Pain d’Epi – Wheat Stalk Bread

Instead of my usual round loaf, last weekend I decided to step out of my comfort zone with this beautiful Pain d’Epi, or Wheat Stalk Bread.  It was easy to shape the long thin loaves, snipped with scissors to form the stalk pattern.  We loved the crispy, crunchy crust and soft crumb!

Ingredients:

  • 2-1/4 cups whole grain flour
  • 1 cup bread flour
  • 1/3 cup instant nonfat dry milk
  • 1/2 tsp. instant yeast
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. diastatic malt flour
  • 1 tbsp. softened butter
  • 3/4 cup sourdough starter
  • 1 tsp. honey
  • 1-1/3 cups warm water
  • olive oil
  • red pepper seasoning

Preparation:

Combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl and whisk well.  Add the starter and honey to the bowl of a stand mixer with the dough hook attachment.  Gradually add the flour mixture, 1/2 cup at a time on low speed, alternating with the warm water.  Use all of the water, whole grain flour needs more liquid than white flour to fully hydrate.  Increase the speed to #3, and knead for 5 minutes to form a soft, supple dough.

Pain-d'Epi-The-Extruded-Noodle-002Transfer the dough to a large oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and proof in a warm place for 3 hours.  Here is our risen dough.

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You can see how elastic the dough is as it pulls away from the side of the bowl, and there are lots of happy air bubbles!

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It smells good already!  Now we transfer the dough onto an oiled cutting board and divide it roughly in half.

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Do a letter fold with each section.

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Shape each piece onto a log.  Cover with plastic wrap and rest for 15 minutes.

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Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and dust with cornmeal where you will lay out the loaves.

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Once the dough has rested, you will easily be able to shape each log into a long thin baguette, about 15″ x 2″.  Lay them on the baking sheet, leaving plenty of space in between.

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Starting at one end, use scissors to snip the loaves every few inches (don’t cut all the way through), and as you snip each section, pull it over to one side, alternating left and right.

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It takes no time at all to create the wheat stalk pattern.  Now brush the loaves with olive oil and sprinkle with pepper seasoning.  I used a garlic infused oil, and the aroma as it baked was wonderful.

Pain-d'Epi-The-Extruded-Noodle-021Heat the oven to 425º and bake for 30 minutes.  Cool in the pan for 10 minutes then transfer to a rack.

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The loaves are beautiful, and the smell of freshly baked bread has filled the entire house.

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Allow the bread to cool for at least 2 hours before slicing, you will have a hard time waiting!  Check out the bottom of the loaf.  Can you say crunch?

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And now for all the Bread Heads out there, who have been patiently waiting to see the crumb.  Here it is!

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This was my first time making this style loaf, and it was AMAZING.  Now that I know how easy it is I’ll be making it often.  I hope you enjoyed this post as much as I did!  Your comments are always welcomed

The Extruded Noodle ©

joycebug

Posted in Bread, Sourdough, Whole Grains | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Handmade Cavatelli

For this week’s Italian Sunday Dinner I’m making Cavatelli using my favorite tri-flour blend, shaped with knife and gnocchi board, the way it has been done for generations.  It’s a labor intensive process, but we have fallen in love with the flavor and texture of this simple pasta made from scratch.  After all that work, I will finish this dish with a simple Amatriciana sauce, a dusting of cheese and chopped parsley.  Follow the steps, including a quick video to see how it’s done!

Pasta Ingredients:

  • 130 g. semolina flour
  • 130 g. whole wheat pastry flour
  • 140 g. “00″ flour
  • 1 large egg
  • 12 tbsp. ice water
  • 1/8 tsp. salt

Sauce Ingredients:

  • 1 large can whole plum tomatoes
  • 1 large can tomato sauce
  • 1 large red onion, chopped fine
  • 4 oz. pancetta, diced
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • red pepper flakes to taste

Finishing:

  • Grated cheese
  • Italian parsley

There are many flour choices for pasta dough.  My personal favorite is an equal parts blend of semolina, whole wheat pastry flour and “00″ flour.  Semolina for it’s texture and yellow hue, whole wheat pastry flour for whole grain nutrition and fiber, and ultra-refined 00 flour for tenderness.  If you don’t want to buy the specialty flours you can use bread flour, or all purpose flour with surprisingly good results.

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Combine the dough ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment.  Add the water 1 tbsp. at a time, just until the dough comes together.

Semolina-Cavatelli-The-Extruded-Noodle-025aThis is a little more moist than my usual pasta dough, the reason is that we are going to form the pasta by hand rather than machine processing.  If we were passing the dough through a pasta roller or using any of the pasta press attachments, I would have reduced the water by a few tbsp. for more of a dry crumbly dough.  Now pat the dough into a ball and wrap tightly in plastic wrap.  Let it rest 15 minutes on the counter.

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Set up a baking sheet and dust with flour.  Use a bench knife to divide the dough into 6 sections and work with one section at a time, keeping the remaining pieces covered with plastic wrap.  Roll each section into a 1/2″ rope and cut into 3/4″ pieces.

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Use a butter knife to roll each piece over the gnocchi board.

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We are having a little fun with video this year so be sure to check us out on YouTube.

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Homemade Cavatelli – The Extruded Noodle ©

 

Set the finished Cavatelli on the floured baking sheet, don’t let them touch or they will stick together.

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Continue with the remaining sections until you have used up all of the dough.  Follow food safety guidelines and refrigerate the pasta within 1 hour.

