"At my table, sit with me. I'll pour coffee or some tea. Perhaps we'll share our tears and laughter, and be friends forever after.

Welcome! Come on in, pull up a chair, have a cup of coffee and take a look at recipes from different cookbooks, vintage finds from vintage cupboards and enjoy sharing memories.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Authentic Flour Tortillas

Everyone has their "quirks" right?
Those little weird things we do that set us apart from everyone else. My quirk?
I love to READ cook books. I don't mean just browsing through until I see a great picture and a great recipe.....I really read the whole thing through. I am always on the lookout for cookbooks that have added stories of family and friends.....and why the recipe was so good! Do any of you do this? One book I just love and read often is this book.....Better Homes and Gardens Heritage Cook Book.
A dear friend, who knows just about all of my weird quirks in life, gave this to me, knowing I would sit down and pour over every page as if it were the latest romance novel. This book is wonderful.....full of history on the origins of the foods we are familiar with.....

and ones that we may not have ever tried.....but can because of the recipes provided.

Living in West Texas and not too far from the Mexican border, there is a type of food we are all accustomed with....Tex Mex. It is a variety of wonderful spicy Mexican influenced foods. One thing my son loves for me to do is to make flour tortillas. The recipe in the book is a true tortilla recipe. As you will notice, it calls for .....lard. That's right, that awful nasty greasy stuff that was used way, way, back by Grandmother and Auntie. However, it is important to use it for these. You can still purchase lard in almost any store. I have used vegetable shortening when I don't have lard........however, the tortillas come out stiff and cracker like. If you use lard...they come out thick and soft and just like the authentic tortillas you purchase. If you ever get a chance to read this cook book.....please do! It is full of the most interesting stories and recipes!
Flour Tortillas
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tbs. lard
1/2 to 3/4 cup warm water (110.F)
In mixing bowl stir together flour, salt, and baking powder. Cut in lard till the mixture resembles cornmeal. Add 1/2 cup of warm water and mix till dough can be gathered into a ball. (If needed, add extra water, 1 tbs full at a time.) Let dough rest 15 minutes. Divide dough into 12 portions. Shape into 1-inch balls. On a floured surface, roll each ball to a 7 inch circle. Trim uneven edges to make a round tortilla. Cook in un-greased skillet over medium heat till lightly browned. Serve hot with butter. Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Tantalizing Flatbread

One of my blogging friends was asking if I had a good pizza dough recipe. This one I have used for the past 10 years. I have used it as the Parmesan Onion flatbread.....but when I want pizza, I just put pizza sauce on the dough, and then add my favorite toppings and follow the baking instructions. I hope you try it with the onions as well....it is so delicious!
Parmesan-Onion Flatbread
1 envelope of active dry yeast
1 cup warm water (105.F.)
2 tbs. honey, divided
2 tbs. vegetable oil
1 3/4 tsp. salt, divided
3 cups bread flour
1 tbs. butter
3 large onion thinly sliced
1 tbs. minced garlic
1 tbs. dried Italian seasoning
1/4 tsp. dried crushed red pepper
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Combine yeast, 1 cup water, and 1 tbs. honey in a 2 cup measuring cup; let stand 5 minutes
Combine yeast mixture, remaining tbs honey, oil and 1 tsp. salt in a large mixing bowl. Stir in 2 cups flour, beat at medium speed. Let rest 5 minutes, add remaining flour beating at low speed until well blended.
Turn dough out onto a well floured surface, and knead well. Place in a well greased bowl, turning once to grease top.
Cover and let rise in a warm, draft free place 45 minutes.
Punch dough down and turn out onto a well greased 15x10 jelly roll pan....or if making pizza, a large pizza pan. Let rise 15 minutes or just until it begins to puff.
Melt butter in a large skillet; add onion and garlic and saute' until tender. Stir in remaining salt, Italian seasoning, and red pepper. Spoon mixture over dough.
Bake at 425 F. for 20 minutes. Sprinkle with Parmesan Cheese and bake 5 more minutes. Cut into squares, serve immediately. Enjoy!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Toasted Ravioli

We don't eat out at restaurants very often......so when we do.... and I try something that is just so wonderful......I try to re-create it at home to enjoy.

We recently ate at Olive Gardens. We got an appetiser plate and one of the items was Toasted Ravioli. It is so good!...What's better...it is so EASY to make!

Select the kind of ravioli( about a dozen) you like best.

Also, you need one egg, lightly beaten.

Also....Italian style breadcrumbs. ( 1 cup)

Cook ravioli in boiling water until they float to the top. Remove from water and drain. Set aside to cool.
Heat vegetable oil in fryer or skillet at least 2 inches deep to a temperature of 375 degrees.
Dip ravioli in beaten egg, then cover in breadcrumbs.
Fry in batches in hot oil until golden brown, drain
Sprinkle hot ravioli with Parmesan cheese.
Heat marinara sauce or spaghetti sauce and set aside in serving bowl.
Serve ravioli with dipping sauce. Enjoy!