Wednesday, January 24, 2007

French Lentil Soup

I'm trying to learn how to cook with lentils more often, since I know we'll have lentils available when we move overseas. I made French Lentil Soup today, which was awesome. There's not a whole lot to it in terms of spices, but the flavors meld so well and the balsalmic vinegar adds some depth to it. My hubby said it was the best lentil soup he's ever had! I made Buttermilk Biscuits from the new Joy of Cooking with it - those were pretty good, but my husband says he likes them as much as the ones made of Walmart biscuit mix, so I'm not going to bother with them until we move somewhere that doesn't have a Walmart (Mars, perhaps).

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Homemade Peanut Butter

We love peanut butter. We started buying natural peanut butter, which is so much better than then ultra-processed kind. We had some peanuts at home so I made homemade peanut butter with them. All you need is 2 cups of peanut butter, 1 tbsp peanut or canola oil, and salt (optional). Throw it all into your food processor for a few minutes, and voila! It turned out well but I don't know if it is any cheaper than buying the natural peanut butter from the store. It's more environmentally friendly though - you're not buying a glass jar every few weeks that's going to end up in a landfill - so maybe I'll keep making peanut butter just for that.

Saturday, January 6, 2007

Pizza with Roasted Garlic, Bell Peppers and Two Cheeses

Made this for dinner tonight. I liked it, my husband did not. I thought it was a little too garlicky though. I used Jiffy Pizza Crust for possibly the last time. We bought a couple of boxes of it because it's so much cheaper than the premade crusts, but it takes too much work and is hard to shape. Either I'll go back to premade crusts or try my hand at making my own next time.

Friday, January 5, 2007

Oatmeal Bread

I made oatmeal bread again last night. This time I added a little less flour when I was mixing (last time I ended up using more like 6 cups of flour - this time I used about 5 1/3 cups). I also used the dough hook on my stand mixer instead of hand-kneading the dough. I ended up using a lot less additional flour during the kneading process, and it was a heck of a lot easier. Plus I finally learned what a "gluten window" is supposed to look like, so this time I knew when my dough was kneaded enough. This time the bread was a little more moist, and maybe a little more chewy. The loaves were still not big and fluffy, but I think that's due to my impatience with the whole rising process.

Thursday, January 4, 2007

Tofu Fajitas

One of our friends in Wisconsin works for the publisher of Taste of Home, and gave us a couple cookbooks. Their Chicken Fajita recipe in one of them is one of my husband's favorites. I don't often make recipes out of cookbooks - I like to get them online, where I can read people's reviews of the recipe and see how many stars/forks it gets - but this is one I keep coming back to. We try to eat more healthy (especially after this season's holiday butter/sugar/egg gorge), so I usually substitute tofu for half of the chicken. Last night I made them with only tofu and they were great. I felt my body detoxing as I ate them. :) I used green peppers, onions, and green onions for the vegetables. I like red peppers in it too, but those are so much more expensive than green, and I'm cheap.