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Friday
Feb202015

Cheesy Beer Bread

Cheesy beer bread

Welcome to the first Friday of Lent. Meatless meals are all around, and local fish fry places are bursting at the seams with customers. When the crowds take over, we prefer to stay home, which is why I plan to make a creole shrimp dish for dinner tonight. A flavorful bread is necessary to soak up all the saucy goodness, if you ask me. And what better type of bread than one that contains beer and cheese? With no rising time needed, this is the perfect bread to make after a long day at work.  

2 cups Whole Wheat Flour
1 cup Flour
1 1/2 tablespoons Sugar
1 tablespoon Baking Powder
1 teaspoon Garlic Powder
1 teaspoon Salt
1/2 teaspoon Black Pepper
1 cup Cheddar Cheese, shredded
1 (12 ounce) bottle Beer (I used Southern Tier’s Where the Helles Summer seasonal spring lager)
2 tablespoons Butter, melted

Spray a loaf pan with non-stick cooking spray and preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, stir together the flours, sugar, baking powder, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and all but 2 tablespoons of the cheese.  Using a wooden spoon, mix in the beer until completely incorporated. Transfer the dough to the prepared loaf pan, pour the melted butter over the top, and sprinkle with the remaining cheddar cheese. Bake the bread for 40-50 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool

SOURCE: Elly Says Opa

Sunday
Feb152015

Blueberry Belgian Waffles

Blueberry waffles

While we have gotten away from the weekly waffles we once enjoyed on the weekends, they are still a welcomed treat every so often. Since yesterday was valentines day, I had hoped to make a special breakfast, but when I woke up, the weather wasn’t exactly cooperating enough to allow me to make a quick run to the store. Luckily, we had everything we needed to make some waffles! I tried a different recipe from the ones I have already posted, and I couldn’t have been happier with the result. While most waffles we have had have either been very dense or so light and airy that they are crispy, these waffles had a great consistency. Substantial enough that we were full after eating one, but not so filling that we were feeling bogged down all day. The leftovers reheated nicely for a Sunday morning breakfast, as well, which certainly helped to combat the -25 degree temperature outside (I only wish that was an exaggeration)!

2 cups Flour
1 tablespoon Sugar
1 tablespoon Baking Powder
1/4 teaspoon Salt
1 3/4 cup Milk
2 Eggs
2 tablespoons Canola Oil
1/2 cup Blueberries (I used frozen)

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. In another bowl, whisk together the milk, eggs, and oil. Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients and whisk well to combine. Gently fold in the blueberries. Pour 1 cup of batter into the center of a preheated waffle maker and bake until golden brown, about 4 minutes. Cool leftover waffles, wrap in foil, and refrigerate. Reheat in the oven. 

SOURCE: Deliciously Yum

Thursday
Feb122015

Peanut Butter Cup Brownies

PB Cup Brownies

Today is my brother’s 30th birthday. Of the two of us, I have the bigger sweet tooth. That being said, when he does eat sweets, he doesn’t mess around. Each year of our adult lives, I’ve been making dessert for his birthday dinner, and each year, he suggests the same “guidelines” and leaves me to choose the perfect recipe: chocolate with peanut butter, or Oreo. The boy certainly knows the best flavor combos! This year, I figured the suggestion was no different, so imagine my surprise when he said brownies! While I could have just used that as an excuse to go easy this year and reach for a box, I could never do no such thing for such a milestone birthday! I took it as the chance to merge his apparent simpler tastes of his 30’s with his favorite flavors of his 20’s. Not to mention, merge my favorite flavors together into one fudgy bite. These brownies were rich, but delicious. Definitely the right way to ring in a new decade. Happy birthday, Michael!

For the Brownies
10 tablespoons Butter
4 ounces Semisweet or Milk Chocolate Chips, divided
1 cup Sugar
2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
2 Eggs
1/2 cup Cocoa Powder
1/2 cup Flour
1/4 teaspoon Salt
1/2 cup Creamy Peanut Butter
1 tablespoon Butter, softened
1 tablespoon Powdered Sugar
Peanut Butter Cups, chopped (about 15-20 miniature size)

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Line an 8x8-inch baking dish with parchment paper and spray lightly with non-stick cooking spray. To a large, microwave safe bowl, add the butter along with 2 ounces of the chocolate, and microwave for 30 second intervals, stirring after each interval, until the chocolate is smooth and melted. Whisk in the sugar until completely combined. Add the vanilla and eggs, whisking until smooth. Stir in the cocoa powder, flour, and salt until just combined. In a small bowl, mix together the peanut butter, powdered sugar, and 1 tablespoon of butter until smooth. Pour half of the brownie batter into the prepared baking dish. Drop the peanut butter mixture onto the brownie batter and sprinkle with the remaining 2 ounces of the chocolate. Top with the remaining brownie batter, gently spreading it toward the sides of the dish, if needed. Bake for 30 minutes (my oven took more like 45 minutes), until the brownies are set on top. Allow the brownies to cool completely before frosting. 

