Thursday, April 10, 2014

Cast Iron Naan Bread

HUGE kudos to the mommy's out there that raise multiple children, cook, clean, shop, entertain friends, take awesome photos, and write posts almost daily...pretty sure they either hire a nanny or lie about their fake lives.

Since the little pumpkin is sleeping away, thank heavens, I have a few seconds to myself, again.
Down with the chores, I'm taking a few moments for me, my blog, my passion.  Speaking of you know how crappy it feels to want so badly to have time to do the things you love?
You probably do.
I'd love to hear how you add more "me" time into your days!

Before I go all parenting blog on you I'll get to the food part.

NAAN BREAD, awwww ya.
How did I have time to make this you ask?
PFFFFT this took me a total of 5 minutes to whip up before the rise time of an hour (which turned into about 3 because I got busy) and then a total of maybe 10 minutes to roll it out and toss it into the cast iron skillet.
Who doesn't love a bread accompaniment to dinner that is homemade and done in less than 15 minutes??
I have yet to meet such person, and if I do, well, we cant be friends.

I started by using a recipe from Half Baked Harvest
I tweaked it slightly but for the most part, the recipe was followed pretty diligently.

Check it out!

Homemade Skillet Naan Bread
makes 8

3 3/4 c. all-purpose flour (you may need to add flour a tablespoon at a time but I didn't)
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tbsp. sugar
1/4 c. hot water (120F or so)
3/4 tsp. active dry yeast
3/4 c. warm milk
1 c. 3% yogurt
melted butter for brushing before tossing in the pan

In a large bowl add the flour, baking powder, soda and garlic powder and stir to combine.
In a larger measuring cup add the water, sugar and yeast - stirring until dissolved.  Let stand to activate (should take about 8-10 minutes for the frothy bubbles to form)
Add the milk and yogurt into the yeast mixture and stir to combine.
Pour into the dry ingredients and mix with a wooden spoon or spatula (you do not need any fancy equipment AT ALL) Mix until it starts forming and then turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead by hand.  At this point the dough should be soft but not super sticky so if need be, add a little flour as you knead.  As soon as it becomes a nice soft ball stop kneading, you don't want to over work the gluten's.
Place in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap and keep in a warm draft free area (I happen to have a bread proofing option on my oven so I use that)  
The recipe suggested I let proof for an hour, ya, I let that pass - by a harm no foul so if you get busy, meh, you're good.

Once ready to bake/fry, get your cast iron rockin over medium high heat.  Divide the dough into 8 pieces, roll out into an oval shape about 1/2in thick maybe less, brush one side with melted butter and toss in the pan (butter side down), brush top side with butter.  Place a lid (any old lid) on and cook for 45 seconds to a minute.  You should see bubbles (I cant wait to blow bubbles with the boy), flip and cook another 45 seconds to a minute.
Place on a tea towel and cover as you continue with the rest 

SO simple, SO delicious.
Even the 8month old loved it!!

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Thursday, October 3, 2013

ClubHouse Gluten Free Gravy with a Side of Meatballs!

Gluten free, a way of life?  A lifestyle decision?
Anyway you slice it going GF is becoming more prevalent in the world, you might say its #trending (ya I hash tagged)

Many companies are producing more options for the gluten free crowd including McCormick Canada.
They are the largest spice, dry sauce and seasoning, extract and specialty food operation in the country. ClubHouse happens to be one of their brands and they have many options for gravy mixes as well as baking essentials (tapioca, potato starch and rice flours) for gluten free cooking/baking and all are certified by the Canadian Celiac Association’s Gluten-Free Certification Program (GFCP)

Now let it be known that I do not NEED to go GF, however I have been dabbling in the world of revisions and trying to experiment since my teenager refuses to accept that GF and vegan can taste good (good enough not to notice a difference anyway)
We made meatballs, mashed potatoes and ClubHouse's brown gravy last night.
Hard to hide the taste of gravy when its smothering pillowy mashed potatoes isn't it?

I tasted the same great taste that the ClubHouse regular brown gravy has.  The ONLY difference I could find was the amount of time in the prep stage.
The regular version suggests you bring to a boil over medium heat and simmer about a minute whereas the GF version suggests you simmer 4 minutes.  This must be to help the gravy thicken up or to cook out some of the ... like I said, I'm still a newbie and do not know all of the details and compositions yet so really, I'm grabbing at straws.
How can you go wrong in making gravy in less than 5 minutes?

