Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Camping and Baking



It’s summertime and you are camping because camping is glorious. Or because it’s a cheap family vacation. Either way, you’re up early because, well, everything else is. The birds, the light, the kids - it all happens quite early in the great outdoors. You unzip your tent and stand up, stretching and breathing the fresh morning air. What could be better?

Freshly baked bread and butter with your coffee, that’s what.

You can have your bread and eat it too if you remembered to bring along your EZ DOH manual dough mixer. (Otherwise your dough will pick up bits of twigs and moss while you’re kneading it on that flat rock!)

EZ DOH is a compact, lightweight container (just over one pound) with an easy-to-install hook and hand crank that mixes, kneads, and provides a perfect place for resting/rising bread dough. EZ DOH uses no electricity and has no sharp blades. And at $39.95, it's the lowest-cost product on the market.

Just follow the instructions printed on the bucket for a basic recipe, browse the blog for more recipe ideas, or make your own recipe. In 5 minutes you’ll have perfectly mixed dough, ready to rise while you build a fire, make the coffee, and change your socks.

Now for the baking. Never baked bread outdoors? No fear. It is a learning process, but once you’ve done it a couple of times, you’ll be a pro.

Campfire Baking Instructions

You’ll need:
  • Dough prepared in your EZ DOH mixer
  • Hot coals
  • A dutch oven with legs or a covered pot and a base of bricks or rocks to keep the bottom of your pot from sitting directly on the hot coals. Your bread will cook unevenly if your pot doesn’t have a lid that can accommodate coals on top.
Instructions:
  1. Start your fire - charcoal or wood; the goal is to have enough coals to put under and on top of the oven.
  2. Build the base of bricks or rocks, if needed.
  3. When the coals are ready, put some under the base. Put the dough in the oven, cover with the lid, and place on top of the coals.
  4. Put some coals on top of the lid - you’ll want more heat on the top than the bottom.
  5. Check the bread after 20 minutes, although it may take 15 or 20 minutes more. Color, smell, and feel will tell you when it’s done. The top should be golden, you should smell a nice bread smell (but not a burned smell), and the bread should sound hollow if you tap the top.
  6. Remove the oven from the fire when done and let cool for several minutes.

Resources

Learn about cooking on a campfire using a dutch oven.
https://whatscookingamerica.net/Information/DutchOven/DutchOvenCooking.htm

Amazon sells a selection of dutch ovens for use on a campfire.
https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_2?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=camping+dutch+oven
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Monday, May 1, 2017

Introducing: The New Team

This week will begin the transition from Ginny and Dave to us - the new team of John and Connie. We plan to build on the vision and achievements of the past five years, and we look forward to continuing to work with all existing suppliers and distributors.

Over time, we will expand and improve our line of products, and are developing our marketing plans to grow the business. We’ll promote how EZ DOH makes baking together fun and easy for the whole family - parents, grandparents, and children. EZ DOH is safe for young children (no motors, loud noises, or whirling blades), and children can enjoy turning the crank handle and watching the ingredients transform. It’s a fun learning experience - following recipe instructions, measuring and counting, and beginning to understand the art and science of dough preparation and baking. Finally, everyone gets to enjoy their creation, knowing that clean-up is greatly simplified by using the EZ DOH mixer.

That’s enough for now - we have a lot of work to do!

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Friday, March 31, 2017

A New Road !

Greetings, friends of EZ DOH!

The road to "EZ DOH" has been one full of twists and turns, surprises and setbacks, burdens and blessings.......  We are grateful for all the lessons we have learned along this 6-year journey!
Best of all, it's been a road that has allowed us to meet so many wonderful, new friends along the way!

We're now at a crossroads that we started to approach in 2014 when we began caring for my ailing parents. In 2016, on the other side of that experience, Dave and I found that our priorities had changed. We still loved our product, but found we wanted to put more of ourselves into our ever-growing family, which left less time for promoting our business. I'm sure you can guess where this tale is leading........ we are selling EZ DOH.

We are very excited to report that Mr. John Dmytriw of Mentor, OH will be taking EZ DOH further down the road!

