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  1. #81
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    Mmmm Grasshopper pie

    Maybe I'd be okay at making pastry cause unlike Jodi people usually tell me "OMG your hands are so COLD!". All this time I thought it was a curse

  2. #82
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    Quote Originally Posted by emason View Post
    Everyone in my family has a sweet tooth, and when I was a child my mother an I were constantly in the kitchen making something sweet: fudge, brownies, eclairs, cookies, cakes, etc.
    My first memories of cooking are baking too - much more kid friendly than making veggies I guess

    I used to help with the Christmas cookies every year, and then we'd have a decorating party with another family featuring a messy table full of coloured icings and sprinkles, lots of fun.

    In second grade, we made butter (which I have never done again - must try that), and something we called bonbons. For years, I had a stained recipe for it and we made them on sleepovers, but we lost it long ago. It had both icing sugar and corn syrup and you kneaded the mixture by hand, adding flavouring and food colouring for different kinds.

    The first non-sweet thing I made was the meatloaf from the old Betty Crocker Recipe Card File (anyone remember that?) - it's the recipe I still use.

  3. #83
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    Friday night is casual dinner night in our house, and that often means sandwiches. Tonight I will be attempting banh mi for the first time.

    My Spice House order arrived the other day - it was like Christmas unwrapping each new item, including my spanking new microplane New favourite condiment: Vulcan's Fire Salt.

  4. #84
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    Cooks Illustrated made a breakthrough when they came up with a recipe that substitutes vodka for part of the water. The vodka adds moisture and keeps the dough easy to handle but does not toughen like water does. The alcohol will bake away in the oven. And the two-step addition of the flour ensures flakiness. I've had excellent results with it.

    Ingredients
    2 1/2 cups (12 1/2 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
    1 teaspoon table salt
    2 tablespoons sugar
    12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch slices
    1/2 cup cold vegetable shortening, cut into 4 pieces
    1/4 cup cold vodka
    1/4 cup cold water
    Procedure
    1. Process 1 1/2 cups flour, salt, and sugar in food processor until combined, about 2 one-second pulses. Add butter and shortening and process until homogeneous dough just starts to collect in uneven clumps, about 15 seconds (dough will resemble cottage cheese curds and there should be no uncoated flour). Scrape bowl with rubber spatula and redistribute dough evenly around processor blade. Add remaining cup flour and pulse until mixture is evenly distributed around bowl and mass of dough has been broken up, 4 to 6 quick pulses. Empty mixture into medium bowl.
    2. Sprinkle vodka and water over mixture. With rubber spatula, use folding motion to mix, pressing down on dough until dough is slightly tacky and sticks together. Divide dough into two even balls and flatten each into 4-inch disk. Wrap each in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 45 minutes or up to 2 days.

  5. #85
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    Seriously?? Sounds like my kinda bread!

    Question for bakers: butter vs shortening vs lard - thoughts?

  6. #86
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    Since so many people are sick or know someone who is, I thought I would post this very easy recipe for chicken soup for cold and allergy sufferers. It's full of vitamins C and A, and the ginger helps clear the nose.

    If you don't like ginger or lime, you won't like this. You can really taste them both. My husband loves this when he has a bad cold, though, because he CAN taste them both.

    Gingeriffic Chicken Soup

    2 quarts chicken broth
    About 1.5 pounds boneless, skinless chicken cut into bite-sized pieces
    1 pound baby red potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
    2 cups baby carrots, cut in chunks
    4 oz. fresh shitake mushrooms or 1 oz dried shitakes, rinsed and chopped
    Zest and juice of one lime
    2-in piece of ginger, peeled and thinly sliced
    1 tsp. salt.
    1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

    Put all ingredients in a large soup pot. Simmer over medium-low heat with a lid slightly ajar for about 40 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through.

    This soup freezes well, or so the recipe says.
    Trolling dates all the way back to 397 B.C. - People began following Plato around and would make fart noises after everything he said.

  7. #87

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    What exactly ARE the healing properties in chicken soup? I have heard several different theories. Is it the spices? Is it the actual marrow from the bone in the chicken....is that true?

  8. #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rex View Post
    What exactly ARE the healing properties in chicken soup? I have heard several different theories. Is it the spices? Is it the actual marrow from the bone in the chicken....is that true?
    Well, there's this:

    http://archives.cnn.com/2000/HEALTH/...ken.soup.reut/
    Trolling dates all the way back to 397 B.C. - People began following Plato around and would make fart noises after everything he said.

  9. #89
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jenny View Post
    Seriously?? Sounds like my kinda bread!

    Question for bakers: butter vs shortening vs lard - thoughts?
    I think the recipe with vodka refers to pie crust, not bread.

    I always use butter myself, I think it has the best flavor.

