Bread and Pizza, Brunch, Uncategorized

Thank you and a homemade pizza

Thank you so much to all of you, my over 200 followers, for taking the time to stop by and following my blog.

Thank you for your comments but also for all your posts that inspire me daily.

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This week, I had a¬†couple of days off, so called a short vacation that I needed it so much. My mind and body were crying for some time off. When I was asked what my plans were, I said that I just wanted to relax. Now I believe we are all different and we relax in our own way. Usually, when I relax means, I want to be equally productive and physically active and just at the end of the day, lazy. ūüôā¬†I really like exuberance and happiness I feel after a good and thoroughly¬†house cleaning or after a five-kilometer ( or more ) walk.

I just wanted to share with you what a day off means to me. I woke up at 06:00 AM instead of 05:00 AM. I started as usual with coffee and getting the breakfast ready. Becuase there was no rush I decided to make a frittata with feta cheese and fresh dill.

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Around 06:50 hubby and daughter left for work and college, so there were only my babies left in the house and me. After a few coffee sips, I put my furry boys in the crate on the balcony so they can enjoy the warm¬†morning, so I started to clean the house. By 08:30 I finished two laundry loads and by 09:30 the cleaning was done. The cleaning included the windows as well. ūüėČ

After a quick shower, I could finally enjoy the fresh scent of a clean house and my second cup of coffee while browsing the internet for lunch ideas. Homemade pizza was the winner. I decided for a Three Cheese¬†Tuna- Crab Meat Pizza. I have to admit it turned out delicious. My daughter said: “I have no idea what you do or put on your pizza that makes it always the best pizza comparing with ¬†the takeout ones ;)”

Ingredients for the dough:

  • 2 1/4 cups of whole-wheat flour ( I used 1/4 cup when kneading the dough )
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 a teaspoon of salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon dry yeast
  • 1 teaspoon chia seeds (optional)
  • 1 1/2 cups of warm water
  • the juice of one lemon

For the pizza topping:

  • sweet basil tomato sauce
  • 100 gr mozzarella
  • 100 gr feta cheese
  • 50 gr of Parmigiano ¬†petals
  • 1 large tuna in water ( no drain one )
  • 1 can of crab meat ( well drained )
  • 1/2 of a large organic¬†white onion
  • green olives

Combine the flour, salt,  turmeric and chia seeds if using.

Put the yeast in a cup of warm water. When it start to bubble, pour the mixture over the flour. Add the olive oil and lemon juice and mix all together.  Once combined, knead by hand for about 5 to 10 minutes. The dough is ready when it feels soft, springy and elastic.  Place the dough in a clean, oiled bowl, cover it and set it in a warm place.

In about an hour the dough should triple the size and be ready for the pizza. Line a baking tray with baking paper. Oil a work surface and roll the dough into a rectangle shape. Rol the dough in half and place it on the baking tray and start topping it.

Preheat the oven to 475 degrees. Using a ladle add the sauce and using the back of the spoon swirl it all over the top of the dough. Top it with tuna, crab meat, thin slices of onion and green olives. Crumble the feta cheese and sprinkle shredded mozzarella and Parmigiano petals.

Cook in the preheated oven for about 20 to 25 minutes.

 

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It feels like I’ve been making pizza since I was young. I started by using the ready made dough, but once I learned to make the dough, it became so natural to have a homemade pizza a few times a month.

Some people might think that is time-consuming, but I like it because while the dough is getting ready, I have the time to prepare the topping. While the pizza is in the oven, I got ready and left to wait for my daughter so we could enjoy 3 kilometers walk back home. We kept hydrated with lemon infused water. It was a good exercise that made us hungry, so when we reached home, we were so eager to enjoy that pizza and watch our favorite show: The Bridge.

 

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In the evening I didn’t do much but watched some videos on Youtube, planning my new knitting – crochet projects ūüôā when I did not play with my furry babies ūüėČ

 

 

 

 

 

Breakfast, Brunch, Chicken, Uncategorized

Long Weekend Specials

We celebrated Victoria Day this Monday, so we had a long and relaxing weekend. The weather was not friendly, and I had in mind a weekend with smoothies and salads, but it did not turn as I wanted.

The strawberries that I bought for the smoothies ended up in a melt-in-the-mouth goodness: Strawberry Clafoutis. I know I have another post about Clafoutis, which you can read here.  This time I used strawberries ( abut 250 grams) but they were giant in size, so I cut them into pieces.

Ingredients :

  • 250 g strawberries¬†

  • 4 eggs

  • 400 ml cashew milk (warmed up)

  • juice from half of lemon

  • 1/4 cup of grape seeds oil¬†

  • 3 tablespoons¬†of sugar¬†

  • 1¬†cup of all purpose flour

Preheat the oven at 350. Oil a baking dish. Wash, drain and cut the strawberries.  Place the strawberries on the baking tray.