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It’s a labor of love and a most relaxing way to pass the afternoon.  Gnocchi boards are relatively inexpensive so invest in several to get the whole family involved!  Now, after working so hard shaping the pasta I’m going to make a simple sauce.  While you make the sauce, bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil.  Heat a large skillet over medium and begin rendering the pancetta in a little olive oil.  Add the red onion.

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Add the tomatoes, season with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes.  Simmer 15 minutes in a wide skillet over medium heat.  You can make the sauce a day ahead.

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When the sauce is ready, cook the pasta.  Just 3 minutes in rapidly boiling water is all fresh pasta needs.  Drain the pasta and add it to the skillet and cook one more minute in the sauce, tossing well to incorporate.

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How good does that look?  We couldn’t wait to dig in.

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Dinner is served.  Handmade Cavatelli, dusted with grated Romano and chopped parsley.  Mmmmm, delicious!

The Extruded Noodle  ©

joycebug

 

 

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Posted in Comfort Food, Italian Sunday Dinner | 1 Comment

Puff Pastry Pinwheels

My new favorite appetizer is so easy to make and everyone loves it!  Just three ingredients and you can prepare most of it a day ahead.  This gives you more time to devote to a special meal or just relax on game day.  Yum!

Ingredients:

  • 1 sheet of puff pastry dough (in the freezer section)
  • 1/2 lb. Parma prosciutto, sliced thin
  • 4 oz. Gruyere cheese, coarsely shredded

Preparation:

Puff pastry is available in the freezer section of your grocer.  Defrost in the refrigerator before rolling.  Roll out one sheet into a thin rectangle.  Layer with prosciutto, and then spread the Gruyere over the top.

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Now roll it up on the long edge like a jelly roll.

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Pinch the seam and wrap in waxed paper or parchment.  Place in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour and up to one day ahead.

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Use a serrated knife to cut 1/2″ slices.  Lay the slices on a baking sheet that has been coated with cooking spray.   You can brush with butter, but the puff pastry has so much butter in it already that you really don’t need to add more.

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Bake for 20-30 minutes, until the tops are just beginning to brown and the cheese is bubbling.

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Transfer to a platter and serve hot.

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Don’t they look good?  What a fun way to start a dinner party or casual get together.  So easy, give it a try!

The Extruded Noodle ©

joycebug

Posted in Appetizers | 1 Comment

Turkey Mushroom Soup with Wild Rice

Turkey Mushroom Soup with Wild Rice is on the menu this week at our house.  The base for this soup was a delicious stock that I had made weeks ago with the remnants of the Thanksgiving turkey.  It yielded several pints of golden rich stock that will be featured in several more meals this winter.  Check out the link to see how easy it is to make the stock and then use it to create delicious soups and stews.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups turkey or chicken stock, homemade or store bought
  • 6 cups turkey or chicken broth, homemade or store bought (buy low sodium)
  • 1 medium sweet onion, diced
  • 3 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 3 celery stalks, diced
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1″ fresh ginger root, peeled and minced (about 1 tbsp.)
  • 1/2 tsp. thyme
  • 1/2 tsp. sage
  • 1 beef bouillon cube (omit of you are limiting salt)
  • salt and fresh ground pepper
  • pinch of saffron threads
  • 1 pkg. white button mushrooms, sliced (substitute baby bella or a combination)
  • 2 cups diced turkey or chicken, reserved from the stock or another meal
  • 1 cup uncooked wild rice blend
  • Romano cheese for serving

Preparation:

Like many of my soups, this one begins with a mirepoix, a combination of onion, celery and carrots.  Heat a large stockpot on medium with 1 tbsp. olive oil.  Add the carrots, onion and celery and cook for several minutes, stirring occasionally.  Season with salt and pepper.

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Add the garlic and ginger.  Stir and cook 1 minute.  Add the stock, broth and the seasonings.  Bring to a boil and then simmer, covered on low heat for 1 hour.  Slice the mushrooms and add to the pot during the last 15 minutes of cooking.  I like to use a combination of white button and baby bella.

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Turn the heat down to low.

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Cook the rice according to package directions.  Add the rice to the pot along with the reserved turkey or chicken.

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Stir well and warm over low heat until rice and turkey are heated through (do not boil once the meat has been added or it will shred).

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Serve with grated Romano cheese.

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I have made this recipe several times now and everyone loves it.  Chase away the winter chills with a bowl of rich hearty soup!

 

The Extruded Noodle ©

joycebug

 

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Turkey Stock

Did you make a stock with your holiday turkey leftovers?  I did, and now we’re making delicious soups and stews with our homemade stock.  If you are too tired to think about making stock after the holiday just pop the remnants of the turkey (carcass with bones and a bit of meat attached) into the freezer.  When you are ready, place everything into the crock-pot along with carrots, onions, celery, bay leaf and peppercorns.  Cook on low for twelve hours and you will have a rich golden stock to use as a base for soups and stews.  

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Strain through a fine mesh sieve or use cheesecloth.  Freeze in pint size containers.

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Remove any bits of meat and freeze them separately.  They will be delicious in soup.

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Get every last bit of goodness out of your holiday turkey, ham or roast.  The bones will make a rich and satisfying stock that can be used for several more meals.

The Extruded Noodle ©

joycebug

Posted in Soup | 1 Comment

Homemade Breakfast Sausage Patties

Breakfast Sausage Patties!  Homemade is always best  Why make from scratch?  You control the fat, you control the salt, no chemicals, no preservatives.  And with no casings needed they are easy to make.  You can buy sausage seasoning (Penzeys makes a good one) or make your own.  Experiment with different spice combinations to find the one you like best.

