Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Mastering the Basics: Pizza Crust

So I kind of totally dropped the ball on the Mastering the Basics posts last year, but it's ok because they're back! This time I tackled pizza dough.

We love pizza and eat it a lot around here, but usually I use store bought dough, it's part of that whole fear I used to have about using yeast. But I definitely think I've gotten over that fear! In fact I think I'd like to play around with even more dough recipes in the future, so look out for those!

This recipe is from my friend Hornedfroggy's blog and is from Gourmet Magazine. It was really easy to throw together and turned out great, I will definitely be using this recipe again and I highly recommend you give it a try!

Pizza Crust
From Gourmet Magazine and as seen on My Baking Heart

2 to 2-1/4 Cups All-purpose Flour
1/4 Ounce Package Fast-acting Yeast
1/2 Teaspoon Sugar
2 Teaspoons Olive Oil
1/2 Teaspoon Salt

In a large bowl whisk together 3/4 cup of flour, yeast, sugar, and 2/3 cup hot water (130 degrees F).

Stir in the oil, 1-1/4 cups of the remaining flour, and the salt and blend the mixture until it forms a dough.

Knead the dough on a floured surface, incorporating as much of the remaining 1/4 cup flour as needed, for 5 to 10 minutes, or until it is smooth and elastic.

The dough can be used right away or it can rise once. Put the dough in an oiled bowl and turn it to coat it with the oil.

Let the dough rise, covered with plastic wrap, in a warm place for 30 minutes, or until it is double in bulk, and punch it down.Top with your favorite toppings and bake at 375 degrees for 10-15 minutes.

This is just a basic sausage and cheese pizza. What's your favorite topping?

Monday, January 4, 2010

Sweet and Spicy Meatballs

This is a super easy recipe that is great for parties or just a relaxing day at home when you want something different that doesn't require too much work. Doug and I actually ate these on New Year's Day and they were the perfect thing for a lazy day at home.

This is one of those recipes that is really just a list of ingredients - the amounts are really up to you, just add things until it tastes good to you and you have enough to cover your meatballs.

Sweet and Spicy Meatballs

1 Bag of Frozen Meatballs*
BBQ Sauce (your favorite brand)
Grape Jelly
Worchestire Sauce

Place meatballs in crockpot.
Pour a large amount of BBQ sauce into a separate bowl (enough so that it looks like it will cover your meatballs).
Place grape jelly into a separate bowl and microwave for a few seconds until it easily stirs smooth (I usually start with about 1/3 cup, it's easy to add more later).
Add the jelly to the sauce, then add a few dashes of worchestire. Take a small taste and adjust to your liking (more jelly for sweetness, worchestire for spice).
Pour the sauce over the meatballs, make sure they are well covered.
Cook on high for 2.5 to 3 hours or low for 5, or until warmed completely.
Goes great with French bread.

*You can use homemade meatballs also, but they won't need to cook as long.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Best of 2009

Happy New Year!
One of my goals (I hate the work resolution!) is to post on here at least twice a week, so expect many more posts in 2010.

But, in the meantime, here are what I consider my best dishes of 2009.