Monthly Archives: August 2020

18 Aug 2020: Easy Corn Salad

Some time in the middle of all “THIS” as we refer to our Coronavirus isolation, Adrien began to take-over responsibility of Sunday meals. The rest of the week, I usually plan for and we jointly prepare whatever we are eating. I actually like to cook so it was never a chore once I stopped feeling the pressure from my teaching career. However, apparently I am “too bossy” to work with in the kitchen, so we’ve worked out this arrangement where I stay out of Sunday meal planning and prep.

With a lot of corn in our recent CSA box – and a ton of tomatoes and cukes – Adrien found this salad from Holly Nilsson on the Spend with Pennies website. It is a welcome summer dish and very adaptable to whatever is growing that suits your fancy.

Easy Corn Salad

Ingredients – again, add or substitute what you have. If you like kohlrabi in place of cukes, go for it.

3 TBSP vinegar (cider or rice)

3 cups of corn kernals from about 4 cobs

1 cup of quartered cherry tomatoes

1 cup diced cucumbers

1/4 cup red onion (we had a vidalia, still tasty)

3 TBSP olive oil

3 TBSP cider vinegar/rice vinegar/ or another lighter vinegar (probably not great with darker Balsamic vinegars)

Salt, Pepper to taste

1 TBSP fresh parsley

Dill or basil (optional)

Method

Prepare the corn by boiling or grilling and remove the kernals from the cob. Put all of the ingredients into a bowl and toss.


14 Aug 2020: Homemade Pita Bread

In the process of using up an eggplant from our CSA Share yesterday (Google it – there are a million great sounding recipes for roasted eggplant dips), I discovered we had no actual bread in the house. Wheat thins didn’t seem like the appropriate vehicle for a Middle-eastern Dip, so I began looking at exactly what the skill level for Pita Bread might be. Whatever that skill level is, I can tell you that homemade Pita bread is worth the effort. Warm, soft, and with a great homemade bread aroma filling our home, I’m pretty sure we won’t be buying that pre-sealed and often dried out version from our local grocer.

This recipe comes courtesy of the New York Times and was developed by David Tanis. It is delicious (did I already say that?), and I discovered that by sealing the dough balls in plastic and storing the in refrigerator, I could make fresh-from-the-oven Pita bread the very next day. One suggestion that I found made a huge difference: up the oven temperature to 500 degrees F and set a pizza stone in the oven. Heat that for about 20-30 minutes before baking.

Homemade Pita Bread by David Tanis, NYT

Ingredients

  • 2 tsp active dry yeast
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 35 grams (1/4 cup) whole wheat flour
  • 310 grams (2-1/2 cups) all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 TBSP olive oil

Method

  1. Make sponge: Put 1 cup lukewarm water in a large mixing bowl. Add yeast and sugar. Stir to dissolve. Add the whole-wheat flour and 1/4 cup all purpose flour and whisk together. Put bowl in a warm (not hot) place, uncovered, until mixture is frothy and bubbling – about 15 minutes.
  2. Add salt, olive oil and nearly all remaining all-purpose flour (reserve 1/2 cup). With a wooden spoon, stir until mixture forms a shaggy mass. Dust with a little reserved flour, then knead in bowl for 1 minute, incorporating any stray bits of dry dough.
  3. Turn dough onto work surface. Knead lightly for 2 minutes until smooth. Cover and let rest for 10 minutes, then knead again for 2 minutes. Try not to add too much of the reserved flour; the dough should be soft and a bit moist (can be refrigerated at this point for several hours of overnight – bring dough back to room temp, knead into a ball and proceed with recipe).
  4. Clean the mixing bowl and put dough back in it. Cover bowl tightly with plastic wrap, then cover with a town. Put bowl in a warm (not hot) place. Leave dough until it has doubled in size – about 1 hour.
  5. Heat over to 475 degrees F (I upped mine – see note). On bottom shelf of oven, place a heavy duty baking sheet, large cast-iron pan or ceramic baking tile. Punch down dough and divide into 8 equal-sized pieces. Form each piece into a little ball. Place dough balls on work surface, cover with a damp towel and leave for 10 minutes.
  6. Remove 1 ball (keep others covered until using) and press into a flat disk with rolling pin. Roll to a 6-inch circle, then to an 8-inch diameter about 1/8 inch thick, dusting with flour as needed.
  7. Carefully lift the dough circle and place quickly on hot baking sheet. After 2 minutes the dough should be nicely puffed. Turn disk over with tongs or spatula and bake 1 minute more. The pita should be pale, with only a few brown speckles. Transfer warm pita to a napkin-lined basket and cover so bread stays soft. Repeat with the rest of the dough ball.


