Tag Archives: Flour

Chicken and Handmade Noodles

chnAuthor: Cassie Stevens

One of my favorite dishes my mother makes for Thanksgiving is her turkey and homemade noodles. OMG! They are so good, she makes them the day before and lets them dry out overnight. Although I have tried many times, I don’t make them the same as my mama.  Well, this is a similar recipe to hers.  My chicken and noodles has veggies in it unlike my mama’s, but I think it adds a lot of flavor to the stock.

I start by making the dough for the noodles. It’s really very easy, all you need is

2 cups of flour

1/3 cup water

1/2 tsp salt

2 egg yolks and one whole egg beaten

1 tsp olive oil

Prep: In a large bowl stir together the flour and salt, then make a well in the center.  In another small bowl mix egg yolks, whole egg, water, and olive oil.  Add egg mixture to flour. Mix well. add a tsp of water at a time if too dry. On a floured surface roll out dough and knead until smooth and elastic. (8 to 10 minutes). Cover and let dough rest for ten to fifteen minutes.  Cut dough in half and roll out as thin as you want your noodles. Dust with flour on each side so the dough does not stick to the counter and cut with a knife, pizza cutter, or the nifty little roller cutter that I found at a thrift store never opened for fifty cents.

chn2I love that thing. I’m glad I picked it up. It also has another roller blade that tenderizes meat. I use it for pastas only. I tenderize my meat other ways.

chn3So after all your pasta is cut, it’s time to set it aside to dry.  I just place it on a parchment lined baking sheet to air dry. I turned it after an hour to help it dry out more evenly.

chn4I let mine dry for about two hours. It was dry enough by that time. As soon as it was dry I started the stock. I added a Tbsp of minced garlic and enough olive oil to cover a stock pot. Then I added the veggies:

chn5About three carrots, half an onion, and two stalks of celery. Dice them all up and sweat them out in the stock pot. I also, added two Tbsp butter, cause I can never cook without it. I love butter, real butter!  Once your veggies are sweatin’ add 3 cups water and simmer.

Next in a cast iron skillet or whatever pan you have (I love my cast iron skillet) brown your chicken. I used 3 boneless breasts and I seasoned my chicken with salt and pepper and a little bit of minced garlic in the bottom of the pan. Once browned on each side I set aside to rest for a few minutes. Then cut into small cubes and put inside stockpot to finish cooking for about ten to fifteen minutes.

chn7Drain the liquid from the stock pot into the skillet and bring to a boil, then add your noodles. Cook for about three minutes. Noodles will be done. Cook a little longer for thicker noodles.

chn6Once the noodles are done, add them to your stockpot. Before you add more water, make a slurry to thicken to a gravy.

chn8Add 1 Tbsp cornstarch and 1 Tbsp flour and mix well in a measuring cup with just enough water to dissolve. Add to stock pot, then add more water to desired consistency. Let simmer for a few minutes and it will thicken up to a gravy consistency.

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Looks yummy right? Time to eat! Pair it with your favorite dinner rolls and you have a great dinner your family will be talking about for a while!

chn10I hope you enjoy as much as we all did! Happy cooking!

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Oatmeal Cranberry Coconut Chocolate Chunk Cookies

cookies2Author: Cassie Stevens

Oh wow! What a mouthful! I know it’s a lot for one cookie, but these power packed energy boosting cookies will win you over when you hear what goes into them and just how good they are for you!  These little cookies go great with coffee in the morning for a quick breakfast, or just an anytime snack with milk.

cookiesCranberries, Coconut, Honey, Oatmeal, and Chocolate chips.  All super foods for energy and health (in a cookie), with no added sugars. My one year old loves them. I think she really likes the chocolate chunks in them more than anything, but they are a big hit with my family. So, lets take a minute to review how healthy these great ingredients can be for you health and happiness.

Oatmeal can lower blood cholesterol, because of its soluble fiber content.  An oatmeal bath, made by adding a cup of finely ground oatmeal to one’s bathwater, is also commonly used to ease the discomfort associated with such things as chickenpox, poison ivy, eczema, sunburn and dry skin.

Cranberries are a source of polyphenol antioxidants, phytochemicals that are for benefits to the cardiovascular system and immune system, and as anti-cancer agents.  There are benefits from cranberry consumption against bacterial infections in the urinary system.

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Coconut peel may contain novel anticancer compounds.  Inside a coconut is a cavity filled with coconut water, which is sterile until opened. It mixes easily with blood, and was used during World War II in emergency transfusions.  Also, young coconut juice has estrogen-like characteristics. There are countless other healing properties and wonderful uses from coconuts.

Honey has been used by humans to treat a variety of ailments, from gastric disturbances to ulcers, wounds and burns, through ingestion or topical application.  Honey has also been used for centuries as a treatment for sore throats and coughs.

cookies4Chocolate can help reduce the risk of certain cardiovascular problems and also reduce blood pressure in adults.  Chocolate boosts cognitive abilities.  Cocoa or dark chocolate positively affects the circulatory system.

Now, with all that said here is the recipe.

