Archive for the 'baking bread' Category

11
Dec
11

This Week’s Events


If you are tired of the same old bread, if you want to try something different, something that will open up new wonderful worlds of flavor, you must attend the incomparable Levana Kirschenbaum‘s demo tomorrow evening at 7:00pm:

Monday, December 12th

Secrets of Whole Grain Quickbreads and Muffins. Served with salad and soup

Think of all the delicious and healthy breads and muffins you could be whipping up in minutes, and you may never again wait in line for those nasty baked goods the cart around your corner heaves all day long. All the following goodies are equally at home as loaves or muffins, and each batch will make you enough for a good two dozen muffins or a large loaf, so we’ll have fun mixing and matching!

We will be serving our goodies with soup and salad.

I’ll be demonstrating:

  • Caraway mustard bread
  • Apple oat bread
  • Irish soda bread
  • Spicy pumpkin bread
  • Zucchini pecan lemon bread
  • Steel-cut oat soup and salad

You can register for this demo at: http://www.levanacooks.com/kosher-cooking-classes/weekly-classes/

$45 / class. $120 for 3 classes. $200.00 + a signed cookbook for 5 classes
$25 — attending for dinner only
$35 — child class fee (ages 12 and under)

Tuesday, December 13th

These days a wine tasting is far more than just an event where you taste wine, it includes live music and more. Thanks to Aron Ritter‘s Kosher Wine Society, the standards have been raised:

PRE-CHANUKAH WINE TASTING EXTRAVAGANZA!

8 CABERNETS

ONE FOR EACH NIGHT OF CHANUKAH!!

8 OTHER HAND-SELECTED WINES!

and that’s not all!!

Join us for a Gala Chanukah Expo

Live Jazz, and Chanukah Eats!!

7:30pm – 9:00pm

Pre-Registered Online Price:

$25.00

$36.00 at the door

Zanger Hall

347 West 34th Street

(Between 8th and 9th Avenues)

New York, NY 10017

PURCHASE YOUR TICKETS TODAY!

 CLICK HERE NOW!

Hope to see you there, gentle reader!

CS

28
Sep
11

Yom Tov Recipes – Cranberry Apricot Bread Pudding


Last year we had a few posts with recipes for this time of the year:

Orange Honey Cake

Yom Tov Recipes – Carrot Kugel

Yom Tov Recipes – From Prime Grill’s Chef David Kolotkin

Yom Tov Recipes – Rib Roast

Yom Tov Recipes – Personal Honeyed Chocolate Lava Cake

This year we feature yom tov recipes again and we’ll start this year’s series with one of  Chef Lévana Kirschenbaum‘s dishes, from her new book The Whole Foods Kosher Kitchen.

Photo by: Meir Pliskin

Cranberry Apricot Bread Pudding

I often whip up this treat after a party, when I look to recycle my leftover bread. Attention gluten- free diners: This is for you too!

Any bread will do as long as it is not too crusty (in other words, don’t use baguette or ciabatta!). You will love the kick and the bold ruby-colored specks the cranberries add. Nothing to it: All aboard-one step and you’re done! Individual desserts: Pour into greased muffin molds and reduce the baking time to about 45 minutes.

Sometimes cranberries can be hard to find, like in this Rosh Hashanah holiday season, so I am making the pudding with apples, which is every bit as delicious. I have included the apple variation, every bit as delicious and as pretty.

  • 3 cups milk or dairy-free milk, low-fat OK
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups all-fruit apricot preserves
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 2 tablespoons orange flower water  (settle for 2 tablespoons orange zest)
  • 3 tablespoons apricot brandy or rum
  • 3 cups fresh or frozen cranberries, coarsely chopped (food processor)

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Mix all ingredients except cranberries by hand in a bowl, breaking up the bread and preserves as you go. Fold in the cranberries. Pour the batter into a greased 9-by-13-inch pan, or a greased 10-inch round pan. Bake for about 1 hour, or a little longer, until the pudding looks nice and puffy, and the center is firm. Serve warm or at room temperature, alone or with caramel sauce (recipe follows), and a scoop of sorbet or vanilla ice cream. Makes a dozen servings.

variation: Apple Bread Pudding GFA

Skip the cranberries and the orange flower water, reduce the milk to 2 cups. Add 4 Granny Smith (green) apples, unpeeled and coarsely grated and 2 tablespoons ciinamon. Proceed just as above.

Caramel Sauce

Another glowing example of a treat known as dairy that doesn’t in the least suffer from a dairy-free adaptation, au contraire! (Go ahead and multiply the recipe if you would like-it keeps very well.)

