Wednesday, October 6, 2010

A Lesson on Artisan Bread from My Friend Doug

So, recently, I had the privilege to take a break from teaching cooking classes and take a class of my own on a subject that has always captured my interest: BREAD.  There is nothing more comforting or nurturing than a fresh loaf of bread, but a true artisan loaf leavened with 100% natural starter is something not easily tamed in the home kitchen.

For help with my quest for the perfect boule, I went to my friend Doug.  You may already know him.  He owns Luminous Kitchens, a local business that makes delicious "Bum Bars" and hand-brewed Kombucha.  Whatdayaknow, the same guy makes some really genius bread, right here in BK and right in his home kitchen.  Luckily for you, he is starting to teach private lessons, so you can learn how to make incredible bread right in your very own home.  Email him to arrange your first class.

Doug showed me a few easy steps to:

- Equip a home kitchen with basic tools for artisan bread baking
- Keep a healthy natural starter
- Mix and proof dough
- Improve a home oven to make a better, crusty loaf of bread
- Best utilize extra sourdough starter

As with all baking, formulas and recipes are always key, but as Doug has taught me, much of the nuance of bread making depends on feel.  You really have to see it done right at least once to get an idea of how artisan bread baking really works.

Here's Doug's formula for a basic country white loaf taken (and adapted) from his tome of choice, Breads from the La Brea Bakery by Nancy Silverton.

12 oz. super active white flour starter
2 pounds plus 2 oz. white bread flour
1 pound 2 oz. water (adjusted to achieve proper consistency)
4 1/2 tsp salt

Monday, September 27, 2010

Follow Betty Brooklyn on Twitter

You can now follow Betty Brooklyn on Twitter @bettybrooklyn !

Join me at the NYC Brewer's Choice

Please join me, this Thursday, September 30 at City Winery in SOHO.

Betty Brooklyn will be participating in NYC Brewer's Choice, the highlight of New York City's Craft Beer Week!

On the menu are deviled eggs topped with crispy pancetta and handmade dilly bean pickles

The eggs are from free-range, pasture fed hens at Tello's Green Farm in Duchess County, New York.
The pancetta is from local pork that is hand-cured at Bklyn Larder.
Green beans and dill are also locally sourced.

The eggs will be paired with a rye based beer from Bear Republic that was brewed especially for New York Craft Beer Week and just won a gold medal at the Great American Beer Fest. 

Come taste and enjoy the festivities!

Friday, September 3, 2010

Squash and Poblano Pepper Tamales, an End of Summer Treat

These tamales are delicious. Oh yeah, and their vegan. That doesn't stop me from serving them with pride to carnivores and vegetarians alike. Maybe I will send along a recipe for tamales de carnitas soon, though.

Tamales are a traditional Mexican dish that is often made around Christmas and 3 Kings Day. Families will make hundreds of tamales and deliver them to friends and to those in need.

However, tamales are delicious all times of year. They are a great food to take on the road, and are high in protein (from the nixtamalized corn flour).

Seasonality: End of summer as squash, peppers and corn are all ripening
Beverage pairing: Nice cold Mexican lager, your choice

Vegetable Oil
1 red onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, sliced thinly
1 poblano pepper, diced
1 squash (butternut, kabocha, delecata, whatever), peeled, seeded and chopped
Salt, Pepper
1 lime, juiced

-Heat a pot over medium high heat. Add a couple Tablespoons of vegetable oil and wait for that to heat up. Add the onions, garlic and poblano pepper to the oil and cook until they begin to soften. Add the squash and some salt and pepper. Reduce the heat to medium and cover the pot.
-Stir occasionally, replacing the lid each time. Cook until the squash is completely tender. and begins to mush and fall apart.
-Season with additional salt, pepper, cumin and lime juice.
-If you are making a bunch of tamales, you can double or triple the recipe.

1/2 Pound masa harina (Maseca is a common brand that can be found in almost any grocery store or bodega)
Chili Powder
1/2 Cup corn oil
2 Cups vegetable broth

-Season the corn flour with the spices. Then add the corn oil and fully incorporate it.
-Then add the broth.
-The texture should be similar to a thick peanut butter. If you need to adjust the texture, add more flour or broth.
-The recipe can be doubled or tripled for larger batches.

