DDD #151 – Crazy Super Easy & Quick Artisan Bread

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2020

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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I had this sort of Artisan bread when I had the pleasure of being a guest at the Arkansas home of my friends Ed & Andrea.  Andrea has a cool food blog of her own called On Life & Beans.  HERE is her recipe for a large quantity of this sort of dough.   It is a simple, hearty, rustic bread that works well for everything.  Hers was delicious!

I started smaller than her recipe.  The secret to this bread is 1) making the dough & letting it rest for AT LEAST 2 hours but up to 12-18 hours and 2) putting a pan of water in your oven when you bake the bread – which results in a crazy awesome & crusty exterior.

There are few recipes more simple than this one.  You can make as much dough as you like & it will keep, raw, in your fridge for up to TWO WEEKS for you to rip hunks off of at will & bake yourself some fresh bread any day.  It’s kind of a miracle.  I cannot recommend strongly enough that you try this at least once.

Click the image below to watch the video.

Crazy Super Easy & Quick Artisan Bread

INGREDIENTS

6 1/2 cups flour

1 1/2 TBS salt

1 1/2 TBS yeast (or 1 1/2 packets of yeast)

3 cups warm water

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DIRECTIONS

Whisk the yeast into the warm water in a very large bowl.

Add the salt & let it dissolve.  Add the flour & blend with a wooden spoon until all the flour is incorporated & you have a very sticky dough.  Cover with plastic wrap sprayed with cooking oil & let it sit for 2-5 hours in a warm spot in your kitchen.

At this point, you can bake immediately or you can put the bowl of raw dough in the fridge.  It will keep for up to two weeks!!!  I let mine chill overnight but this is not necessary.  You can bake it after the two hour rising & get on with the show.  Here is how it looked after a night in the fridge:

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To bake, pre-heat the over to 450 and be sure to let it get to 450 before you put your bread in there.  I used a pizza stone that I never use for pizza – but only because the thing lives in my oven anyway – so why not put it to SOME use?  You could use a cookie sheet or a cast iron pan or cast iron Dutch oven.  Place a pan (or pie tin or something) on the bottom of your oven with a cup of water in it.  This is critical as it will steam your bread into – counter-intuitively – a very crusty exterior.  If you hate crusty bread (weirdo!) – skip the pan of water.

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I tore off a hunk of dough (about 1/2 the entire quantity I made) & rolled & stretched it a bit until I formed a loaf that was sorta smooth & round on the top.  I slashed the dough a few times with a serrated knife & then placed the dough on parchment paper & then put this on the pizza stone on the middle rack.

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I baked mine bread for 20 minutes.  Time will depend on the size of the loaf you make.  It should look nice & golden – even browned – on the outside.  Be sure to let it get golden or your risk a wet & doughy center in your loaf.

Remove from the oven & let cool or devour immediately.

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Homemade Cracked Pepper Spaghetti with Broccoli & Goat Cheese Pesto

5 Comments

All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2013

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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This is not a Cinco de Mayo recipe but several will be coming in the next few days.  This is just a yummy broccoli pasta recipe that is really easy – especially if you use dry spaghetti.

I am not going to post a formal recipe here for the spaghetti except to say that the ingredients are: 600 grams flour, six eggs, a tsp salt & 2 TBS fresh cracked pepper.  That works out to what they call 6 servings.  I put all those things in my bread machine & let that thing work its magic.  It produced this tacky ball:

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which I then put through this process:

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to get this result:

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Homemade pasta is a glorious thing!  Comprehensive instructions on making pasta dough is HERE in this post.  It can be done without any tools beyond a rolling pin & a knife – but that seems like a lot of work.

This pesto doesn’t have any nuts.  It is as easy as any pesto & just as yummy.

Also – I bought red basil at the AMAZING store – Super King – that I blogged about yesterday & that is the dark leafy stuff you might make out in the photos.  Regular basil is fine.

