Friday, March 29, 2013

Yolanda's Easter Bread


5 lbs flour  add more for kneading and rolling
2 cups sugar
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp orange juice
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp almond extract
2 sticks melted butter, cooled
1 tsp cinnamon
1/3 cup vegetable oil
12 beaten eggs
2 cups warm milk
4 pkg quick rising yeast mixed with 1 tbsp sugar and 1 cup warm water

Put dry ingredients in huge bowl.  Make a well in the middle.  Set aside.

Beat the eggs, add the juices, extracts, warm milk, oil, and cooled melted butter.  Add these ingredients to the well in the dry ingredients.  Mix it well.  Knead the dough for about 5 minutes.

Wash the huge bowl and grease with shortening.  Place the dough in the bowl and grease the top with shortening.  Cover with a lint free kitchen towel.

Preheat the oven to 275 degrees and turn off.  Place the dough in the oven and wait until it doubles in size.  Take it out, punch it down, knead it a little bit.

Preheat the oven again to 275 degrees, let the dough rise again.

This time, divide the dough into 8 sections.

Take one piece of the section and divide into three sections.  Roll into ropes, using flour so it doesn't stick.  Start braiding from the middle section.  Braid the opposite way down the other side.

Place in a greased baking sheet.

Preheat oven to 275 degrees again and let rise for the third time.

Before baking at 325 degrees for 30 minutes, make an egg wash of one egg with some splashes of water, beaten.  Spread this over the bread.

When cool, decorate with non-pareils and toasted sliced almonds.  Tastes the best, toasted.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Fannie Farmer's Classic Baked Macaroni and Cheese

1 (8 ounce) package macaroni
4 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons flour
1 cup milk
1 cup cream
or half and half
1/2 teaspoon salt
fresh ground black pepper, to taste
2 cups good quality shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 cup buttered breadcrumbs

Preheat oven to 400°F.
Cook and drain macaroni according to package directions; set aside.
In a large saucepan melt butter.
Add flour mixed with salt and pepper, using a whisk to stir until well blended.
Pour milk and cream in gradually; stirring constantly.
Bring to boiling point and boil 2 minutes (stirring constantly).
Reduce heat and cook (stirring constantly) 10 minutes.
Add shredded cheddar little by little and simmer an additional 5 minutes, or until cheese melts.
Turn off flame.
Add macaroni to the saucepan and toss to coat with the cheese sauce.
Transfer macaroni to a buttered baking dish.
Sprinkle with breadcrumbs.
Bake 20 minutes until the top is golden brown.

(You can also freeze this recipe in zip-lock bags for later use - once you have mixed the macaroni along with the cheese sauce allow to cool to room temperature before adding to your freezer - I generally pull it out the night before and allow macaroni and cheese to reach room temperature; I then add the macaroni and cheese to a buttered baking dish, sprinkle with bread crumbs and then bake for 20 to 30 minutes, until golden brown on top and bubbling.

White Chicken Chili-Use this Recipe from now on

2 chicken breasts, cut into bite size pieces
1 stick butter, divided
2 large onions, chopped
1/4 cup flour
3/4 cup chicken broth
2 cups half and half
1 tsp hot sauce
1.5 tsp chili powder
1 tsp cumin
salt and pepper to taste
2 - 16 oz cans white beans (cannellini)
2 - 4 oz cans chopped mild green chilies
1.5 cups grated Monterey Jack cheese
1 cup milk
1/2 cup sour cream

Saute chicken in oil.  Season with salt and pepper.  Remove from pan.
In same pan, melt 2 tbsp butter and cook the onion until softened.  Remove from pan.
In the same pot, mel remaining 6 tbsp of butter and whisk in flour.
Cook the roux, whisking constantly for three minutes.
Stir in the onion.
Gradually add the broth then the half and half, whisking the whole time.
Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes until obviously thick.
Stir in hot sauce, chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper.
Add beans, chilies, chick, cheese and milk.
Cook over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally for 20 minutes.
Add sour cream.
Best served the next day.