Monday, August 26, 2013

Ricotta Pie

This is one of those kid-friendly, super fast and easy dinners that we make about once per week.  The recipe is from my mother-in-law and is one that my husband ate a lot of growing up!  Good thing he likes it.....


1 lb good quality, whole milk, ricotta
3 eggs
7-10 swiss chard leaves, lightly steamed
1 cup mozzarella, sharp cheddar or your favorite cheese
salt and pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 350°F.  After steaming the swiss chard lay it on a towel to dry.  Meanwhile mix the ricotta, cheese, eggs and salt and pepper in a medium bowl.  Chop the swiss chard and add it to the bowl.  Mix.  Pour the ricotta mixture into a 8 inch baking dish.  Sprinkle with parmesan cheese.  Bake for about 50 minutes until golden brown and puffy.

It makes a complete meal when served with brown rice and a salad.

Serves 4

Recipe from TM

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Bacon Cheeseburger and a Delicious Homemade Roll

We don't eat a lot of meat in our house.  We really like it, but we try to limit our meat intake to once or twice a week.  On the days when we do eat meat we try make something extra delicious.  During the summer, with the hot weather and a barbecue, it is pretty easy to accomplish this task - and a juicy burger is always one of our favorites.  

I make the buns and that is a large part of what makes this burger so amazing.  The recipe comes from Macrina bakery's MORE from MACRINA cookbook.  They are fairly easy and make enough that you should have extras to keep in the freezer.  

Bacon hamburger (no cheese on this one) with grilled onions, lettuce, tomato and garlic mayonnaise 

for the hamburger rolls:

34 cup lukewarm water (80°F)
34 cup lukewarm whole milk (80°F)
112 teaspoons active dry yeast
14 sugar
2 large eggs
13 cup olive oil
414 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
212 teaspoons kosher salt
1 large egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water

Lightly oil a medium bowl with canola oil.  Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper and fill a spray bottle with water.

In a stand mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the water, milk, yeast and sugar on low speed for 30 seconds.  Let the mixture sit for 3 minutes.

Add the eggs and olive oil and mix for about 1 minute.  Add the flour and salt.  Mix on low speed for 2 more minutes.  Switch to the dough hook and mix on medium speed for 10-13 minutes.  Toward the end of the mixing time you will notice that the dough develops a ball around the hook, but it will still be tethered at the base of the bowl.  You should hear a slight slapping sound as it goes around.  With floured fingers, pinch a big piece of dough and pull it away for the dough ball.  It should stretch about 3 inches without tearing.  If it doesn't pass this test, mix for another 1-3 minutes.  Transfer the dough to the oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap.  Let it rise for 2 hours.  It will double in size.

Gently place the dough on a floured work surface.  Divide the dough into twelve 3-ounce pieces.

Shape each piece of dough into a ball by flattening it and then gathering the edges toward the center. Flip the dough over so the ball is seam side down and cup the roll in the palm of your hand (keep your fingertips and the heel of your hand resting on the work surface) and move your hand in a circular motion to tighten the roll.  Place the rolls about 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets.  Lightly cover with plastic wrap.  Let the dough rise at room temperature for 1 to 112 hours.  The dough will be soft and springy to the touch when it's ready to bake.

About 20 minutes before baking, position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 400°F.

Brush one set of rolls all over with the egg wash.  Use the spray bottle to heavily mist the inside of the oven with water.  Insert the egg washed rolls into the oven.  Mist twice more during the first 10 minutes of baking.  Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the rolls are a deep golden brown.  Transfer the rolls onto a wire rack by sliding them (parchment too) from the baking sheet.  After 10 minutes, remove the parchment and cool the rolls for another 20 minutes.

Egg wash the second set of rolls.  Heavily mist the oven again and insert the rolls into the oven.  Follow the same directions as above.

Use the rolls immediately or freeze for up to 3 weeks in freezer bag.

Makes 12 rolls.

From Leslie Mackie's MORE from MACRINA

for the hamburgers:

1 lb lean, grass-fed ground beef
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
1 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion sliced into rings
8 slices cooked bacon
sharp, white cheddar cheese
sliced tomato
red butter lettuce

Mix first 6 ingredients in a medium bowl and form into patties.  Barbecue.  Just before hamburgers are finished add cheese to melt.  Makes 4-5 burgers depending on size.  Brush the onion rings with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  When the burgers are almost done add the onions and grill for about 4-5 minutes, flipping once.

Adapted from Ina Garten's Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics

for the garlic mayonnaise:

12 cup mayonnaise
1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
salt and pepper to taste

Mix all of the ingredients in a small bowl.  Set aside in the refrigerator until ready to use.

Adapted from Lynn Alley's Cooking with Fresh Herbs

for assembly:

Lightly spread some of the garlic mayonnaise on the cut side of each bun.  Grill the buns for a few minutes or until there are light grill marks on each side.  Remove.  Add more garlic mayonnaise to taste.  Place the burger on the bottom of the bun, add bacon, onions, tomato and lettuce.  Open wide and enjoy!