BWD: Summer Fruit Gallete

Today’s BWD recipe for Summer Fruit Gallete was chosen by Elizabeth of Gluten-Free Baking 101.  You can find her gluten-free version here.  You can find the original recipe on Tina’s blog, My Domestic Bliss, or on pages 366-367 of Dorie Greenspan’s Baking: From My Home to Yours.

I was a bit intimidated by this recipe.  As I’ve posted here before, I don’t have a ton of baking experience, and have never made a pie crust.  I figured that would be the part of this recipe with which I would struggle.  Turns out that was the easy part for me!  My plan was to use peaches (Dorie recommended peaches, apricots, plums or rhubarb).  I spent 30 minutes trying to get the peaches peeled and sliced, and only got halfway through the eight peaches I had.  Thankfully, I had seen Elizabeth’s post using blueberries, and since I just bought some this morning along with strawberries, I decided to go that route.  Thanks goodness!  It was so delicious.  The husband loved it too, although he was missing some whipped cream or vanilla ice cream (he has a pretty strong sweet tooth).  The pie crust was to die for, and will definitely be my go-to recipe. 


Doesn’t this look amazingly delicious?

To see how the other BWD bakers did with this, check out the blogroll here.  For the next BWD recipe, we’ll be making Caramel-Peanut Topped Brownie Cake, which can be found on pages 264-265.


Bourbon Chicken

I love Chinese food, but I feel so gross after I’ve eaten it.  I’ve always wanted to learn how to make some of our favorites at home in much healthier manner.  This recipe for Bourbon Chicken was the answer for healthy Chinese food at home for a fraction of the cost and calories!  I’ve been making this for quite a few years now, and it usually makes our menu at least once a month.  Even the toddler enjoys this (although I’ve tamed the spice a bit for him).  It tastes so much better than the stuff you get in the mall food court or your local take-out place.  Give this a try!

Bourbon Chicken

2 lbs boneless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
1-2 tablespoon olive oil
1 garlic clove, crushed
1/4 teaspoon ginger
3/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 cup apple juice
1/3 cup light brown sugar
2 tablespoons ketchup
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1/2 cup water
1/3 cup soy sauce
2 tsp cornstarch 

Heat oil in a large skillet.  Add chicken and cook until lightly browned.  Remove chicken.  Add remaining ingredients, heating over medium until well dissolved.  Add chicken and bring to a hard boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.  Serve over hot rice and enjoy.

Source:  Adapted from Recipezaar

Red Chile Chicken with Rice and Black Beans

As soon as I saw this recipe in my Google reader, I knew I would be making it very soon.  We absolutely love Mexican food, and anything I can do in one pot in 30 minutes makes me very happy.  This was delicious, and was even better as leftovers the next day.  I will be adding this dish to our dinner rotation for sure.  I’ve also added Mexican Everyday by Rick Bayless to the top of my cookbook wish list (as if I need more cookbooks…).

Red Chile Chicken with Rice and Black Beans

2 Tbsp. canola oil
4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (1.25-1.5 lbs. total)
2.5 Tbsp. ancho chili powder, divided
1 medium onion, large dice
1 cup rice
4 cloves garlic, minced
1.5 cups chicken broth
1 (15 oz.) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1/4 cup chopped green onions, roots and wilted outer leaves removed before chopping (OR 1/3 cup cilantro OR 2-3 Tbsp. epazote or hoja santa)
1/2 to 1 cup salsa, such as Smoky Chipotle Salsa, or chipotle hot sauce for serving

Heat the oil in a medium-large heavy pot (with a lid) over medium-high heat. Sprinkle both sides of the chicken breast with salt and 1 Tbsp. of the ancho chili powder. Place the chicken in the hot oil and brown on each side, 2-3 minutes. Remove to a plate, leaving behind as much oil as possible.