  • 1 cup Sucanat
  • ½ cup agave syrup
  • ⅓ cup water
  • ¾ cup dairy-free milk, low-fat OK
  • ⅓ cup soy or rice milk powder
  • 3 tablespoons brandy or rum
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Bring the Sucanat, agave, and water to boil in a small saucepan, stirring. When it comes to a boil, stop stirring and cook until thick and a deep amber color, 2 to 3 minutes. Whisk the remaining ingredients in a small bowl until perfectly smooth, then carefully add to the saucepan (to avoid splattering). Cook another 3 minutes on a medium flame, whisking. Makes about 2½ cups. Store refrigerated in a glass jar.

Enjoy, gentle reader, enjoy!

CS

12
May
11

Date and Nut Bread


I had some dates from Israel and decided to use them in a recipe, I was intrigued by the following one from Elizabeth Wolfe-Cohen‘s Perfect Jewish 


Delicious!!!

Date & Nut Bread

Yields: 12 slices

Directions

  • 1 1/2 cups self rising flour, plus a little more for dusting
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 – 1 tsp ground ginger [SYR used 1 tsp]
  • 1 1/3 cups chopped dried dates [SYR did not use dried ones]
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda [baking soda]
  • 2/3 cup boiling water
  • 1 egg lightly beaten
  • 1 tsp butter or margarine, softened [SYR used margarine to keep it pareve]
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts, pecans or almonds [SYR used walnuts]
Directions
Preheat the oven to 325 F. Grease a 4″x8″ loaf pan. Line the base and and sides with nonstick baking parchment paper to come to 1″ above the sides. Grease again and dust with flour. Sift the flour, salt and ginger into a bowl.
Put the dates into a large bowl with bicarbonate of soda. Pour over the boiling water and leave to stand for 5 minutes.
Stir the egg and butter [or margarine if you prefer it pareve] and flour mixture into the date mixture and beat with a wooden spoon until well blended. Stir in the nuts. Pour the mixture into the loaf pan, smoothing the top. Tap the pan gently on a surface to expel any air bubbles.
Bake in the center of the oven for 1 hour or until set and well colored and the bread begins to pull away from the sides of the pan; a knife inserted in the center should come out clean.
Transfer to a wire rack to cool for 5 minutes , then leave to cool completely Using the paper as a guide, carefully remove the bread from the pan. If not serving the same day keep in the paper to prevent drying out.To serve, remove the paper from the base and sides, slice thinly.
Prep time: 20 minutes – Bake Time – 1 hour

The bread came out very aromatic, it tasted subtly sweet, we had it with some cholov Yisroel Mascarpone cheese made at Pomegranate Supermarket‘s kitchen and recommended by their resident cheese expert, none other than our good friend Elizabeth Bland. We washed it down with a Herzog Selection Chateneuf 2009, a white semi dry with a fresh, fruity bouquet. The bread was delicious, the Mascarpone just right, and the wine proved a perfect pairing!

CS

04
Jan
11

Spelt Bread


[Gil Marks is the author of numerous books, including his latest, the highly-acclaimed Encyclopedia of Jewish Food. CS]

Recently, I’ve been experimenting with various grains in place of common wheat in breads. I’ve made rye bread many times over the years, but always with some wheat flour in the dough. A couple of weeks ago, I baked a 100% rye bread, which turned out rather flat and very dense and with a nutty, fruity flavor. It was perfect with lox. I have some einkorn flour in the refrigerator awaiting use in the near future. Meanwhile, I’ve been enjoying spelt bread the past few weeks.

Triticum spelta L. (Photo from: plants/usda.gov)

Spelt (triticum spelta L.) – dinkel in German and Yiddish; farro grande in Italian; kusmin in Modern Hebrew — is a hexaploid species of wheat (it has 42 chromosomes), like common wheat. Spelt is a hybrid of emmer (a tetraploid wheat with 28 chromosomes) and a wild goat grass (Aegilops tauschii), possibly occurring north of the Caucasus or in Crimea. The kernels are slightly longer and more pointed than those of wheat, somewhat resembling barley in appearance. Spelt is a hulled grain (spelze in German and farro in Italian), meaning the husk remains attached to the kernel during threshing and requires much pounding and effort to extract the grain. (Common wheat and durum wheat are free-threshing grains in which the hulls easily slip off.) Spelt is also relatively low yielding. However, spelt grows well in poor soil and without the need for pesticides, since, as with most hulled grains, it naturally resists fungus and insects.

It was in Bronze and Iron Age (750-15 BCE) Europe where spelt found its greatest popularity, becoming the predominant wheat species of Germany and Switzerland. The word spelta, believed to be of Saxon origin, was first recorded in 301 CE in an edict of the Roman Emperor Diocletian, the Romans possibly introduced to the grain after expanding the empire northward. Romans, however, preferred common wheat, which they spread through their domains. Ashkenazim mistakenly confused spelt with both the Talmudic shiphon (probably einkorn) and the Biblical kussemet (probably emmer or a generic term for hulled wheat, of which emmer was then the most prominent), as one of the Five Species of grain forbidden on Passover and also requiring the removal of challah. (As a member of the wheat family, spelt is still forbidden on Passover and requires challah removal.) Rashi (Pesachim 35a) translated kusmin into Old French as espelte, which is usually translated as spelt, but may actually mean hulled wheats in general, similar to the German Spelzen and Italian farro. Spelt was not grown in biblical or Talmudic Israel or Egypt and there is no archeological evidence for this grain anywhere in the ancient Near East or Egypt.