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Broccoli & Goat Cheese Pesto

INGREDIENTS

2 small – medium heads broccoli

garlic cloves (I used 10 – but that might be too hardcore for more tender palates)

1/2 cup fresh basil

5 oz goat cheese

1/2 cup olive oil

juice & zest of 1/2 lemon

S&P to taste

Lemon wedges as garnish

Grated Parmesan as garnish

Parsley and/or extra basil, chopped as garnish

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DIRECTIONS

Cut the florets off of one head of cauliflower & quick steam them for 3-5 minutes in a covered pan with very shallow (1/2 inch) boiling water.  Drain & rinse under cold water.  Set aside.

Take the stems from the first head & all of the second & chop them up.  Blend in a food processor with goat cheese, garlic, basil, lemon juice & zest and S&P – adding the olive oil slowly.  You might not need it all – you might need more – depending on the quantity of broccoli you have.  It also might need to be scraped down the sides of the work bowl a few times.   If it is still too thick and you want to limit the olive oil used – just add a bit of water.

Cook your pasta.  While it cooks, heat a TBS olive oil in a pan & heat up your pesto.  Add the broccoli florets you set aside.  Heat it through but do not cook it too long so that your florets do not get soggy.

When the pasta is done, drain it & toss it with the pesto.  Garnish with grated Parmesan, chopped parsley & a lemon wedge.

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Lemon-Pepper Artisan Pappardelle with Creamy Lemon-Basil Sauce, Spinach & Edamame

2 Comments

All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2013

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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I love homemade pasta.  I love making homemade pasta.  I loved making it when I was doing it all manually & I like it even more now that I can mix & knead the dough in my bread machine & I have a stand mixer with pasta making attachments that motorizes the cranking for me as I press & cut the dough.  I love the process – it is Zen for me – and I am reeeeeally gratified by the light & delicate finished product.  And now I am loving experimenting with flavors.

Homemade pasta has a subtle flavor that begs for more nuanced toppings than heavy red sauces etc.  Also – some folks think it is overcooked when they taste it because they are so accustomed to al dente being a pasta standard.  Homemade pasta can never be al dente because it is never dried & hard.  It is soft & light & you can eat mounds of it without ever getting that stuffed & bloated feeling.  Leftover pasta makes an incredible breakfast when mixed with eggs, Parmesan & parsley (and anything else – sausage, avocado, tomatoes etc etc).

Anyway – this particular pasta could be made without any special tools.  You could make the dough, roll it out in sections to the desired thinness & then hand-cut the pappardelle.   I hand-cut mine with a sharp knife & I liked the inconsistent dimensions of each noodle.  I think you will, too.  However – if making homemade pasta either intimidates you or is too time consuming – just use a boxed pappardelle or other long noodle pasta.  This recipe seems heavy – but the ratio of heavy cream to pasta is such that it is actually quite light.

One note – I hung this pasta to dry over hangers like this:

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I won’t do that again as most of the pasta broke at the bend when it dried out.  It didn’t matter much but just letting it dry on the counter works just as well.

Also – I had the luxury of using backyard lemons that were nearly orange in color & exceptionally juicy & amazingly aromatic.   Ymmm!

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Lemon-Pepper Artisan Pappardelle

INGREDIENTS

3 1/2 cups flour

4 eggs

1 TBS olive oil

2 TBS water

1-2 lemons – zest & juice

1 TBS cracked pepper

DIRECTIONS

I made my dough by putting the ingredients in my bread machine.  Additionally – I made it a day ahead & let it rest overnight in my fridge, wrapped tightly in plastic wrap.  This isn’t necessary.

Comprehensive instructions on making pasta dough is HERE in this post.

I then rolled it thin & cut it into strips by hand.

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Creamy Lemon-Basil Sauce, Spinach & Edamame

Serves 4 easily

INGREDIENTS

2 TBS olive oil

4 TBS butter

4 garlic cloves – minced

1 1/2 cups heavy cream

2 TBS lemon juice

1 TBS lemon zest

2 or more TBS basil – chopped

2 packed cups fresh spinach

1 cup edamame

Gremolata (2 TBS lemon zest, 1 minced garlic clove & 4 TBS minced parsley)

Grated Parmesan

S&P to taste

DIRECTIONS

Mix the gremolata & set aside.

