More Crack a lackin

Posted on July 3, 2017. Filed under: Appitizers, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , |

I’ve been working a LOT. Doubles most days, only have had 2 days off in the past month or so. I really haven’t had the time or the energy to make anything more than just my smoothies and salads, and that’s fine, but I’ve been getting the itch to cook.

Today I was supposed to go in for a lunch shift, but while I was on the train, the manager called me off, so I came back home. Now I don’t have to be there until about 2:30. I didn’t want to nap because I knew I’d be more groggy, so spinach crackers came into my mind.

Now, about a week ago, I decided no more processed or non fruit and vegetable carbs until my birthday. So, basically no bread, pasta, grains, crackers, chips, ect. Now, at the 2nd job, that’s been pretty easy. At Unos, not so much, but I pulled through just eating salads, veggies, hummus and almonds. I have to say, it’s been paying off. (That and the exercise) I can actually see my muscles changing and it’s kind of cool.

Now, that being said, I need more snacks, and yes, I know these crackers have carbs in them, however, I modified the recipe I found to use wheat flour and milled flax seed instead of while flour. That did mean I had to use a little more water, but that’s fine.

This recipe is very easy and takes very little time. It’s 100% vegan, and decently low carb, in my mind.

Whole Wheat and Flax Spinach Crackers

Here’s what to get from the store:

Spinach
Wheat Flour
Milled Flax seed
Baking Soda

Whole Wheat and Flax Spinach Crackers
(Based Off Elephantastic Vegan)

1 cup wheat flour
2/3 cup milled flax seed
1½ teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
¼ cup  or more of water
2 loosely packed cups spinach

 

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 400°F
  2. Wash the spinach and put it in a blender together with the water and blend until completely smooth.
  3. In a mixing bowl add in the dry ingredients, whisk and then add in the spinach-water and olive oil. Mix and knead with your hand until it’s a smooth dough. Add more flour if your dough is too sticky.
  4. On a floured baking sheet roll out the dough until thin and evenly.
  5. Cut it with a pizza cutter length- and width wise.
  6. Bake them in the oven for about 20 minutes (until they get crispy). 5 minutes in, if you would like, top with garlic powder and paprika.

I turn 32 on Saturday. I really am proud of myself, at 32 I’m in better shape than I was when I was 22. I have a great life, awesome people, I’m not only financially stable, I have money saved up. I have very little debt, in fact I could pay it all off today if I wanted (I’d have no savings, but I could). The management and Unos loves me (like, really though) and I’m getting along pretty well at my new job.

While I’m not working some high paying job, or stage managing all the time, I’m happy. If you had told me 10 years ago where I’d be now, I wouldn’t have believed you, but I’m glad where my life has taken me. Sure, not everything has been the best, but that’s ok, life has ups and downs. I can’t wait to see what the next 10 years will bring me.

 

 

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Gimme a Pizza yo Mind

Posted on February 10, 2017. Filed under: Main Course, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , |

I was originally going to write a post about the pickled red onions I made the other day, but my Domino’s app (don’t judge me, we all have that one awful food we have to have) told me yesterday was National Pizza Day. How could I pass up an opportunity to make pizza?

Kati and I normally hang out on Thursdays so I suggested pizza and said I was going to make it. I came up with a whole wheat crust (which turned into a beer whole wheat crust) with the pickled red onions, and Kati picked mushrooms. Both of us love cheese so there would be no less than 5 cheeses. vc bbbbbbbbbbbbbbbg4aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

Above was Batman, he’s not a pizza guy, but Ghost doesn’t like typing. (Yes, crazy cat lady is in full effect this winter)

Now, let’s talk about the red onions that were the star of the pizza. I had been annoyed with Aldi because the only way to buy red onions was to buy them in a bag. I like putting red onions on my salad, but I don’t go through them that quickly to justify buying a bag of them. Last week my parents and I went to MSI for my mom’s birthday. For lunch I had a spinach a bleu cheese salad that had pickled red onions. And it hit me, duh, why not buy the bag of onions and pickle them? Humans have been pickling vegetables for a long time because we didn’t always have fridges or chemicals to keep food from going bad. I had finished 2 jars of my mom’s pickles, and figured why not clean them and use them again? The onions didn’t take long to make and I’ll have onions for my salads for a long time.