Green Kern spelt - Photo from allergome.org

In the late medieval period, as new species of naked wheat became prevalent in central Europe, spelt consequently lost its attractiveness. Nevertheless, spelt remained the predominant grain in southern Germany until the nineteenth century. Still, it retains a degree of popularity in parts of southern Germany and southwestern Poland. Today, spelt’s primary form is husked and kiln-dried, the resulting grains called gruenkern (literally “green kernels”). Harvesting green grains, such as barley for the biblical Omer offering, is an ancient practice devised to collect a small part of a springtime crop while still immature, thereby salvaging at least that portion, in case a heavy storm would potentially damage or rot the entire yield.

Primarily produced in parts of southern Germany and southwestern Poland, gruenkern is rare in America, but found in some specialty food stores. Germans use the greenish-tan kernels in soups, stews, puddings, gruels, breads (mixed with wheat flour), and fritters. Today, many German families, instead of shalet (cholent), slow simmer gruenkernsuppe overnight to commence Sabbath lunch. The first edition of The Settlement Cook Book (1901), the author from a German-Jewish heritage, included a recipe for “Green Kern Soup,” directing “2 qts. soup stock or poultry soup, 1/8 teaspoon pepper, ¼ teaspoon celery, diced, 2 cups green kern, 1 cup Croutons, 2 cups boiling water, 1 teaspoon salt. Wash green kern in cold water, then cook in boiling salted water 2 hours or until tender, add the celery. As water evaporates add soup stock, page 66. If you are making fresh soup take the “top soup” and keep adding it strained to the green kern, until the desired consistency. Season to taste. Serve hot with Croutons, page 81. If you prefer, dry the green kern on back of stove, grind fine and cook until tender in the soup. Just before serving pour on one or two egg yolks well beaten and serve hot with Croutons.”

Spelt is also used in central Europe to make ale, noodles, pancakes, and bread. Spelt contains a lower amount of omega gliadins (proteins) that engender gluten than common wheat and, therefore, can sometimes be tolerated by those with wheat allergies to common wheat, which has been bred to contain a massive amount of gluten. For some, but not all of those who face problems with common wheat (not those with celiac disease), spelt is fine. Otherwise, the fat and amino acid content of common wheat and spelt are similar.

As to my spelt bread, the results were very good. Spelt bread is a bit more crumbly and not quite as high rising as common wheat loaves as well as a light brown hue. But it is still rather fluffy inside, has a crusty exterior, and with a somewhat nutty taste. In many ways, spelt flour can be used similarly to common wheat. However, spelt dough, since its gluten is more fragile and soluble, requires less kneading than common wheat, only 4 to 5 minutes by hand (wheat bread is typically 10 minutes of kneading). Also use less water than in wheat dough (which will weaken the gluten), meaning a firmer dough. However, the dough should not be too dry, or the bread will turn out too dense. I understand that bread machines, which I won’t use anyway, overstress the gluten and produce inferior spelt loaves.

In case you feel like experimenting, here’s my recipe for spelt bread (Dinkelbrot):

Spelt bread (dinkelbrot) - Detail from photo by: thefreshloaf.com

Spelt Bread

(1 medium loaf about 24 ounces)

Ingredients

  • 2 teaspoons active-dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm water (105 to 115 degrees (40 to 46 C) for dry yeast
  • 1½ tablespoons honey
  • 1½ tablespoons vegetable or olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • About 3¼ cups spelt flour (13 ounces/365 grams)

Directions

  1. To make the dough: Dissolve the yeast in ¼ cup water. Stir in 1 teaspoon honey and let stand until foamy, 5 to 10 minutes. Add the remaining water, oil, salt, and 2 cups flour. Gradually add enough remaining flour until the mixture holds together.
  2. On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough until smooth and elastic, 4 to 5 minutes. (Less than wheat flour.) Place in a greased bowl, turning to coat. Cover loosely with plastic wrap or a towel and let rise until doubled in bulk, about 2 hours.
  3. Punch down the dough, knead briefly, divide in half, and form into a ball. Place, seam side down, on a parchment paper-lined or greased large baking sheet or in a greased 8-inch round baking pan. Cover loosely with plastic wrap or a damp cloth and let rise until nearly doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.
  4. Position a rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (175 C).
  5. With a sharp knife, slit an X in the top. Bake until the bread is golden brown and hollow-sounding when tapped on the bottom, 30 to 40 minutes. Let cool on a rack.

Enjoy!

Gil Marks




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