Hello friends....It's Wednesday, that time for my long "just-once-a-week-but-with-multiple-dishes-Books-Movies" post again! I do feel your pain..I do....I do! Please bear with me!! ;D
Here is a bread as I had planned to bake last week. I hadn't baked in few weeks, so I thought it's high time I used my oven. This particular Bread is called Bushman Bread. I am assuming here that it's a Australian country style bread as you can guess by it's name. Whenever we go to Australian style (Americanized?) Outback Steakhouse restaurant, they serve these freshly baked dark chocolate colored (almost like Ragi flour bread! :D), elongated bread speckled with yellow coarse cornmeal for a starter along with whipped soft butter and a big serrated knife. It's slightly sweet and very tasty bread, my kids fight over it. I desperately wanted to try to bake this bread at home but where do you I get the recipe?
Well...Todd Wilbur comes to the rescue of course!! He has written many "Top Secret Restaurant recipes" books, your favorite chain restaurant dishes which he experiments in his kitchen to replicate/clone the restaurant tastes. I have bought 3 of his books. I found this Bushman bread recipe is in his second book which also lists hundreds of recipes cloning different chain restaurant dishes. I have tried few of his KFC recipes like Coleslaw and Potato salad, turned out very well, some don't taste like the original but very close.
Honey-Wheat Bushman bread has a unique dark color which is hard to get just by adding Cocoa powder but this author has mastered that dark chocolate color by adding 3 different food colors. As you can see, bread is delicious by adding very less sugar, dark Molasses and some honey. This recipe I have used is almost as it is in his book except I added less honey and some Walnuts for texture. I made the shape of the bread to 4 round loaves instead of elongated shapes, less work for me and they freeze very well in air tight Zip-Lock bags for later use. I also made extra Virgin Olive oil dip with herbs for this bread (since I made my bread lot less sweeter than his recipe). I like it better than having it with Butter. Original Bushman bread as they serve in the Outback steakhouse looks like this. Enjoy.
Slice of Honey-Walnut Bushman Bread with soft whipped Butter:
I made this with less honey than required, so it will taste good with Herby Olive oil as a dip. If you want to make it sweet, add more honey and skip milk as I have given you in (....). Brush the whipped sweet Butter thinly on the slice and enjoy. Here are more breads, cakes etc. I have posted before in both of my blogs.
Make Yeast mix first:
1. Heat 1 1/4 cup water until luke warm.
2. Add 2 tsp Sugar and 1 Pack or 2 1/4 tsp of dry active Yeast and let it foam for 5 mins. Make sure dry Yeast is fresh, not sitting there in your pantry and expired as it happens to me sometimes.
3. Once foamed, add 1 1/4 tsps red food color, 1 tsp Yellow food color, 1 tsp blue food color to yeaat mix and mix. (Believe me, you get that amazing dark color with this mix of colorings!)
Keep few tbsps of coarse yellow Cornmeal for topping the dough.
1. Mix 2 cups Bread flour (or plain flour if you don't have the Bread flour), 1 3/4 cup whole Wheat flour, 1 tbsp Cocoa powder and 1 tsp salt, mix well.
2. Add 2 tbsp softened Butter at room temperature and mix with dry flour mixture, rub in the butter.
3. Add 3 tbsp finely chopped Walnuts, 2 tbsp Molasses, 2 tbsp Honey ( or 4tbsp honey if you want sweeter, skip milk), 2 tbsp Milk.
4. Add Yeast mixture to flour mixture, mix and knead for 10mins. Make a dough, cover and let it rise for 2 hours or double in size.
1. Divide this dough into 4 or 6 equal portions. I made into 4 round loaves. Traditionally, make into 6 portions, roll to a 6" by 2" elongated logs.
2. Rub some water on the loaves with your hand, then sprinkle Cornmeal on top of each, press gently to make then stick. Book says roll the whole log in Cornmeal but I thought sprinkling is on top is better. Your choice.
