Key Lime & Coconut

My adventures in the world of food & wine

Monday, November 26, 2007

Tender Potato Bread

This month was Round 2 for me of the Daring Bakers challenge, in which over 300 food bloggers prepare the same elaborate recipe and post about it on the same day. This month, our chosen baked good was savory, not sweet: a Tender Potato Bread with mashed potatoes mixed right into the dough. I decided to make this as my contribution to my family's Thanksgiving dinner (fortunately my Mom took care of a good bit of the rest).

Before setting out to bake this delicious bread, I perused the Daring Bakers internal blog to see if anyone had any tips or suggestions. Fortunately, in this manner I was warned that the dough was incredibly sticky due to the mashed potatoes. In fact, sticky would be an understatement. While I was kneading the dough, I had to get my Mom to gradually add in the flour for me, since my hands were literally stuck to the ball of mush. It didn't take too much flour to wrangle it into control, though, and even though it was incredibly soft (I didn't want to add
too much flour for fear of making the bread tough) I decided to shape it into rolls to go with Thanksgiving dinner. Well, the dough was so soft that it couldn't hold the roll shape. When I put the balls of dough onto the baking sheet, they just flattened out into one big...sheet of bread. It was odd. But when I tore it apart into pieces to put into the bread basket and carried the hot-from-the-oven mini-loaves to the table, no one was complaining. The bread had a nice crusty top and was chewy and moist on the inside. Definitely well worth the effort.

To see hundreds of other takes on this Tender Potato Bread, formed into all sorts of shapes and topped with yummy extras, cruise on over to the Daring Bakers blog roll starting today. If you're feeling particularly daring, check out the recipe over at My Kitchen in Half Cups, whose creator, Tanna, selected this tasty treat. (Don't let the recipe's length scare you; it just contains a lot of variations.)

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Saturday, November 24, 2007

Everyday Yum

After all the Thanksgiving fuss has died down a bit, I finally have time to post a recipe that I tried out earlier this week that I really loved. Sunday night I made a recipe out of Martha Stewart's new food magazine, Everyday Food, and I was pretty disappointed with it. The recipe was for "lighter" sesame chicken, and it just didn't have a whole lot of flavor. The next night, with some apprehension, I tried a different recipe from the same magazine, this time for Pork Paprikash. Fortunately, it was much better, and is definitely going to be added to my catalog of go-to recipes that are fast, easy, and delicious.

Pork Paprikash
serves 4
  • coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 8 oz wide egg noodles
  • 1 Tbsp butter, cut into pieces
  • 1 pork tenderloin (about 1 pound), excess fat and silver skin removed, halved lengthwise, then cut crosswise into 1-inch-thick pieces
  • 2 Tbsp sweet paprika, divided
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil, divided
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 can (14 oz) whole peeled tomatoes in juice
  • 1/2 c. sour cream
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook noodles until tender; drain and return to pot. Stir in butter; cover and set aside. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine pork with 1 Tbsp paprika. Season with salt and pepper and toss to coat. In a large skillet, heat 1 Tbsp oil over medium-high. Cook pork, tossing occasionally, until lightly browned on all sides, 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Return skillet to stove, reducing heat to medium. Add remaining Tbsp oil and onion; cook until onion is soft, 4 to 5 minutes. Add pork, remaining Tbsp paprika, tomatoes with their juice, and 1/2 cup water. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer, cooking until sauce is slightly thickened, breaking up tomatoes with a spoon, 2 to 4 minutes. Remove skillet from heat and stir in sour cream. Season with salt and pepper. Serve paprikash over noodles.

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Friday, November 23, 2007

Happy Turkey Day

Well, folks, two chipped teeth didn't stop me from pigging out like a fat cow today. Wow, I really mixed up my animal metaphors in that last sentence. Anyway, my Thanksgiving dinner was fabulous, and I hope yours was too. No recipes for now unless I get specific requests. In the meantime, here's our menu and a picture of my plate:

Mixed Greens with Beets, Orange Slices and Goat Cheese
Potato Bread
Mustard and Herb Turkey with Scallion Gravy
Lemon Roasted Green Beans
Sweet Potato-Bourbon Mash
Cranberries in Port Wine and Cinnamon

Texas Pecan Pie

In the picture: turkey, cranberries, sweet potato mash, green beans.

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Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Itsy Bitsy Pieces

Sorry for the hiatus, faithful readers. Two weekends ago I had a bit of an incident, in which I managed to chip my two front teeth pretty badly. While I wait for the verdict as to whether they can be saved, I've been forbidden from using my front teeth for any purpose whatsoever. This has made eating somewhat tricky. For the first week I subsisted almost entirely on oatmeal, soup and pudding until I realized that I could eat solid food as long as it was made up of small pieces that I could place into the back of my mouth and chew with my molars, bypassing the front teeth entirely.

Last night I made a
goat cheese, lentil and potato salad that fit the bill pretty well. Everything in it is in little pieces - no incisors necessary. Also, it's fast, pretty healthy and tastes good. If anyone has suggestions for other meals that are front-teeth-free, please, pass them along. It'll be at least another week and a half until I have recovered full mastication ability.

Goat Cheese, Lentil and Potato Salad
serves 2 as a main course
  • 1-1/4 c. French green lentils, rinsed and drained
  • 3 Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 3 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 2 medium tomatoes, seeded and finely diced
  • 1/2 c. finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 c. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 c. fresh lemon juice
  • salt and pepper
  • 8 oz. fresh goat cheese, crumbled
In a large saucepan, cover the lentils with cold water and bring to a simmer. Cook over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until the lentils are tender, about 18 minutes. Drain the lentils well and transfer to a large bowl. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, cover the potatoes with cold water and bring to a boil. Cook over moderately high heat until the potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes. Drain very well and add to the lentils. Add the scallions, tomatoes, parsley, garlic, olive oil and lemon juice, season with salt and pepper and toss. Spoon the lentil salad onto plates and top with the goat cheese.

I borrowed this recipe from the October 2007 Food and Wine. They recommend a Semillon as a wine pairing, since its lemony/zesty flavors partner naturally with the earthy lentils and tangy dressing and goat cheese.

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Friday, November 02, 2007

Food Quote of the Day

"She's incredibly powerful and more loved than I am. But she genuinely offends me. Julia Child, for example, raised people's expectations of food. When Rachael tells you that it's perfectly O.K. to buy prechopped onion from the supermarket ... I mean, how hard is it to chop an onion? The takeaway is, I could cook, but instead I'll finish this bag of Cheetos and that gallon of Diet Pepsi before dying of diabetes."

--Anthony Bourdain on Rachael Ray - Nov. 12, 2007 issue of Time