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs. boneless pork shoulder (or buy ground pork)
  • 2 tbsp. sausage seasoning mix (purchased or make your own)

Sausage Seasoning:

  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. sugar
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne
  • 1/2 tsp. sage
  • 1/2 tsp. thyme
  • 1/2 tsp. ground fennel
  • 1/2 tsp. ground coriander

Remove skin and trim visible fat from the pork.  Cut into 1″ dice.

Breakfast Sausage Patties The Extruded Noodle 002aPulse in the food processor, working in batches if needed.  Transfer to a mixing bowl.

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Gradually sprinkle the seasoning over the ground pork, incorporating well with a fork.

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Form into 2 oz. balls, then press into patties.

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These will keep for several months in the freezer, wrap in wax paper and store in a freezer safe bag.

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Cook 4-5 minutes per side.

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Our Saturday Morning breakfast just got a little happier!


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The Extruded Noodle ©

joycebug

Posted in 30 Minutes or Less, Breakfast | Leave a comment

Handmade Orecchiette with Chicken, Sausage and Roasted Cauliflower

Handmade Orecchiette with Chicken, Sausage and Roasted Cauliflower was our first pasta dish of 2016!  I’m ready for another year of pasta making and started it off with a new recipe, including a short video to show you the shaping technique for this rustic pasta, named Orecchiette because it resembles “little ears”.   This meal was so delicious, my family named it “happiness on a plate”.  Very high praise indeed!

For the pasta dough

  • 100 g. semolina flour
  • 100 g. “00″ flour
  • 100 g. whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 12 tbsp. ice water

For the dish

  • 12 oz. boneless chicken breast cut into 1″ pieces
  • 4 oz. sweet Italian sausage, casing removed and cut into 1″ pieces
  • 1 head of cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 large shallot, minced
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup low sodium chicken broth
  • 2 tbsp. Wondra flour
  • grated cheese (Romano, parmesan)
  • 2 tbsp. toasted pignoli
  • fresh parsley

Preparation:

To make the pasta, combine all of the dough ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment.  Add the water 1 tbsp. at a time to form a shaggy dough that holds together when you give it a squeeze.

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Divide the dough into 6 sections, working with one section at a time and keeping the remainder covered so that it doesn’t dry out.  Roll each section into a rope, 1/2″ thick and cut the rope into 3/4″ pieces.

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Use your thumb to make an indentation in the center of each piece, then invert over your thumb to create the “ear” shape.  Here’s a little video, to show you how to do it!

Watch the video here!   

Place the finished pasta on a large baking sheet dusted lightly with flour.  Refrigerate until ready to cook.

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Toss the cauliflower florets with olive oil, salt and pepper.  Spread evenly on a large baking dish and roast for 20-25 minutes at 425º, turning every 10 minutes.  The edges will be slightly browned.  Don’t be tempted to skip this step!  Roasting imparts such depth of flavor to the cauliflower, a wonderful nutty quality that you will never get from steaming.  I think it makes the dish.

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Heat a large pot of salted water for the pasta and bring to a rolling boil.  Have it ready just before you finish the dish, as the pasta only requires a few minutes to cook!  Now season the chicken and sausage with salt and pepper.  Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium low.  Melt 2 tbsp. butter with 2 tbsp. olive oil.  Add the chicken and sausage and cook for 5 minutes.  Add the shallots and garlic, toss well.

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Now it’s time to cook the pasta.  As soon as you add the pasta to the boiling water, cover the pot so that the water returns to a boil right away.  Cook for just 4 minutes, remember fresh pasta cooks quickly so set your timer!  Drain and add to the skillet along with the cauliflower.  Whisk together the chicken broth and the Wondra flour and pour evenly over the skillet.  Cook for two minutes more, tossing frequently while the sauce thickens.  Season with red pepper flakes.  Doesn’t that look amazing?

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Transfer everything to a serving platter, and garnish with grated Romano cheese, toasted pignoli and chopped parsley.  Serve with more grated Parmiggiano Reggiano cheese.

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I hope you have enjoyed our first pasta dish of the New Year, and I look forward to sharing many many more.  Special thanks to our Extruded photographer, a/k/a Hubby for shooting the video!

Happy New Year from our family to yours

The Extruded Noodle ©

joycebug

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Shrimp with Broccoli and Egg Noodles

Here is a light and easy dinner to begin the New Year.  This dish was inspired by a little out of the way place where Hubby and I used to go back in the dating days.  The restaurant version was made with tons of butter but I’ve made a lighter, more healthful version.  Ready in less than 30 minutes, it’s perfect for busy weeknights.

-4 servings

Ingredients:

  • 24 large raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 8 oz. whole wheat cholesterol free egg noodles (such as No Yolks)
  • 4 cups raw broccoli florets
  • 6-8 cloves garlic,minced
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. seasoning blend made of crushed red pepper, fennel, garlic granules
  • 2 pats of butter
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/4 cup of white wine
  • 1/4 cup of chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 tbsp. Wondra flour
  • 2 tbsp. toasted pignoli
  • grated Romano cheese

Preparation:

Cook the egg noodles for 1 minute less than package directions.  Melt butter and oil in a large skillet with medium heat.   Add the broccoli and toss well to coat.  Cover and cook 5 minutes.  Add the shrimp to the skillet and cook just until it begins to turn pink.  Whisk together the wine, broth, flour and seasonings.  Add the cooked noodles to the broccoli and shrimp.  Pour the wine mixture over everything and cook for 1-2 minutes longer, tossing frequently until the noodles are heated through and the liquid thickens slightly.  Transfer to a serving platter and garnish with grated Romano toasted pignoli.

