Sunday, February 16, 2014

This one I'm pretty excited about.  Tamales seem really complicated, but after looking at the steps and considering I already had the chicken cooked from last week it seemed pretty easy.

I made the masa dough following this recipe only I halved the amounts.  For the filling I used some of the chicken, some corn, spinach and various spices.

Wrapping the tamales was pretty tricky, I'm sure there's an art to it, I just don't have it.  I used twine to tie some of them because the corn husk ties upset me.

It tastes pretty good. I'm pleased with the results but I think this may be one of those foods that you're way better off buying from a stand for $2 than making yourself.

Oh and when they tell you to make sure the water doesn't boil away, you should listen to them.  In related news, baking soda and vinegar cleans burned pots very well.

Slow cooker pulled chicken

A local grocery store was selling chicken for $1.69 a pound, I'd been wanting to make a batch of pulled chicken I could have in the freezer for recipes for a while so this was the time.  I asked for 6 chicken breasts, and didn't realise until I got home they sell them joined together. So if you ask for 6 you actually get 12 chicken breasts.

This was super easy, even needing to do two batches because of the amount I had. Put it in the crock pot. Turn it on.  Let it cool. Tear it apart. Done and Done.

It was pretty tasty, I wanted it pretty plain so I could use it in a variety of recipes so I used the instructions from Handle the Heat.

This week I turned it into a BBQ chicken sandwich, which involved the very complex step of putting BBQ sauce into a pot with the chicken and stirring it until it was warm. 

The next night I turned the left of BBQ chicken into nachos. Delicious? Yes. Healthy? Not at all.

Cauliflower Alfredo

There's a trend at the moment where people take old favourite recipes and try to make them super healthy.  I see the appeal, diets are easier to follow when they aren't major shifts, just little changes.
But I don't think it's for me, I just get angry. Don't tell me that spaghetti squash is just like pasta. It's not. It doesn't taste the same. Don't tell me you can't tell the difference. You're lying. Everyone can tell the difference. 

So I'm not going to tell you that this Cauli-Power Fettuccine Alfredo from Oh She Glows tastes exactly like alfredo sauce. It tastes nothing at all like alfredo sauce, it's good. It's even better the next day but it's not the same.  It's not as creamy, I blended that thing for a very, very long time and it was still kind of grainy. Not it a gross way, just in a way that didn't let you forget that it was made of cauliflower.

Chicken Pot Pie Soup

I stole a new years resolution from someone in my Stitch & Bitch group, to make a new recipe every week.  I'm hoping this will both expand my skills in the kitchen and make me eat actual food.  Because I eat breakfast & lunch at home and get home pretty tired I tend to eat a lot of the same thing over and over and none of it particularly healthy.

First up is this Chicken Pot Pie Soup from Heat Oven to 350.

I'd had some puff pastry sheets in my freezer for a couple of years and I was a little worried they wouldn't work but they turned out just fine.

I used almond milk instead of regular milk and I don't think it made much of a difference, perhaps it would have been creamier with it.

It was a little runny so I took out probably 2 cups of the broth before serving it.  I used this later in the week just mixed with rice.

From Pinterest: Bread Dough

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Did you know you could actually do the things you pin to Pinterest? Me neither, I thought they were purely aspirational. Here's a series on actually doing the pins.
The Series. My Pinterest boards

I've been meaning to bake my own bread since I moved to the USA because bread here is too sweet.  Regular supermarket loaves all taste like sugar I don't know what it is or why but American bread is sweet.  I've been buying sour dough but that just doesn't taste the same. I want a bread that doesn't add flavour to the sandwich, just holds the bits together.  Four years later I've actually decided to do it.

I used this recipe from Bread in 5 my yeast was 4 months out of date so I was a little worried it wouldn't work but after mixing it all in and leaving it I came home to risen dough. I was pretty excited.

To make the loaf you measure out a pound of dough and make it into a ball, then leave it to sit for 90 minutes.  You're supposed to use parchment paper but last time I used it it made my kitchen all smoky so I just used foil.

I cooked it at 400 instead of 450 and for 5 minutes less because my over runs really hot, it probably could have done with a few minutes less because the crust was a little tough. But it turned out great!

Apparently the dough lasts in the fridge for two weeks and I love the idea of having dough in my fridge to use when ever I want.