Thursday, November 18, 2010

FFWD Week 8: Roast Chicken for Les Paresseux

This was the first time I'd ever roasted a chicken or even bought a whole chicken! I love how this group is prompting me to try new things. I roasted this chicken for my family and it was ALL devoured. For some reason, my bread came out super soggy and mushy, but it still tasted great. I want to try this recipe again and not add the optional 2/3 Cup water and see if that makes a difference. The chicken was so pretty and crisp and golden when it came out of oven!!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Double Banana Bread Cinnamon Rolls

While at school the other day, I was suddenly hit by the desire to make Banana Cinnamon Rolls. I couldn't remember ever seeing them, but was sure that someone had thought of it before me - and I was right! I came across a few recipes for putting banana in the dough, and another recipe for including roasted banana in the filling. After a heated debate with myself I decided to combine them for a double banana cinnamon roll! In the end, for the dough I used a pumpkin cinnamon roll recipe from Goodlife Eats, and just swapped banana for the pumpkin called for and switched up the spices a little. For the filling I used the roasted banana cinnamon roll filling from Picky Palate. They turned out GREAT! I didn't have any icing sugar and was much too lazy to go to the store, so I just made a brown sugar glaze. This was good, but they would have been significantly more divine with a glaze made with icing sugar or even a cream cheese icing. Double Banana Bread Cinnamon Rolls (adapted from Goodlife Eats & Picky Palate) *makes about 16 rolls, depending on size Roll Dough: 1/4 cup warm water (not hot, about 110 degrees) 1 package (2 1/4 teaspoons) active dry yeast 1/3 cup warm milk 1 large egg, beaten 3/4 cup mashed ripe banana (about 2 bananas) 1 tablespoon melted butter 2 cups (approximately) All-Purpose Flour 1 1 /4 cup Whole Wheat Flour 1/2 cup brown sugar 1 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg Filling: 2-3 ripe bananas (depending on how banana-y you want the rolls) cut into 1/4 inch slices 2 Tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces 2 Tablespoons brown sugar 4 Tablespoons softened butter 2/3 Cup packed brown sugar 2 Tablespoons Tablespoons ground cinnamon 1/4 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (optional) And your favourite glaze or cream cheese icing! Directions: In a large bowl, stir yeast into water to soften. Let rest for 5 minutes before stirring. Add milk, eggs, banana, butter, 1 1/4 cups whole wheat flour, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg to yeast mixture. Beat vigorously for 2 minutes. Gradually add remaining flour (all purpose), a little at a time, until you have a dough stiff enough to knead. Start with about 1 1/2 cups and increase if necessary. Turn dough out onto a floured surface. Knead, adding flour as necessary, until you have a smooth, elastic dough. Put dough into an oiled bowl. Turn once to coat entire ball of dough with oil. Cover with a towel and let rise until doubled, about 1 hour. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Place banana slices and cut up pieces of butter into a small baking dish. Sprinkle with 2 Tbsp brown sugar and bake for 25 minutes or until golden and bubbly. Remove and let cool for 10 minutes. Next, use a fork to mash the roasted bananas until well combined. Transfer the risen dough to a lightly floured work surface, and pat or roll it into a 16" x 12" rectangle. Spread with softened butter and sprinkle with brown sugar, cinnamon and nuts if using. Place dollops of roasted banana mixture evenly over top. Roll the dough into a log the long way; it'll stretch to about 20" long as you roll. Using a very sharp knife (I find a serrated knife works well), slice the log into 16 slices. Place slices in a greased 9x13 inch baking pan (or in two 8 or 9 inch round cake or pie pans). Cover with a towel and let rise until almost doubled, about 45 minutes. Bake in a preheated 375°F oven. Bake the rolls till they're brown around the edges and beginning to turn golden brown across the center, about 20-30 minutes. While rolls bake, prepare your favourite glaze or icing. Frost warm rolls with your prefered topping and serve immediately. Make sure you have people to share these with, or else you will end up eating all of them. Not that I did that or anything... really!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

FFWD Week 7: Potatos Gratin

I made this week's recipe for a French potluck hosted by a good friend. It was a great evening full of fantastic food and chatter. These potatos were well recieved by all. If I made them again I think I would use more garlic and more salt and pepper.

Friday, November 5, 2010

FFWD Week 6: Pumpkin-Gorgonzola Flans

Well, I jumped off the deep end this week and made the Pumpkin-Gorgonzola Flans from Around My French Table. At the grocery store I was warned against Gorgonzola and told that it was like eating "a stinky gym sock". Naturally this worried me some, but I decided that I would never know for myself if I didn't try it. And I gotta say, this recipe did absolutely nothing for me. The best part was the walnuts. Now, I'm sure that this is for other people, but it's not for me. I like my pumpkin with plenty of sugar and spices! And now I know: gorgonzola = not my thing