To assemble:
Corn Husks (Hojas de Mais)

-Soak the corn husks in luke warm water for 20 minutes.
-Make a 1/8" to 1/4" layer of Masa dough on one side of the husk, leaving 1" at the far edge.
-Place a small amount of filling (approx. 3 TBS) in the center of the dough, in a line.
-Roll the tamale up like a sushi roll or a cigar. Be sure to pinch it together slightly when one edge of the dough touches the other side. You want the dough to fuse together.
-Fold the bottom end of the corn husk up to seal it together.
-Place all of the tamales in a tall steamer with the folded end toward the bottom.
-Steam the tamales for 45 minutes, making sure that the water does not run out, burning the bottom of the pot.
-Remove the tamales, unwrap them, and slice them in pieces to taste.

HERE is a really cute you tube video of some little girls making tamales

End of Summer Canning

Tomato Jam with Cinnamon Basil and Crystallized Ginger
Tomato jam is great for grilled chicken sandwiches, delicious with pesto on grilled bread, and perfect with fresh mozzarella on a piece of country wheat toast. You don't have to add the ginger or the basil. You can add whatever seasoning or spice you like. With this recipe you will get significantly less yield than a tomato sauce, but to me, it's worth it for the super-sweet concentrated tomato taste.

3 Quarts of your favorite heirloom tomato, chopped
1 Cup sugar
2 Cups white wine vinegar
4 Inches ginger, minced
10 Pieces crystallized ginger, diced
1 Bunch cinnamon basil (or other spicy basil such as Thai or Mexican)
Salt and pepper, to taste

-Boil the tomatoes with sugar, vinegar, and ginger.
-Stir frequently and reduce to a very thick mixture (almost a paste).
-At the last moment, stir in the crystallized ginger and basil.
-Season with salt and pepper.
-Process jars in boiling water bath.

Jupiter Grape Jam with Balsamic and Rosemary
Jupiter Grapes are a seedless table grape available from the finger lakes region of New York state only for a very short window. They are super flavorful like concord grapes (maybe a little juicier), but because they are seedless you can use them to make jam (with the whole fruit), not just jelly (strained). This jam is less sweet than most and can be used as a sauce for quail, in a mini tart, or just with pb on a sandwich.

4 Bunches Jupiter grapes, pulled from the stems and rinsed
4 Sprigs rosemary
1 Cup Balsamic vinegar
Generous amount of Black Pepper
Salt to taste

-Boil the Jupiter grapes in a large pot with a little bit of water and 1/2 of the Balsamic vinegar until quite thick.
-Then, season the jam to your taste with the remaining vinegar, black pepper and salt, add the rosemary and allow it to steep for 30 min.
-Remove the rosemary, bring the mixture back to a boil and can it.

Tomatillo Salsa
This is one of my favorite recipes to make this time of year and it is so SUPER easy! You do need two very important pieces of equipment, however: a cast iron pan, griddle or grill and a blender. Can this and you will be feasting on summer bounty for the rest of the winter, or as long as your supplies last....

3 LBS of fresh tomatillos, leaves removed and fruit rinsed
4 Jalepenos
2 Heads of garlic, roasted in aluminum foil in a 300F oven until soft (20 min.)
2 Cloves garlic, raw
2 Bunches fresh cilantro
Fresh lime juice to taste
Salt to taste

-Heat your cast iron pan until it is extremely hot.
-Do not add oil.
-Drop in your tomatillos and jalepenos, blackening them on all sides. You will need to move them around to blacken them evenly. Also, you will want to do this in small enough batches where all the tomatillos can touch the bottom of the pan for more even cooking/blackening. You could also do this on a grill/griddle or barbecue if you prefer.
-Then just toss all of your blackened tomatillos and jalepenos in your blender with the roasted and raw garlic and cilantro.
-Blend (you can leave it a little chunky). Then season your salsa with salt and lime juice. You can just stop there and enjoy your creation on chips right out of the blender, but if you have slightly more restraint, bring it to a boil on the stove top. You may want to reduce the salsa a little if you feel like it is too watery. If so, this is the time to do it. When you have reached the consistency that you desire, taste it again to make sure that you still have all the acidity that you want and can it.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Betty Brooklyn's Pies Take the Cake!

Betty Brooklyn was the winner of the People's Choice award at Pie Lovers Unite, the BK Farmyards Pie Cook-off held on June 12. Many thanks to all who came and showed their support! And thanks to BK for my awesome prizes!

