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Bread

Teff Dinner Rolls

by Emma on June 13, 2012

in Bread

I love baking things in my cast iron skillet. It took me a while to realize you could just pop these (or stainless steel pans) right into the oven. How fun! It’s sort of like when you find crayons in your refrigerator.

Well. Actually no. It’s not really like that.

It’s just sort of fun when things have dual purposes. I feel like my skillet can do double duty since she can both sauté and bake (and yeah, mine’s totally a she). And that’s sort of cool. Plus I like having a handle for pulling it out of the oven.

The main draw back to baking with cast iron is that the pan is very, very heavy. I’m not a strong lady. I go to the gym, yeah. But I don’t lift much, and it’s real hard. I’m just not strong. So pulling a heavy and super hot pan out of the oven is dangerous. Not to mention that every time I open the oven with my glass on they fog up like crazy.

So I can’t see.

And I’m not strong.

But dang it, I still get that pan out of the oven. Because that’s how I do.

I like trying something sweet and savory with all my new flour adventures to start. I made teff cookies so now I’ve added teff dinner rolls to my list of breads I’ve baked this year (we’re up to 16 so far!). Both of these turned out pretty good. I think I like teff. We are friends now.

Teff Dinner Rolls, makes 16, adapted from this recipe.

Needed: 3 cups all-purpose flour, 1/2 cup teff flour, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, 2 teaspoons active dry yeast, 2 tablespoons sugar, 3/4 cup warm water and 2/3 cup milk. Melted butter and coarse sea salt for the topping.

In a small bowl dissolve the sugar in the warm water. Add the yeast allow this to bubble. In the bowl of mixer combine the flours and salt. Now pour in the yeasty water and milk. With the dough hook attachment mix/knead the bread until the dough is smooth. You could also do this by hand.

Oil and bowl, set the dough ball inside and cover with plastic wrap. Allow this to rise for 1 hour.

Turn dough out onto a floured surface and divide into 16 pieces. Roll each into a bowl and lay in your baking… uh… vessel. Cover and allow to rise for another hour.

Bake at 350 F for 22-25 minutes. Remove from oven, brush with melted butter and sprinkle with sea salt. xo. Emma

11 comments

Whole Wheat Focaccia

by Emma on April 16, 2012

in Bread

Yesterday was one of those days where you realize you studied the wrong chapters for your online quiz. You had high hopes of building your back yard fire pit but now it’s pouring rain (and lightning—pouring lightning. ok maybe not pouring). You know you should probably cook something/baking something/do something with your life but you just don’t know what.

I think we all have those moments—where nothing is really wrong but everything feels just a tiny bit over-the-top. It sucks, but it’s just one of those things I guess. I have a few “cures” that I usually turn to on annoying days like this:

-Eat an ice cream cone. Not just ice cream in a bowl from your freezer. No. Go somewhere, get a cone, take a picture, eat it. It does wonders. (You can skip the picture part if you’re not a weirdo like me.)

-Make a giant to-do list for your week/month/year/life. Dreaming up things you want to do, or making note of the things you’ve been putting off but ought to do is somehow very liberating for me. Lists set me free. I know it should probably feel like the opposite, but like I said, I’m a weirdo.

-Do something you’ve never done before. Like make Focaccia. Or run 3 miles. Or organize your closet by color. Or climb a mountain. You can go crazy with this one or you can work with the time you have that day.

So for me, as I read the correct chapters for my online quiz I also waited for my Focaccia to rise. This was my first focaccia, ever. And it was marvelous. And it reminded me that I can, indeed, do new things. And that made me feel better.

Plus I got an “A” on my quiz later that day. (Boom.)

Whole Wheat Focaccia, makes one giant loaf (you can turn it into croutons if it’s too much), adapted from here.

Needed: 2 heaping teaspoons active dry yeast, 1 cup warm water, 2 tablespoons sugar, 3 cups all-purpose flour, 1/2 cup whole wheat flour, 1 tablespoon salt, 1/3 cup olive oil (plus more for the top), cornmeal for the pan, spices for the top (I used: caraway seeds, dry oregano, coarse sea salt, and sprinkle of chili powder).

In the bowl of your mixer (fitted with the dough hook) combine the warm water and sugar until it dissolves. Add the yeast and let it bubble up, about 3 minutes. Turn the mixer on low and start adding in the flours, then the salt. Scrap down the sides of the bowl and then continue mixing, add in the oil. Now turn the mixer on medium and let it knead the dough for 8-10 minutes; until the dough is very elastic. If you don’t have a mixer you can totally do this by hand, it will just take longer but you will get some pretty sweet arm muscles. Cover the dough and allow it to rise for 1 hour. Turn out onto a flour surface and punch the dough down. Roll or stretch the dough so it’s about 1/2 inch thick and roughly a large rectangle. Place on a lightly oiled and covered in cornmeal baking sheet, cover, and allow to rise for another 15-20 minutes.

