Tag Archives: Cooking

Freezer Pie

Well, you know how about three hours ago I said I had no idea what I was going to make next? I figured it out; I was really bored and then I remembered that we had some frozen fruit in the freezer. I had wanted to make a rhubarb pie with rhubarb from our garden, but since last time I made one nobody ate it, I decided not to. Instead, I made a blueberry peach pie. I didn’t really have a recipe for the filling, just some basic guidelines, but it turned out well. For the crust I made a shortbread cookie type crust and then crumbled some on top of the pie. The amount of filling I had was to much for the pie pan, so I topped the leftovers with an oatmeal sugar crumble mixture. The color of the filling is like an amathyst and looks pretty speckled with the crumble. I think I am done baking for today, but you never know!

~thechildcooks

Frozen Blueberry Peach Pie

Based loosly off a recipe from The Joy of Cooking

2 cups frozen blueberries

2 1/2 cups frozen peaches

2/3-1 cup sugar

3 1/2 tablspoons cornstarch

In a large saucepan, heat the fruit with the sugar until it begins to lightly bubble. Add liquid if neccessary to prevent from burning. Add the cornstach and stir in until it dissolves. Leave on low heat sirring occasionaly while you make the crust. 

Short Bread Crust

1 1/2 cups flour

1/3 cups sugar

Pinch of salt

8 tablespoons butter cut into 8 pieces and slightly softened

2 egg yolks

In a bowl, whisk together the flour sugar and salt. Cut in the butter until it resembles large crumbs. With the back of a spatula mix in 1 egg yolk until the crust holds together. Hold back 2 tablespoons of dough for the crumble. Pat into a 9 inch pie tin that has had the bottom greased and floured. Prick holes in the bottom of the crust and bake for18-20 minutes at 400F. Brush the second egg yolk on the bottom of the crust and bake for 3 minutes.

 Add the filling and crumble the remaining crust on the top. Bake at 350F for 12-15 minutes longer or until the topping is cooked. Cool and enjoy!

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Filed under Pie, Sweet

Saying More

Last night I posted a picture of some yummy home made pizza. There is another such picture right over there(points right). The recipe for the dough was from my 4H book(but also is in the bead machine book as the same recipe, coincidence?), the sauce was made by my mother(no recipe there, just throw some tomatoes and spices in there and let it simmer) and a cow somewhere made the cheese. The dough was described in the recipe book as “not to thin or thick” and it was. In the 4H book the recipe says it yields 8 servings, which is a lie, this will serve four normal people, or 8 for appetizer-sized pizzas. I made mine with dough, sauce, eggplant, onion, pepper, mushroom, broccoli and cauliflower. The crust tastes really good and fresh and my mom says I can make it again, which means that this was a success! For my project, I still have to make basic white bread, pretzels, bread machine cheese bread and herb loaf. There are also a few recipes from the second year of the project I would like to try such as some of the sweet breads.

~thechildcooks 

Bread Machine Pizza

Note: This will take some time, so plan ahead.

3/4 cup lukewarm water

2 tablespoons oil

2 cups all-purpose or bread flour

1/2 teaspoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons active dry yeast or 1 1/2 teaspoons quick rise yeast

Combine ingredients according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Select the dough setting and process. When the dough process is complete, take the dough out and knead it for 1 minute. Let rest for 15 minutes. Roll the dough to fit a 14 inch pizza pan or cooking sheet, you can also make mini pizzas. Place the dough on a greased pan or one lined with parchment paper. Press the dough into the pan. Let dough rise in a warm place for 20 to 25 minutes. Spread sauce over top and add cheese and other desired toppings. Bake in a preheated 425F oven for 15 to 25 minutes, depending on the size of your pizza. Remove from oven and let rest for 5 minutes before cutting and serving.

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Filed under 4-H, Breads, Meals, Yeast Bread

Not Just White Bread

The recipe for Not Just White Bread from my 4-H book is a winner. The bread is light and tasty, not to mention easy to make. It is similar to the recipe for white bread in the Betty Crocker cookbook, but calls for making a sponge instead of mixing everything together at once. The method for shaping the loaves is also different, Not Just White Bread does not get rolled before placing into the pans, you just put it in. All in all, I will be making this recipe again.