John has an extensive background in engineering and has worked with many major companies. He has decided that it’s now time to own a business for himself and will be purchasing EZ DOH. It will still be a “family business”, with his daughter and son assisting him in marketing and internet. We are convinced John is the person who can take EZ DOH to “the next level”, so it is with great anticipation that we turn things over to him in the very near future.

We started out on this road with much prayer, depending on God to guide us.....and we are now at a crossroads where we place a memorial, saying "Thus far, the Lord has helped us!" (I Samuel 7:12)  We now continue to look to Him to be our guide for "life beyond EZ DOH!" (Prov. 3:6 - In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path)

We wish you, our dear friends and customers, safe and joyful travels along this road of life! May your lives continue to be filled with tasty bread, good health and great friends!!

We pray that you, too, know the great travel Guide and will trust your journey to Him! He truly is "the Bread of Life!
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Thursday, March 23, 2017

American Irish Soda Bread!

This March, as a final "tip o' the hat" to St. Pat, I thought I would list one more recipe dedicated to the Irish. In doing a search of my previous posts, I realized that I have never shared a recipe for Irish soda bread. Now this is due, in part, to the fact that traditional soda bread has no yeast. It is a wonderful "quick bread" that depends on baking soda as leaven. It is WELL worth trying! However, there are yeasted versions of soda bread that use baking soda AND yeast to raise the bread, giving it a slightly different texture. The true Irish would probably scoff at this creation, so, to that point, I have named this recipe "American" soda bread. But, once you taste this bread, there will certainly be NO scoffing - it is tender and absolutely delightful! I took this creation to card club this month to accompany the hostess' main dish of shepherd's pie.....there were many requests for both recipes! Try it, warm out of the oven,  with a heavy dollop of Irish butter - absolutely YUMMY!!! 

American Irish Soda Bread !

1 pkg/Tbsp Red Star Platinum yeast
½ Cup warm water
1 Cup buttermilk, warmed ( you may substitute ¾ Cup milk + ¼ Cup yogurt or sour cream )
3 Tbsp. sugar
2 Tbsp. softened butter
1 tsp. salt
½ tsp. baking soda
4 Cups unbleached, all-purpose flour
¾ Cup dried cranberries or raisins (a friend suggested adding walnuts, too!)
1 ½ tsp. orange zest

Place warm water and yeast in EZ DOH bucket and stir to dissolve yeast. Let rest 1 minute. Add one cup of flour, then additional dough ingredients. EZ DOH-it for 2-3 minutes, or until dough is smooth and soft and all ingredients are incorporated. Remove dough from bucket, spray bucket with cooking spray, “smooth” dough and replace in bucket. Cover and let rise until doubled.

Remove dough from bucket and form into a round loaf. Place on a greased baking sheet. Depress the loaf slightly with your palm to create a flatter round loaf. Cover and let rise about 30 minutes. With a sharp knife, slash the top of the loaf. Sprinkle lightly with flour. Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes, until golden brown. Place on a wire rack to cool. 

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Thursday, March 16, 2017

Celtic Brioche!

Top of the mornin' to you and Happy St. Pat's Day!! Technically, I celebrated this holiday on last week's blog with a recipe for delicious green bagels (though spinach and parmesan aren't traditional flavors of Ireland - LOL!) However, I couldn't resist sending you one more recipe in honor of St. Patrick! (Also, just FYI, there are some other wonderful recipes for this holiday on this blog from prior years- check 'em out!) 

Today's recipe intrigued me......"Celtic" definitely evokes Irish/Ireland.....but "Brioche"? Not so much. Brioche is a VERY French term for a dense, cake-like, rich bread. So...."Celtic Brioche" - what's that?  I did some brief research on the history of this delicious bread and here's what I found: There is a popular restaurant in Dublin named "Brioche", so I'm wondering if that's where this recipe originated. Also, the beautiful form of this bread is very fun and free-looking, which, to me, is the spirit of the Irish. So that's what I've got for you! Whether it's March 17 or another day of the year, this bread is worth making for ANY celebration! 