Now get ready, cause these pies are coming right back at you! Betty Brooklyn is giving an encore performance, serving her delicious savory pies at Meatopia, the cities biggest meat event ever! The event is going to be held on Governor's Island on Sunday, July 11th . Get you tickets now!

Here's a recipe to make these yummy pies at home! Beware, this is a multi-day process, but boy is it worth it!

I made 4 times this much, but I wanted to keep the quantities manageable for those who may want to try it at home. This amount should make about 25 mini pies. But hey, if you are going through the trouble, why not make a few extra to give to friends or save in the freezer for a rainy day. You could even heat them up in a toaster oven for breakfast!


For the braised shortribs:
1 1/4 LBS. Local, grass-fed shortribs
Salt and Pepper
12 oz. Home-brewed stout (or you could use Guiness)
Chicken stock
1/4 can Tomato paste
1 Red onion
1 Carrot

To make the filling:
1/2 Red onion
1/2 Jalepeno
Braised short ribs
Salt and pepper
Homemade whole grain spicy mustard (or you could buy whole grain mustard)
Slotted spoon or spatula

To make the crust:
2 1/2 c All purpose flour
2 TBS Sugar
1 1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 cup Butter
1/2 cup Vegetable shortening
1/4 cup and 2 TBS Buttermilk

To assemble the pies:
Mini muffin tin
Short rib mix
More home made whole grain spicy mustard
Light egg wash

For the shortribs:
-Pat the short ribs dry and season them generously with salt and pepper.
-Sear the short ribs in a pan or skillet until they have a nice brown color on all sides. Try not to allow the pan to burn.
-Deglaze your pan using a little beer to loosen the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Place the liquid in a pot deep enough to hold all of your ingredients.
-Peel the onion and carrot. Cut them into large chunks and brown them in a pan or skillet. Then add the tomato paste and cook it until it begins to darken.
-Transfer all your veggies to the pot containing your liquid from the previous deglazing.
-Then, deglaze your vegetable pan using a little beer and add that liquid to the pot as well.
-Add the shortribs to the pot. Add the rest of the beer and add chicken stock until the ribs are just covered with liquid.
-Cover the pot and cook at a simmer for 4-6 hours or until the ribs are completely tender. You can do this on the stove on low heat or in the oven at 225F.
-When the ribs are very tender, remove the pot from the heat and cool rapidly in an ice bath.

To make the filling:
-When the mixture is cool, remove the ribs and place them on a cutting board.
-Strain the liquid through a fine mesh sieve and reduce the liquid at a simmer, skimming regularly, until it is thick enough to barely coat the back of a metal spoon.
-Remove bones and sinew from the braised ribs (you can save this to make a weak stock later).
-Chop the meat finely.
-Dice the red onion and jalepeno very finely and sautee them in a pot that is large enough to hold the sum of all of your filling ingredients.
-Add the reduced liquid and the chopped ribs.
-Cook the mixture, stirring with a slotted spatula or spoon to break-up the beef into more uniform pieces.
-Cook until the mixture is thick and fairly homogeneous (it doesn't have to be completely without chunks).
-Season with salt, pepper and spicy mustard.
-Cool the mixture in an ice bath.

To make the crust:
-Mix the flour, salt and sugar in a bowl.
-Add the butter and shortening and rub it into the butter with your hands. Make sure to not rub it in too thoroughly, you want some buttery bits.
-Add the buttermilk all at once and mix just to incorporate.
-Knead for 1 or 2 turns on the counter top and rest the dough (wrapped in plastic wrap) in the refrigerator for an hour.

To assemble the pies:
-Roll out the pie crust very thinly and cut into appropriate sizes for your muffin tins (top and bottom). I use a round cookie cutter set and just find the right size out of the set, but you could use the rim of a glass if it is the right size, or just roll a sheet of dough over the tray and remove the excess dough that you don't need after pushing it into the molds.
-Fill the pies to the rim with your cooled short rib filling. Then put about a teaspoon of spicy mustard on top.
-Then put on your top crust.
-Seal the top crust to the bottom crust with a fork and punch a small hole in the top of each pie to vent.
-Brush with a light egg wash using a pastry brush or a digital pastry brush (your fingers).
-Pop them in a 375F oven for 20-25 minutes or until they are bubbly and golden brown.
-ENJOY!!! You've earned it!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

HOT summer salads!!