The pizza dough itself was pretty easy to make. It’s just the normal dough with some beer added in. I love using beer in baking because not only does it have it’s own yeast, it also adds an extra flavor that most breads don’t have. The recipe I used suggested a dark beer, but I added a wheat beer and I actually liked the flavor.

Whole Wheat Beer Pizza with Picked Red Onions, Mushrooms and 5 Cheeses

 

Here’s what to get from the store:

Whole wheat flour
Beer of your choice
Yeast
Red onion
Apple cider vinegar
Peppercorns
Mozzarella
Sharp cheddar
Asiago
Goat cheese
Parmesan

Whole Wheat Beer Pizza Dough
(From Veggie and the Beast)

2/3 cp room temp beer
2 1/4 tap active dry yeast
1 tsp sugar
2 tbsp. Olive oil, divided
1 tsp sea salt
1 1/2 cp whole wheat flour (plus more for kneading)

  1. Whisk together the warm beer with the sugar and the yeast. Let sit for 5 minutes, until bubbly and foamy.
  2. Whisk in 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Pour in 1 1/2 cups flour and the salt. If you have a stand mixer with a knead hook, let it do its thing for 5 minutes. If you don’t, use a wooden spoon to incorporate the flour, then turn out onto a floured surface and knead for 5 minutes. This is the stage where you may need to add a few more tablespoons of flour. It will come together and be more elastic. You want the dough to bounce back when you poke it.
  3. Transfer the dough to a lightly-oiled bowl and flip it around so the oil coats it fully. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let it rise in a warm place for 2 hours.
  4. Turn the dough out onto a parchment-lined surface. Cover with a warm, damp towel and let rise for another 20 minutes. (I actually skipped this step, the crust ended up being crispy and we loved it)
  5. At this point you can refrigerate the dough if you’re not using it right away.
  6. Preheat oven to 400. If you have a pizza stone, put it in the oven while it preheats.
  7. Roll the dough into a 10-12 inch circle (depending on how thick you want the crust) Pinch the sides to form a slightly raised crust. Brush 1 tablespoon of oil on the top of the crust.
  8. When you’re ready to bake, add your favorite toppings, and then bake for 20-25 minutes.

Pickled Red Onions
(From the Kitchen)

1 medium red onion, about 5 ounces
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup rice vinegar, white wine vinegar, or apple cider vinegar

Flavorings (optional):
1 small clove of garlic, halved
5 black peppercorns
5 allspice berries
3 small springs of thyme
1 small dried chili

  1. Slice the onions: Start 2 or 3 cups of water on to boil in a kettle. Peel and thinly slice the onion into approximately 1/4-inch moons. Peel and cut the garlic clove in half.
  2. Dissolve the sugar and salt: In the container you will be using to store the onions, add the sugar, salt, vinegar, and flavorings. Stir to dissolve.
  3. Par-blanch the onions: Place the onions in the sieve and place the sieve in the sink. Slowly pour the boiling water over the onions and let them drain.
  4. Add the onions to the jar: Add the onions to the jar and stir gently to evenly distribute the flavorings.
  5. Store: The onions will be ready in about 30 minutes, but are better after a few hours. Store in the refrigerator. They will keep for several weeks, but are best in the first week.

My laptop is currently being fixed so I’m on my tablet. I actually like my tablet, but I do miss my laptop. I was hoping to get it back today, but come to discover I had ordered the wrong part, so I had to order the right one, I hope he’ll have it back to me next week.