  10. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post
    Since so many people are sick or know someone who is, I thought I would post this very easy recipe for chicken soup for cold and allergy sufferers. It's full of vitamins C and A, and the ginger helps clear the nose.
    Thanks Prancer for sharing this - never thought of ginger and lime in chicken soup, and it sounds like just the thing.

    Will file in case needed this season.

  11. #91
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    Nothing beats lard for lightness and crispness in pastry. Even my pastry I always use at least half butter for flavour though.
    I am too long away from water;
    I have a need of water near.

  12. #92
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    Thanks for the soup recipe Prancer, it was really good. The only change I made was to use a bit of macaroni in place of the potatoes.

  13. #93
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    Quote Originally Posted by KikiSashaFan View Post
    Thanks for the soup recipe Prancer, it was really good. The only change I made was to use a bit of macaroni in place of the potatoes.
    Wow, that was quick. Glad you liked it.

    I should give credit where credit is due there, so the recipe came from Hands-Off Cooking: Low-Supervision, High-Flavor Meals for Busy People.
    Trolling dates all the way back to 397 B.C. - People began following Plato around and would make fart noises after everything he said.

  14. #94

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    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post
    Thanks for this; it pretty much makes sense.

  15. #95
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post
    Wow, that was quick. Glad you liked it.

    I should give credit where credit is due there, so the recipe came from Hands-Off Cooking: Low-Supervision, High-Flavor Meals for Busy People.
    Just added this to my Amazon cart - I usually stay away from these types of cookbooks as they are usually more flash than flavour, and sacrifice healthy eating for convenience - this one sounds like it has the fast meals/fresh ideas/limited effort formula done right.

    I'll put it next to my copy of Casseroles for Drinkers.

  16. #96

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    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post
    Since so many people are sick or know someone who is, I thought I would post this very easy recipe for chicken soup for cold and allergy sufferers. It's full of vitamins C and A, and the ginger helps clear the nose.

    If you don't like ginger or lime, you won't like this. You can really taste them both. My husband loves this when he has a bad cold, though, because he CAN taste them both.

    Gingeriffic Chicken Soup
    I tried this tonight; it was easy and delicious. At the last minute I threw in a handful of spinach and plated up the soup as soon as the spinach wilted. Yum!

  17. #97

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    Anyone has a quick and easy banana bread recipe to share?
    “Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none.” William Shakespeare

  18. #98

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    Quote Originally Posted by Buzz View Post
    Anyone has a quick and easy banana bread recipe to share?
    4 very ripe bananas
    1/4 cup melted butter
    1/4 cup brown sugar
    1/2 cup white sugar
    1 1/2 cups flour
    1/4 tsp salt
    1 egg, beaten
    1 tsp baking soda
    Cinnamon, nutmeg, chocolate chips, nuts, etc. if preferred

    Preheat oven to 350F. Mash bananas in a bowl. Add everything else and mix. Bake in a bread pan for about 45 to 60 minutes.

  19. #99
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    Here is mine - I make all the time.
    So easy, I like the technique – just fold the wet with the dry – just barely.
    I like size of the loaf – not too much.

    Banana Bread
    The wet ingredients are:
    2 ripe bananas,
    6 Tbs. melted butter I used 2 more Tbs
    1 tsp. vanilla extract,
    2 large eggs

    For the dry ingredients:
    1-1/3 cup flour
    1/2 tsp. baking soda
    1/4 tsp. baking powder
    2/3 cup sugar I used a bit more sugar
    1/2 tsp. salt No salt if using salted butter
    1/2 cup chopped walnuts.

    Combine and whisk all the dry ingredients except for the walnuts. The use of both baking soda and powder are necessary to provide enough leavening for the proper consistency of the bread. The baking soda is just enough to utilize the slight acidity of the bananas to create the desired carbon dioxide bubbles. Baking powder (which is a mix of baking soda, a base, and cream of tartar, an acid) provides even more leavening power.

    Mash the bananas, melted butter, and vanilla extract together. Lightly beat the eggs together.

    Mash the banana mixture with the eggs until smooth and well blended.

    Pour the banana mixture onto the dry ingredients. Add the walnuts.

    Fold the ingredients together until no more white flour is uncovered while folding.

    Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake for 55 minutes at 350°F.

    After 55 minutes, the loaf of banana bread should be done. A wooden toothpick inserted into the center should come out clean. Set the pan on a wire rack to cool for ten minutes.
    Remove the loaf from the pan and let cool on the wire rack. Serve warm or fully cooled. The loaf can be wrapped in plastic and stored at room temperature for about four or five days.

  20. #100
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    Quote Originally Posted by emason View Post
    I tried this tonight; it was easy and delicious. At the last minute I threw in a handful of spinach and plated up the soup as soon as the spinach wilted. Yum!
    Amazon just told me my copy of the book has shipped

    Love the spinach idea for more nutrition, will try. With all these endorsements, I think I'm going to make it *before* anyone gets sick.

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