Howdy folks -

I feel like I am back in Texas today, being that the high was 95F and it is only May 26! I can't wait till August!

Well, being as the heat has already started, I think that it is fair to say that it is time to begin changing the way we eat. Out with saucy stews and in with summer salads!

One thing I love about all of these recipes is that they require little to no cooking. Just be sure to use the best possible ingredients. They will really shine through!

Black bean and corn salad

5 ears of corn
1 cup of black beans, soaked and cooked till tender or 1 large can of black beans
2 red peppers, diced
1 box of cherry tomatoes, split lengthwise
1 bunch cilantro, washed
3 limes
Salt and pepper

-Shuck the corn and cook it over the open flame of a gas burner or grill. Allow the ears of corn to slightly blacken.
-Cut the ears off the corn and mix it with the drained black beans, diced red peppers, and split cherry tomatoes.
-Pick the leaves of cilantro off the stems and mix it into the salad.
-Season with the juice from the limes and salt and pepper.

Cabbage and fennel slaw with sesame seeds and golden raisins

1/2 cabbage cut into thin strips
1 fennel bulb, cut into thin strips
1 1/2 cups golden raisins
1/2 cup sesame seeds
Red wine vinegar to taste
Salt and Pepper

-Cut and mix the cabbage and fennel together with a little salt.
-Toast the sesame seeds in a pan on the stove top stirring constantly.
-Mix the sesame seeds and the golden raisins with the cabbage and fennel.
-Then season the salad with additional salt, pepper and red wine vinegar.

Soba noodle salad

2 rolls of buckwheat soba noodles
1 carrot, diced
1 bunch radishes, diced
1 bunch scallions, sliced thinly
1 bunch cilantro, washed
1/4 cup sesame seeds
Toasted sesame oil
Ume plum vinegar

-Cook the soba noodles until al dente. Then drain and rinse with cold water.
-Mix the noodles with the diced carrot and radishes and sliced scallions.
-Pick the leaves off of the cilantro stems and add to the salad.
-Toast the sesame seeds in a pan on the stove top, stirring constantly.
-Add the sesame seeds to the salad and season the salad with toasted sesame oil, ume plum vinegar and tamari.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Benefit Bash in Review

After a long hiatus due to multiple computer malfunctions, Betty Brooklyn is returning to the blogosphere.

It is now time for much belated thanks to all of those who contributed to the Benefit Bash for BK Farmyards.

Here are some recipes from the event. For those of you who were there, you can learn how to make some of your favorites. And for those of you who couldn't make it, this is to make you jealous....

Also, this entry features some beautiful and amazing photos by Raymond Adams who photographed the event. Please check out some of his other work at his website:

Ramp and pistachio pesto:

Ramps are wild leeks that are foraged all along the Eastern Coast of North America. They have a flavor similar to garlic and onions but are spicier and grassier. There are so many delicious recipes featuring ramps, I highly suggest you go get some from the farmer's market or try and forage your own. Then have fun and experiment. The bulbs make delicious sweet vinegar pickles and the greens are excellent sauteed and mixed in stir fries and pastas. Here is one of my favorite applications: pesto.

Seasonality: Ramps are extremely seasonal. They are only available from Late April through May.

Beverage Pair: Full bodied white wine such as a Viognier

1 bunch Ramps
1 bunch Basil
8 oz. Pistachios
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Lemon Juice to taste
Salt and Pepper to taste

-Wash the ramps well, then slice them thinly.
-Sautee the ramps in a skillet lightly (until just wilted), then cool them in one layer on a tray in the refrigerator to maintain their color.
-Pick the basil leaves from the stems and save the stems for herbal tea or stock.
-Wash the basil leaves in a bowl of cold water and dry them well without damaging the leaves.
-Then place the pistachios, ramps and basil in the blender with a few TBS. of extra virgin olive oil and the juice of half a lemon. Only use enough oil to get the blender going.
-Blend until completely incorporated, or if you prefer a rustic look, leave it chunkier.
-Add salt, pepper and additional lemon juice to your taste.

To make the hors d'oeuvre I served at the party: Mix the pesto with thinly sliced sugar snap peas and blanched English peas and spoon onto toasts. Top with thinly sliced radish for garnish.

But don't stop there, this stuff is delicious in a variety of applications.

For a delicious pasta dish: Mix with perfectly cooked linguine, sauteed asparagus and morrel mushrooms.

