Friday, August 31, 2007

Artichoke Pizza

Artichoke Pizza, originally uploaded by mysterybridgers.

This attempt at Roman pizza was close, but not entirely successful. The dough was just a little too tough in spite of a mixture of all-purpose, pastry, and semolina flours. The taste was right, however. The pizza topping came from Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone and included fresh artichoke heart slices browned in olive oil and then mixed with lemon juice and salt and pepper, tomato paste for the sauce diluted in some olive oil, very yummy italian fontal (a type of fontina), capers, and parsley. Even though the dough was not perfect, this was still a very tasty pizza with a bottle of dark beer. For some reason beer is the perfect compliment to pizza.

Saturday, August 25, 2007


Pizza, originally uploaded by mysterybridgers.

This marinated fig, onion, and olive pizza looks messy, but it was really good. The recipe is from the Millennium Cookbook so I won't go in to too much detail, but the crust was grilled and topped with garlic aioli, grilled onions, figs marinated in balsalmic vinegar, and calamata olives. All of the grilling was done in a cast iron grill pan.

Margarita Cupcakes

Margarita Cupcakes, originally uploaded by mysterybridgers.

These are once again from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World. They really have tequila in them. Most of it gets baked off except for the tablespoon in the frosting.

Cornbread and Jam

Cornbread and Jam, originally uploaded by mysterybridgers.

Remember that blackberry jam? Well here it is with cornbread.

1 cup flour
2/3 cup cornmeal
1/3 cup masa harina
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 egg
2 Tbl melted butter
1 1/2 Tbl honey
1 cup yogurt
1/3 cup soy milk

Put batter in a in skillet with 1 tablespoon butter melted in the bottom and then put it in a 350 degree oven for 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Chili and jam are optional.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Berry Tart

Berry Tart, originally uploaded by mysterybridgers.

I actually made this tart quite a while ago. It is a blueberry and raspberry galette. The dough recipe is from Baking with Julia. I suppose any pie dough would do. Just pile some berries or fruit of your choice in the middle of the rolled out dough, sprinkle on a little sugar and a few small bits of butter, fold the edges in a bit, brush the dough with water and sprinkle sugar on top. Then bake at 350 for about 30 minutes or until golden.


Berries, originally uploaded by mysterybridgers.

We picked some blackberries in the park today (enough to fill up 1 and a half quart sized bags). The berries are now cooking on the stove on their way to becoming jam--the smell is fantastic. I'm thinking that a trifle is in these berries' future.

Blackberry Jam:

  • 1 1/2 quart ziploc bags full of freshly picked berries from Golden Gate Park, rinsed
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup apple juice
Cook all of this on the stove on medium heat, until it almost reaches the "soft ball" stage.   There are two ways to tell if this is ready.  One way, is the "spoon sheet" stage.  The berry syrup will not completely slide off the back of a metal spoon, but will form a thin sheet that coats the spoon.  The other method is the double drip method.  When you want to test the syrup, dip a spoon into the syrup, and watch how it drips off the spoon.  When it is ready, it will make two drips that slide together and form one drip before they fall off.   Either way, it takes about 20 minutes to a half an hour.

Once this hits this point, pour it into a sieve over a bowl, and press the syrup and berry pulp through the sieve with a wooden spoon.   We needed the seeds in the syrup, because the seeds contain the pectin needed for the berries to gel, but to me, seeds in the jam are a nuisance.    Pressing the jam through the sieve takes a little bit of time,   keep at it till you have only about 2 to 3 Tablespoons of seeds and tough fruit pulp in the sieve.  Stop every now and again to scrape the jam off the bottom of the sieve.   At the end of this, you should have only about a cup of jam, but it will be good jam. 

Mango Salsa

Mango Salsa, originally uploaded by mysterybridgers.

This tasty mango salsa ended up in burritos with pinto bean chili, potatoes, onions, lettuce, and a garlic herb aioli. The mango salsa from the Millennium Cookbook consists of 1 mango, 1 tomato (or in my case enough heirloom cherry tomatoes to equal 1 tomato), the juice of 1 lime, 1 serrano chile, 1/2 of a red onion, a bit of fresh oregano and a bit of cilantro.

Pistachio Rosewater Cupcakes

These cupcakes are from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World. They were soooooo good and did not last very long.

Monday, August 13, 2007

French Toast

French Toast, originally uploaded by mysterybridgers.

The brioche had one more life in french toast made by hubby from the Cafe Flora Cookbook. I put plum sauce (made the day before with plums from the farm) and a little bit of maple syrup on top. It was also eaten with a fresh peach (not pictured). Yummy!

More Fun with Brioche

Because I had so much brioche dough left over, I decided to make the "brioche pockets" from Baking with Julia with some minor changes like using red onions from our CSA box instead of yellow onions and using squash blossoms from the farmer's market instead of asparagus (which is not in season). Observe the process below:
The ingredients: farm potatoes steamed and mashed with goat cheese salt and pepper, squash blossoms (halved), chives (mixed with mashed potatoes later), caramelized onions, and brioche dough (not pictured).

After rolling out the brioche dough and cutting out 24 rounds (two being slightly funky since they were made with scraps), I placed 12 of the rounds on a baking sheet and equally divided the onions.

Then I added a heaping tablespoon of the potato mixture to each.

Then placed the halved squash blossoms on top.

Then I placed the remaining 12 rounds over the rounds on the pan, sealed around the edges with my fingers and brushed with egg wash.

And this is what they look like after they are baked at 350 for 25 minutes.

Served with cucumber watercress salad.
And two dollar award winning chardonnay and aranciata. As you can see, they were quickly devoured--but still with enough for lunch the next day. The next day we ate them with sauerkraut, which made them taste like piroshky because of the eggy dough.

Brioche from Baking with Julia

Baking this brioche from Baking with Julia was so much fun. It required lots of mixing in our up until now underused mixer. For some reason I was surprised that everything went according to plan. I just about squealed with delight when a completed brioche came out of the oven (even though it was a day and half after I started). It tastes just like the brioche we have gotten from our local french bakery.

Before First Rising--I eventually had to transfer two-thirds of the rising dough to another bowl because it REALLY rose. Only one third of this dough went into making the brioche loaf below.
Finished Brioche

Look Inside--Nice Nooks and Crannies!