4 cups Oats

1 1/2 cups flour

3 eggs

1/4 cup cream or whole milk

2 tsp vanilla extract

2 tsp baking soda

1 cup chocolate chunks

1/2 cup dried cranberries

1 cup shredded coconut

1/2 tsp salt

1/2  cup butter

1/2 cup honey

First mix all your dry ingredients then in a separate bowl mix all your wet ingredients then mix the two together. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F. Drop cookies on a parchment lined baking sheet pan 1 tablespoon at a time. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes. Makes about 5 dozen cookies.

Homemade Calzones

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Author: Cassie Stevens

A calzone is folded over like a pocket pizza. A calzone has sauce inside, like a pizza. Not to be confused with the Stromboli, which does not contain any sauce and is usually made with Italian dough and stuffed with meats and cheeses only. Were as, the calzone is made with pizza dough hence, a pocket pizza, and stuffed with everything you would put on a pizza.  I love either, meat and cheese wrapped in any kind of dough, sauce or not, and you can count me in.

Start by getting your stuff together. I used the same recipe I use for my pizza dough.  Only, I added another 1 Tbsp of yeast for a thicker crust. Let the yeast sit a few minutes in warm water until it gets foamy.

SAM_1233Olive oil, Italian seasoning, yeast, sugar, bread flour, warm water, salt, and love.  Mix and knead on a flour surface until dough is smooth. Place in a well oiled bowl in a warm oven to let rise for about an hour.

SAM_1242I always turn on my oven to as low as it gets (170) then shut it off once it hits temp.  I place it on a hot pad on a sheet pan so my bowl doesn’t melt in the oven. Once it has a chance to rise, pull it out and divide in half for two large calzones or into four equal parts for four smaller ones.  Egg wash the tops then sprinkle with sesame seeds. I baked them as high as my oven would go 500 degrees F for about ten minutes or so. Keep an eye on them they will brown fast.

SAM_1244My husband and I split one and we saved the other for lunch the next day. There was more than we could eat in one of them. They were very big, and very good.  I didn’t get a chance to take pictures while I was stuffing them. They are filled with chicken, pepperoni, marinara sauce, ham, Colby jack cheese, and mozzarella cheese.

SAM_1257Oh yeah! Looks real good huh! Oooey Gooey Goodness!  Ah, I think your drooling. Ha! Ha! Ha!

SAM_1258Fill them with whatever you like and enjoy! Easy personal pocket pizzas! Sandwich-sized calzones are often sold at Italian lunch counters or by street vendors because they are easy to eat while standing or walking.

SAM_1265As a rule, calzones are usually stuffed with cheeses such as ricotta, mozzarella, Parmesan, Provolone or a type of regional cheese. The dough is folded into a half-moon shape then sealed with an egg wash mixture, or formed into a spherical shape and baked or fried. After cooking, calzones are typically served smothered in marinara sauce or topped with a combination of garlic, olive oil, and parsley.

SAM_1263In the United States, calzones are characteristically made from pizza dough and stuffed with meats, cheeses, and vegetables. Traditional calzone dough consists of flour, yeast, olive oil, water, and salt. Calzones are similar to Stromboli, but traditionally the two are distinctly different dishes.

SAM_1261However you enjoy your calzones, they are sure to please. So enjoy them with your family for dinner. They don’t take too long to make!

SAM_1248and they are so delicious…..How do you eat a calzone?

Rosemary Garlic Parmesean Yeast Rolls

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Author: Cassie Stevens

Light and buttery, you’ll love these! They go great with anything from pasta to seafood.  Fresh rosemary from my patio garden, grated Parmesan, garlic, and butter. Hot from the oven, they are crisp around the edges. and so soft and delicious on the inside. These will be a big hit at the dinner table with your family and friends.

I make a large batch and most I will make plain (for snack-time sandwiches) and the rest I will top (like these above) for dinner. I start with the yeast, the milk/cream mixture, and a little sugar. I will let that sit about 5 to ten minutes until it’s nice and foamy. Like this:

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Then I will mix  in another bowl the eggs, the rest of the sugar, salt, and softened butter. Mix well and add to the yeast and milk mix. Stir until incorporated. Then add 6 cups of flour and mix in well with a wooden spoon, add one more cup of flour and mix in well again. Clean off your wooden spoon, cause you will be using your hands from here. I always knead my dough with my hands. For the last cup or more of flour, I will sprinkle a little on top of the dough and spread the rest out on the counter.  Roll the dough ball out on the your floured surface and begin kneading your dough ball. Keep adding flour down on your counter until your dough has a smooth and soft not sticky consistency. your dough shouldn’t need too much more flour. Place in a greased bowl and let it rise for about an hour in a warm place, like your oven or on top of your dryer if you are doing laundry, or I heard even on top of your refrigerator works great too. So, after your dough has risen and doubled in size, flour your counter, roll out the dough and knead for just a minute to get the big air bubbles out.  Then cut into about thirty even pieces.  Shape into balls. Place on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper.  Brush each roll with a little melted butter and egg mixture.  Then sprinkle on you seasonings, or leave plain. Let rise until doubled again. Then bake at 350 degrees F for about 20 minutes or until golden brown on top.