For those of you wondering why I have not posted in a while, I am fine, I was just on vacation on the Atlantic coast. While there, I dicovered that eating crabs freshly steamed out of their shells seasoned with liberal amounts of Old Bay is awesome. I packed away about 36 in one sitting at an all you can eat place and it has enlightened me. I also visited two Indian restaurants where I stuffed myself with deliciousness. My father told me, that this summer, we might have a seafood boil similar to the east coast steam pots. It was really relaxing to be on vacation, but I missed baking in m kitchen and need to make up for lost time. Tomorrow, I plan on making graham crackers, in order to start experimenting for the best s’mores. Hope you all are have a good summer!

~thechildcooks

Not Just White Bread

Yeast Breads on the Rise

Sponge

1 1/2 cups warm water

2 tablespoons sugar

1 package active dry yeast

2 cups all-purpose flour

Dough

1 cup warm milk

2 tablespoons sugar

1 tablespoon salt

3 tablespoons shortening

5 cups all-purpose flour

Use a large bowl to make the sponge. Measure the water and 2 tablespoons sugar into the bowl. Sprinkle in the yeast and stir until smooth. Beat in the 2 cups flour by hand until the mixture is smooth. Let the mixture rise in a warm place until light and spongy, about 1 hour.

While the sponge is rising, combine sugar, salt, and shortening with warm milk, cool to room temperature.

Stir the sponge down when light and spongy and sitr in the milk mixture. Stir in additional flour until dough leaves the sides of the bowl. Turn dough onto a lightly floured boar and knead until smooth, about 8 to 10 minutes. Add small amounts of flour while kneading if dough is too sticky.

Place in a greased bowl and brush with shortening. Cover and let rise until doubled in size, about 45 minutes. Punch down and turn out on a lightly floured board. Divide in half, let rest 15 to 20 minutes.

Shape dough into two loaves and place in greased 9x5x3 inch loaf pans. Cover, let rise in a warm place until the center is slightly higher than the edge of the pan, about 1 hour.

Bake at 400F about 50 minutes. Remove from pan and cool.

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Filed under 4-H, Breads, Yeast Bread

Shakepeare and Banana Cake

Got you attention didn’t I? Well, if the title didn’t, I hope that these recipes will. On Wednesday(I know, I know, long time ago) I made Crusty Dinner Rolls out of my 4-H book for a Shakespearean festival at school. I was to do a small bit of research on foods during the Elizabethan time period and found that bread was a major part of their diet. So, I decided to kill two birds with one stone: make a recipe for 4-H, then use it for school. The rolls turned out great, but be warned the recipe does make a lot if use make the recommended size.

 Saturday, I once again discovered some almost black bananas on the counter and instead of banana bread, I made banana cake. The recipe calls for a 13×9 pan, but I used a 9 inch and 18 muffin tin cups and that filled it up. The muffins(cupcakes?) rounded out beautifully and are delightfully moist. Definite make again recipe.

One last subject; I have two cartons of just whites egg whites. If anyone has and suggestions, please do tell! I need to use them up soon. Thanks and have a great week.

~thechildcooks

Crisp Dinner Rolls

2 1/2 cups warm water

2 packages active dry yeast

1 tablespoon sugar

1 tablespoon salt

2 tablespoons margarine, softened

6 1/2 to 7 1/2 cups flour

1 egg, beaten

1 tablespoon milk

Measure warm water into a large warm bowl. Sprinkle in yeast, stir until dissolved. Add the sugar, salt, margarine and three cups of flour, bead until smooth. Add enough flour to make a stiff dough. Turn out onto a lightly floured boars and knead until smooth. Place in a greased bowl and let rise for 1 hour, or until doubled.

Punch down dough, divide in half, Divide each half into 18 equal pieces. Shape each into rolls and let rise until doubled. Combine egg and milk; brush this mixture on the tops of the rolls. Bake at 400F for about 15 minutes. Remove from sheets and cool on wire racks.

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Filed under 4-H, Cake, Sweet, Yeast Bread

Happy in the Kitchen: I Certainly Am!

At the library yesterday I picked up some new cookbooks. You see, when I choose a cookbook it usually has large glossy pages with stunning food arrangements and pleasing pictures. If the book is black and white or an off-color ink, I will probably not take it home with me unless I leaf through it and see a recipe that I would want to make. One of the books I checked out yesterday fit into the former category colorful and glossy. Plus, it had a catchy title. Happy in the Kitchen: the Craft of Cooking, the Art of Eating by Michel Richard was a very good read. The cuisine in question is more of a modern twist on classic food items. I have not made any of the recipes out of it so far, as I have been very busy lately, but there are some that I would like to try. One such recipe is the Carmel and Corn Ice Cream, another is the homemade Spudies(tater tots). The recipes seemed easy to follow and each was introduced by an often humorous paragraph or two. Most of the recipes,as I mentioned above, were accompanied by a glossy full-page picture. All in all, this book is a good read, even if you look at it purely for reading purposes. 

