Nov 28, 2009

Oreo Biscotti

What's a cup of hot chocolate without a biscotti? Undrinkable! In our house. Alexander loves, hot chocolate and he loves cookies and biscotti. I make different kinds of biscotti, but the oreo one is his favorite, that's because he loves oreo cookies, but he prefers biscotti for "dipping" in his hot chocolate.

 In the last week we have been watching Toy Story 1 and 2 ( more times that I wanna remember), he is very excited abut the third one coming out in the summer of next year, that's all he talks about. I have to admit that I'm pretty excited as well. I watched the first one with my son Brandon when it first came out, then with Cass when the second one was released, and I'm so happy that Alex is going to go to the theater to experience the third one ( in 3D). Until then we  are watching the 1 and 2, and I have bookmarked the theatrical trailer on you tube for the third one ( otherwise I have to search for it 10 times a day). He loves  when Buz  is speaking spanish.... His grandmother ( my mom) already bought for him the new Buzz and Woody toys. He can't wait until Christmas when she's coming over.
 The cup of hot chocolate in the above picture, I got it ready for him, so he can enjoy it while watching the "Trailer" again.

Actually, here is the famous trailer. Enjoy!

Now back to the biscotti. This recipe I found on Kraft foods website. Very easy to make, and delicious.


1 cup of sugar
3 eggs
1/3 cup unsalted butter melted
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
3 cups flour
1 1/2 baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
16 Oreo cookies, coarsely chopped ( about 2 cups)

Preheat oven to 350˚F. In a large bowl mix sugar, butter ( melted), eggs and vanilla, until well blended.

Add the flour, baking powder and salt. Mix well.

Add the chopped Oreo cookies.

Mix well. Divide the dough in 2 equal portions. With floured hands shape into logs. Place the logs on greased baking sheet.

Bake for 25 to 30 minutes until golden brown, or the toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
Remove from the oven and let cool for 10 minutes. Cut each log into 16 slices 1/2 inch thick. You can cut it diagonally or straight. I cut them straight.

 Place the biscotti cut side up on the same baking sheet, return to the oven for another 10 to 12 minutes, on each side or until lightly toasted on both sides. Cool on a wire rack. If you like the biscotti can be drizzled with melted chocolate.

Enjoy with a cup of hot chocolate or coffee, while watching Buz and Woody ( again).

Another Oreo recipe you might like. Oreo Cupcakes.

Nov 23, 2009

Greek chicken and Potatoes

My son Brandon, loves any food that has greek in its name. When I found this recipe of greek chicken and potatoes on Rouxbe online cooking school I knew was going to be a hit with him, after all the Pork tenderloin sandwiches are a weekly meal in our house( and that's a rouxbe recipe as well)
I was hesitant to make the full recipe, it makes a lot.... And my boys are not very good at eating leftovers. After careful consideration ( on not having to cook the following day) I made the full recipe.
The leftover chicken I cut it up in strips and store it in a glass container together with the pan juices, and from there they used the chicken, with some crumbled feta cheese and whole wheat buns to make "the best greek sandwiches ever" in Brandon's words. The recipe is for greek chicken and potatoes. If you make only the chicken you should make only half of the dressing recipe.
For the
Greek chicken and for the Greek potatoes. Feeds 8 to 10 people. I'm a great fan of Rouxbe online cooking school and that's all thanks to my foodie friend Steve who introduced me to the site.

Ingredients for dressing enough for 8  single chicken breasts and the potatoes.

8 cloves of garlic
1/2 grainy  mustard
6 tbsp honey
1/2 cup Dijon mustard
1 tbsp of greek seasoning
1 tbsp lemon pepper
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp pepper
3 tbsp lemon zest
1/2 cup lemon juice
2 1/2 cup vegetable oil

Start by peeling the garlic, place in a food processor and purée. Add grainy mustard, honey, Dijon mustard, greek seasoning, lemon pepper, salt and pepper. Pulse a few times to blend. Add lemon zest and juice. Keep the processor running wile you slowly pour the oil. Take care not to over mix. The consistency should be thick.

You can marinate the chicken ahead of time, for extra flavour. Just place the chicken in a large bowl and pour half of the dressing over it. Cover and place in the fridge for 2 hours.

To cook the chicken, preheat the oven to 400˚F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and lay the chicken on it. Discard any remaining dressing. Bake the chicken for 20 minutes, or until no longer pink inside. 

Let the chicken rest for 5 minutes before serving. Pour any pan juices over the chicken.

For the Greek potatoes. You will need.

1/2 recipe Greek dressing
1/8 cup chopped rosemary ( optional)
freshly ground black pepper.
8 large Yukon potatoes.