Lightly beat the eggs; add the sugar and whisk together until smooth. Stir in the flour.

Add the milk ( warmed up ) and the lemon juice. Pour into the baking dish over the fruits.

Bake for about 40 to 45 minutes until golden brown.

Brunch, Cakes

Banana Peanut Butter & Oats Muffins

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I woke up with an undeniable urge to bake. As you might know from reading my previous posts, sometimes I make pancakes or crepes when the mood strikes me. And there’s also that odd batch of sweet and/or savory muffins that makes the cut as well.

Today, while the rest of the family slept I scoured the fridge to see what I could make for breakfast. There wasn’t a lot to pick from (we had yet to go grocery shopping, heh) but that didn’t stop me. I see an (almost) empty fridge as a challenge, not a defeat.

¬†And so, here we are: Banana Peanut Butter & Oats Muffins. Not bad, if I do say so myself ūüėČ

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup old fashion oats
  • 6 teaspoons of chocolate peanut butter powder¬†
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • lemon juice from 1/2 lemon¬†
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup grape seeds oil
  • 2 cups cashew milk
  • 1 1/2 cup white rice flour
  • 1/2 cup coconut sugar

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Line 12 cup muffin pan with paper liners.

 Whisk together: flour, oats, sugar and peanut butter powder. Make a hole and add the two eggs, milk, vanilla extract and grape seeds oil. sprinkle the baking powder and add over the lemon juice. Stir until the flour mixture is moistened Рdo not overmix. 

 Using a medium size ice-cream scoop, pour the batter into the muffin cups. Each cup will get 2 ice-cream scoops. 

 Bake until muffin top springs back when lightly pressed, it should take no longer than 20 minutes. Leave to cool for 5 minutes in the pan then move the muffins to a wire rack to cool completely.

¬†And, if you‚Äôd prefer a bit more sweetness you can top the muffins with a teaspoon of Nutella. Yum! ūüėä

Bon Appetit! ‚̧

Makes: 12 muffins; preparation: 10 – 15 minutes; baking 15 – 20 minutes.

muffin post 1

 

Breakfast, Brunch

Christmas Morning Pancakes

Makes about 10- 12 pancakes ( about 4 inch pancake )

Every Sunday morning our family will start the day feasting on pancakes. This past Sunday was even more special because it was Christmas day as well. I always get up early to get the batter started so by the time my hubby and daughter come to the kitchen, there will the perfect pancakes awaiting.

Our favorite are those loaded with blueberries but because it was Christmas morning I decided to use chocolate chips instead. ūüôā

Right off the bat, my husband piled 6 pancakes onto his plate and devoured them with organic smooth peanut butter.  I have to admit I had three as well. Ops!  I just loved them simple like that. The chocolate chips did more than enough for my taste buds.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups GO-GO QUINOA Pancake mix ( the ingredients listed on the package were:¬†Organic brown rice flour, organic tapioca flour, organic kaniwa flour, organic pink salt, xanthan gum, Baking soda, baking powder. )
  • 1 tbsp peanut butter powder
  • 1 tbsp soft brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract.
  • 2 1/2 cups unsweetened cashew milk
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

In a large bowl add the flour mix, peanut butter powder, sugar and chia seeds. Whisk until all ingredients are combined. Make a well in the flour mixture and add the milk and vanilla extract.  Stir until just combined. Add the chocolate chips and fold them into the batter.

Heat a skillet over the medium heat. Pour 1/4 cup of a batter for each pancake. Cook until small bubbles form and pop on the surface and the bottom is golden-brown. Flip it over and cook until golden -brown, about 4-5 minutes.

Store the pancakes on a cooling rack over a baking sheet to prevent the steaming.

Enjoy !

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Breakfast, Brunch, Vegetarian

Pineapple-Kiwi Smoothie

We are still playing with the Ninja blender. This time we tried a green smoothie just with green and yellow fruits.

Ingredients

  • 2 medium Granny Smith apples, cored and cut in pieces
  • 1 small fresh pineapple, cut in chunks; I used the juice from the container
  • 1 large red and green mango, pilled and cut in pieces
  • ¬†2 medium ripped bananas
  • 2 large ¬†ripped kiwi
  • 1 cup filtered water

Blend all the ingredients together to the desired consistency and enjoy it.

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pinepple-kiwi-smoothie

 
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Breakfast, Brunch

Green Olives Focaccia

Focaccia is flat bread that is oven-baked. Focaccia dough is pretty similar to pizza doughs.

