Tomato & Red Quinoa Bread

tomato and red quinoa bread - sweetheatchefs.com

The only commentary I am going to try to make up for this recipe is, be sure to make both loafs, as this first one will not last long. Oh and don’t let the title fool you…There were 5 of us for dinner last night and we devoured 1 loaf in its entirety. (finger licking good is not just for chicken!)

tomato and red quinoa bread - sweetheatchefs.com

Apparently we are carb loving fiends!! All is good, I am happy being one. This bread is good next morning for toast and then for lunch as an open faced sammy! It is not just about the bread and butter here.

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INGREDIENTS #1

DIRECTIONS #1

Rinse quinoa in a strainer and add to pot with V8 juice. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes or until all liquid is absorbed. Set aside with lid off to cool. You need it cool for the next step.

tomato and red quinoa bread - sweetheatchefs.com

INGREDIENTS #2

  • 2 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 1 cup lukewarm water
  • 2 cups warm V8 juice
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 2 tbs dried basil
  • 2 cups bread flour
  • 1 cup whole-wheat flour

DIRECTIONS #2

To the bread machine, add the yeast to the warm water and stir, let sit for 5 minutes.  Add the rest of the ingredients plus the cooled quinoa and mix thoroughly.  Let run through the dough cycle and sit for 1 hour.

INGREDIENTS #3

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 to 4 cups white bread flour

DIRECTIONS #3

Add the dough that has been sitting for one hour into an oiled bowl and mix the above ingredients into the dough, start with 2 cups of flour first. Place dough on a clean surface, along with 1 more cup of flour and knead that into the bread. Continue to knead bread for about 5-10 minutes or until  smooth consistency.  Dough is relatively sticky, but if it is too sticky, add more flour 1/4 cup at a time.  Once ready, place back into the oiled bowl, cover and let sit for another 1.5 hours.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. After the 1.5 hours punch dough down and re-cover while oven is heating up.

When oven is ready, take 2 loaf pans, buttered and divide dough in half and place in pans

tomato and red quinoa bread - sweetheatchefs.com

INGREDIENTS #4

  • 3 tbs butter, melted
  • 2 tsp flax seeds

DIRECTIONS #4

Slice down the middle of the dough and drizzle half of the butter over the top of loaf. Sprinkle with half flax seeds, continue with second loaf.

Bake for about 50 minutes. Let cool about 10 minutes (if you can stand it) and then repeat after me:

SLICE BUTTER SCARF, REPEAT! 

 

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Loaded Bake Potato Soup Crock Pot Style

IMG_3174

INGREDIENTS

6 large baking potatoes, peeled, cut in 1/2″size
1 large onion, chopped
1 quart chicken broth
3 garlic cloves, minced 
1/4 cup butter (REAL butter)
2 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 cup cream or 1 cup half-and-half cream
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
1 cup sour cream (optional)
8 slices bacon, fried & crumbled
cheese, for sprinkling

IMG_3175

DIRECTIONS

Combine first seven ingredients in a large crock pot; cover and cook on HIGH for 4 hours or LOW for 8 hours (potato should be tender).

Mash mixture until potatoes are coarsely chopped and soup is slightly thick. If you want it thicker, add 1/4 cup instant mashed potatoes.

Stir in cream, cheese and chives.

Top with sour cream (if used), sprinkle with bacon and more cheese.

Loaded Baked Potato Soup

Focaccia – Don’t miss this!

I have made this recipe a few times now and each time it just gets better since I get more comfortable with the whole dough making business. A baker, I AM NOT, N-K?! So..if I can do this ANYONE, can do this. I follow this dough recipe to the “T” and then add the other stuff to suit mine and my families taste. I found this recipe at this amazing blog…ready for the name?….The Barefoot Kitchen Witch! Love her name, love her blog, check her out and you’ll see why. While you are there tell her we sent ya over 😀

Ok, back to the Focaccia yumminess. I could eat these things as a meal in-and-of-itself, however to save face and not look like a total carb overload eater, I make this with either a veggie packed salad or delicious soup, like my Creamy Chicken Veggie & Rice Soup.