3. Place these on a cookie sheet, cover with plastic wrap ot towel. Let it rise again for an hour or double in size again.
Heat the oven to 350F.
Uncover the loaves and bake them for 30-40mins. Cool them on a rack and serve.
Honey-Wheat Bushman bread loaf with Olive oil and herb dip:
If you make the Bushman bread with less honey, not so sweet, Olive oil with herbs and lemon juice makes a wonderful dip for these slices. If you make it sweeter, just serve the slices with whipped Butter or Cream cheese.
Olive oil dip with herbs for not so sweet Bushman bread:
Sending this to PJ's "No Cook" dishes event, enjoy the dip and thanks for hosting PJ.
Cinnamon-Brown Sugar Crescent rolls:
When the kids come home from school in the evening tired and hungry, these are perfect for those times. I don't like desserts/sweets personally (give me few savory snacks anytime instead!:P) but I often make these little quick Cinnamon and sugar/brown sugar rolls using Pillsbury Crescent crust (comes in tubes) for my son. You can use any short crust pastry or bread dough and follow the same procedure. Dust with some sugar powder or drizzle with icing on top. If you want to try authentic Cinnarolls, click here for my recipe.
Here is how:
Open the can, spread the 8 triangles you get in the can on a non-stick cookie sheet. Pinch the dough gently and close all the gaps you see in the triangles to make one big rectangle sheet. Do not stretch or press the dough hard. Butter is not needed. Sprinkle 2 tbsps good quality sweet Cinnamon powder (not the spicy Cassia bark powder like Indian one) evenly on top, then sprinkle as much sugar as you like, white or brown sugar (ran out of Brown sugar which I prefer usually), press very lightly for them to stick. Take a plastic knife so you don't damage the non-stick surface of the cookie sheet with steel knife, cut lengthwise in the middle, roll from the side tightly to a long rope, seal the sides by pressing the ends. Repeat the other side.
Then cut about 2-3" portions out of long rope, separate the portions and put the upright with the swirls showing on top. Bake at 350F (or as the instruction says on the tube) for 15-17mins. Do not bake until very crispy. They cook as they cool but make sure sugar starts melt. Use your judgment how long to bake depending on your oven, ovens varie in temp. Take the sheet out, drizzle icing on top while they are hot or if you want to use Sugar powder on top, let the rolls cool before you dust then with confectioner's sugar . Cool thoroughly on a rack, store in a container with tight lid and serve.
Icing: Mix 1/2 cup Sugar powder and 2-3 tsps of milk or cream, mix to a creamy consistency. You can add food color of your choice of younger kids to make it attractive.
Sending this to Rahin's "Semi-Homemade" event. Thank you Rahin, enjoy the event! :)
Here ( http://foodieshope.blogspot.com/2009/03/two-kerala-delicacies.html) is another Savory Spinach and Feta rolls I made last year with the Pillsbury Crescent triangles.
Onion-Chilli Flakes baked Crackers:
Shammi of "Food in the Main" blog started this trend (Thank you Shammi!) of baking these great tasting "Crunchy baked Methi Biscuits" few years ago. She posted it in 2006 to be exact and this wonderful biscuit/crackers recipe caught on like wildfire making rounds in many blogs, just like the "No knead bread". We are all baking away these very tasty crunchy crackers with slight variations of our own ever since then.
I based the recipe for my Onion-chilli flakes crackers/biscuits on Shammi's original recipe with my own variation ie adding some Rice flour for crispness and few tbsps of Besan for taste and color (with not so healthy plain white flour too! :D). Didn't add Methi mainly because of unavailability of good quality Methi leaves here. Nevertheless, they taste fabulous. Here is my way with slight variation, enjoy.