~thechildcooks

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Filed under Book Reviews

My Summer Plans…

Emblem of the 4H organisation.

Image via Wikipedia

…include a lot of baking/ cake decorating. I know this for a 100% true fact because those are the projects that I am taking for 4-H. More Specifically, I will be making yeast breads in multiple manners, and trying out new cake decorating techniques. As part of the two projects, I will post some recipes and decorating tutorials here on thechildcooks. Since next week is my Spring Break, I hope to be doing some baking to get a jump-start on my projects; they are due in the middle to end of July, but it is never a bad thing to finish early. 

Also, if things go as planned, I may, hopefully, possibly be looking at having a bakery job. But the probability of that is slim, as people tend to not hire 14 year olds. Never the less, I have picked up an application and found some people to be my references. Another plus would be that the bakery is within running/ biking distance of my house. I figure the sooner I can start getting experience in the real food industry, the closer I am to my dream of one day owning a restaurant.  

‘Til my next baking adventure,

~thechildcooks

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Filed under 4-H, Cake Decorating, Uncategorized, Yeast Bread

Oh, Oh, Oh, Oatmeal Breakfast Bars

I am a runner. To me, this constitutes as a reason to eat energy bars; that and they taste good. But energy bars are slightly expensive to eat every day, so I decided to make some of my own. I followed a basic recipe with guidelines for the fruit and nuts, and then added two scoops of protein powder. They have a very cakey texture and are pleasantly moist. The flavor is good too, but not exactly like the store-bought bars. I baked them for longer than the original recipe said, but that is most likely just my oven. I will add the guideline recipe below, but remember that it is just a guideline and you can add more or less mix-ins.  Hopefully the weather in you neck of the woods is looking Springy and warm. Have a good weekend!

~thechildcooks

Oatmeal Breakfast Bars

1 1/4 cups oatmeal

1/2 cup chopped nuts

3/4 cups dried fruit

1 teaspoon spice(more or less depending on the spice)

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/4 cups milk

1 teaspoon vanilla

Protein powder

Preheat oven to 375F and line a 9×9 pan with parchment paper. Mix dry ingredients in a bowl. Mix wet ingredients and add to the dry ingredients. Stir and let set for 15 minutes. Bake in oven for 30-45 minutes. Bars will be moist, but golden brown. Cut while hot, then let cool and enjoy.

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Twist and Shout

A wood-burning pizza oven baking a pizza.

Image via Wikipedia

Good news bad news situation here. Good news is that today I did a little baking. Bad news is, I killed my sourdough starter. I just kinda forgot about it, and then there was a blueish liquid on top,as well as what looked to be mold around the edges. Maybe this summer, I will try to start another one. Anyway, back to the good news. Today, I saw some rather sad-looking, black-speckeled bananas sitting on our counter and decided to make banana bread. But, I wanted something a little bit different from your average banana bread. It is a twist on the common and familiar, hence the name of this post. I went looking around foodgawker.com and found a recipe for Oatmeal Sweet Potato Banana Everything Bread over at Flour Child’s blog. I made it with a fourth of a cup of sweet potato and one and one-fourth cup mashed bananas. My bread did not use oat bran and used all white flour, and instead of buttermilk, I used greek yogurt. I just pulled the loaves out of the oven and they look and smell delicious. Looks like I am going to be doing some more baking because my mom just informed me that she would like home made pizza for dinner, so I am making some. Once again, I looked on foodgawker.com and found some good-looking recipes. I chose this recipe, pizza dough, from acouplecooks. To forgo leftovers, I divided it in half for tonight and just set it to rest. Later bakers!

~thechildcooks

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Filed under Breads, Meals, Savory, Sourdough, Uncategorized

Meatless Chili for Lent

Phaseolus vulgaris, white beans

Image via Wikipedia

For our church dinner tomorrow, I am making a meatless chili dish using textured vegetable protein(tvp). Tvp, according to Bob’s Red Mill,  “is made from reduced-fat soy beans and is used to replace or extend ground meats. It is also added to casseroles to add extra flavor and nutrition.” Each serving of tvp contains 12 grams of protein. Along with the beans, this makes the chili a relatively healthy dish. The recipe also looks very simple to assemble(I have never made chili before) and one of the parts of the recipe that I changed is that I am using dried white beans instead of canned beans. This requires for me to start soaking the beans tonight and cooking then for about an hour tomorrow afternoon. I also think that I am going to change some of the spices used, but do not yet know which I will use. Curry powder, perhaps? Maybe some tandoori seasoning. The original recipe only calls for peppers and tomatoes, but I think that i might add some other vegetable, such as carrots, or mushrooms(to keep with the meatless theme).  For now, I will just post the original recipe, but tomorrow, I will post my version and the results on how the chili turned out. See ya!