Let your heart and tummy guide you through this process of what to top it with. Your options are as vast as your imagination on this one, that is half the fun coming up with toppings and combinations. Just imagine yourself biting into a light warm crispy and soft doughy bite filled with your favorite toppings….now your talking!

Take your time with the recipe, nurture it, follow it and enjoy the outcome when finished. I will guide you through a step by step process that will ensure complete success!

Things to know about this recipe:

  1. Kids love helping with this; let them dimple the dough, let them pick their own ingredients and let them top their own with what they picked!
  2. The dough is sticky; keep flour out until  you are done with all the handling of it
  3. Small kitchen? Make sure you have room for 2 sheet pans and a cutting board and a floured surface all at once.
  4. Use a kitchen aid (or whatever brand) stand up mixer for this, a hand held mixer will not work.
  5. If you want smaller portions, I have made this recipe into 18 focaccias, it is possible.
  6. Pre cut your parchment paper and set out on sheet pans ahead of time or during the rising process.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2  1/2 tsp (1 pkg) active dry yeast or 1 small cake (18 grams) fresh yeast
  • 1  cup warm water
  • 1/2 cup milk (warmed in microwave for about 1 minute)
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 2 1/2 T lard, at room temperature (I used vegetable shortening)
  • 3 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • Olive oil for brushing the tops
  • Salt for sprinkling the tops
  • Cornmeal for dusting the bottoms before baking
  • Toppings – thinly sliced vegetables, grilled or sautéed to intensify the flavor.  Garlic, Cheeses, Whatever sounds good.

DIRECTIONS:

Stir the yeast, water and milk in the bowl of a stand mixer; let stand until creamy, 10 minutes. 

Stir in the oil, and lard with the paddle. 

Add the flour and mix at low speed about 2 minutes. 

Change to the dough hook and knead 4 to 5 minutes. 

Add the salt and knead another 1 to 2 minutes.  The dough will climb up the collar of the hook, and you will have to stop several times to push it down.  The dough should be smooth, velvety, and softer than bread dough but firmer than croissant dough.

First Rise:

Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover tightly with plastic wrap (don’t forget to spray the plastic wrap), and let rise until doubled, 2 hours.

Cut the dough into 6 pieces (or however many you want to make, remember I made mine into 18 once) on a lightly floured surface and shape into balls. Let rest under a towel for 15 minutes.

Dimple the dough balls (remember kids love this part, no matter what age!), spreading each into a circle, and let rest under a towel another 15 minutes. 

Dimple tops with oil and sprinkle lightly with salt alone or your seasoning. (Here I used basil and salt) Place the dough circles on parchment-lined or oiled baking sheets or baker’s peels sprinkled with cornmeal.

Second Rise:

Cover with a towel and let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.

Dimple the dough again with your fingertips, stretching it as you go.  Sprinkle with salt and brush with oil. 

Mist water very lightly over the top to cover and trap the oil and then cover with the toppings of your choice.

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. at least 20 minutes before you plan to bake.  Bake 18 to 20 minutes.  Immediately brush the surfaces with oil.  Serve hot, or cool on racks to room temperature.

This recipe is being shown over at Thursday’s Treasures!!

Creamy Chicken Veggie and Rice Soup – Warm the Heart, Warm the Soul!

Don’t let the sunny picture fool you…well ok I’m not even going to go there. Living in California sure its fun in the sun. But when my favorite time of year comes, FALL, I am saddened that the weather is not cool enough to reflect that. I love making soup and bread and warm you up goodies, but when the temperature reaches 80 in November, well sometimes it just isn’t that easy to get my family to eat hot soup! Luckily in between these warm days are a few hit or miss cool and even rainy ones. Leaving me to explore the world of Fall cooking.

Today I made a creamy, warm, stick to your ribs with a hearty healthy kick soup. This soup is almost too hearty to have a second bowl…I did say ALMOST! Filled with vegetables for great nutrition and a little creaminess to round it out, you will surely want to accompany it with a carb filled side! For me I have been making this Focaccia Bread that is just delicious and pairs perfectly with any soup or is fabulous on its own. Take a weekend, get your ingredients together you will want to make both of these delights this weekend!