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The Extruded Noodle ©

joycebug

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Posted in #dashdiet, 30 Minutes or Less, Dash Diet Friendly, Pasta, Seafood | Leave a comment

Christmas Brickle

A pan of Christmas Brickle will put you on top of Santa’s “Nice” list!  Easy to make and delicious, it’s great for last minute baking and gifting.

Line a jelly roll pan with foil, and top with parchment paper.  Arrange graham crackers in a single layer.

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Melt: 2 sticks of butter, 1/4 cup sugar, 3/4 cup brown sugar.  Simmer 3 minutes to make a thick caramel.  Whisk frequently!

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Pour the caramel over the graham crackers and bake for 12 minutes at 350º.

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Spread 2 cups of dark chocolate over the top.  Use chocolate chips or bakers chocolate, chopped fine.

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Let it sit for a few minutes until melted, then spread the chocolate evenly with a spatula.

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Decorate with cranberries, nuts or crushed candy cane.  I did half cranberries and hazelnuts, and half candy cane crush.

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Cool completely (refrigerate if you’re in a hurry) and break into pieces or use a bench scraper.

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Don’t forget to leave some for Santa!

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Merry Christmas to all our Foodie friends!  We wish you all a joyous day of family, love and good food!

The Extruded Noodle ©

joycebug

 

Posted in Desserts, Holiday Favorites | Leave a comment

Chocolate Spiral Sugar Cookies

I love the look of these cookies.   It’s easier than you think to create the swirl pattern from this very basic sugar cookie recipe.  Refrigerate the dough before slicing, and again before baking to retain the nice sharp lines.  The butter should be softened, not melted.  Take it out ahead of time, don’t use the microwave.  About 20 cookies.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) softened butter.
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg, whisked
  • 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1-2/3 cups all purpose flour
  • 3/4 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tbsp. cocoa powder

Preparation:

Add butter and sugar to the bowl of a stand mixer and cream together with the paddle attachment.  Add the egg and vanilla.  Sift the flour and baking powder together and add to the mixture to form a dough.  Divide the dough into 2 equal parts.  For the chocolate spiral, return one part to the mixer and beat with 1 tbsp. cocoa powder.  Press each piece of dough into a disk, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Roll each piece of dough into a rectangle 1/4″ thick.  I placed the dough between 2 sheets of wax paper for easier handling.

Chocolate Spiral Sugar Cookies The Extruded Noodle 012aCarefully lay the chocolate layer on top of the white layer.  Begin rolling it up lengthwise to form a log, keep it nice and tight.

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Wrap the log it in wax paper and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.  You can prepare up to this step a day ahead and bake in the morning.

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Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.  Cut the dough into 1/4″ thick slices and arrange them on the cookie sheet 2″ apart.

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Return to the refrigerator for 30 minutes before baking.  This step keeps the lines nice and sharp as the cookies bake.

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Bake at 400º for 8 minutes.

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Cool in the pan for 8 minutes then transfer to a rack.

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Everyone will love these cookies, be sure to make extra for Santa!

The Extruded Noodle ©

joycebug

 

Posted in Baking, Desserts, Holiday Favorites | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Pull Apart Pinwheel Dinner Rolls

Easy, pull apart pinwheel rolls made from an enriched buttery dough.  Everyone will love them!  Make ahead and freeze for the holidays!

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup white whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup bread flour
  • 1 tsp. instant yeast
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 tbsp. sugar
  • 1/4 cup powdered milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup warm water.
  • canola oil
  • 3 tbsp. butter, softened
  • 1 egg, for egg wash

Combine first 8 ingredients, through warm water in the bowl of the stand mixer.  Knead for 5 minutes to form a wet sticky dough.

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Transfer the dough to an oiled bowl, cover and let rise for 1-1/2 hours.

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Turn the dough out onto an oiled cutting board.  Rest 10 minutes then roll it into a 15 x 10″ rectangle, less than 1/2″ thick.  Brush liberally with the softened butter.

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Roll it up and pinch the seams closed.

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Use a bench scraper to slice the dough into 1″ pieces and arrange in an 8 x 8″ baking dish.

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Cover and let rise for 30 minutes more.  The rolls will be touching.  Whisk an egg and brush over the top.

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Bake at 400º for 11 minutes.  Cool slightly in the pan before serving.

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Warm, soft and buttery sweet.  Watch them disappear!

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 The Extruded Noodle ©

joycebug

 

 

Posted in Bread, Holiday Favorites | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Holiday Tater Stacks

A beautiful potato side for your Thanksgiving table, with all the colors of fall.  Make this festive presentation of white and sweet potato, layered and baked gratin style in individual muffin cups.  You will want to make a double batch, they are so good everyone will want seconds and thirds!

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Ingredients:

  • 1 large sweet potato, peeled
  • 4 small red potatoes, 2 peeled, 2 with skin on
  • cooking spray
  • 4 tbsp. butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup 1% milk
  • seasoned salt, to taste (I used Lowry’s)
  • 2 cups Gruyere cheese, shredded
  • fresh thyme for garnish

Preparation:

Slice the potatoes very thin, using a mandolin or sharp knife.  Leave some of the skins on for more color and texture.

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Heat the butter, milk and seasoned salt, whisk well.

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Preheat the oven to 400º and coat a 12 cup muffin pan with cooking spray.  Begin layering the potatoes in the muffin cups, alternating white and sweet potatoes until the cups are half full.  Use the smaller slices in the bottom for the best fit.  Drizzle one tsp. of the butter mixture over each stack and top with half of the grated cheese.