09 Aug 2020: Yellow Squash Bundt Cake

I did a double-take when I spotted this recipe for Yellow Squash (!) Bundt Cake. Yellow squash, seriously?

But with an enormous haul of yellow squash in our CSA share the last 2 weeks, it felt as if this recipe from Southern Living was meant to be baked. So I did.

Yellow Squash Bundt Cake (Southern Living)

Ingredients for Cake

  • 2 cups All Purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 large eggs at room temperature
  • 1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup canola oil (I used coconut oil)
  • 2 cups grated yellow square
  • 1 TBS lemon zest plus 2 TBSP lemon juice

Ingredients for Lemon Buttermilk Glaze

  • 2 cups unsifted powdered sugar
  • 2 TBSP buttermilk
  • 1 tsp lemon zest plus 1 TBSP fresh lemon juice

Method

  1. Prepare the cake: preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a 10-cup Bundt pan with baking spray (or just oil it). Stir together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. Place eggs, sugar and oil in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Beat on medium-high speed until light and airy (about 3 minutes), stopping to scrape down sides as needed. Stir in the squash, lemon zest and juice. Gradually add flour mixture, beating on low speed until just combined (about 45 seconds). Pour batter into prepared pan.
  2. Bake in preheated oven until a wood pick inserted in the center comes out clean (50-55 minutes). Cool in pan for 10 minutes. Invert onto wire rack and cool for 1 hour.
  3. Prepare the glaze. Whisk together all ingredients into a bowl until smooth. Drizzle over cooled cake.

01 August 2020: One-Bowl Vegan Zucchini Bread

Because we’ve received a really (really, really) large amount of zucchini, I’ve developed a new appreciation for gardeners and the creative recipes so many people share to help use up zucchini crops. We’ve had some delicious muffins (thanks Joanne Chang-Meyers) and today, we baked this delicious and moist Vegan Zucchini Bread recipe from the website Nora Cooks.

One-Bowl Vegan Zucchini Bread

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup canola oil (also suggested were coconut oil, vegan butter or applesauce for those wanting to bake oil-free version)
  • 1/3 cup almond milk
  • 1 TBSP ground flaxseeds
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup grated zucchini (about 1 medium)
  • 1 1/2 cups white or whole wheat all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • OPTIONAL: 1 cup dairy free chocolate chips or walnuts

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a standard 9×5 loaf pan with parchment or spray with oil.
  2. In a large bowl, add the oil, almond milk, ground flaxseeds, brown sugar and vanilla. Whisk well until combined.
  3. Lightly blow the grated zucchini with paper towels and add to the bowl. Stir the zucchini into the wet ingredients.
  4. Now add the flour to the wet ingredients. Sprinkle the baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon on top of the flour. Stir gently until just combined, being carful not to over-mix or the loaf will be too dense.
  5. Fold in walnuts or chocolate chips if using. Pour into the prepared pan, and bake for 45-55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  6. Let it cool in the pan for a few minutes, then transfer the loaf to cool on a rack. Slice and enjoy.

Can also be made into muffins (12). Oil a muffin pan, spoon batter nearly to the top of each muffin cup and bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes.


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