Celtic Brioche!

Dough:
1 Tbsp. Red Star Platinum yeast
½ Cup milk, warmed
2 ½  Cups unbleached all-purpose flour
¼ Cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 eggs
1/3 Cup butter, softened

Brush on before baking:
1 egg yolk, mixed with 1 tsp. of milk

Glaze, if desired:
½ Cup powdered sugar
1 tsp. softened butter
1-2 Tbsp. milk
½ tsp. vanilla or almond extract

Place warm milk and yeast in EZ DOH bucket and stir to dissolve yeast. Let rest 1 minute. Add one cup of flour, then additional dough ingredients. EZ DOH-it for 2-3 minutes, or until dough is smooth and soft and all ingredients are incorporated. Remove dough from bucket, spray bucket with cooking spray, “smooth” dough and replace in bucket. Cover and let rise until doubled.

Divide dough into 8 equal pieces. Roll out each piece to a very thin sheet. Using a round 2” cookie cutter, cut circles out of the dough (I got about 6 circles out of each piece. I then combined the scraps, rolled it out and cut as many more circles as I could) . Stack three circles together and roll “jelly-roll”-style into a little cone-like form. Place, end-up, in a greased 8” cake pan. Continue until all the circles are used. The “cones” do not have to be super-close together – just fill the pan. If you have an odd amount of circles, just roll them up and tuck them in the pan. Cover and let rise until doubled. Preheat oven to 350. Bake rolls for 30-35 minutes – Cover with a piece of aluminum foil during the last 10-15 minutes of baking to prevent excess browning. Mix glaze ingredients. Remove rolls from pan and transfer to wire rack to cool. Brush hot rolls with glaze, if desired. You could also sprinkle the top of the rolls with powdered sugar as an alternative.



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Thursday, March 9, 2017

Spinach Parmesan Bagels! The Eating of the Green!

This week I'm trying to prepare for what lies ahead.......or to prepare you for what lies ahead! It occurred to me that in one week, it will be St. Patrick's Day! And if I blog about an appropriate recipe NEXT week, it will be too late for you to prepare it for the big day, so today you get a "green" recipe! 

I was very torn as to whether to do a bread with an Irish heritage or just do something that would be fun and green. Well, "fun and green" won out! And, let me add, "fun and green.. and DELICIOUS" ! If you've been reading my blog for very long, you know my penchant for boiled breads, ie: bagels and pretzels, so of course you would expect me to choose the bagel recipe, even though its not truly Irish. (I believe St. Patrick would forgive me if he would taste one of these circles of yumminess!) These probably have more of an Italian tone, but they might be quite tasty layered with the traditional Irish corned beef for an amazing sandwich.....I have just been enjoying them toasted with butter! However you eat 'em, you'll be happy to be a part of the "eating of the green" for St. Patty's Day!   

Spinach Parmesan Bagels

Dough: 
1 Cup milk, warmed
1 Tbsp/packet Red Star Platinum yeast
½ pkg. frozen spinach, thawed and well-drained
2 Cups unbleached bread flour
1/3 Cup rice flour (if you aren’t able to find this, just use additional bread flour)
2 ½ Tbsp. brown sugar, packed
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. dried minced onion
2 Tbsp. parmesan cheese

Additional: 
Pot of water for boiling
2 Tbsp. brown sugar for water 

Place yeast and ¼ Cup of the warmed milk in the EZ DOH bucket. Stir to dissolve. Add a tablespoon or so of the flour. Let sit while you mix the remainder of the warmed milk ( ¾ Cup) and the spinach in a blender. Blend until the mixture is very well-blended and is bright green. Add this mixture and the remaining dough ingredients to the EZ DOH bucket and EZ DOH-it for 2-3 minutes, adding a small amount of additional flour, if necessary, to create a smooth (almost sticky, though – we don’t want a dry dough) dough. Gently remove the dough from the bucket, “smooth” it , spray the bucket with cooking spray and return the dough to the bucket and cover. Let  rise until doubled.