I’m not sure what it is, at the beginning of the week I had so much motivation to go through my yoga practice, but yesterday and today I just don’t. I forced myself through it yesterday and I’m glad I did, but today I’m not sure if I’ll go through it. I still have a few hours before I have to be on the train to go to my show so hopefully I’ll get a little more motivated. I’m currently writing this in front of my therapy light with Batman lying in a weird position on my leg.

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Flatten it out!

Posted on February 17, 2015. Filed under: Main Course | Tags: , , , , |

I’m not going to lie, every once in a while, if I’ve had a few weeks of crazy-ness, I’ll take a day just to do me things. Yes, I know what you’re thinking, I realize I had a vacation a few weeks ago. As awesome as that vacation was, it was a lot of activity, and then I jumped straight into tech for my latest show. So, today was the day I took for myself. Which, of course, besides the yoga was laundry and cleaning my apartment. But I stayed in bed later, and I did take my friend’s dog out because I cannot say no to any dog.

Yesterday while at work I randomly got an idea for a flat bread with tomatoes, mozzarella, asparagus and a balsamic reduction.  I couldn’t even tell you why it popped into my head, but it did. Maybe it’s because I’ve been craving pizza but I can’t ever find one that I like anymore.

The biggest thing I’ve learned by eating home made, fresh, non processed foods for the past few months is that I don’t miss them. I realized very quickly that what I can make at home is much better than what other places can make for me. Now, that doesn’t mean I refuse to eat other stuff; I had some mac and cheese at work last night; I just know I don’t need it.

This recipe has a lot of steps, which may seem daunting, but it’s actually really easy. Don’t be afraid to try it (including the tomatoes, why do I know so many people who don’t like tomatoes??)

Grilled Asparagus Caprese Whole Wheat Flatbread

Here’s what to get from the store: (assuming you have things like baking powder and baking soda)

Whole wheat flour
Greek yogurt , plain
Asparagus
Shallots (type of onion)
Boccihoni (fresh mozzarella pearls, they will be in with the higher quality cheeses)
Roma tomatoes
Butter
Balsamic vinegar

Whole Wheat Flatbread (For pizza, below)
(Originally From the Lean Green Bean)

2 cups white whole wheat flour
¼ cup water
¾ cup whole milk yogurt
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
2 tsp sugar
1 Tbsp oil
½ tsp salt
Melted butter for brushing (I made a garlic and shallot infused, recipe below)

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine all ingredients and use the dough hook to mix just until a rough ball has formed. Dough should be very soft.
  2. Let rest 1 hour.
  3. Knead by hand or using the mixer for about 3 minutes, then divide dough into 6-8 balls.
  4. Roll each ball into an oval that’s about ¼ inch thick
  5. Spread melted butter on one side and place butter side up in hot pan (or a grill pan, if you have one!)
  6. Cover pan with lid for 30-45 seconds until bubbles start to form.
  7. Remove lid, flip over and cook 30-45 seconds more.

Shallot and Garlic infused butter

1 shallot, chopped
3 cloves garlic, smashed
1 stick butter

  1. Melt butter in a sauce pan, add the shallots and garlic, then bring to a simmer. Brush on the flat bread while cooking.

Balsamic Reduction

1 cup Balsamic vinegar

  1. Bring vinegar to a boil in a saucepan, stirring constantly. Lower heat and bring to a simmer, let cook until it has reduced by half. You can store it in an air tight container in the fridge.

Asparagus and Tomato Flat bread

1 cooked whole wheat flatbread
1/2 bunch asparagus, quartered1.5 Roma Tomatoes, sliced
1 container of Boccichini, sliced
Shallot and Garlic butter
Balsamic reduction
Salt, pepper, basil

  1. First you need to blanch your asparagus. Cook it in boiling water until the color is bring green. Drain and set aside.
  2. Take some of the shallots and garlic that cooked in the butter and spread it on the flat bread. Add the sliced tomatoes, asparagus and mozzarella. Top with salt, pepper and basil. Cook in a 350 degree oven on a cookie sheet until the cheese has melted.
  3. Put it out of the oven, transfer it to a cutting board, cut and drizzle with the balsamic reduction.