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Plunge the spinach in boiling water for 30 seconds then drain, cool & chop.  Set aside.

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Heat the butter in a pan & add the garlic.  Saute for a minute then add the heavy cream, lemon juice & zest, shredded basil and S&P to taste.  Simmer on low heat for a few minutes to let the flavors meld.  Add the chopped spinach & edamame.

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Cook your pasta.  If using homemade, it will cook VERY quickly, under a minute sometimes.  You can tell it is done because it begins to float.  Drain & add to the pan with the cream sauce.  Blend & serve with the gremolata & grated Parmesan – and maybe a drizzle of a nice olive oil.

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Leftover Tomato & Artisan Bread Soup with Buffalo Mozzarella

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2013

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

Ok, kiddies.  I am going to post two different dishes today that are made from leftovers of the recipes I posted last week.  This one uses the Roasted Heirloom Tomato Bisque and the Crazy Super Easy & Quick Artisan Bread.

Simply, brush some olive oil on a slice of Artisan bread & toast it in your oven (at about 350 – 400 degrees) for about ten minutes.  Add a few slices of fresh mozzarella & return it to the oven for a few minutes or until the cheese is melted.  Plunk this bad boy into the center of a warmed bowl of tomato bisque.  Garnish with leftover basil oil (I forgot to!!) and some fresh tomato (I used some Heirloom cherry tomatoes), fresh basil & fresh cracked pepper!  Ymmmmm!

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Tomato, Avocado & Jalapeno Grilled Cheese Sandwich with Homemade American Cheese on Artisan Bread – or – Garlic Broccoli Grilled Cheese Sandwich

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2013

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

So – I have been building to these grilled cheese sandwiches for a few days now.  I posted the Homemade American Cheese recipe HERE

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and the Homemade Artisan Bread HERE

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And a Tomato Bisque recipe HERE.

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Now it is time to get down to business!  There is no need to make every item on this menu from scratch but it is, of course, more impressive if you do.  The two grilled cheese sandwiches I present here are only the tip of the iceberg of possibilities.  You can use any variety of bread you choose & any sort of cheese.  You can use canned soup (egads!).  These are presented as ideas & to spark your imagination.

I used red jalapenos because I had them & they are pretty.  Use green if you want to.  I used heirloom cherry tomatoes because, you guessed it, I had them.  These – I do NOT recommend.  They do not stay in place in the sandwich well.  I recommend a larger tomato & I recommend it be sliced very thinly.  That said – may I present:

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Tomato, Avocado & Jalapeno Grilled Cheese Sandwich

INGREDIENTS

Artisan Bread or other bread of your choice

Homemade American cheese or other cheese of your choice

Butter

Avocado – sliced thinly

Tomato – sliced thinly

Jalapeno – seeded & sliced thinly

Cilantro

DIRECTIONS

Pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees & place a greased cooking sheet in there while it warms up.

Butter one side each of two slices of bread.

Melt some more butter in a frying pan.  Place one slice of bread, butter side down, in the pan & top with some cheese.  Layer the avocado, tomato, jalapeno & cilantro on top & top with more cheese.  Place the other slice of bread atop this, butter side up, and grill.  Or you can assemble the sandwich on the counter & place into pan complete.

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I used a pot lid to apply pressure.  After a minute of so, CAREFULLY flip the sandwich & toast the other side.  Repeat this until you get to the level of toasting you prefer.  Then – place sandwich in warm oven for another minute or so to completely melt the cheese.

Slice it up & shove it in your face.

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OR —-

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Garlic Broccoli Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

3 cups chopped broccoli (about enough for about 3 sandwiches)

Bread

Cheese

2 cloves garlic – minced

1 tsp crushed red pepper (or to taste)

S&P to taste

2 TBS olive oil

DIRECTIONS

Pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees & place a greased cooking sheet in there while it warms up.

Butter one side each of two slices of bread.