~thechildcooks

Tvp Country Chili

From Bob’s Red Mill

Ingredients2 cups TVP® (Textured Vegetable Protein) 2 Tbsp Ketchup 

1 Large Onion, chopped 

1 Green Pepper, chopped 

2 Cloves Garlic, chopped 

1 Jalepeño Pepper, chopped 

2 Tbsp Oil 

2 Tbsp Chili Powder 

2 tsp Cumin 

2 tsp Oregano, Mediterranean 

½ tsp Cayenne Pepper 

2- 28oz Cans Tomatoes, chopped 

2- 16 oz Cans Red Kidney Beans, with liquid 

2 cups Hot Water 

Directions
In a large bowl, pour 2 cups of boiling water over 2 cups of TVP flakes (or chunks) and ketchup. Set aside.Heat a large Dutch oven, add 2 Tbsp oil. Saute the onions, peppers, and garlic for a few minutes.

Into the TVP mixture, sprinkle seasonings and stir with fork. Add TVP to the vegetable mixture, cook for a few minutes. Stir in tomatoes, kidney beans and 2 cups hot water.

Cover and simmer for 30 minutes to one hour. Taste and add salt if needed. If desired, add a 16 oz pkg of frozen corn in the last 15 minutes. Makes 10 Servings.


 

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Filed under Meals, Soups and Such

It’s Sourdough Time!

A sourdough starter fermenting.

Does anyone else find the smell of yeast fermenting lovely? Image via Wikipedia

That’s right, ladies and gentlemen, it is that time of the week where you realize that your starter must be attended to. Earlier this week I made some sourdough biscuits with whole wheat flour(they were more like rolls, and they disappeared before I could remember to take a picture)and today I mixed up the beginnings of my all-purpose sourdough bread recipe. I made just a few alterations to the recipe so far. Instead of using all all-purpose flour, I pulsed a cup of rolled oats so that it was fine, but still oaty enough to give the bread some texture; I also added a small handful of whole rolled oats. I also added about 2 tablespoons of cornmeal(I don’t really know I this will affect it at all, I might add more to the final dough). I then used about 1 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour to get the full 2 1/2 cup of flour needed for the first dough. While I had the food processor out, I also whipped up some instant oatmeal mix. And then, I had the idea to make lentil flour. That did not work; lentils are hard little buggers and I wound up with a coarse/fine mixture of the actual lentil and their skin-like covering. Oh well, it was worth a try to see what happened, though the ringing in my ears from the food processor is slightly annoying(just kidding). Over and out!

~thechildcooks

P.S. Don’t forget to go over to the Sock It To Me Design Contest and look for my design. Find out more here.

Whole Wheat Sourdough Biscuits/Rolls(They are whole wheat becuase last time I refreshed my starter, I added a half cup of whole wheat flour)

1/2 cup sourdough starter

1 cup milk

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon sugar

3/4 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Prep all your ingredients ahead, this will help to make things move faster. Place half the flour onto a flat surface. Pour the starter mixture on top. Now, add the salt, sugar, baking powder and baking soda to the flour and mix till blended. Pour the rest of the flour mixture on top of the starter. Now, start to knead in the flour to the starter. Knead just till the dough is mixed. Do not over knead. Roll out the dough to a 1/2 inch thickness. Cut out the biscuits. Place in 9-inch baking dish. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise for 1/2 an hour. Bake in a 375F oven for 30 -35 minutes.

Homemade Instant Oatmeal 

From Tammyrecipes.com

2 cups quick-cooking oats, pulsed slightly in food processor
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup sweetener (dry — like sugar, brown sugar, raw sugar, sucanat, etc.)
1/2 cup powdered (dry nonfat) milk

Mix all ingredients together and store in an airtight container or bag.

To prepare oatmeal: Mix 2/3 cup of dry mixture with 1 cup boiling water in a bowl, stirring to remove lumps. Let stand 1-2 minutes and serve. I would suggest adding your favorite mix-ins(i.e. berries, raisins, yogurt, jam…) and adjusting the sugar to your specific tastes.

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Filed under Breads, Breakfast, Meals, Sourdough