Wash the potatoes and cut of any damage parts. Cut the potatoes in wedges. Finely chop the rosemary if using ( I didn't have any in the house at that time )
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Toss the potatoes with the dressing, add the rosemary. Toss well.
Place the potatoes in a single layer on the baking sheet. Sprinkle with black pepper.

Place in a 400˚F preheated oven, and bake for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven, toss, return to the oven and bake for 15 to 25 minutes longer.

Serve with greek chicken, steamed veggies and a greek salad.

Make your own greek condiment. No MSG and no salt it's easier to control the sodium. I found this recipe on the rouxbe site, posted by Dawn the creator of the greek chicken recipe.
I usually make more and store it in a glass jar. Here is the recipe

1 1/2 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dry mint
1 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 dried marjoram
1/2 tsp dried onion ( or onion powder)
1/4 tsp dried minced garlic( or garlic powder)


pinch dry rosemary
pinch dried lemon peel
salt and pepper

I made mine X 10. Its convenient to have it  ready made on hand for other recipe that call for greek condiment.

PS. I got a few notices from readers that they can not post comments. It must be a problem from blogger :(   Thank you to all of you who tried to comment but were not able :)

Nov 19, 2009

Soft Naan Bread

Naan bread! One of my favorite flat breads. I used to buy it from supermarket, where besides the fact that it is very expensive you pay over $3 for a package of 3 naan breads, when you read the ingredients there are so many that have nothing to do with flour, milk or oil ..... Of course I decided to make my own, so just like that I started looking for a good recipe. You think it would be easy with the internet and so many food recipe sites. Right?! Well, so did I. I was wrong!
The first recipe that came up in my search was Emeril Lagasse's naan bread. I was happy, I like Emeril!
Well, his naan bread didn't taste like naan bread, and was hard, I mean really really hard, it tasted more like hard pita bread, nothing like what I expected. So the search was still on. I don't remember how many recipes I tried from different sites and you tube, nothing was like the soft naan bread that I liked.
Then, I got fed up and decided to make my own recipe. It might not be authentic naan bread, but is soft, delicious and very easy to make. I love it, the boys love it, my husband loves it...... that's all I care about.
So if you are looking for an authentic naan bread recipe, this is not the one for you. If you are looking for a soft naan bread then here you are........ :D
I use a base recipe which I will list bellow, to that recipe sometimes I add herbs just for flavour, those ingredients will be listed as optional. Also I will post pictures from both the original and the herbed naan bread. Choose which one you like best. The recipe makes about 30 naan breads, if that's to much' you can adjust the recipe to fit your needs; make just half of the recipe. It also freezes well!


2 cups milk
2 tbsp sugar
4 1/2 tsp active dry yeast
2 tsp sea salt
5 tbsp extra virgin olive oil ( or you can use any oil you like. I'm a fan of E.V. olive oil)
5 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 egg lightly beaten ( for extra softness, but if you are a vegan you can omit it)


 1 tbsp of dry parsley
  1 tbsp of dry chives
1/2 tsp of cumin
Or, your favorite herbs. Rosemary is one of my favorite as well!

Place the milk and sugar in a small heavy saucepan. Stir over medium heat until the sugar has dissolved and the milk is very warm. Remove to a small bowl and let stand for about 5 minutes to cool down.
Sprinkle yeast over top. Let stand for 10 minutes until foamy.

In a large bowl mix the flour, salt and herbs if using. Make a wheel in the center and add the olive oil and the egg lightly beaten.

Stir to dissolve the yeast, and add to the wheel. Mix until you get a dough.
Turn dough on a lightly floured surface and knead for 5 to 7 minutes adding very little flour to prevent sticking. Place the dough into a large oiled bowl, turning once  to coat the top.

Cover with cling wrap and tea towel and let stand in a draft free place for 40 to 50 minutes or until doubled in bulk.
Turn the dough on a clean surface and punch down to help expel the air.

With herbs.

Without herbs.

Divide the dough in about 30 equal potions.

I made them into little balls, but it's not necessary. Flatten each portion, out.

With herbs.

Without herbs.

Preheat a nonstick frying pan ( I used the griddle from my stove) over medium heat.

This is purely optional but i like spraying the griddle or frying pan with some butter flavored nonstick cooking spray. It helps the naan bread not to stick together if you decide to freeze it, and it gives a nice coating helping it stay soft longer.

Cook the naan bread for about 1 minute.

Then flip and cook for a minute more.

Remove to a cooling rack.

Serve warm, with your favorite dip, works great with soup. my boys love it for panini sandwiches.


Nov 18, 2009

Sour Cream Coffee Cake

It's no secret that I cannot walk by a book store without going in for a browse... and I cannot live the store without buying a cookbook. I was especially happy when a few weeks ago I found a small booklet released by the" Company's Coming", entitled Coffee Cake Classic. Amazing recipes, I can't wait to try them. So far I only tried one, the sour cream coffee cake, which was Cass's choice. It tasted delicious and was very easy to make. The sour cream keeps it moist, can be served on its own or with a dollop of whipped cream.