For the Frosting
1/2 cup Heavy Cream
5 1/2 ounces Semisweet Chocolate, chopped (I used chips)
1 tablespoon Creamy Peanut Butter
2 teaspoons Vanilla

In a small saucepan, bring the cream to just below a boil. Remove from the heat and stir in the chocolate and peanut butter until it is melted and smooth. Set the frosting aside to cool and thicken as the brownies are cooling. Once thickened and cooled, spread the frosting on the brownies and sprinkle with chopped peanut butter cups. Allow the frosting to set for about 30 minutes (I popped them in the fridge) before slicing into 16 squares. 

SOURCE: Half Baked Harvest
  

Tuesday
Feb032015

Cherry Almond Granola

Cherry almond granola

We’ve really been getting into granola and yogurt for breakfast lately. Personally, I find that it has more staying power than something like a bagel. Joel has a favorite granola recipe, which is chock full of nuts and brown sugar, and while it is delicious, I enjoy dried fruit in my granola so I kept on searching. I’ve made countless different recipes, and I have to say that this one ranks up there among my favorites. A little bit nutty and a little bit fruity, the almonds and cherries are the perfect pair. Not only does this granola cook quickly, it stays together perfectly, which creates the most deliciously perfect clusters to top my morning yogurt!

1 cup Almonds, divided
3 cups Old Fashioned Oats
1 cup Dried Cherries (I added)
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/3 cup Brown Sugar
1/3 cup Honey
3 tablespoons Coconut Oil
1/4 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1/8 teaspoon Almond Extract 

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Finely chop half of the almonds and place them in a large bowl. Coarsely chop the cherries and remaining almonds, and add them to the bowl. Add the oats, salt, and brown sugar to the bowl and toss to combine. In a small microwavable bowl, combine the honey and coconut oil and heat for about 40 seconds, until the coconut oil is mostly melted. Stir to dissolve the coconut oil and add both extracts. Pour the oil mixture over the oat mixture and stir to coat evenly. Spread the mixture evenly onto the prepared baking sheet, then bake for 5 minutes. Remove the granola from the oven and stir, then return it to the oven and bake for about 10 more minutes. Remove the granola from the oven and let it cool completely. As it cools, it will clump together. When it has cooled completely, break the granola into clusters and store in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks, but I bet it won’t last that long! (*FYI...The cook time is not a typo. I thought so at first too, but it really does work!)

SOURCE: Barely adapted from Lovely Little Kitchen

Monday
Jan262015

Kimmelweck Rolls

Kimmelweck Rolls

It’s the first Secret Recipe Club reveal day of the year! This month, I was assigned to Karen’s Kitchen Stories. Karen, a busy, working mom and grandma, has so many amazing recipes on her blog with beautiful pictures to go along with each one. I know that I say it every month, but I really, truly had a difficult time paring down what I wanted to make from her blog. While she has posted many delicious main dish, side dish, appetizer, and dessert recipes, her favorite thing to make is bread, which shows through her extensive list of recipes in her bread category. It’s no secret that we are big on carbs in this house, so I wanted to take advantage of all of the bread recipes that Karen had to offer. While searching, I came across this Kimmelweck Roll recipe. I’m from Buffalo, NY and Beef on Weck is about as Buffalo as you can get, next to wings, so I knew that this was the bread recipe that I had to make! I’m so glad I did! Of course, we could’t resist trying one hot out of the oven, which was so delicious! The flavor of these rolls are spot on for some of the best I’ve had around my city. They made for the perfect vehicle for a roast beef sandwich! Thanks for giving me a reason to try my hand at a hometown staple, Karen!! 

2 1/2 teaspoons Dry Active Yeast
1 cup Warm Water, divided (95-110 degrees F)
2 tablespoons Vegetable Oil
1 tablespoon Sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon Salt
1 teaspoon Barley Malt Syrup or Honey
2 Egg Whites, separated
3 to 3 1/4 cups Bread Flour
1 tablespoon Water
Coarse Sea Salt
Caraway Seeds

In a small bowl, stir together 1/4 cup of the warm water with the yeast and set aside for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, in the bowl of a stand mixer, stir together the remaining 3/4 cup water, oil, sugar, salt, honey/barley syrup, and one egg white. Add 1 1/2 cup of the flour along with the yeast mixture and combine with a wooden spoon. Add another 1 1/2 cup of the flour and mix to combine. Knead the dough with the dough hook for 5-7 minutes. The dough should be smooth, elastic, and tacky but not sticky. Add additional flour if the dough is too sticky. Form the dough into a ball and place it in an oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise for about 1 hour, until doubled. Punch the dough down, cover, and let it rise for 30 more minutes. Divide the dough into eight equal pieces. Roll each piece into a ball and slightly flatten. Place the pieces onto a parchment lined baking sheet, pray with oil and cover with plastic wrap. Allow the dough to rise for 30 more minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. In a small bowl, whisk the remaining egg white with 1 tablespoon of water and brush over the rolls. Cut crescent shaped slits into the tops of the rolls and sprinkle them with the salt and caraway seeds. Mist the rolls with water and place them into the oven. Bake for 5 minutes, then quickly mist the rolls again. Continue to bake for an additional 20 minutes, or until browned. Cool on a wire rack before slicing. 

SOURCE: Karen’s Kitchen Stories