You can serve Focaccia as an appetizer, snack or just table bread. Focaccia can be topped with herbs, onion, and cheese or even meet. Focaccia with Rosemary is a common focaccia style in Italian cuisine.

The main difference between pizza dough and Focaccia dough is that focaccia contain a higher quantity of yeast causing the dough to rise significantly. Also this higher quantity of yeast permits the dough to absorb a large amount of oil.

After you rolled out the dough, you need to dot the dough by creating multiple wells in the bread just by using your fingers. Spread olive oil on top either by hand or with a pastry brush before rising and baking.

Ingredients for about 10-12 servings

  • 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided, plus more
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour plus more for
  • 5 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 tsp kosher salt, some extra for the top
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp. active dry yeast
  • 1/3 cup thinly sliced red onion (this time I used onion flakes)
  • 2 tbsp. chopped fresh rosemary (I had only dry one handy)
  • 1 tbsp. fresh oregano leaves
  • 4 tbsp. of green olives (I used stuffed ones)
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Dissolve the yeast in the warm water in a medium bowl. Wait a few minutes for the yeast to proofing. Add the yeast mixture and two tbsp. of olive oil to the flour and start working the dough. Add more flour if needed. Work the dough for about 5-10 minutes until is coming off your hands.

Transfer the dough to a oiled bowl. Cover loosely (with plastic wrap) and let stand in a warm area until dough has almost doubled in size. (approximately an hour)

Lined a baking sheet with parchment paper and brush it with 2 Tbsp. oil. Stretch and press dough on sheet into a rectangle slightly smaller than the sheet. Brush the top of the dough with the remaining 2 Tbsp. oil.

Preheat the oven to 475. Remove plastic wrap and dot the dough with your fingertips. Scatter onion flakes, rosemary, and oregano and stuffed mushrooms over dough; season with salt and pepper.

Bake focaccia until golden brown, 10‚Äď15 minutes. Let cool to room temperature before slicing it and enjoy it ūüôā

 

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Breakfast, Brunch, Muffins and other sweets

Savory muffins

After we ‘overloaded’ on the Overloaded Muffins I was just craving for some savory ones for a change. Personally, I love both. These goodies are called Grab and Go Muffins. I had two for breakfast and two for lunch at work. I could have another two for dinner, no problem if I wouldn’t have to share them ūüôā

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 chicken breast¬†cooked and chopped
  • 1/2 cup red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 cup mushrooms, diced
  • 1 cup frozen spinach, (chopped)
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
  • 4 free run eggs
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tbsp Parmesan flakes ( save a few cheese flakes for the muffin’s top )
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup cashew milk ( you can use any milk of your choice )
  • 3 strings green onion ( I would say that green onion is highly recommended ¬†in savory muffins. However, ¬†I had no green onions handy so I substitute them with 1/4 red onion diced )
  • Himalayan ¬†salt
  • pinch of sweet paprika

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375 F. Lined a 12-cup muffin pan with muffin papers.

In a on stick skillet saute the onion, spinach and mushrooms for a few minutes. Season with salt and black pepper. Set aside to cool down.

In a small bowl mix together the flour, baking powder and salt. Not too much as you have already seasoned for salt the veggies.

In a large bowl mix together the eggs and the milk. Add the chicken, red pepper, Parmesan cheese  and  veggies mix. Stir until well combined.

Add the dry ingredients over the wet ones and stir gently until well combined.

Scoop the mixture in the prepared tray. Bake for about 20 – 25 minutes until golden brown on top. Let it cool in the tray for about 5 minutes and than place the muffins of a cooling rack and just enjoy them ūüėČ

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Brunch

Sweet and Savory Bread Puddings

I don’t know what you do when you have too much bread or ¬†stale bread in your kitchen but I would always come with a bread pudding version: sweet or savory depending on what else is there in the fridge or cupboards.

Bread pudding is a bread-based dessert popular in many countries’ cuisines . As you might know the main ingredients are stale bread and milk or cream, eggs and some ¬†form of fat: butter or suet. If you choose a sweet bread pudding version you also need sugar, dried fruits, nuts, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, bourbon or rum extract. ¬†If you choose a savory variation you can also add cheese, mushroom, spinach, olives depending on your inspiration.

I  think no matter what kind you choose they both are a great choice for brunch.

Savory puddings can also be used as meal.

Sweet bread pudding:

dried prunes, cinnamon and dried prunes bread pudding 

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apples and cinnamon bread pudding 

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Savory bread puddings:

cheddar, feta and green olives bread pudding 

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Spinach and cheese bread pudding: 

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Spinach and goat cheese whole wheat bread pudding

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I hope that whatever your choice will be you enjoy ¬†the bread pudding ūüôā