Omnomnominator’s Blog

A study in Citrus – part 2

Posted in Uncategorized by user72521 on May 26, 2009

Well, really, all I have photos of are the Blueberry Muffins. I chose the recipe from Cooks Illustrated – A magazine that has rocketed to the top of my choices for cooking magazines. The muffins have a grated lemon zest / sugar crumble on top. And I have to say, these were the best looking best tasting blueberry muffins I ever made.

What I don’t have a picture of is a hot mess of a muffin called the Banana Chocolate Chip Espresso muffin from my favorite Baked Cookbook. Um, these were in my top 5 things I have ever eaten in my life, much less made. Go buy this dang cookbook!

So good

So good

Review: Blueberry Muffins – 5 noms out of 5

Banana Chocolate Chip Espresso: 100 noms out of 5

Of breads and bars

Posted in Cookies by user72521 on May 2, 2009

I took my (paid for) truck for an oil change today and was told I had a power steering fluid leak. I knew this already because I put power steering fluid in a few months ago and then promptly forgot about it. For some reason, per my dad, power steering fluid is one of those fluids you should never have to add to unless you have a leak. Long story short, I had to have the rack and pinion replaced to the tune of SEVEN HUNDRED DOLLARS. Hrmf. I was understandably a little  grumpy about that. The mechanic gave me a ride home (and then called me later to tell me I couldn’t have my truck back til Monday morning) so I did some yard work before the rain came. I cleaned the house, did some laundry reorganized my kitchen cabinets and cleaned up the pantry. It was then that I spotted some Cornflake crumbs and thought this would probably be a good day for some Magic Cookie bars. Might put me in a better mood. Then I found a can of pumpkin and thought what the hey, might as well make some pumpkin bread while I’m at it.Then I got a little giddy at the thought of a new recipe. So, I haven’t tried the bread yet but it looks pretty good. I got the recipe for the Cookies off the back of the cornflake box, I’ve blogged about those already. The Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Loaf recipe came from my favorite dessert book Baked: New Frontiers in Baking.

For the Cookies, I used Butterscotch chips, coconut, Milk Choc. Chips and Dark Chocolate chips. And some walnuts.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread

3 1/4 cups all purpose flour

2 tsp baking soda

2 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp nutmeg

1/2 tsp allspice

1/2 tsp ginger (Optional. I did not opt.)

2 tsp salt

1 cup vegetable oil

1 3/4 cups pumpkin puree (15oz can)

3 cups granulated sugar

4 large eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

2/3 cup water, room temperature

1 cup (12 oz) semisweet chocolate

Preheat the oven to 350F and position a rack in the middle. Grease and flour two 9×5 inch loaf pans (I’d use Baker’s Joy).

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, spices, and salt. Set aside.

In another large (VERY LARGE. I HAD TO GET OUT MY BIG SAUCE PAN BECAUSE MY BIGGEST BOWL WAS TOO SMALL) bowl, whisk together the oil and pumpkin puree. Add the granulated sugar and whisk to combine. Add the eggs, one at a time, followed by the vanilla extract and water. Mix in the chocolate with a rubber spatula.

Fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until just combined. Do not overmix (and don’t worry if you see a few small streaks of flour). Divide into the two pans and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Transfer pans to a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes, then unmold leave to cool completely.

I found you, Pumpkin!

I found you, Pumpkin!

The recipe said butter and flour the pans. I prefer Bakers Joy and will forever dismiss the butter and flour instructions from now on.

The recipe said butter and flour the pans. I prefer Bakers Joy and will forever dismiss the butter and flour instructions from now on. Baker's Joy is just more effective.

Whisking the dry ingredients

Whisking the dry ingredients

Whisking the wet ingredients. It was just about now that I realized I still had more liquid to add before the dry and I was going to need a much larger vessel.

Whisking the wet ingredients. It was just about now that I realized I still had more liquid to add before the dry and I was going to need a much larger vessel.

You are going to need a BIG bowl

You are going to need a BIG bowl

In the pans ready to bake

In the pans ready to bake

I got hungry in the meantime so I made a grilled cheese and turkey sammy

I got hungry in the meantime so I made a grilled cheese and turkey sammy

Right out of the oven, looking nom-riffic

Right out of the oven, looking nom-riffic

Looking good....