Preheat oven to 375. Prepare a large pan by covering it with baking parchment.  Divide the dough into 8 equal portions (12 if you would like smaller bagels). Lightly flour the working surface. Cup your hand over each portion, moving your hand in a circular motion – this will create a smooth ball. With your fingers/thumb, create a hole in the center of the bagel. Pull evenly to create a larger hole. Lay bagels on the parchment and let rise ½ hr. While rising, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add 2 Tbsp. of brown sugar to the water. Place 3-4 bagels in the water, 30 seconds on each side. Place boiled bagels on a paper towel briefly to drain, then place them back on the baking sheet lined with parchment. Bake at 375 for 20 minutes. Enjoy these savory treats!!!



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Thursday, March 2, 2017

Dutch Coffee Buns – Koffiebroodjes!

Last week we received the shocking news that my hubby's brother had been diagnosed with incurable cancer. Denny lived in Kentucky, so Dave began making plans to go down and visit with him, as it had been quite some time since they had seen one another. Unfortunately, the cancer moved more quickly than we could, and we got the sad phone call from his kids that Denny had passed. Dave and I packed our bags and took off to be with our nephews and niece for the funeral. We had not seen them recently, as they are located all over the midwest. In spite of that, our time together was wonderfully bittersweet - mourning together, catching up and sharing a meal along with many memories. It was worth the tiring trip to be with them to celebrate the life of this special man. 

Today's recipe is a wonderful recipe that calls for friends old and new to sit down and share their lives and their memories. Imagine a steaming cup of coffee, a plate of these delicious rolls and a long-unseen friend at your table - Sounds like a perfect recipe for joy! 


Dutch Coffee Buns – Koffiebroodjes!

Dough:
1 Tbsp./Packet Red Star Platinum yeast
1 ¼ Cup milk, warmed to the touch
3 1/3 Cup unbleached, all-purpose flour
3 Tbsp. butter, softened
4 Tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. salt

Filling:
1 – 3oz. pkg. vanilla or French vanilla instant pudding
1 Cup milk
1/3 Cup sour cream
*(please note: I ended up using only about 1/2 of this mix - if you care to just divide the filling ingredients in half, you would have enough for 2 recipes) 

2/3 Cup dried cranberries, soaked in warm water and then thoroughly drained

Glaze:
2 Tbsp. apricot jam (other jams have been used, ie: strawberry. I like the “clear” look of the apricot)
1 Tbsp. water

3 Tbsp. melted butter

Place warmed milk and yeast in EZ DOH bucket and stir to dissolve yeast. Let rest 1 minute. Add one cup of flour, then additional dough ingredients. EZ DOH-it for 2-3 minutes, or until dough is smooth and soft and all ingredients are incorporated. (Dough may be very close to sticky, but should still be smooth).  Remove dough from bucket, spray bucket with cooking spray, “smooth” dough and replace in bucket. Cover and let rise until doubled.

While dough is rising, mix filling ingredients * (see recipe note)  – mix the pudding and milk thoroughly then add the sour cream and stir thoroughly.  Soak cranberries in warm water for 10-15 minutes, then drain and press dry with a paper towel. Prepare a large baking sheet by lining with baking parchment or spraying with cooking spray.

Remove dough from bucket and divide in two. On a lightly floured surface, roll one half into a 12-14”x 8-9” rectangle. Spread with 1/3-1/2 cup of the filling and sprinkle ½ of the cranberries. Roll up lengthwise, jelly-roll style. Slice into 9 evenly-sized rolls. Place on baking sheet and press lightly with the palm of your hand to flatten slightly . Repeat with the remaining dough. Let the rolls rise  for 20-30 minutes (I covered them with plastic wrap and let them rise overnight in the frig.) Preheat oven to 350. Brush risen rolls with the melted butter. Bake at 350 for 25 minutes. (While baking, briefly microwave the apricot jam and the water. Stir until well-blended.) When rolls are golden, remove from oven and brush with the jam mixture. Serve while warm, if possible. They are delicious reheated in the microwave for 10 seconds also! 

Adapted from a recipe on itspotluck.com

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