Cardamom and dark chocolate ganache truffles rolled in cocoa:

The perfect after dinner treat for chocolate lovers everywhere, these truffles are a delight. They are little bite sized treats packed with flavor. Chocolate truffles are named after the fungi that looks a little similar and is just as much of a delicacy.

Use the best quality chocolate you can find/afford because the better the chocolate, the tastier the truffles. this really is one recipe that depends on quality ingredients. For the party, I used a very high quality, single origin chocolate from Venezuela.

Seasonality: Cocoa isn't local, so chef's in the US don't really consider it to be a seasonal ingredient. Maybe we're all just chocoholics, but I love to eat chocolate all year!

Beverage pair: Aged Ruby Porto


1 LB. of Dark Chocolate
1 cup Heavy Whipping Cream
Cardamom and Salt to taste
Cocoa Powder

To make the ganache:
-Chop the chocolate into small pieces and put them in a heat proof bowl.
-Bring the heavy cream to a boil in a sauce pan with 5 cardamom pods.
-Remove the cardamom pods and pour the hot cream over the chocolate. Allow the mix to sit for a couple of minutes.
-Stir with a spatula to incorporate.
-Pour the ganache onto a sheet tray in a thin layer, cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled.

To shape the truffles:
-Grind Cardamom seeds in a coffee grinder or spice grinder until very fine. Combine cardamom with cocoa and salt until you have reached the desired flavor (probably about 12 cardamom pods and 1 TBS salt to 1 1/2 cups cocoa).
-Now, get ready. Take off any jewelry you wear on your hands. You are about to get messy!
-Roll the ganache into small balls about 1/2 inch in diameter.
-Then toss them in your cocoa mixture.
-Separate the truffles from the cocoa using a fine mesh colander.

NOT TO BE FORGOTTEN: Shout out to everyone that helped out with the Benefit Bash for BK Farmyards!

GRAB Specialty Foods: GRAB provided a superb cheese plate for the event!

Visit GRAB Specialty Foods at

Sister Liqueurs: Awesome, delicious cocktails! Beet Sangria, Grapefruit Fizzles, need I say more? You have to check this out and join her club! Also, thanks to Gabriel Willow for his bar tending skills!

Visit Sister Liqueurs at

Ice Sculpture by Joshua Kalin: Looked so pretty!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Benefit Bash for BK Farmyards

Betty Brooklyn is celebrating the launch of her private chef and catering business by throwing a benefit bash to support BK Farmyards.

What: Benefit Bash with Betty Brooklyn
When: Sunday, April 11th 2010 4:30-8pm
Where: 220 Plymouth St. Suite 5A, BK NY, F Train to York Street
Cost: $20 in advance $25 at the door, 100% of all proceeds goes to bk farmyards. Purchase Tickets at
Space is Limited!

• Hors d’oeuvres by Betty Brooklyn
• Specialty cocktails by Sister Liqueurs
• Beer provided by Blue Point
• Gourmet goods provided by GRAB Specialty Foods
• Homebrewed kombucha tea spritzers
• Ice sculpture by Joshua Kalin
• Presentation on the bk farmyards and the new Youth Farm at the High School for Public Service.
• Live auction of local Brooklyn goods

The Menu
• Sautéed spring mushrooms in phyllo cups with Salvatore Bklyn ricotta and tarragon
• Grilled marinated flank steak skewers with chimichurri sauce
• Deviled quail eggs with crispy bacon
• Spring peas in ramp and pistachio pesto with radish slices on locally baked baguette
• Handmade lox on bagel chips with crème fraiche and wild onion chives
• Citrus and beet salad in lettuce cups
• Selection of local artisan cheeses supplied by GRAB specialty foods with dried fruits and locally baked breads
• Crunchy seasonal vegetables with handmade hummus
• Roasted almonds with smoked paprika and thyme
• Cardamom and dark chocolate ganache truffles rolled in cocoa
• Warm cookies and Ronnybrook Farm milk

About Betty Brooklyn
Using the best of New York’s local, seasonal and organic produce, Betty Brooklyn prepares delicious, nourishing meals for people who love food. She also offers personalized private chef classes for individuals and small groups.