For onion crackers, you need:
1 1/2 cups Plain all purpose flour, (you can use Whole Wheat flour)
6 tbsp rice flour,
2 tbsp Besan/Chickpea flour,
3 tbsp butter, melted,
2 tbsp oil,
1 tsp Baking soda,
1 tsp or more salt,
1 small Onion, very finely chopped,
2 tsp dry red chilli flakes or 2-3 fresh red or green chillies finely chopped,
1/2 tsp crushed Peppercorns and 1 tsp Garlic pd, (optional),
1 tbsp Sesame seeds,
2 tsp crushed or powdered cumin seeds,
2 tsp Coriander seeds, coarsely crushed or powdered,
1 tbsp each Coriander leaves and curry leaves,very finely chopped.
1/4 cup water or more as I needed.
To bake these crackers:
1. Mix all the above ingredients including herbs, soda, salt, butter and oil until crumbly first, then add water by the tbsps and knead gently to a slightly firm dough, adjusting the salt, spices and water as needed. Don't make it too soft like Chapati dough!
2. Roll out the dough to 1/8" or 1/4" thick circle, take a 2" or 3" round cookie cutter or in shapes like Shammi's biscuits and cut them out. (or you can take small portions of dough balls and press them to small circles by your palm or using your fingers as well)
3. Place them on a parchment paper on a cookie sheet/tray 1" apart from each other. Gather the remaining dough after you cut the rounds, knead to a mass again, roll out and cut more circles.
Preheat oven to 350 F.
Bake them for about 30-40mins depending on your oven or until they are slightly golden on the edges. Don't bake too long. They keep baking even after they are taken out of the oven.
Tip: Don't let them get too brown in the oven. If you think these crackers are slightly unbaked in the middle after you take them out and cooled, you can always put them in the microwave and heat up for few seconds/mins. Once they are cooled, they will get crisp again. Can't fix them if you let them bake too much, can you?!
I am sending these crackers to Priya's "Cooking with seeds-Sesame seeds" event, thanks for hosting Priya!
Movies I rented to watch from the Red box:
one of those Science fiction movies. It's alright, a entertaining thriller, watchable once. One man trying to save the humanity again, this time against the future Technology.
Bruce Willis is my son's most favorite actor. My son watches all his movies, specially "Die Hard" movies multiple times and even gets VERY upset if Bruce Willis dies in one of the movies! I think if Bruce Willis is ready to adopt him, my son will say "yes, please" and just move out of here in a second!! ;D
"SAW VI" released on DVD, latest one of my favorite scary movie "SAW" series. Mr.Jigsaw says "once you see death up close, then you know the value of life". So he tortures the bad people who don't care about others, lets them punish themselves and learn from this experience if they survive. This time, it's that Heath Insurance management guy's turn to pay for his sins who approves or disapproves your health insurance application, thereby deciding whether you and your family members live or die! A must watch but don't watch this movie if you don't have the stomach for blood and gore. Of course I loved it! GRUESOMEly awesome!!! Hahaha!
"This is it", Micheal Jackson's most beautiful last movie or rehearsal video recorded just before he died. He was truly a genius, looked reasonably healthy, a bit thin and nervous but very happy to be there on that stage. You can feel it in your bones how much love he had for music and perfection when you watch him act, dance, sing so naturally and as an artist, his unnecessary death is a humongous loss to us all. RIP, MJ.
"Bright Star", a love story between British poet John Keats and Fanny Brawne. He dies at the young age of 25 of a disease, believing himself as failure as a poet! Very interesting and very tragic.
After sra commented about the book she was reading in my last week's post written by David Sedaris (who is from North Carolina which made me more curious about his books and found out that he is also on NPR's "This American Life."!), I quickly downloaded one of his books "Naked" to my Kindle 2. It's really hilarious to read, he has a wicked sense of humor. I just started reading the first few chapters, made me laugh already. Thanks sra.
I also ordered his book Me Talk Pretty One Day too but should have bought his Audio Cd book. Listen to a sample here, sounds so funny with NC accent, doesn't it? Can't wait to read the book. Nice change for me to read these lighthearted books with a smile after reading pretty serious books like "Push" and "Say you are on of them" last month!
Have a enjoyable weekend.