Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Whole Wheat Pizza Crust

Got this recipe from www.sparkrecipes.com, and it is fabulous! I've made it twice in 2 weeks and Johnny loves it as much as I do. You can top it with whatever you like. I used pizza sauce, onions (lots), bell peppers, grilled chicken, avocado, tomato and mozzarella cheese, of course. The second time I made it I just used peppers, chicken, onions and it was also the bomb.

Whole Wheat Pizza Crust
2 c. whole wheat flour
1 T. dry active yeast
3/4 t. salt (I use a little less and it tastes fine, but I am also watching my sodium)
1 c. warm water
1 T. olive oil
1 t. honey

Combine flour, salt and yeast in a large mixing bowl and mix well. Add the water, oil and honey and mix well.
Cover with a moist cloth and let sit in a warm place for 10-15 minutes to rise.
Punch down and press the dough onto a lightly greased 14" pizza pan. Add the ingredients you love and bake in a 425 degree oven for about 20 minutes, until the cheese is melted and the crust is golden brown.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

As Seen On TV... foodie edition

I love infomercials and the ridiculous products they aim to sell, but while perusing the As Seen on TV site recently, I couldn't help but notice a ton of totally USELESS products.  Here are three of my favorites:

The Roasted Garlic Express.  The world's first electric garlic roaster.  Hmm... this gadget, while kitschy and relatively small, doesn't seem like it would get a ton of use... How often do you roast garlic, and is it really such a pain that you would need a special machine?  Not worth my $50.

The ROTATO EXPRESS.  Well, they win for clever name... it's a potato peeler that rotates and peels - FAST.  I think all of these things need to have the word "express" in their names, to assure the buyer that while this gadget might take up precious counter space, it will peel those potatoes, kiwis or cucumbers in no time! Who eats that many potatoes? Any decent peeler can do the same job, and I can think of 4,000 better ways to spend $20. 

The DOUGH-NU-MATIC doughnut maker!  This actually looks pretty cool and fun, if I weren't trying to lose weight, if it didn't get such horrible reviews and if it didn't cost $150.  

I might not have been fair when I described these products as "totally useless." Clearly, these products each have ONE use... I would love to know how many people are currently suffering buyer's remorse related to the Roasted Garlic Express, Rotato Express or the Dough-nu-matic.  

What are some of your favorite As Seen on TV products? 

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

Sorry for no blogs last month. I was busy baking and simultaneously trying to lose some weight - needless to say, I'm a little counter-productive. Here's a recipe for a super delicious pie, my favorite pie. Fresh strawberries and rhubarb make the perfect mix of sweet and sour.

Pie Crust Ingredients (enough for double crust, needed below):
2 1/2 c. all purpose flour
1 c. shortening
1/2 t. salt
6 T. ice cold water

Whisk the flour and salt together in a bowl. Using a pastry blender, "cut" in
the cold shortening until it resembles coarse crumbs. Drizzle 3 to 4 T. of the cold water over the mixture and mix with a fork to combine, adding more water until the dough comes together. Split dough in half and form into two balls. Wrap each with plastic wrap and chill for at least 30 minutes before rolling out. Rolling out can be super tricky. Make sure you have extra flour near by, a good "rolling space" and a weighted or wooden rolling pin. I use a weighted non-stick, but I still had difficulty doing this.

Pie Ingredients:
1 c. white sugar
2 T. corn starch
1/4 c. water
1 pound fresh rhubarb, chopped (can be hard to find)
2 pints fresh strawberries
1 recipe pastry for a 9 inch double crust pie
2 T. butter
1 egg yolk
2 T. white sugar

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In a large bowl, add 1 c. white sugar, the sliced strawberries and chopped rhubarb, and toss together. In another small bowl, combine the 1/4 c. water with 2 T. cornstarch and add this mixture to the strawberries/rhubarb bowl, toss to combine. Let stand for 30 minutes.

Pour filling into the prepared pie crust, and spread little bits of the butter around the top of the filling. Cover with the top crust and seal the edges, using water if necessary.

Use a pastry brush to apply yolk to the top of the pie. Sprinkle with the 2 T sugar and cut holes/lines in the top to let steam escape. Bake for about 1 hour. This is a little tricky because I'm pretty sure my oven is off from other people's "normal" ovens. When the top looks golden, you're golden. Let this pie stand on a cooling rack for at least 2 hours, or it will still be runny. MUST SERVE with vanilla ice cream.

I forgot to take a picture of the cross section of the pie, but here's the whole thing when I pulled it out of the oven.

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