About BK Farmyards
BK Farmyards is working to transform a Brooklyn public school yard into a one acre urban farm to be used both as an educational program for the students and a community agriculture project.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Beet and Horseradish Preserves

Beets and horseradish are traditional ingredients for the passover feast. In honor of passover, I would like to present this recipe. This preserve goes wonderfully with raw tuna or goat cheese. It's also delicious on roast beef sandwiches. Mustard seeds are not kosher for some during the passover season. To substitute, you can just use more horseradish and a little extra lemon juice.

Seasonality: passover time or in late summer when you have lots of beets in your garden

Beverage Pair: depends on what you eat it with

1 pound of grated beets (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 pound finely grated horseradish (about 3/4 cup)
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup whole grain mustard
Salt, pepper and additional lemon juice to taste

-Combine all the ingredients in a pan and cook them over medium heat until the beets are cooked and the mixture is thick like a jam.
-Taste the mixture and add salt, pepper and any needed lemon juice.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Check out my New website!

Hello readers!

I am just writing to mention that Betty Brooklyn's new website for private chef services, catering and cooking classes is now public. Please check it out to see pictures, menus and class descriptions.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Awesome Chai Tea

This chai tea is the perfect something for a rainy afternoon! It is incredibly rich and flavorful because of the ground nuts in the recipe.

Seasonality: Any time you're feeling blue...

Beverage pair: Oh, yeah. This is a beverage!

1 1/2 TBS blanched almonds
1 1/2 TBS shelled and peeled pistachios
10 whole green cardamom pods, pods removed
1 inch cinnamon stick
1 large pinch saffron
1/2 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
2 cups whole milk (you can substitute soy milk)
3 1/2 TBS packed light brown sugar
5 TBS loose black tea leaves
1/8 tsp salt

-Grind the nuts, cardamom, cinnamon and saffron in a coffee grinder until a fine powder. Then add the nutmeg.
-Simmer milk with the nut mixture. Add sugar and salt.
-Boil water and steep the back tea in it. Strain.
-Combine tea and milk.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Garlic Pickle

Garlic pickle is a traditional Indian condiment used along side of rice, stews and vegetable dishes to add flavor. I love to put it on avocado sandwiches or use it as a sauce or condiment with roasted lamb and chicken. It is also delicious on top of hummus.

Seasonality: all year

Beverage pair: depends on what you serve it with...

Note on peeling garlic: Garlic can be frustrating to peel, but it is made easy if you simply soak the cloves in water for 30 minutes prior to removing the peel.

1/4 cup olive oil
1 TBS yellow mustard seeds
1/2 cup raw cashews
1 1/2 cup peeled garlic cloves
2 tsp coriander, ground
1 tsp cumin, ground
1 tsp red chili flakes
1/2 tsp tumeric
2 1/2 tsp salt
2 TBS jaggary or brown sugar
1/4 cup lemon juice

-Heat oil in a large skillet.
-Add mustard seeds and wait for them to pop.
-When the seeds are nearly all toasted and have turned a gray color add the garlic cloves. They will begin to caramelize. Then add the cashews.
-Add all the spices and cook till fragrant. Then add jaggary or brown sugar and salt and cook until it dissolves in the mixture. Add lemon juice and allow it to reduce slightly.
-Cool and serve.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Raymond Adams Photography

I want to take a minute and thank Raymond Adams for his beautiful photography. He has taken some amazing shots for my professional website and I want to give him full credit on his amazing work. Ray is an incredible photographer with a great sense of style and lighting. His work on interiors and exteriors is also quite fantastic. Please take a look at to see more of his work.

Awesome Pizza Dough

This pizza dough is terrific to work with. It has a subtly sweet flavor from the honey and goes well with a lot of different sauces and toppings. You can roll the dough out in advance and put it in the freezer for a rainy day.

Seasonality: All Year

Drink Pair: Pilsner

1/2 oz fresh yeast
3/4 cup room temperature water
1 tsp sugar
2 TBS extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 TBS honey
10 oz bread flour

-Dissolve the yeast in water.
-Mix in sugar, olive oil, salt and honey.
-Then combine with the flour to form a dough.
-Rest the dough 10 minutes and then knead it for 10 minutes or until a very smooth ball forms.
-Let rise for 1 hour or until doubled in size.
-Turn the dough and refrigerate for 2 hours.
-Divide the dough in half and roll two 10-12 inch pies. Be careful in this stage not to overwork the dough. This will get the gluten strands to contract and make it hard to stretch the crusts thin.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

My Best Friend's Family Favorite Mustard Sauce

My best friend Erin has a lot of family recipes. She shared this one with me and we served it at my wedding. It was a big hit! Serve it on Easter ham or with a delicious charcuterie plate.