Looking good....

AND my magic cookie bars. I mixed the bread while these were cooking

AND my magic cookie bars. I mixed the bread while these were cooking.

Homemade Granola

Posted in Uncategorized by user72521 on March 20, 2009

OMNONOMNOM. First of all, I love granola. It’s probably a top 10 of all time sweet snack for me (not stuff I make, just quick snacks. I have MANY lists). Others on the list include:

1. Mini Cadbury Eggs (NOT the big ones)

2. Robins Eggs

3. Samoas

4. Oatmeal Cream Pies

5. Ice Cream Sandwiches

6. Granola

7. Deep fried Oreos (first one I ever had was some skeezy casino in the old part of downtown Vegas. Two showgirls in full peacock regalia stopped smiling and pageant waving to remark ‘oooohhhh. those look good’. Only in Vegas)

8. Deep fried Twinkie

9. Deep fried Snickers (with vanilla ice cream and raspberry coulis omnomnomnomnom)

10.  Krispy Kreme Original Hot nows

Anyways, I love granola. What I hate is crumbly granola otherwise known as lightly sweetened oats. I like big chunky granola, something I can pop, not have to eat with a spoon over yogurt, which I do love too.

Despite my love of granola I have yet to make any. I have looked at a bunch of recipes but they all seemed to sugary or too hippie or too something. When I got the Baked: New frontiers in Baking Cookbook I immediately spotted a recipe for granola that looked like the perfect thing for me. So I made it tonight – super easy, I tweaked it a bit. That’s the great thing about granola – you can add or subtract to your preference at will. Want chocolate? Throw it in. Want Dried prunes (why?) – throw them in. It’s at your leisure.

Homemade Granola

Adapted from Baked: New Frontiers in Baking

Ingredients:

2 Cups Oats (I used regular, not quick cook)

1 tsp Cinnamon

1 tsp Salt

1/4 Cup Honey

1/4 Cup firmly packed brown Sugar

1 tsp vanilla

3 Tbsp plus 1 tsp Oil (Called for Veg., I used Canola)

1/3 Golden Raisins (I used regular since that’s what I had on hand. And I didn’t have enough so I supplemented with dried cranberries)

1/3 Cup Dried Cherries (I don’t think I care for these. Time will tell)

1/3 Cup Almonds

1/3 Cup Hazelnuts (I didn’t have any and couldn’t find them tonight so just used more almonds)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 325. Line a baking pan or sheet with parchment Paper.

Toss oats, cinnamon and salt together in a large bowl

In a medium bowl, whisk honey, brown sugar, vanilla and oil until combine. Really get in there to combine that oil. (Here’s a tip for measuring Honey – spray your measuring cup first with a bit of non stick spray – will release the honey easier.)

Pour the honey mixture over the oats and combine with your hands. I recommend one hand at first because I always end up with monster oat hand or monster whatever I’m mixing. You need a good hand to slough off the ingredients off the other.I also added about a 1/3 cup of flax seeds to the mixture at this point. Do it if you want, you can’t really taste them anyway.

Once combined, spread on parchment paper. You can spread it out well if you don’t like big chunks or leave it chunky. I chose chunky.

Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and flip granola with a metal spatula. Sprinkle almonds ontop and return to oven.

Bake for 5 minutes. Remove from oven, flip with a metal spatula and sprinkle with hazelnuts.

Bake for 10 more minutes. The recipe said remove from oven and sprinkle with dried fruit. I didn’t see what it would hurt (and it didn’t) to sprinkle before this last 5 minutes in the oven. So I did.

I slid the parchment paper with granola onto a cooling rack to cool faster. It is still a bit pliable out of the oven but hardens when it cools. Once cooled, store in airtight container for 4 days.

Oats, Cinnamon and Salt

Oats, Cinnamon and Salt

Get on in there and mix it

Get on in there and mix it

First round in the oven

First round in the oven

With almonds...

With almonds...

beautiful

beautiful

OMNOMNOMNOMNOM

OMNOMNOMNOMNOM

Score: 5 Noms out of 5

Tagged with: , ,

Happy Pi Day!

