A New Kind of Weekend Warrior

Weekend Adventures with my KitchenAid Mixer!

Hamentaschen May 6, 2009

Filed under: Other — Diana @ 3:16 pm
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Tasty!

As I mentioned below, I was going to make challah. I took out my mixer and found that I was out of yeast! Since the urge to bake was very strong, I had to come up with something else to put in the oven. It only took me a moment before I remembered that while out to dinner last night, my friend Stephanie told me I should make some hamentaschen for her.  Not one to shy away from a challenge, I looked up a few recipes for the dough, and added a few things to make the recipe below.

These imperfect little triangle pastries are a traditional food for the Jewish holiday of Purim (and apparently one of Stephanie’s favorite Jewish treats).

Wikipedia defines it very well:

The name hamantash (המן־טאַש), is commonly known as a reference to Haman, the villain of Purim, as described in the Book of Esther. A more likely source of the name is a corruption of the Yiddish word מאן־טאשן (montashn) or the German word mohntaschen, both meaning poppyseed-filled pouches. Over time, this name was transformed to Hamantaschen, likely by association with Haman. In Israel, they are called Oznei Haman (Hebrew: אוזני המן‎), Hebrew for “Haman’s ears” where children are jokingly told these tasty pastries are the ears of Haman.

I remember being in Hebrew school (with Stephanie) and singing this purim song while munching on our Hamentaschen:

My hat it has three corners.
Three corners has my hat.
And had it not three corners,
It wouldn’t be my hat.

The traditional filling for Hamentaschen is mohn or poppy seed (my mom’s favorite), while I’m partial to fruit-filled ones like lemon and apple. I didn’t have any of the necessary pie fillings to make some of the traditional flavors, but I improvised and used some sugar free red raspberry preserves that I had in my fridge.

Even though Purim was just a month or so ago, I’m already looking forward to making LOTS of flavors next year.

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Pizza Dough January 3, 2009

Filed under: Other,Uncategorized — Diana @ 7:03 pm

Happy New Year everyone!

I just got back from visiting my boyfriend’s family in Alabama. We had a great time and I did a little bit of baking with his 9 year old neice. We made cinnamon swirl bread and she had a grand time kneading the dough, rolling it out, and sprinkling the cinnamon sugar.

While I was there, she was playing a game on her Nintendo DS called Cooking Mama that has recipes on it (the game was pretty fun too). We took a look at all of the recipes,  and she decided she wanted to make pizza. When it came down to it,  she let ME make the pizza.  I found the recipe on recipezaar.com, but added some extra stuff to the dough to make it flavorful and appeal to grown-ups and kids alike.

This dough was really easy to make (I even mixed it with my own two hands!) and made enough for two crusts.

Pizza Dough

adapted from recipezaar.com

1 cup warm (not boiling) water

2 tbsp sugar

1 pkg yeast

3 cups flour

1 tsp salt

2 tbsp olive oil

1 tsp garlic powder (optional)

1 tbsp basil (optional)

1. In a small bowl (or your measuring cup) combine the water, sugar, and yeast. Let proof for about 10 minutes.

2. In a large bowl combine flour, salt, and herbs.  Make a small well in the middle of the bowl and pour oil and yeast mixture in the well.

3. Stir to combine in to a soft dough, adding more flour if it becomes too sticky.

4. Knead until smooth on a lightly floured surface.

5. Place in an oiled bowl, cover with a damp towel and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size.

6. Punch down and rest for ten minutes.  You can then roll out the dough or hand toss (if you have the skills!) until it’s the size of your pizza pan.

When you’re ready to bake, top with your favorite sauce, cheese, and toppings, and bake at 450 for about 12 minutes or until cheese is bubbling.  Bake longer for a crispier crust.

 

Vegan Lasagne?! YES!!! December 7, 2008

Filed under: Other — Diana @ 3:11 pm
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Last night I had some co-workers over for a holiday dinner party. I made the focaccia, artichoke dip, ham, latkes, meatless lasagne AND vegan lasagne, apple pie (also vegan) and cheesecake.

As you can tell by the list of foods, I had a vegetarian and a vegan in the crowd.

I decided that there HAD to be an easy way to make a vegan lasagne, so I did my internet research. Turns out it actually is pretty easy, provided you have the right ingredients. The vegan was impressed and ate the whole (small) lasagne. She kept going back for more. While I was making it, I sent a text to my friend Greg to tell him and Christina (they’re vegan).  I was asked to let them know how it turned out and to pass on the recipe.

I made about 1/3 of a normal size lasagne, but I’m including the list for a full-size.

Enjoy!

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Whole Wheat Pasta! October 19, 2008

Filed under: Other — Diana @ 5:01 pm

So, one of my birthday gifts (I am SO blessed) was the pasta roller and cutter attachments for my Kitchen Aid mixer.  My aunt called me on Friday to let me know that it had arrived, so as soon as I could, I went over to her house and picked it up. I had a busy day yesterday, so I didn’t get to break it out until TODAY!

I’m trying to watch what I eat, so the logical first attempt was whole wheat pasta. I used the recipe in the booklet that came with the roller and cutter attachments. This recipe makes about 1 1/2 lbs of pasta dough, and that’s a LOT of pasta. Unless you’re cooking for a large group, consider halving this recipe.

TIP: If you roll out all of your pasta before cutting (like i did), make sure you dust the sheets with flour. The longer it sits, the more the dough will stick together.

This is also my first post with my new camera so, without further ado:

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Pre-Blogging Pictures September 27, 2008

Filed under: Breads,Cake,Other — Diana @ 4:25 pm

Here are some pictures of things I made prior to starting this blog. I won’t post recipes yet, but I make many of these things often enough that the recipes will come soon enough.