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Continue layering the potatoes until just even with the top of the cups or a little higher (they will cook down) and finish with the remaining butter and cheese.

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Bake for 40-45 minutes.

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The edges will be browned and the cheese melted.

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To serve use a spoon to carefully remove each stack and invert onto a serving platter.  Garnish with fresh thyme.

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 From our home to yours, a very Happy Thanksgiving!

The Extruded Noodle ©

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Holiday Dinner Rolls

No, these aren’t cookies, they’re dinner rolls!  Today I’m doing some baking for the holidays.  These rolls freeze well and we will enjoy them at Thanksgiving and Christmas.  The star and artichoke shapes I chose are among the easiest!  Learn how to make them with step by step instructions, including my first ever video on YouTube!

Yield 12 dinner rolls, 1-1/2 oz each.

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Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup whole grain flour (fresh milled or store bought)
  • 1/2 cup bread flour
  • 1/4 cup rye flour
  • 1/2 cup rye starter, fully activated
  • 1 tsp. honey
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. instant yeast
  • 1 tsp. diastatic malt powder
  • 1/2 cup water
  • olive oil
  • 1 egg, for eggwash
  • sesame seeds for topping, optional

Preparation: Whisk together the flours, salt, malt powder and instant yeast.  Combine starter and honey in the bowl of a stand mixer.  Gradually add the flour and water until combined with the dough hook attachment on low speed.  Increase the speed to #3 and knead for 5 minutes.

Holiday Dinner Rolls The Extruded Noodle 009a You can see how heavy and wet the dough is here.  The whole grain flour needs this extra moisture for a good rise.

Holiday Dinner Rolls The Extruded Noodle 013a Scrape the dough into an oiled bowl and turn to coat.  Cover and allow the dough to rise for 1-1/2 hours or until doubled.

Holiday Dinner Rolls The Extruded Noodle 020a Next, flour a large cutting board and turn out the risen dough.  Knead the dough a few times and use a dough scraper to divide into 12 equal pieces.

Holiday Dinner Rolls The Extruded Noodle 024aa Using your fingers, flatten each piece into a round and fold over letter style.

Holiday Dinner Rolls The Extruded Noodle 027a Rotate and fold again.

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Turn over, rotate and shape the dough in your palm, to form a tight round ball.  Arrange rolls on a baking sheet lined with parchment.  Mist with cooking spray, cover with plastic wrap and rest 15 minutes.

Holiday Dinner Rolls The Extruded Noodle 036a To form the star shapes, use a sharp knife to make six cuts in the dough.  Then pinch the ends.

Holiday Dinner Rolls The Extruded Noodle 050sWatch the video here. Holiday Star Shape Dinner Rolls | The Extruded Noodle

 

 

 

Holiday Dinner Rolls The Extruded Noodle 050ssTo form the artichoke shapes, use a sharp scissor to snip circles around each roll.  Watch this video here.   Holiday Artichoke Shape Dinner Rolls | The Extruded Noodle

 

 

 

Return all the rolls to the baking sheet.

Holiday Dinner Rolls The Extruded Noodle 050a Cover and proof 15 minutes while preheating the oven to 400º.

Holiday Dinner Rolls The Extruded Noodle 039a Whisk an egg and brush over the rolls, sprinkle with sesame seeds.

Holiday Dinner Rolls The Extruded Noodle 041a Holiday Dinner Rolls The Extruded Noodle 043a Bake for 11 minutes.

Holiday Dinner Rolls The Extruded Noodle 045a Second batch.

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Now you know how easy it is!  Use your favorite bread dough and give it a try!

The Extruded Noodle ©

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Catfish Dinner

Catfish is one of my favorite weeknight dinners.  We have seafood at least once a week, and this fast and easy dish is perfect after a busy day at work.  Served with Dutch marble potatoes and corn.  Have your ingredients ready and dinner is on the table in 30 minutes!

Dinner for Two:

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. catfish fillets
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup cornmeal
  • 2 tbsp. flour
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • paprika
  • cayenne pepper
  • 3 tbsp. butter, divided
  • 1/2 bag frozen corn
  • 1/2 bag Dutch marble potatoes, halved
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil

Preparation:

Preheat the oven to 400º.  Set up 2 breading dishes, one with milk and the other with flour and cornmeal.  Soak the catfish in milk while you prepare the potatoes.  Toss the halved potatoes in olive oil, salt and pepper and bake 30 minutes.  Get the corn ready in a microwave safe dish.

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When the potatoes have been in the oven 15 minutes, heat a large heavy skillet over medium low.  Dredge the catfish in the cornmeal mixture.

Catfish Dinner The Extruded Noodle 005a

Melt 1 tbsp. butter in the skillet and add the fillets, season with salt, paprika and cayenne.  Don’t crowd the pan, cook in batches if needed.

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Cook 5 minutes per side, adding another tbsp. of butter when you turn the fillets.

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Season the corn and microwave for 5 minutes.  Finish with 1 tbsp. butter.

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A single serving platter makes a very nice presentation for this casual meal.  If you enjoyed this post check some of my other easy weeknight meals ready in 30 minutes or less.

 

 The Extruded Noodle ©

joycebug

 

 

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Rigatoni Casserole

Add a little “wow” to your Rigatoni Casserole with a beautiful vertical arrangement!  I made a light ricotta filling and topped with cheese and meat sauce.  I cooked the rigatoni just 3 minutes, so they were firm and easy to arrange and stuff.  One pound of rigatoni filled my casserole dish perfectly.  It baked up beautifully, it was a delicious meal with a very cool presentation.