Seasonality: all year
Beverage pair: Pinot Noir (to go with the ham)

1 cup sugar
1 TBS dry mustard powder
3 eggs beaten
1/2 cup vinegar

-Cook in a double boiler until thick.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Elizabeth's Magical Pepita Seed Rolls

These rolls are famous in their own right.

Seasonality: all year
Beverage Pair: Brown Ale

2 packs of dry yeast
1/2 cup luke warm water
1/3 cup molasses
1 TBS salt
1 TBS caraway seeds
1/4 cup shortening, melted
1 3/4 cup luke warm water
1 1/2 cup rye flour
1 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
3-4 cups all purpose flour
1/3 cup pepita seeds

-Dissolve yeast into 1/2 cup water.
-Stir in molasses, salt, caraway seeds, melted shortening, 1 3/4 cup additional water, rye flour and whole wheat flour.
-Beat until smooth.
-Stir in enough all purpose flour to form a dough and then add pepita seeds.
-Rest the dough for 10 minutes.
-Knead for 10 minutes.
-Let the dough rise in a bowl coated in olive oil for 1 hour or until doubled.
-Shape the dough into rolls and let rise for 1 additional hour.
-Bake at 400 for 35-40 minutes.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Moist Pumpkin Bread

This recipe is amazing in its versatility. It is crumbly and moist. My favorite application for this bread is mini finger sandwiches filled with Nutella. It makes an amazing sweet treat for a tea party or baby shower.

You can use your run-o-the-mill canned pumpkin for this recipe, or use fresh kabocha squash from the farmer's market. Really, any pumpkin puree will do. Just make sure that consistency of your puree is similar to that of canned pumpkin. If it is too dry, just add a little water.

Seasonality: Perfect pumpkin season is fall, but go ahead and make this recipe through the winter as well.

Beverage pair: Hot cider

2/3 cup shortening
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
2 cups pumpkin puree
2/3 cups water
3 1/3 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground cloves

-Cream the shortening and sugar together.
-Then, add the eggs, pumpkin puree and water.
-In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, and spices.
-Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir just until combined.
-Pour into 2 greased loaf pans and bake at 350F for about an hour.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Biscuits Supreme

This is my absolute favorite biscuit recipe. It is perfect with gravy for a good old fashioned Southern breakfast. You can add a little more sugar and use it for shortcake or add cheese and bacon for a delicious savory snack. This recipe also adapts very well to vegan applications (see the parenthesis for ingredient substitutions).

Seasonality: all year
Beverage pairing: hot coffee

3 cups all-purpose flour
4 tsp. baking powder
1 TBS. sugar
1 tsp. salt
3/4 tsp. cream of tartar
3/4 cup butter (or vegetable shortening)
1 1/4 cups buttermilk (or 1 1/4 cup cup soy milk plus 1 TBS white vinegar)
1/4 cup whipping cream (or 1/4 cup additional soy milk)

- Whisk together flour, baking powder, sugar, salt and cream of tartar.
- Then, rub the butter into the flour mixture using your hands until the flour has pea size chunks of butter in it.
- Make a well in the center of the mixture and add buttermilk and cream. Mix just until the batter is moistened.
- Drop spoonfuls of batter onto un-greased baking sheets and bake at 450F for 10-12 min.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Vegan Double Chocolate Cake

Seasonality: Make this cake all year round.
Beverage pair: A nice robust red with some fruity overtones like a red zinfandel.

My husband is vegan, so this is an amazing recipe for me. Non-vegans will be surprised. This cake is really amazing!

For the cake:
Olive oil
1 cup warm water
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
1 cup sugar
3/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup olive oil
1 TBS. vanilla
2 tsp. distilled white vinegar

For the glaze:
2 ou. Dark Chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup confectioner's sugar
2 TBS. water

-Grease an 8" round pan with olive oil.
-Wisk the water and cocoa until smooth.
-Combine the remaining dry ingredients.
-Make a well in the dry ingredients and add cocoa mixture, oil and vanilla.
-Add the vinegar and pour directly into the pan.
-Bake at 350F until a toothpick comes out clean (30-45min)
For the Glaze:
-Melt chocolate in a double boiler.
-Add sugar and water.
-Wisk until smooth.