1/2 cup butter softened
1 cup of granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup of light sour cream
1 tsp of pure vanilla

2 cups of all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp of baking soda
1/4 tsp salt

Cinnamon nut topping

1/2 cup of brown sugar packed
3 tbsp of chopped walnuts or pecans
1 tsp of ground cinnamon .

Beat butter and sugar in a medium bowl until light and fluffy.

Add eggs one by one beating well after each addition. Add sour cream and vanilla, beat well.
Combine the flour,baking powder, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl. Add to the butter mixture and stir.
Spread  half of the mixture evenly in a greased 9 x 9 inch baking pan ( I used a larger baking pan because a doubled the recipe)

Cinnamon nut topping.

Combine the brown sugar, finely chopped walnuts or pecans and cinnamon in a small bowl. Sprinkle half of the mixture over batter in the pan.

Drop the remaining batter by tablespoonfuls over the batter, to make it easier to spread.

Spread evenly.

Sprinkle the rest of the topping evenly over the batter
Bake in a preheated oven of 350˚F, for 40 minutes. Every oven is different so the test with the toothpick works best.

The cake is ready when the toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean!

Serve with a dollop of light whipped cream and a steaming cup of coffee.


Here is a picture of the booklet that the recipe comes from

Nov 16, 2009

Potato Bread

I did mention many times that my boys only eat home made bread! Cass is complaining that the store bought one gives him headaches, Brandon doesn't say anything, just, wrinkles his nose, and Alex is the most innocent one he only asks if next time I can make my own bread because he loves it better. I feel like a bad mom and that I let my kids down when I run out of time for baking fresh bread, and time is something, in short supply for me. I'm on a tight schedule everyday. Driving three kids to school,  with different times of starting and dismissal from school, then every afternoon we have sports. 6 days a week. And finishing my house work in between. Yeah... it's a rush.
Potato bread, it's the bread I usually make over the week, in the weekends I go more fancy with herb bread, buttermilk rolls , etc.
This bread is delicious, it could be made white or whole wheat, Great for sandwiches and especially for grilled cheese sandwiches which are Alex's and Cass's favorites. It also freezes well. The recipe is for 2 but I usually make 4 and freeze 2 of them.


1 medium potato peeled and cut into small cubes
1/2 tsp sea salt

2 cups milk
1/4 cup butter
3 tbsp granulated sugar
2 1/4 tsp of active dry yeast
3 1/2 cups of bread flour ( or all-purpose flour) first amount
2 tsp of sea salt
1 1/2 cup of bread flour ( or all-purpose flour) second amount

Cook the potato in water and salt in a small saucepan for about 15 minutes until very tender. Drain. Mash very well or, I used a potato ricer. Keep warm into a medium bowl.

Combine the 2 cups of milk, 1/4 cup butter and 3 tbsp of sugar into a small heavy saucepan. Heat and stir over medium heat until the sugar has dissolved. Pour into an extra large bowl stir to make sure the butter has completely melted. Let stand for 5 minutes.

Sprinkle yeast over top and let stand for 10 minutes longer until the yeast is foamy. Stir until yeast is dissolved.

Add the first amount of flour ( 3 1/2 cups)salt, and potato. Mix until a soft dough forms.

Work in enough of the second amount of flour ( 1 1/2 cups) until dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and is no longer sticky.

Turn out onto a lightly floured surface, knead for 10 minutes adding more flour as necessary to prevent sticking.

Place dough into an oiled large bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover with cling wrap and tea towel and let stand in a draft free area for about 1 hour or until the dough has doubled in bulk.

Punch dough down. Turn onto a clean surface.

Divide the dough into 2 equal portions.

Flatten one portion into a rectangle. Roll up tightly, starting from the short side facing you. Place into a
9 x 5 x 3 inches greased loaf pan, stretching the dough if necessary to fit, and tucking the ends in.

Repeat with the second portion.

Cover with cling wrap and tea towel and let rise for about 1 hour, until the dough rises to the top of the pans.

Bake into a preheated oven of 400˚F, for 10 minutes, reduce the temperature to 375˚F and bake for 18 to 20 minutes more. Each oven is different, the bread is baked when golden brown and hollow sounding when tapped. Let stand in pans for 5 minutes before removing to wire rack to cool.

Each loaf cuts into about 16 pieces for a total of 32 slices.

Especially delicious for sandwiches or, grilled cheese sandwiches.

Variation:  you can substitute 1 1/2 cups of flour (from the first amount of 3 1/2 cup) with whole wheat       flour or whole grain flour. You will have 2 cup of bread flour ( or all-purpose flour) + 1 1/2 of whole wheat flour. Continue with the recipe as described.

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