Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Soft Pretzels

Soft Pretzels
1 1/2 c warm water
2 T brown sugar
2 t yeast
3 T vegetable or canola oil, plus more for greasing
2 t salt
4-5 c flour
8 c water
1/2 c baking soda
1 egg
1 T cold water
coarse salt
1/4 c butter, melted

1. In a stand mixer bowl, combine warm water, brown sugar, and yeast; cover with a towel and let stand until bubbles form, about 5-10 minutes.
2. Add oil and salt, and, using the dough hook, add the first four cups of flour a cup at a time; knead dough at medium speed until it is smooth and pulls away from the side of the bowl, about 4 minutes. If it is still sticky, add more flour.
3. Spread some oil on the dough and bowl, turn to coat. Cover with a towel and place in a warm spot for an hour, or until doubled in size.
4. Preheat oven to 425*, line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and divide the dough into 8 equal pieces.
5. In a large pot, bring water and baking soda to boil.
6. Roll each piece of dough into a long rope and twist into a pretzel; pinch the ends in to the pretzel.
7. Boil the pretzels, two at a time, in the water for about 45 seconds; drain with a slotted spoon and place on the baking sheet.
8. Once all of the pretzels have been boiled, beat together egg and cold water; brush over pretzels. Generously sprinkle with salt.
9. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from oven and immediately brush with melted butter. Serve warm.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Tuesday Night Dinner

Tuesday Night Dinner
1 lb ground beef
1 lb frozen mixed vegetables
1- 15 oz can Italian-style tomato sauce
1 1/2 c uncooked macaroni or small pasta shells
3/4 t garlic salt
1/4 t pepper
1/2 c Parmesan cheese

1. Preheat oven to 400*.
2. In a small pan, cook beef over medium heat until cooked through, about 8-10 minutes; drain.
3. Stir in vegetables, tomato sauce, pasta, garlic salt, and pepper; spoon into a 2-qt casserole dish.
4. Cover and bake for 30 minutes, or until pasta is cooked and vegetables are tender. Stir in cheese.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Blueberry Stuffed French Toast Bake

Blueberry Stuffed French Toast Bake
10 slices white bread, cut into 1" pieces
1- 8 oz pkg [light] cream cheese, cut into small pieces
1 c fresh blueberries
8 eggs
1 1/2 c milk
1 t vanilla

1. Grease a 9x13 pan and cover the bottom with half of the bread pieces.
2. Layer the cream cheese, blueberries, and then the rest of the bread.
3. In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, and vanilla; pour over the pan.
4. Cover tightly with foil and refrigerate overnight.

5. Preheat oven to 350* and bake, covered, for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake for an additional 25-30 minutes, until center is set.
Serve with [blueberry] syrup.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Maple Syrup

I got this yummy recipe from my friend, Anna. It's such a great alternative to store-bought.

Maple Syrup
2 c sugar
1 c brown sugar
1/4 t salt
1 1/2 c water
1/2 c corn syrup
1 1/2 t or more maple flavoring
1/2 t vanilla

1. In a medium bowl over high heat, stir together sugars, salt, and water; bring to a boil.
2. When sugars have dissolved, add corn syrup; bring back up to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook for 10 minutes without stirring.
3. Turn off heat and stir in maple flavoring and vanilla.
Store in an airtight container in the fridge.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Minestrone Pasta

Minestrone Pasta
3 c small pasta shells, cooked
2 carrots, sliced
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1- 15.5 oz can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1- 15.5 oz can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
1- 14.5 oz can Italian-style stewed or diced tomatoes, drained
2/3 c Italian dressing
1/2 c Parmesan cheese

1. Toss all ingredients in a large bowl and serve warm or cold.