Monday, January 24, 2011

Flaky Baking Powder Biscuits

I decided to make my family some baking powder biscuits for breakfast this morning. I did a quick internet search and looked over several different recipes. This one came from the Food Network. I didn't have the luxury of time, so I made a few alterations and used my mixer.  My kids LOVED the results.
This works so well in a Bosch mixer - I can't say enough good about mine. The original recipe is made by hand, but a mixer makes these so much quicker, and the lid on my Bosch kept everything inside the bowl. If using a mixer, be very careful not to overmix as that will produce 'hockey pucks'. I understand that it is a 'gluten thing'.

2 c. flour
1 T. baking powder
1 t. sugar
1 t. salt
7 T cold unsalted butter, sliced
3/4 c. milk

Pre-heat oven to 450*, and place rack in the center of the oven.

Whisk flour, baking powder, sugar and salt in mixer until evenly combined.
Add butter slices and mix until butter slices are broken into small pea sized pieces.

Slowly add milk and mix (very briefly) until mixture makes a very loose dough.

Turn out onto a well floured surface, and pat into a 1/2 inch thick rectangle.
Fold the dough into thirds like a business letter (I totally skipped this part)
Pat into a 5x8 inch rectangle about 3/4 inch thick.
Use a 2-3 inch round cutter (or drinking glass top) to make 6 biscuits. Place them on prepared sheet. Press scraps of dough together and make 2-3 more biscuits, and place on baking sheet.

Bake until lightly browned - about 15 minutes.
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Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Trout - Fish Boil

I'm feeling a little frustrated with my photo software right now - I apologize for the really little picture...not quite sure what is going on.

My husband headed out ice fishing last weekend with some friends and came back with three 18+ inch rainbow trout.  I thought they were lake trout (since he caught them in a lake), but apparently not.

While my husband loves to fish, he doesn't care to eat them.  I eat them because - well, I'll eat about anything, they are good for you, and basically, they are free food if you can catch'em.  

I searched around today for a good trout recipe - I got several facebook responses and suggestions, but they all seemed to be the traditional 'lemon, butter, salt & grill'.

I stumbled across a trout recipe page (don't ask where, I doubt I could find it again).  One of their recipes was for a 'boil down'.  I  have never 'boiled down', and was a little dubious.  I did reduce the quantities, and we still had lots left over.  I changed a few things - their recipe called for 1 c. of salt...that seemed out of control to me, and I'm glad I changed it.  

My husband was amazed at how much he ate and commented on how 'unfishy' it actually tasted.  My kids ate a lot, and wanted seconds.  I enjoyed the mildness - it actually almost tasted like a corned beef with the vegetables and all.

1 Lake Trout cleaned, gutted, and gilled.  Chop into slices 2-3 inches wide
1 large onion - coarsely chopped
2 c. peeled baby carrots (or equivalent)
8 medium red potatoes.  Scrubbed and quartered, with peels left on
1 T. dill weed/seed
1-2 T. salt
1 stick melted butter

Wash trout, and scrub scales to remove fishy taste in cold water.

Bring large pot of water to a boil.
Add salt, dill weed/seed, potatoes and carrots.
Cover, and return to a boil.
Add onions
Cook for 20 minutes.
Add trout.
Cover and boil for 12 more minutes.

Fish will flake easily when it is done.  Do not overcook.
Remove from heat and drain.
Return to pot, or serving dish and pour melted butter over trout, potatoes, onion and carrots.
Be careful to remove bones as you eat.  

Serves 6-8

Note - I'm told that this traditional Fish boil is always served with cherry pie for dessert

Monday, January 3, 2011

7 Minute frosting without the double boiler

As a kid, I LOVED it when my mom frosted her cakes with 7 minute frosting...full of sweet marshmallowy goodness.
Most recipes for this frosting require beating the frosting over a double boiler for 7 minutes. Unfortunately, I have a Bosch mixer which won't let me do that.
This great little recipe still gives you that great taste and texture, without the double boiler.

2 egg whites
1 c. sugar
1/3 c. water
1/4 t. cream of tartar
1/8 t. salt
1 t. vanilla

In mixing bowl, beat egg whites until white and foamy. They should form a mound, but NOT peaks.

Set aside while preparing syrup.

In saucepan, combine sugar, water, and cream of tartar.  Bring to a boil and continue to cook and stir until the sugar is completely melted.

Turn on mixer and begin beating eggs whites again. Remove syrup from stove and in a thin steady stream, slowly pour into egg white mixture.

Continue beating until stiff peaks are formed.
Mix in vanilla.

Spread over cooled cake or cupcakes.
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