Rigatoni Casserole The Extruded Noodle 002a

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 lb. lean ground beef
  • 1/4 lb. sweet Italian sausage, casing removed
  • 1/4 cup 1% milk
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 medium sweet onion, diced
  • olive oil
  • 1 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 28 oz. can whole peeled tomatoes (or tomato sauce)
  • 1 tsp. basil
  • 1/2 tsp. oregano
  • Italian seasoning
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 lb. rigatoni
  • 1-1/2 cups light ricotta
  • 4 slices provolone cheese, shredded
  • cooking spray
  • 1/3 cup grated romano

Preparation:

First make the meat sauce.  Heat a heavy skillet on medium low.  Add 1 tbsp. olive oil, with all of the ground beef and sausage.  Cook over low heat, breaking up the meat with a spatula.  Add the milk and simmer until most of the liquid has evaporated.  Add the onion and garlic, stirring to combine.  Break up the whole tomatoes with an immersion blender until smooth (or use sauce).  Reserve 2-1/2 cups, and add the remainder to the skillet along with the crushed tomatoes, salt, pepper and Italian seasoning.

To make the filling, combine 1-1/2 cups of the reserved sauce with the ricotta and whisk.  Season with salt, pepper and Italian seasoning.

Rigatoni Casserole The Extruded Noodle 005a

Heat water for the pasta to a rolling boil and salt generously.  Cook the rigatoni for 3 minutes and drain.  If they start to stick together rinse them under warm water.  Coat a casserole dish with cooking spray and spoon in the last reserved cup of sauce in the bottom of the casserole.  Now arrange the rigatoni snugly in the dish.

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Spoon the ricotta mixture into a pastry bag, or use a zip top bag with one corner snipped like I did.

Rigatoni Casserole The Extruded Noodle 007a

Pipe the filling into the rigatoni, filling them about half way.  Don’t worry about spills!

Rigatoni Casserole The Extruded Noodle 008a

Shred the provolone and scatter it over the top.

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Now begin spooning on the meat sauce, letting it drizzle in.

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Be sure to cover the pasta all the way to the edges.  Top with grated cheese and cover tightly with foil.  Bake, covered at 350º for 40 minutes.

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Remove the foil and bake uncovered for another 20 minutes.  Finish under the broiler for 2 minutes.  Ahhhh!

Rigatoni Casserole The Extruded Noodle 020aDoesn’t that look good?  The pasta has absorbed most of the liquid from the sauce and baked to al dente.  The meaty topping was delicious and filling!

Rigatoni Casserole The Extruded Noodle 048a

Comfort food that the whole family will love!

Make it for dinner this weekend!

 The Extruded Noodle ©

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Easy Seafood Pasta

When you need to get your weeknight dinner on the table fast, make this Easy Seafood Pasta.  It’s healthy, delicious and on the table in 30 minutes.  3-4 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 8 oz. whole wheat spaghetti
  • 16 large shrimp
  • 1/4 lb. squid cut into rings
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • white wine (use your favorite)
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 small zucchini cut into thin matchsticks
  • olive oil
  • red pepper flakes
  • Italian seasoning
  • grated Romano for serving
  • Italian parsley for serving
  • 1 tbsp. pignoli

Preparation:

Pour yourself a glass of wine.  Toast the pignoli in a dry skillet and set aside.  Cook the pasta to 1 minute less than the package directions.

While the pasta cooks saute the garlic in a little olive oil, stirring constantly until fragrant, about 1 minute.  Add the tomatoes, 1/3 cup wine and seasonings to the pan.  Cover and simmer 10-15 minutes.

Add the seafood to the pan and simmer just until the shrimp turn pink, don’t overcook.

Easy Seafood Pasta The Extruded Noodle 001a

Add the zucchini and pasta to the skillet.  Stir and toss well for another minute to finish cooking.  Transfer to a serving platter and garnish with grated cheese, parsley and toasted pignoli.

Easy Seafood Pasta The Extruded Noodle 015a

Fast, easy, healthy!  If you liked this check out some of my other 30 minutes or less meals.

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Brunswick Stew

Restaurants have long known the secret, that today’s leftovers can be reinvented into tomorrow’s soups and stews.  It eliminates waste and makes good economic sense.  I try to follow this principle in my own kitchen by using every last bit of food so that nothing goes to waste.  Brunswick Stew is a restaurant favorite of mine.  This thick, spicy stew is the ideal way to use up meat leftovers.  So when I made my Crock-pot Pulled Pork earlier this week, not only did I put aside some of the meat but also reserved the crock-pot liquid for stock.  The next morning I made this easy stew.

Ingredients:

  • 1 28 oz. can chunky tomato sauce
  • 1 cup pork stock (made with the reserved liquid from my Crock-pot Pulled Pork recipe, refrigerated overnight, fat skimmed and strained)  you can substitute beef stock
  • 3 tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 1 tsp. red pepper flakes (or to taste)
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper (or to taste)
  • 1 tbsp. brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 cups leftover pulled pork
  • 1 cup leftover pulled chicken
  • 2 cups frozen corn, thawed (I used fire roasted)

Preparation:

Shred 3 cups total of leftover pork and/or chicken.  I used 2 cups pork and 1 cup chicken.

Brunswick Stew 005 The Extruded Noodle

Look it over carefully to be sure there are no bones.  I also removed most of the visible fat.

Brunswick Stew 012 The Extruded Noodle

I skimmed off the top layer of fat from my pork stock then gently reheated and strained it through a fine mesh sieve.