INGREDIENTS

  • 8 c. Low-Sodium Chicken Broth
  • 2 Stalks Celery, thinly sliced
  • 1 Red  Onion, diced
  • 1/2 c. Carrots, I used the shredded ones
  • 1 head of broccoli, washed and cut up in small pieces (reserve 1/2 of the florets)
  • 1 bunch of Asparagus, washed and trimmed; reserve the stems
  • 2 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp. Dried Oregano
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 tbsp. All Purpose Flour
  • 3/4 c. Cream of Chicken Soup (could substitute in heavy cream, I just had this left over so I wanted to use it)
  • 1/4 c. 2% Milk
  • 1/2 cup sharp cheddar cheese (optional)
  • Kosher Salt, to taste
  • 1/4 tsp. Fresh Ground Pepper
  • 3 cooked Chicken Breasts, diced

DIRECTIONS:

In a large stockpot, drizzle olive oil on the bottom and add your diced chicken. Season with salt/pepper and cook until browned and cooked through.

Remove from pot and add 1 tbs of olive oil, add; carrots, celery, onion, broccoli, stems of your asparagus and saute for 5 minutes.

*NOTE* Using the stems to the asparagus:

  1. Cut the very bottoms off, discard and do not use
  2. Bend the bottom of one the asparagus spears until it snaps, this will be your guide for cutting the rest of the bunch
  3. Cut the remaining spears and cut the stems into 1/2″ dices, add these to your stockpot.

Add flour and saute for 2 minutes to get the flour taste out of it.

Add chicken broth slowly stirring as you add to avoid clumps. Once all broth is incorporated, bring to a boil and then reduce heat to just at a boil for about 20 minutes, or until all veggies are super soft.

Remove from heat and using an immersion blender (these things ROCK!) start blending until you get the desired consistency you like.

Return pot to stove and reduce heat to low. Add rice stir to combine.

Take a microwave safe bowl and add your milk and cream of chicken soup and combine. Add cheese if using.

Add this to your stockpot along with your reserved chicken and simmer for about 30 minutes or until the rice is cooked through.

While simmering place your asparagus spears & broccoli florets in a microwave safe bowl and add about 2 tbs water. Cover with Saran wrap and cook for 1 minute. Immediately add to an ice bath to stop the cooking process.

When soup is finished garnish with a few of your steamed broccoli florets and asparagus spears.

Cornbread Toaster Bites

This is it…all the ingredients needed for this recipe, only 9 of them! Love easy, love convenient, love quick & YUMMY!

Do you remember the days when your mom was making homemade cornbread and as it was baking away in the oven and the odor of that sweet corn traveled through the house and made its way to your room? You emerge from under a pile of clothes that has been strewn about your room for weeks even though your mom has asked you to pick it up every time she walks by, to see what was for dinner. I love cornbread in many things and with many things. Now that the weather is getting cooler I can’t think of anything better than to get cooking on finding a new use for them.

I have had cornbread for lunch and dinner…how about breakfast? I can’t remember a breakfast that I have had that included fresh-baked cornbread. The vest part about this recipe is it is quick to assemble and a quick bake for the morning. You can get up throw everything together and bake. When you make you can eat it right as it is out of the oven with melting butter and drizzled honey and a few sprigs of freshly toasted rosemary leaves! You will not be able to stop at 1 piece!

Since this makes an entire sheet pan, you most likely will have left overs. Pop these in the toaster in the morning and repeat the process of butter, honey and rosemary. Enjoy with a hot cup of coffee or tea and you are in sweet cornbread bliss.

NOTE TO SELF: If possible get a plate, put your feet up and zen out!

INGREDIENT LIST

1 stick butter, melted
1/2 c + 2 T sugar
2 eggs
1.5 t vanilla
1 1/2 t baking powder
3/4 c + 2 T cornmeal
1 1/4 c all-purpose flour
1/2 t salt
1 c milk

Preheat oven to 350 F. and
In a medium-sized bowl mix together the melted butter & sugar.

Stir in the eggs and vanilla.

Add the baking powder, cornmeal, flour & salt. Mix until everything is moistened. 

Add milk & mix until smooth

Line a 10″ x 15″ baking sheet with 1/2″ sides with foils and a piece of parchment paper. Spray a little non stick cooking spray on the parchment and throw a small handful of cornmeal over the top (this is optional) Pour your batter onto the parchment paper and spread it out over the entire sheet, getting it in each corner. If the mixture is uneven just give the cookie sheet a couple shakes to even it out.