I'm looking forward to using the ClubHouse Turkey Gravy mix this year for the family (along with my homemade gravy of course).

1lb lean ground beef
1 small onion, diced
1 tsp dried thyme
2 cloves garlic
1 egg
Worcestershire, couple dashes
salt & pepper
1/2 c. gluten free bread crumbs (I used All But Gluten foccacia to make mine)

Combine all ingredients together just until mixed.  Shape into small balls and pan fry in 1 tbsp. olive oil turning often until browned, approx. 8-10min .  Set aside
Once ClubHouse gravy has been made add meatballs and simmer for an additional 7 minutes
Serve with mashed potatoes and some form of veggie (we had cut up peppers and cucumbers because we wanted crunch!)

Want to follow McCormick Spice on Facebook

This sponsorship is brought to you by The Gluten Free Agency who we have partnered with for this promotion.
Club House Products
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Monday, July 1, 2013

Sprouting! And I Don't Mean My Belly

Do you garden?
Herbs, veggies, fruit, flowers? 

Veggies and herbs I do well.  Its pretty easy to plant herbs in pots and lettuce and onions in my raised bed.  I even grew potatoes one year (albeit we only reaped about 4 spuds).   Watermelons still to this day wont grow for me so I give up on those.

I don't do flowers well - I plant them based upon my love of colors when really I should plant based on space requirements, sun vs. shade, varying heights etc.  I am terrible at it.  Although I do have a flower bed (actually 2) they seem to look like a forest.  Inside and out....bring flowers or plants into my house and they die, a slow painful death.
I am the grim reaper of indoor things.

I was offered an opportunity to use A. Vogel's BioSnacky Original Seed Sprouter and I was thrilled!
Do you know how long its been since I've had fresh alfalfa sprouts?!  We're talking probably about 5 years now.  There is nothing better than fresh sprouts on your egg salad sandwiches - TRUST ME!

Wait...I have to grow this indoors?  RUHR OH (in my best Scooby Doo voice)  Please don't let the grim reaper strike this time, I really want fresh sprouts!
The literature that accompanied my package professed it to be foolproof.  (Thanks to bioSnacky® germinators, growing sprouts and herbs at home is fun and easy)
We'll be the judge of that.

Little Ugh was skeptical of my venture too.
3 trays, some seeds, a little bit of water and set it on my counter (in my kitchen that barely has any natural sunlight). RIIIIIIGHHHHT.
He wouldn't let me take a photo of him making fun of me while I was setting everything in motion but just think of a 15 year old boy looking at his mom like she was going to build a Lego castle without directions.
I'm telling you, I kill indoor things, I know it, he knows it and now you do too.
Except I didn't kill anything.
It was THAT easy.
Dish, seed, water twice a day (I even forgot one day to water and it still worked out) and in less than a week we were eating fresh, juicy sprouts!!
PS  My Mr. had never had sprouts before - EVER and now he's hooked.   We put them on sandwiches, burgers, in salads - he even eats them right out of the fridge.

This little contraption is now my new best friend.
I wonder if I can put my aloe plant in there?

Here's a photo re-cap of our journey!

My swag - 
1 sprouter, seed selection pack, some seasonings, a little bag to keep everything neat and organized

The beginning:
Rinse the seeds in a fine mesh strainer and place in the different tiers.

Add some water twice a day....(this is really the one and only issue I seemed to have with this product - throughout the first few days some of the seeds liked to nestle into the red draining areas making the water stop flowing freely from one tray to the other - not a huge deal, started with tapping the container then moved to actually removing the cap to get the seeds out.  Certainly not a deal breaker for me)

Keep Going!

Its not long now!!

UGH apparently I deleted Day 4 but Day 5 was harvest day, it was popping out the top!!
We washed and wrapped in paper towel and tossed into a tupperwear for future eating pleasures.
Here's our first haul an deliciously crispy EGG SALAD SPROUT SAMMIE

Since we only sprouted alfalfa (because I was hesitant to kill the other options) I will be working with radish sprouts and a fitness mix next!
Do I recommend this?

(Disclaimer - although this product was provided to me free of charge all opinions are my own and in no way  solicited from the company itself)

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