Brunswick Stew 011 The Extruded Noodle

This was the base for my stew.

Brunswick Stew 008 The Extruded Noodle

Whisk in the chunky tomato sauce, tomato paste, vinegar, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, pepper flakes and cayenne.  Simmer 30 minutes, then add the meat and corn to the mixture.  Keep it on a very low simmer until all ingredients are heated through, about 20 minutes more.

Brunswick Stew 014 The Extruded Noodle

Time to taste and check your seasoning.  If you held back on the pepper flakes and cayenne, you can add more.  If you prefer a sweeter taste add another tbsp. of brown sugar.

Brunswick Stew 022 The Extruded Noodle

Serve with crackers or crusty bread for a hearty lunch or a great start to dinner.

Brunswick Stew 026 The Extruded NoodleThe Extruded Noodle ©

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Pumpkin Tortellini

Fall inspired Pumpkin Tortellini was the star of our Italian Sunday Dinner featuring Sage.  My favorite grown up version of macaroni and butter, this beautiful homemade pasta is served with a sage butter sauce.  I rolled out the thin sheets of pasta with my KitchenAid® and then shaped the tortellini by hand.  A labor of love but totally worth it, they are delicious!  This recipe makes 4 generous servings.

For the filling:

  • 1/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 cup fat free ricotta
  • 1/8 tsp. pumpkin or apple pie spice (if you don’t have this use a pinch of cinnamon and nutmeg)

For the pasta dough:

  • 100 g. “00″ flour
  • 100 g. semolina flour
  • 100 g. whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 1 egg
  • 8 tbsp. ice water

For the sauce:

  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 12 whole sage leaves
  • salt and fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 cup sliced baby bella mushrooms
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • pinch of red pepper flakes

Preparation: Drain the pumpkin and ricotta in a fine mesh sieve or use a colander lined with cheesecloth.  The filling should be firm, not watery.

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Add the spice, whisk together and refrigerate.  It may not look like enough, but each ravioli will need less than 1/2 tsp. of filling.  This will go a long way and I usually have leftover (it’s great in pancake batter!).

Pumpkin Ravioli The Extruded Noodle 010a

Combine the pasta dough ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment.  Add the ice water 1 tbsp. at a time, until you have a dry dough that holds together when you give it a squeeze (think pie dough).

Pumpkin Ravioli The Extruded Noodle 015a

Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and let it rest for 20-30 minutes.  This allows the flour to hydrate and makes the dough easier to work with.  Divide the dough into 4 pieces and flatten each into a disk.

Pumpkin Ravioli The Extruded Noodle 016a

Roll out each piece into a long thin sheet.  I used my KitchenAid® pasta roller attachment and rolled to setting #5.  Use any pasta roller, or your rolling pin.

Pumpkin Ravioli The Extruded Noodle 020a

Lay the sheets on a floured dish cloth or wax paper, and sprinkle the top lightly with flour.

Pumpkin Ravioli The Extruded Noodle 024a

Trim the ends even.  I reserved the scraps and threw them into the pot with the tortellini.

Pumpkin Ravioli The Extruded Noodle 026a

Working with one sheet at a time, cut the dough into squares using a pizza cutter or sharp knife.  Keep the remaining sheets covered with a dish towel so that they don’t dry out.  Place a scant 1/2 tsp. of filling in the center of each square.

Italian Sunday Dinner Featuring Sage The Extruded Noodle 011a

Set up a small bowl of water.  Dip you finger in water (or use a small brush) and moisten the edges of each square.  Fold in half to form a triangle, and press the edges together.

Tortellini The Extruded Noodle 057a

Pinch the sides.

Pumpkin Tortellini The Extruded Noodle 010a

Now wrap the ends around your finger and squeeze together.

Tortellini The Extruded Noodle 059a

Continue cutting, filling and shaping.  Not every Tortellini will come out perfect, don’t worry they are going to taste delicious!

Tortellini The Extruded Noodle 080a

Lay the tortellini on a baking sheet that has been lightly dusted with flour.  Be sure to follow food safety guidelines and refrigerate raw pasta within an hour of preparation.

Pumpkin Tortellini The Extruded Noodle 003a

Heat a large pot of water and bring to a boil.  Salt generously.  Heat a large skillet and add the butter, olive oil, sage leaves and the mushrooms.  Saute the mushrooms until they release their liquid.  Add the wine, salt and pepper to taste.

Italian Sunday Dinner Featuring Sage The Extruded Noodle 017a

When the water has reached a rolling boil, cook the tortellini for 3 minutes.  Do not overcook, and do not crowd the pot.  As the tortellini finish cooking they will rise to the top, gently remove them with a spider strainer and transfer to the skillet with the butter sauce.  Using 2 spatulas, turn gently to coat.

Italian Sunday Dinner Featuring Sage The Extruded Noodle 019a

Transfer to a serving platter and garnish with fresh sage leaves and grated Romano.

Italian Sunday Dinner Featuring Sage The Extruded Noodle 021a


To see what else I made today for our Sage themed meal, check out the previous post Chicken Thighs with Prosciutto and Sage.  Hope you enjoyed reading along and were  inspired to give this a try!

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Chicken Thighs with Prosciutto and Sage

The sage in my herb garden was still going strong in mid-October.  With frost in the forecast I wanted to use what I could in our Italian Sunday dinner.  This is an elegant, easy recipe that looks like you fussed!  Make it for guests or a romantic dinner for your special someone.  The ingredient list is short and the preparation is simple.