Add the onion and rice to the pot. Stir for several minutes, until the rice turns from translucent to opaque. Add the garlic and the remaining 1.5 Tbsp. ancho chili powder. Cook one minute, and then add the broth and salt to taste. Stir well. When the mixture comes to a boil, reduce the heat to medium-low. Cover, and cook for 10 minutes.

Cut the chicken breast into 1″ pieces.  Add them to the pot along with the beans. Re-cover and cook 12 minutes longer.

Sprinkle the green onions and test a kernel of rice.  It should  have no more than a hint of chalkiness at in the center, in which case you place the cover back on, remove it from the heat and let it stand 5-10 minutes.  If it’s not cooked, cook for another 5 minutes or so.

Fluff the mixture with a fork and serve with salsa for each person to spoon on al gusto.

Source:  From Elly Says Opa, who adapted from Everyday Mexican by Rick Bayless

BWD: Lemon Cup Custard

First, I’m so excited to bake along with the Baking with Dorie (BWD) group!  When I first started this blog, I really wanted to join the Tuesdays with Dorie (TWD) group, but membership was closed.  I was so thrilled to find this group of other food bloggers who also missed out on joining that group.  Second, I apologize for the late in the day post.  95% of the days I’m home with the toddler, we have a great day where we play a lot, and I can get cooking/baking/laundry/cleaning done.  Today was one of the 5% days where he decided to spotlight his terrible twos and the husband had to work late.  This is not a good combination in The Rookie Baker household!  Thankfully, he is now sleeping, and I have time to write my post!

Today’s recipe was for Lemon Cup Custard, which can be found on page 387 of Dorie Greenspan’s Baking From my Home to Yours or at our lovely hostess Grapefruit’s blog, Needful Things.  I have never eaten or baked custard of any kind before.  In fact, I always thought custard was just a fancy term for pudding.  The TWD group commented on how “eggy” this tasted, which seemed a bit, well, gross to me.  However, the main reason I started this blog and joined several baking and cooking groups was to push myself beyond my normal comfort zone.  The husband and I love lemon, so I thought this would be a winner for us. 

Unfortunately, I understand why the TWD wasn’t overly excited about this one…it tasted WAY too eggy to both of us.  I even doubled the lemon zest and used a healthy splash of lemon extract, and I let the milk and lemon zest mixture steep for an hour and a half (although that was due to the toddler’s shenanigans today…).  I would be interested in trying this again with some of the other flavor combinations Dorie recommends (vanilla, orange anise, and cinnamon-espresso) to see if those flavors would overpower the egg taste.

To see how the other BWD bakers did this week, check out the blogroll here.  Stay tuned for our June 21st recipe for Summer Fruit Gallete, which is on pages 366-367.  I am very much looking forward to this one!

SMS: Pistachio Linzer Thumbprints

This week’s recipe for Sweet Melissa Sundays was for Pistachio Linzer Thumbprints and was hosted by Tracey of Tracey’s Culinary Adventures.  Check out her blog for this recipe, as well as some other great recipes and pictures!

In almost 30 years, the only pistachio I’ve had was in a muffin I bought in the cafeteria of my first job out of college.  I thought I had picked up a blueberry muffin.  No breakfast for me that morning…I took one bite and promptly spit it in the garbage.  So, when I saw this week’s recipe, I wasn’t overly excited about trying it.  However, Melissa suggests using hazelnuts in place of the pistachios.  I thought, GREAT, I’ll just buy hazelnuts!  I searched four different stores and could not find hazelnuts anywhere.  Refusing to be defeated, I opted to suck it up and make this with pistachios, and man, am I glad I did! 

Due to time constraints (and a peacefully sleeping toddler…not something that has happened much this week!), I did not roll the cookies in the egg whites and chopped pistachios (I wasn’t risking waking up the toddler by running the mini chopper), and I’m glad that I didn’t as I think it would have been too much pistachio for me.  We really enjoyed these cookies and I think they would be great as a Christmas cookie or other special occasion cookie. 

To see how the other SMS bakers did this week, check out the blogroll here.