Archive for June 2012


TWD: French Strawberry Cake

This week’s Tuesdays With Dorie is French Strawberry Cake, hosted by Sophia and Allison.

I’ll be honest, I was a little wary about this one. I was happy because strawberries! But it’s got a lot of steps, some of them fiddly, and though the information with the recipe says that French chefs makes these over and over again to become comfortable with it, this was my first time and I was definitely not comfortable with it.

Case in point: I totally forgot the butter step. I had the two tablespoons of butter melted in a bowl, sitting on the counter waiting for me while I did the rest of the cake. And I completely forgot it. I thought I was doing so well, too.

But aside from it being a bit on the drier side (and to be honest, I’m going to keep using my angel food cake recipe), it was good and no one would have guessed it was missing anything. And as you can see, I didn’t manage to cut the cake into three layers, either. I got the top part off okay, but when I went to saw into the rest of it it just wasn’t having any of that (even though I had frozen it as others had suggested). So I shrugged and said, eh, good enough. I just loaded up the strawberries in one layer and of course that didn’t affect the taste. Oh, and I couldn’t get the strawberries to mash so I just piled them on.

I couldn’t find my couplers for my piping tips (where are they???) so I just squeezed the whipped cream out of a hole clipped in the corner of a plastic baggie to keep things fancy. And I did too many dollops on top and had to improvise with the five strawberries I had set aside.

Also, this was the best whipped cream I’ve ever had and I will now be using it for everything.

And I don’t like the tops of strawberries to still be on top of the strawberries when they’re used for decoration. It looks gross to me, so they had to go.

Otherwise, exactly like the recipe! 🙂


Personal Pan Pizzas

Personal Pan Pizzas

My family and I love pizza from Pizza Hut, but it’s been a long time since we’ve had it since it can be a bit of a budget-buster.

When this recipe for a Pizza Hut pan pizza knock-off showed up on Pinterest several weeks ago, I immediately added it to my list of food to try.

Personal Pan Pizzas

It was extremely easy to put together, and though I balked at the thought of using 3 oz of oil per pan (it’s a lot of oil!) I did it anyway.

The nutritional info at the bottom of the recipe nearly gave me a heart attack by itself, and I didn’t see it until after I’d already made the pizza. Keep in mind, however, that the recipe states this is enough for four people. I fed five people with the three pizzas, and still had leftovers. I served it with a side salad with veggies, so that helps fill you up alongside the pizza.

Personal Pan Pizzas

I don’t have three round cake pans so I used one pie plate, which worked well.

The sauce was also a breeze, though I wouldn’t say it was a Pizza Hut clone.

Personal Pan Pizzas

The second time I made these, I used coconut oil instead of canola, and I think they actually turned out even tastier.

This is a really fun one for kids to help out with, and has been added to our dinner list. A definite keeper!

Pizza Hut Original Pan Pizza clone
from cdkitchen

1 1/3 cup warm water (105 degrees F)
1/4 cup non-fat dry milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 cups flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1 package dry yeast
2 tablespoons vegetable oil (for dough)
9 ounces vegetable oil (3 ounce per pan)
butter flavored cooking spray

1 can (8 ounce size) tomato sauce
1 teaspoon dry oregano
1/2 teaspoon marjoram
1/2 teaspoon dry basil
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt

For pizza crust:

Put yeast, sugar, salt, and dry milk in a large (2 qt.) bowl. Add water and stir to mix well. Allow to sit for two minutes. Add oil and stir again. Add flour and stir until dough forms and flour is absorbed.

Turn out on to a flat surface and knead for about 10 minutes. Divide dough into three balls. In three 9″ cake pans, put 3 Oz. of oil in each making sure it is spread evenly. Using a rolling pin, roll out each dough ball to about a 9″ circle. Place in cake pans.

Spray the outer edge of dough with cooking spray. Cover with a plate. Place in warm area and allow to rise for 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

For sauce:

Combine ingredients and let sit for 1 hour.

For Each Nine Inch Pizza:

Preheat oven to 475 degrees F Spoon 1/3 cup sauce on dough and spread to within 1″ of edge. Distribute 1 1/2 Oz. shredded mozzarella cheese on sauce. Place toppings of your choice in this order: Pepperoni or Ham Vegetables Meats (cooked ground sausage or beef) Top with 3 Oz. mozzarella cheese Cook until cheese is bubbling and outer crust is brown.

[originally posted at pinspired]


Homemade Hummus

Homemade Hummus

I love love love hummus, and it was a happy day indeed when I discovered that you could make it at home!

However, I’ve had a hell of a time trying to find tahini, one of the main ingredients, at the grocery store, and I’m not willing to spend $20+ at a specialty shop. So I filed it away in the back of my mind and just bought the tiny, expensive little tubs when I needed it.

But I was on Amazon the other day looking for something completely unrelated, when one of the related search suggestions (seriously) showed a jar of tahini. And it was affordable! And Prime shipping! So I bought it.

It arrived today (along with the unrelated item I needed in the first place), and I picked up several cans of garbanzo beans (also known as chickpeas) while I was at the store this morning.

I hunted around online for a good recipe, and they’re all pretty standard. However, the issue that I had with them is that they all call for two cups of beans. One can of garbanzo beans is 1-1/2 cups, so you need two cans, but you’re not using over half of the second one. I didn’t want it taking up space in the fridge (yesterday was yogurt-making day and salad jarring day), so I dumped both cans into the food processor.

I used this recipe for my jumping off point, and here’s what I did instead:

Homemade Hummus

2 cans garbanzo beans (about 3 cups), drained (reserve some of the liquid)
1/2 cup tahini
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 to 1-1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
4 cloves garlic, halved
1 tsp ground cumin

In a food processor, combine garbanzo beans, tahini, lemon juice, salt, garlic and cumin until smooth. Add some of the drained garbanzo bean liquid if it’s too thick. Test for taste and adjust as needed, pulsing after each addition.

Place in a dish and sprinkle with paprika and a drizzle of olive oil. Serve with sliced veggies and baked pita chips.

Homemade Hummus

I could literally just eat this with a spoon. It’s a thousand times better than store bought, and it makes a ton so you’ve got plenty for some healthy snacking. I tested it out with baby carrots, and my oldest had some with Wheat Thins. I know it’s traditional to serve with pita chips, but I’m trying to lay off the processed carbs for summer, and carrots were perfect (and so were the Wheat Thins).

Store it in a regular plastic container in the fridge, which works well when you have to smooth out the top after a few sneaks.