Ingredients:

  • 6 chicken thighs, bone in, skin removed
  • 6 thin slices of prosciutto
  • 12 fresh sage leaves
  • olive oil
  • butter
  • salt
  • red pepper flakes
  • garlic powder
  • ground fennel
  • a bottle of white wine

Sage The Extruded Noodle

Preparation:

Pour yourself a glass of wine (because the recipe is that easy).  Remove the skin from the chicken thighs and discard.  Toss the chicken thighs with 2 tbsp. olive oil, salt, pepper flakes, garlic powder and fennel.  Cover and refrigerate for one hour.

Italian Sunday Dinner Featuring Sage The Extruded Noodle 007a

Butter a 9 x 13″ baking dish and preheat the oven to 350º.  Place a sage leaf on each thigh and wrap in one slice of prosciutto.  Top with another sage leaf.  Bake for 1 hour, and add 1/3 cup of white wine half way through.

Italian Sunday Dinner Featuring Sage The Extruded Noodle 014a

Remove from the oven and arrange on a platter.  Garnish with more fresh sage and serve.

Italian Sunday Dinner Featuring Sage The Extruded Noodle 024a

This chicken was tender, juicy and delicious.  Easy to make and what a beautiful presentation for your dinner table!

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Pumpkin Bread French Toast

Cinnamon Swirl Bread gets a seasonal twist with the addition of pumpkin!  Make this to-die-for Sweet Bread for your family this weekend.  We begin the recipe with a yeasted enriched bread that takes on a beautiful golden hue from pumpkin puree that is kneaded right into the dough.  The cinnamon swirl is enhanced with more pumpkin creating a moist delicious loaf.  It was yummy right out of the oven, but the Pumpkin Bread French Toast we had the next morning was really over the top! Pumpkin Bread French Toast The Extruded Noodle 020a Dough Ingredients:

  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1-1/4 tsp. instant yeast
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
  • 3 tbsp. butter, softened
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tbsp. white sugar
  • 1/2 cup + 1 tbsp. 1% milk
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree, divided

Filling Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1-1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • reserved pumpkin puree from above
  • 1 tbsp. butter

Glaze:

  • 2 tbsp. egg whites
  • 1 tbsp. water

For the French Toast (enough for 6 slices):

  • 1/3 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg

Pumpkin Bread French Toast The Extruded Noodle 013a Preparation: Drain the pumpkin puree in a fine mesh sieve, reserving the liquid.  Pour 1/2 cup milk into a measuring cup, then top it off with the reserved liquid from the pumpkin.  Add just enough of the drained puree to equal 3/4 cup total.  Whisk together the flour, yeast and salt.  In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the egg and sugar with the whisk attachment.  Switch to the dough hook attachment and begin adding the flour mixture along with the liquid until completely incorporated.  Add 1 more tbsp. milk and knead on medium speed for 5 minutes.  You will have a smooth supple dough and the pumpkin gives it beautiful color.  Transfer to an oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and a dishtowel and allow to rise for 1 hour. Pumpkin Bread French Toast The Extruded Noodle 018a The dough didn’t double in size, and I wondered if the pumpkin and the yeast were playing nicely together.  They were, the dough was wonderfully soft and easy to work with.  Oil a large cutting board and rolling pin with canola oil or other light vegetable oil, and roll the dough out into a rectangle about 1/2″ thick. Pumpkin Bread French Toast The Extruded Noodle 019a Whisk together the remaining pumpkin puree with 1 tbsp. of softened butter and spread it over the dough in a thin layer. Pumpkin Bread French Toast The Extruded Noodle 025a Combine the brown sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle evenly over the pumpkin. Pumpkin Bread French Toast The Extruded Noodle 029a Now roll it up! Pumpkin Bread French Toast The Extruded Noodle 036a When you get to the end, pinch the seam to seal it and tuck the ends inside. Pumpkin Bread French Toast The Extruded Noodle 039a Place the roll seam side down on a baking sheet or use a tea loaf pan as I did.  Cover with plastic wrap and proof for another 30 minutes while you preheat the oven.  Brush with egg wash, and pierce the top with a fork or docking tool to allow steam to escape.  Bake 30 minutes at 350º. Pumpkin Bread French Toast The Extruded Noodle 045a I mentioned earlier that I was a little worried that the dough had not risen enough.  Look at it now! Pumpkin Bread French Toast The Extruded Noodle 002a Wow, that was some oven spring!  The top almost got singed! Pumpkin Bread French Toast The Extruded Noodle 010a1I let the loaf cool and by then we were ready to enjoy a slice!  This sweet bread is great with coffee, but I had to put aside some slices for morning and the long awaited Pumpkin Bread French Toast! Pumpkin Bread French Toast The Extruded Noodle 023a To make French Toast, whisk together the egg, pumpkin, milk, vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg.  Arrange bread slices in a baking dish. Pumpkin Bread French Toast The Extruded Noodle 001a Now pour the egg mixture over the bread and turn to coat.  Let it sit for 20 minutes while you heat up the griddle.  Alternatively, you can refrigerate overnight and bake it in the morning for about 30 minutes. Pumpkin Bread French Toast The Extruded Noodle 003aFor the two of us I like using the griddle, just 4 minutes each side and sprinkle with more cinnamon.  Pumpkin Bread French Toast The Extruded Noodle 014aA beautiful tasty fall breakfast, served with toasted walnuts, fresh fruit and just a drizzle of maple syrup. Pumpkin Bread French Toast The Extruded Noodle 016a Two slices each were quite filling!  Leftovers, if you have any will freeze well so you can enjoy for another quick breakfast or snack.

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