Posted in Pie by user72521 on March 14, 2009

So today is Pi day and in honor of this blessed event, I have made TWO pies –  A Tuscaloosa Tollhouse Pie (from Baked Cookbook I recently purchased). This pie is like a Chocolate Chip cookie and pie all in one and I give it 5 noms out of 5. Here’s the recipe:

1 pie crust – fitted into a 9” pie pan and frozen
1/2 cup AP flour
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
2 large eggs
3/4 c. unsalted butter, softened and cubed
1 tbs. whiskey
3/4 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped
1 ¼ cups chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium bowl, whisk the flour and sugars together until combined. Set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the eggs on high speed until foamy, about 3 minutes. Remove the whisk attachment and add the paddle attachment. With the mixer on low, gradually add the flour mixture. Turn the mixer to high and beat for 2 minutes. Scrape down the bowl and add the butter, beating on high until well-combined. Scrape down the bowl and add the whiskey, and beat the mixture on high for 1 minute.

Fold the nuts and 1 cup of chocolate chips into the filling. Scrape into the frozen pie shell and smooth into an even layer. Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup chocolate chips on top. Bake for 40-50 minutes, covering the edges of the crust with foil if it gets too brown. The pie is done when it is puffed and golden brown, and a knife inserted into the center comes out clean.

Allow to cool before slicing, but this pie is best served warm.

Cassiboy commented on the lightness of the Pie. I think it's due to beating these eggs half to death

Cassiboy commented on the lightness of the Pie. I think it's due to beating these eggs half to death

For baking purposes only

For baking purposes only

Folding and folding

Folding and folding

Ready for the oven. Smells really good even at this point

Ready for the oven. Smells really good even at this point

OMNOMNOMNOMNOMNOMNOM

OMNOMNOMNOMNOMNOMNOM

A test drive

A test drive

MAIN EVENT

The main event for today was apple pi(e) for the throwdown between Shelly of http://busyatworkathome.wordpress.com.This is being judged some confusing way and I hope I win, will post results later. Cassiboy and Party Foul were here for moral support as I prepared the pi(e). Mostly, they danced around the kitchen and made up songs that involved Pi. I’m guessing Cassiboy will post those at her blog, but I might be mistaken http://leomonkey.wordpress.com/

So my pie is called “Pi(e) Are Squared” – Get it? You have to see it, I guess. First of all, this pie tastes like the buttery goodness that it looks like in the closeup. I give it 5.314 noms out of 5 – Cassiboy and Party Foul seemed to enjoy as well because despite how hot the pie was they kept taking bites and kind of dancing around. (the real name is Grandma Opal’s Apple Pie and here’s the recipe from http://www.allrecipes.com:)

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 recipe pastry for a 9 inch double crust pie
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 8 Granny Smith apples – peeled, cored and sliced

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). Melt the butter in a saucepan. Stir in flour to form a paste. Add water, white sugar and brown sugar, and bring to a boil. Reduce temperature and let simmer.
  2. Place the bottom crust in your pan. Fill with apples, mounded slightly. Cover with a lattice work of crust. Gently pour the sugar and butter liquid over the crust. Pour slowly so that it does not run off.
  3. Bake 15 minutes in the preheated oven. Reduce the temperature to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Continue baking for 35 to 45 minutes, until apples are soft

And photos….First of Shelly’s Cherry Pie

Mmmm cherry pie mmmm

Mmmm cherry pie mmmm

Well, she did go to Tech....

Well, she did go to Tech....

Sweet Cherry Pi(e)

Sweet Cherry Pi(e)

I call this one "Shelly with Pie"

I call this one "Shelly with Pie"

And then my Apple pi(e) Are Squared:

Apples chopped and ready

Apples chopped and ready

Ready to go

Ready to go

Pi(e) R Squared. Get it? Get it???

Pi(e) R Squared. Get it? Get it???

I'm basically like Vanna White or some junk

I'm basically like Vanna White or some junk

Except hungrier

Except hungrier

Look in the bottom left corner - that's a river of butter. A butter river runs thru it. hahahaha.

Look in the bottom left corner - that's a river of butter. A butter river runs thru it. hahahaha.