bake at 375 for about 20 minutes.
  21. Take the pie out and cover the edges of the pie. Get a square of aluminum foil about the size of your pie. Fold it in half, then fold in half again. Cut out the center so that when you unfold it, you have a piece of aluminum foil that will cover the edges of the pie, but the center is open to continue browning. Mold it gently onto your pie edges.
  22. Continue baking for another 25 to 30 minutes (Total bake time should be 45-55 minutes.) You will know it is done when the crust is golden brown. Everything inside the pie is cooked, so you're just waiting for the crust to get nice and golden.
  23. Take the pie out of the oven and let cool for at least 10 minutes before digging in. Enjoy!!

Thursday, January 30, 2020

Recipes Homemade Garlic Knots

Chewy and delicious Homemade Garlic Knots! This yeasted dough recipe is straightforward and sure to be a big hit with your family and friends! And the dough is freezer-friendly!

As an Italian woman, and carb lover, I am a HUGE fan of garlic knots. So learning to make garlic knots from scratch was one of my top priorities this year.

And guess what? I learned and perfected this recipe way faster than I thought I would. Turns out making bread knots is NOT hard. Like, at all. And they’re made with super basic ingredients you probably have in your kitchen right now!

How to make Garlic Knots:
  1. Alright, it’s time to get down to business! And today’s business is teaching you exactly how to make homemade garlic knots. If you’re new to making homemade bread recipes, don’t fret!!!
  2. Working with yeast is not super complicated! But there are quite a few steps, so make sure you take the time to read through the entire recipe before getting started. I also recommend reading through the ingredient list to making sure you have everything on hand!
How to Shape Garlic Knots:
  1. You’ll want to divide your dough into 2 equal pieces. After you divide the dough, let it rest for 10 minutes before you begin shaping.
  2. Next, sprinkle the top of each round of dough with a little flour. Slice each round into quarters.
  3. Press each quarter into a rectangle, then slice in half again. You should have 16 pieces of dough. Dust each piece with a little flour and quickly shape into individual balls.
  4. Roll out each ball into a long rope then tie it into a knot. Place the knots on the prepared baking sheet, covered loosely with plastic wrap, and set aside for 30 minutes.The knots will rise a little more during this time.
  5. Once the dough has been shaped, you’ll place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake them until golden brown. Then you’ll brush them with a delicious garlic butter and sprinkle with parmesan cheese. If you want extra flavorful garlic knots, you can brush them with melted butter and herbs before and after baking. Just note they’ll be a little darker in color if you do this. But will taste even more like garlic bread!
  6. Bread flour is a high-gluten flour that has a tiny amount of barley flour and vitamin C added. The barley flour helps the yeast activate, and the vitamin C increases the elasticity of the gluten and its ability to retain gas as the dough rises and bakes. Bread flour is typically used in pizza dough and garlic knot recipes because of the chewiness that the extra gluten provides. I did test this recipe with all-purpose flour and unfortunately the results were tough, dry, and utterly disappointing.
Moral of the story? If you want soft, chewy, and incredibly delicious garlic knots, don’t skip the bread flour!

For the dough:
  • 3 and 3/4 cups bread flour
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons granulated sugar
  • 1 envelope active dry yeast
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/2 cups warm water, 110 - 115 degrees (F)
  • 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons olive oil, divided
For the garlic coating:
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley, minced
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons garlic salt
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
For the dough:
  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook add the bread flour, sugar, yeast and salt; gently whisk to combine. Turn mixer on low speed and add the warm water and 2 tablespoons of the olive oil; beat until the dough forms a ball around the hook. If the dough is super sticky, add additional flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the dough comes together in a solid ball. If the dough is too dry, add additional water, 1 tablespoon at a time. Scrape the dough onto a lightly floured surface and gently knead into a smooth, firm ball.
  2. Grease a large bowl with the remaining 2 teaspoons olive oil. Add the dough, cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and place the bowl in a warm area to rise for 90 minutes, or until it has doubled in size.
  3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and divide it into 2 equal pieces. Place each round of dough onto a piece plastic wrap and let them rest for 10 minutes. Dust the top of each round of dough with a light sprinkling of flour and, using a sharp knife, slice each into quarters. Press each quarter into a rectangle, then slice in half again. You should have 16 pieces of dough. Dust each piece with a little flour and quickly shape into individual balls. Roll out each ball into a long rope then tie it into a knot. Place the knots on the prepared baking sheet, covered loosely with plastic wrap, and set aside for 30 minutes.The knots will rise a little more during this time.
  4. Preheat oven to 450 degrees (F). When the 30 minutes are up, remove the plastic wrap and place the garlic knots in the preheated oven. Bake for 20 minutes, or until knots are golden brown and firm.
  5. Cool for 5 minutes, then brush the freshly baked knots with the garlic coating. Sprinkle with cheese and serve warm!
For the garlic coating:
  1. Melt the butter in a small pan over medium-low heat. Add in the garlic and simmer for 1-2 minutes, or until fragrant (be sure not to over cook it here). Add in the parsley and garlic salt and stir to combine. Taste to season (add more salt, if needed), then remove from heat. Set aside until needed.
  1. For darker and more flavorful garlic knots, brush garlic coating on knots before and after baking.