Heat olive oil in a frying pan & saute broccoli & crushed red pepper until the broccoli is vibrant & it begins to soften.  Add garlic & continue cooking being careful not to burn the garlic.  After a minute or two, add a few TBS water & cook off on high heat – steaming the broccoli.  Remove from heat.

To assemble, simply melt some more butter in a frying pan.  Place one slice of bread, butter side down, in the pan & top with some cheese.  Layer the broccoli & more cheese & top with the second slice of bread.  I used a pot lid to apply pressure.  After a minute of so, CAREFULLY flip the sandwich & toast the other side.  Repeat this until you get to the level of toasting you prefer.  Then – place sandwich in warm oven for another minute or so to completely melt the cheese.

This is also now ready for slicing & face shoving.

Serve with Vegan Roasted Heirloom Tomato Bisque for increased pleasure!

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Crazy Super Easy & Quick Artisan Bread

8 Comments

All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2013

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

vromans front

vromans back

I had this sort of Artisan bread when I had the pleasure of being a guest at the Arkansas home of my friends Ed & Andrea.  Andrea has a cool food blog of her own called On Life & Beans.  HERE is her recipe for a large quantity of this sort of dough.   It is a simple, hearty, rustic bread that works well for everything.  Hers was delicious!

I started smaller than her recipe.  The secret to this bread is 1) making the dough & letting it rest for AT LEAST 2 hours but up to 12-18 hours and 2) putting a pan of water in your oven when you bake the bread – which results in a crazy awesome & crusty exterior.

There are few recipes more simple than this one.  You can make as much dough as you like & it will keep, raw, in your fridge for up to TWO WEEKS for you to rip hunks off of at will & bake yourself some fresh bread any day.  It’s kind of a miracle.  I cannot recommend strongly enough that you try this at least once.

PRINT THIS RECIPE

Crazy Super Easy & Quick Artisan Bread

INGREDIENTS

6 1/2 cups flour

1 1/2 TBS salt

1 1/2 TBS yeast (or 1 1/2 packets of yeast)

3 cups warm water

Image

DIRECTIONS

Whisk the yeast into the warm water in a very large bowl.

Add the salt & let it dissolve.  Add the flour & blend with a wooden spoon until all the flour is incorporated & you have a very sticky dough.  Cover with plastic wrap sprayed with cooking oil & let it sit for 2-5 hours in a warm spot in your kitchen.

At this point, you can bake immediately or you can put the bowl of raw dough in the fridge.  It will keep for up to two weeks!!!  I let mine chill overnight but this is not necessary.  You can bake it after the two hour rising & get on with the show.  Here is how it looked after a night in the fridge:

Image

To bake, pre-heat the over to 450 and be sure to let it get to 450 before you put your bread in there.  I used a pizza stone that I never use for pizza – but only because the thing lives in my oven anyway – so why not put it to SOME use?  You could use a cookie sheet or a cast iron pan or cast iron Dutch oven.  Place a pan (or pie tin or something) on the bottom of your oven with a cup of water in it.  This is critical as it will steam your bread into – counter-intuitively – a very crusty exterior.  If you hate crusty bread (weirdo!) – skip the pan of water.

Image

I tore off a hunk of dough (about 1/2 the entire quantity I made) & rolled & stretched it a bit until I formed a loaf that was sorta smooth & round on the top.  I slashed the dough a few times with a serrated knife & then placed the dough on parchment paper & then put this on the pizza stone on the middle rack.  No parchment paper?  No worries.  Cornmeal works to keep the dough from sticking.  Do not be alarmed if the cornmeal browns & smokes in your oven.  That is some excess flour you see on the parchment paper.  It smoked & burned & smelled bad & I will not get any on my paper in the future.

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I baked mine bread for 25 minutes.  Time will depend on the size of the loaf you make.  It should look nice & golden – even browned – on the outside.  Be sure to let it get golden or your risk a wet & doughy center in your loaf.

Remove from the oven & let cool or devour immediately.

PRINT THIS RECIPE

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