Here is pan of plain ones I made for sandwiches. They keep well if I store them in a plastic bag once they are cooled.

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OK, so here is my recipe: This was the one I found online

1/2 cup cream

1/2 cup whole milk

1 cup water

5 tsp yeast

2 tsp salt

2 large eggs

1 1/2 sticks butter

2/3 cup white sugar

7-8 cups all-purpose flour

For my Rosemary Garlic Parmesan Topping:

Lightly sprayed tops of rolls with cooking spray, sprinkle on grated Parmesan, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, pepper, 1 chopped sprig fresh rosemary.

POW! you get these ~ awesome herb and cheese crusted yeast rolls.

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Hope you enjoy!

Easy Buttermilk Biscuits

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Author: Cassie Stevens

Warm fluffy, buttery, homemade buttermilk biscuits. Do I have your attention yet? Sounds good right? They are so easy to make from scratch. If you haven’t ever made your own biscuits before you will love this recipe. It’s easy and simple. I make these all the time, and they are a huge hit on my house.  I usually make them for white pepper sausage gravy, one of my husbands favorites. I try to make it every Sunday for him (it’s his only day off).

2 cups flour

4 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

3/4 tsp salt

6 Tbsp cold butter (you can use shortening or lard if you have it, but I really like the buttery taste better)

1 cup buttermilk

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Mix all the dry ingredients together in a large mixing bowl.  Cut up cold butter into small cubes. Using a fork or a pastry blender cut in butter into the flour, until resembles a course meal.  Slowly pour in one cup buttermilk, careful not to over mix. You don’t want to break up the butter too much, because those lumps of butter melt in the oven creating pockets of steam that leave your biscuits light and airy or flaky.  Once you have it all mixed, lightly flour a work surface to roll your dough out on. Keep your dough thick, about an inch or so.  Cut with a cookie cutter or a cup, and place on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper.  You can re-roll your leftover dough from the edges when you cut your first batch of biscuits. Be careful not to over work the dough. You just want to get all the pieces back together again. Bake for about ten minutes or until lightly golden brown. Let cool for a minute, and dive right in. Split it open and spread butter, or jam or whatever your fix is. Just enjoy the bounty of your efforts.

Soft and Fluffy Bread Machine White Bread


Author: Veronica Hilliard

 I used to be daunted by making bread. It seems so difficult if you’ve never made it before. The water has to be warm, but not too hot! Do I use all-purpose or bread flour? How long should I knead it for?

Bread is one of my favorite things to make now that I’ve gotten better at it. And you can do it too! I make this white bread in my bread machine (a cheap Oster from Walmart). I use a bread machine because I have a inquisitive and overly helpful (almost) 4 year old and a climbing 1 year old monkey baby, who so sweetly bug help me. But you can easily modify this recipe to be done by hand if you don’t have a bread machine or children. 🙂 I’m joking. Sometimes I have the time to help my daughter help me. Then we have a blast making memories together.

Soft and Fluffy Bread Machine White Bread :: Pen Pals and Cookin' GalsRecipe modified from this one found on allrecipes.com:

Simple White Bread for Bread Machine

Ingredients:

1 cup warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)

3 Tbl white sugar (or 3 Tbl maple syrup, or 2 Tbl honey)*

1 1/2 tsp salt

3 Tbl olive oil (or oil of choice)

3 cups bread or all-purpose flour**

2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast

Directions: Add the ingredients to the bread machine pan in order, adding the yeast last in a slight well in the flour. Set your machine to a 1 to 1.5 lb loaf, on the white, or basic setting. Cool completely before slicing for best results!

*If you want a substitute for processed sugar, try maple syrup or honey. Maple syrup adds a little manganese and calcium to your bread with a better taste than plain sugar. Honey has trace amino acids, vitamins and minerals that table sugar doesn’t; and it’s easier on your blood sugar. If you are using these liquid alternatives use slightly less water, about a Tsp or two less. 

**Bread flour has a higher gluten content, helping it to rise better than all-purpose. If you don’t mind a slightly less fluffy, chewier bread, all-purpose is fine. I do recommend trying bread flour once or twice though to see how you like it. Bread flour can be found bleached or unbleached, in wheat or white, and also organic.

If you don’t have a bread machine just add your water, sugar, oil, and yeast. Let it sit for about 10 – 15 minutes until the yeast has proofed (gotten foamy). Add the flour and salt and knead until smooth. Set in a greased bowl, covered, until the dough has doubled in size, 1-2 hours – depending on the warmth of your house. Punch down, knead again, and place your loaf into a loaf pan. Cover lightly and let rise to double again, 1-2 hours. Bake at 350 degrees F for 30 to 40 minutes, or until the outside is a light to medium brown, depending on your preference.

Now do you see why I prefer the machine? Ain’t nobody got time for that!

Anyway, I hope ya’ll enjoy it. 🙂 ❤ Tell me what you think if you try it.

Do you prefer a bread done by hand or from a machine? Do you notice a difference?