Dimple the dough, brush with a generous amount of olive oil and sprinkle on your spices (or add toppings like olives, caramelized onions, etc.). Bake at 400 F for 18-20 minutes. Enjoy with soup, or warm with butter. These are just suggestions. You could just stare at it; but that seems like such a waste, no? xo. Emma

17 comments

Amaranth Breakfast Muffins

by Emma on April 5, 2012

in Bread,Breakfast

I think my default is to add dark chocolate to everything I bake. My default hair do is curled out at the tips (I’d like to think I look like Farrah Fawcett… but that’s just not true). My default outfit is jeans with a stripe shirt and boots or sandals (depending on the weather). My default drink is a Sidecar (or Mojito). My default evening activity is reading young adult fantasy novels, or science fiction if I’m fresh out of fantasy.

I guess my point is, I’m naturally really cool. Obviously.

Also, no I will not stop using my new flours. You can’t make me. It’s my blog. So there.

These muffins feature: amaranth flour. I made flat bread and it was awesome, so I decided to make muffins this morning. They were pretty fab-but I will say that I should have mixed the raspberries and chocolate into the batter instead of placing it on top before baking. So you be better than me-and mix it in. My thought was the berries and chocolate would sink to the bottom before the batter baked.

I love alliteration.

But this didn’t happen, I guess the batter was more substantial than I would have guessed. I’m not a food scientist, I learn most of my baking tips from trial and error.

Amaranth Breakfast Muffins, makes 10-12 standard size muffins

Needed: 1/2 cup amaranth flour, 3/4 cup all-purpose flour, 1 1/4 cup oats, 1/2 cup sugar, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/2 cup oil (I used vegetable), 1 egg, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract, 1/2 cup buttermilk, 1 to 1 1/2 cup mix-ins of your choice (I added some raspberries and dark chocolate chips).

In a bowl combine the flours, oats, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir in the oil, egg and vanilla. Stir in the buttermilk. Stir in the mix-in ingredients of your choice.

Spoon batter into a lined muffin pan, 2/3 full. Bake at 375 F for 16-18 minutes. Enjoy in the morning with coffee or milk. That’s just part of the directions… so sorry if you don’t like coffee or milk. That’s just how it is.

Here’s a picture of all the flours I was recently gifted… so you can probably expect more weirdo-flour recipes coming at you in the coming months. If I get sick of flour I may actually cook something… like soup or whatever. But I don’t know man, that’s a lot of flour to obsess over…

xo. Emma

29 comments

Amaranth Flatbread

by Emma on April 4, 2012

in Bread,Snacks,Vegan

This is, without question, the best flat bread I have ever eaten. It’s so simple but the addition of amaranth flour and a few seasonings splashed on before cooking just makes this bread ah-maz-ing. I ate some plain. I ate some with humus. I plan to use some to make into a pizza…. my life is awesome this week.

I am continuing my plunge into cooking with different flours-the adventure continues. I learned this week that amaranth flour is gluten-free, has a lovely nutty taste and is pretty darn healthy. It can be substituted for about 25% of the flour in most recipes (says the internet… so we’ll see).  And guess what, if you add yeast to it, it will rise.

If you build it they will come.

That movie was so weird. I mean, I like it… but can you imagine pitching that idea to someone? “Ok, so it’s a movie about a guy who builds a baseball field in his backyard. Like a really good baseball field. And then these ghost baseball players come and play there. It’s a film about faith, baseball and ghosts.”

Seriously, what a weird idea. Kevin Costner, what a handsome guy.

I digress….

Amaranth Flatbread, makes around 8 10-inch pieces, recipe adapted from Good to the Grain.*

Needed: 1 1/2 cups warm water, 2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast, 1 tablespoon honey or sugar, 1/2 cup amaranth flour, 3 cups all-purpose flour, 1 tablespoon salt, olive oil for brushing the tops of the breads and a seasoning mix to sprinkle on (I used a pinch of: cumin, chili powder, oregano, salt and caraway seeds).

In a bowl combine the water, yeast and honey (or sugar) let that mingle and bubble for 5 minutes. Combine the flours and salt, pour in the water mixture and knead for 5 minutes on a floured surface. Form the dough into a ball, lay in an oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let this rise for 1 1/2 to 2 hours. My kitchen was quite hot the day I made this so my rise time was around 1 1/2 hours.

Punch the dough down (get violent with it. if you want. then apologize) form in a ball again, put it back in the bowl, cover and let it rise for another hour to 1 1/2 hours. Again, I only let it rise for an hour as my kitchen was quite warm.

Divide dough into 8 pieces. Use your hands to roll them out flat, as if you were stretching out pizza dough. Brush a little oil on each side, season with your spice mix and cook in a medium hot cast iron skillet for 6-8 minutes, flipping once in the middle.

These are best served right after you cook them, but if you warm them up in the microwave the day after they are not too shabby either. :) xo. Emma

*I’ve been sharing a number of recipes from Good to the Grain, as I’ve found it to be an excellent place to start when baking with new-to-me flours. I usually slightly adapt recipes, based on what I have on hand. But I highly recommend this cook book for anyone curious about baking with different grains. Kim Boyce you amaze me.

16 comments