Bake for about 25 minutes. The edges should be brown & pulling away from the side of the pan & the top should be set and not jiggly.

Allow to rest in the pan 5 to 10 minutes before cutting into. This helps keep the shape you want for making the taster bites. Using a sharp knife cut into individual pieces. 

Store the toaster bites in plastic wrap or in a re-sealable bag in the refrigerator. For longer storage keep them in freezer bags in the freezer.

 

 

Shown on Foodie Friends Friday!

Fake Out Parmesan & Rosemary Biscuits

These are the best quick go to fake out biscuits you can have. You have a dinner for some guests and you’re in a hurry, these taste like you made them home-made and they are super quick. TIP: Get rid of the packaging and you can claim them as your own! the crunchy rosemary and its earthy flavor mixed with the freshly grated parmesan with its nutty sharp flavor all go together so well. You won’t even need butter on these!

INGREDIENTS

1 can Pillsbury biscuit dough (any kind)
2-3 sprigs rosemary
1/2 cup fresh grates Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon garlic powder

Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees F. and cook biscuits for 15-18 minutes or until golden brown. Place biscuits on a foil lined cookie sheet. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese, and cut 1 leaf of the rosemary on top. Sprinkle with garlic powder. Take 1 whole leaf of rosemary and place in the middle of biscuit. Repeat until all biscuits are done.

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1000!!!

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Chefs! We are just a mom and daughter doing what we like best, cooking and being together. I am so happy everyone enjoys our recipes and my awesome sense of humor, wait who slipped that in? LOL I hope there will be lots more to come with the next 1000 fans. YOU ALL ARE THE BEST!

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Smooth & Cheesy Chicken Enchilada Soup

For those of us on the West Coast, I know it is entirely TOO HOT to be talking soup, but here’s the deal…you are going to NEED this recipe come Fall and Winter. Seriously, not want it, NEED it. I think last year I made this so many times we almost turned into enchilada soup! My entire family likes this and that is not an easy feat to accomplish. Again, this was in my early days of picture taking and blogging, so you will need to excuse the pics and TRUST me on the delectable taste of this soup!

INGREDIENTS

1 lb. skinless boneless chicken
2 T. Extra Virgil Olive Oil
1 whole sweet onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic (microplanned)
2 qt. chicken stock
1.5 cups masa harina
3 cups water divided
2 c. enchilada sauce
2 c. shredded sharp cheddar cheese (go for sharp every time you will be glad you did!)
2 t. chili powder
1 t. ground cumin

DIRECTIONS

First off for convenience I use a store made rotisserie chicken for my soup. If you want to go completely homemade, use 4 chicken breasts and bake them in oven until done. Let cool and then cut into bite sized pieces.

  1. In  your stock pot, cook onion in olive oil for a few minutes then add, garlic until fragrant, (about 1-2 minutes on medium) do not burn garlic or it will be bitter and you will have to start over. 
  2. Add chicken stock.
  3. In a bowl whisk together masa harina and 2.5 cups water until it becomes thick and is well blended.
  4. Pour masa mixture into pot with additional water, enchilada sauce, chili powder, and cumin and chicken. (I am using the rotisserie chicken so I just shred it and drop in stock)  
  5. Bring to boil. At this stage I drop the temperature to low and cook for however long necessary. You can make it all afternoon or crank the heat up and eat within 30-40 minutes. If you are cooking for a long time, do not add cheese until closer to eating time. If you are eating within a relatively short amount of time (30-40 minutes) add cheese now. 
  6. When ready to serve, garnish with shredded jack cheese, sour cream, chives and homemade tortilla strips (see recipe below). 

Tortilla Strips
4 Corn Tortillas
1 c. Vegetable Oil
Salt

DIRECTIONS
Add oil to small fry pan and heat on medium high. While waiting for oil to heat up cut tortillas into strips. Line your counter with 3 layers of paper towel to drain tortilla strips on when finished. When oil is hot add 8-10  tortilla strips at a time to oil and fry for 3-5 minutes. Set on paper towel and add salt. 

 

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