Now, I made two flat breads for some weird reason, but it’s not that filling (or I’m really hungry). The actual bread recipe makes a LOT of flat bread, I still have some sitting in the fridge. This is where you get to have some fun with it. I’m probably going to make a dessert pizza with some strawberries and the vinegar reduction, but the possibilities are endless. Open up your fridge and see what’s in there, add to the flat bread, who knows, you may like it!

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#WhitepeopleSh*t (Or, anything fall)

Posted on September 16, 2014. Filed under: Breads, Breakfast | Tags: , |

When I was first out of school, every time I was working on a show that was in tech, I would bake or make a snack for the actors because, for some reason, they would never eat enough before the first rehearsal. I haven’t had time to do that as of late just because of how much I work (ah, bills. The problem with doing something you love that also happens to not make you rich). But, in what I can only believe is the magic of fall, was given the day off before the first day of our Boobs on Endor tech. I had originally wanted to make a giant apple cinnamon roll, but I found a recipe for pumpkin spice whole wheat knots from Simply Scratch  and I just had to make those because one of my girls is all about everything fall. I just pulled them out of the oven, and now my entire apartment smells of pumpkin spice (well, I am drinking pumpkin spice coffee too, but that’s besides the point). These knots are really easy and I know they’re going to be delisous. I had to change what I did slightly because I don’t have salted butter or allspice, but the rest of the recipe is right on. Make these for breakfast or dessert!

Whole Wheat Salted Pumpkin Spice Knots

Pumpkin Pie Spice:
2 tablespoons Cinnamon
2 tablespoon ground Nutmeg
2 teaspoons ground Ginger
1-1/2 teaspoon Allspice

FOR MAKING THE KNOTS:

1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons of Pumpkin Pie Spice
1 stick Unsalted Butter
1 stick Salted Butter
1 recipe Whole Wheat Pizza Dough
Kosher Salt

  1. While dough is rising on the counter, preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. In a medium bowl, use a spoon or spatula to combine butter and 1-1/2 tablespoons of the pumpkin pie spice. Store the extra for another use.
  3. Yields about 3 tablespoons.
  4. Punch down risen dough. On a floured surface, use a rolling pin to roll out a large rectangle. Spread half of the pumpkin spice butter on half of the dough in a thin even layer. Fold the other half over top of the butter side. Use a pizza cutter and divide the dough in half. Cut each half into 8 or 9 strips.
  5. Tie each strip into a knot, tucking the ends behind the knot and place on a parchment or silicon lined sheet pan. Repeat with remaining strips.
  6. Bake knots in preheated oven for 18-20 minutes or until light golden brown in color. Mean while melt the remaining spiced butter in a small saucepan over low heat until melted.
  7. Generously brush freshly baked knots with melted butter using a pastry brush. Serve warm and enjoy!

Whole Wheat Pizza Dough

1 packet {1-1/4 teaspoons} Active Dry Yeast
1/2 teaspoon Honey
1 cup warm water {110-1120 degrees F.}
1 teaspoon Olive Oil
1-1/2 cups All Purpose Flour
1 cup Whole Wheat Flour
3/4 teaspoon Kosher Salt

  1. In the bowl of your mixer (fitted with a dough hook) add the honey, warm water and stir to dissolve.
  2. Sprinkle the yeast over top and let it bloom for 5 minutes or so.
  3. Add in the olive oil and turn your mixer on low. Gradually add in the flours, increasing the speed as you go.
  4. Season the dough with kosher salt and continue to mix the dough until it forms a ball along the side of the mixing bowl.
  5. Remove the dough and form a smooth ball. Toss the dough in a well oiled bowl coating it and the sides of the bowl. Cover with a clean towel and place the bowl in a warm, dry place to rise for 1 hour.
  6. Use your hands to press the gas out of the dough and roll into desired pizza sizes.
  7. This dough will make one regular large pizza or two thin-crust medium size pizzas.
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