Friday, November 15, 2019

Thanksgiving: Make 'Parker House' Dinner Rolls and Sandwich Rolls at the Same Time

                                                  Original Parker House Hotel in Boston                   

The recipes for "Parker House" dinner rolls date back to at least the 1870's, when the original recipe was first printed in the April, 1874 edition of the New Hampshire Sentinel. The most popular story of the real origin of these much-admired rolls is that the baker at the Boston Parker House Hotel threw a batch of unfinished rolls into the oven after an altercation with a guest. Somehow, these rolls came out of the oven with a crisp, buttery shell and a light and fluffy texture inside. And, they appeared to have the shape of a folded 'pocketbook'. The rest is baking history.

Research tells us that the original Parker House Hotel opened its doors on October 8, 1855. Guests included Charles Dickens in 1867-1868, along with many other famous people. In addition to the Parker House rolls, the hotel/restaurant also developed the Boston Cream Pie. Here's a link to the history of the Parker House Hotel, which is still in operation on the same site today (rebuilt in 1927).

GETTING BACK TO THANKSGIVING ROLLS, we wanted to make dinner rolls and sandwich rolls (for 'after dinner' sandwiches) from the same batch of dough using a recipe that's close to the original one. Here's our recipe for making a small batch (12 dinner rolls and 5 sandwich rolls), and of course you can easily double this recipe as long as your EZ DOH mixer has the stainless steel dough hook that can easily handle large batches.


3/4 cup of milk
1/4 cup warm water
1/2 package of dry yeast (NOTE: one package of Red Star contains 1/4 ounce which is 2 and 1/4 TSP
1/2 stick of unsalted butter (4 ounces).
1/4 cup sugar
2 small eggs, lightly beaten
3/4 TSP salt
3 cups all-purpose unbleached flour


*Bring milk to a simmer in a small saucepan. Remove from heat, cut the butter into small pieces and stir them into the milk along with the sugar and then let it cool down.
*Dissolve yeast into warm water and stir until some foam bubbles appear.
*Place 1 and 1/2 cups of the flour into your EZ DOH container and add in the salt and stir to mix. Add in the milk mixture, the beaten eggs, and the water/yeast mixture and mix until smooth. Then slowly add in the the rest of the flour and slowly turn the crank and work the dough thoroughly for about 5 minutes. You'll develop a smooth dough with good stretch qualities, which helps form the desired texture.

Remove the mixing attachment, cover the container and let the dough rise in a warm place for about an hour (or until it doubles in size). If you prefer a more 'hands-on' experience, remove the dough from the container and place on a lightly floured surface and hand knead for a minute. Rinse the container, apply some olive oil to the bottom and sides, and then place your dough ball back in to let it rise (again, covered and in a warm spot).

After the dough has doubled in size, punch it down and form your rolls. We made 12 dinner rolls that each weighed 1 and 1/4 ounces, and five sandwich rolls that weighed 2 and 1/2 ounces. Place them on a greased cooking sheet, cover lightly with plastic wrap, and let them again rise until they double in size. True Parker House rolls get flattened and then folded over (for that pocketbook appearance).
You can flatten them with your hand and use a dull knife to form a slightly off-centered crease, and then fold them over and place the shorter side down before placing on greased sheet and letting them rise.

They should about double in size in less than an hour. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and bake for 15-20 minutes when they should be golden brown and the centers should measure 190 degrees. You can remove the smaller ones a few minutes before the larger ones, but we removed all of ours after 20 minutes and they were all brown on the outside and had great texture on the inside. Place them on a cooling rack for a few minutes and they're ready to serve.


Saturday, November 2, 2019



According to the latest statistics, there are about 90,000,000 pet dogs in the USA! Dog food is a huge business, but beware of the ingredients in your pet's dog biscuits because many are filled with chemicals and ingredients designed to keep those biscuits edible for a LONG time. Here are the label ingredients from 3 popular brands:

Ingredients: Beef, Meat By-Products, Soy Grits, Sugar, Liver, Salt, Propylene Glycol, Garlic Powder, Caramel Color, Natural Smoke Flavor, Potassium Sorbate (Used As A Preservative), Sodium Nitrite (For Color Retention), Red 40, BHA (Used As A Preservative), Onion Extract.  

Ingredients: Chicken, Corn Syrup, Soy Flour, Wheat Flour, Corn Starch, Water, Propylene Glycol, Animal Fat (BHA Used As A Preservative), Animal Digest, Calcium Sulfate, Soy Protein Concentrate, Sugar, Beef, Potassium Chloride, Salt, Phosphoric Acid, Titanium Dioxide, Sorbic Acid (Used As A Preservative), Red 40 Lake, Garlic Powder, Natural Smoke Flavor, Iron Oxide, BHA (Used As A Preservative), Citric Acid (Used As A Preservative). 

Ingredients: Wheat Flour, Beef Tallow Preserved with Mixed-Tocopherols, Wheat Gluten, Lecithin, Chicken By-Product Meal, Animal Digest (Source of Liver Flavor), Lamb Meal, Oat Fiber, Mono and Dicalcium Phosphate, Calcium Carbonate, Garlic Powder, Red 40, Yellow 5, Blue 1, Yellow 6. I-5051

As a healthy alternative, you can have family fun making your own dog biscuits using your own ingredients. There are many recipes available that are tailored to help address specific health issues (overweight, diabetes, joint pain, anxiety, etc....). Here are a few SIMPLE recipes with known, healthy ingredients which you can easily modify as needed to best suit the needs of your pet.


2 cups of unbleached all-purpose flour  (or whole wheat flour)
1/2 cup of peanut butter
2 eggs
1/2 cup of water (add more as needed to form your dough)

We mixed the ingredients in our EZ DOH mixer for about 3 minutes to achieve a nice ball of dough. We used a rolling pin to roll out the dough to about 1/4" thickness, and then cut the dough into various shapes (if you don't have any cookie molds, just use a drinking glass or pizza cutter). Keep re-rolling the 'leftover' dough from the cut-outs so there is no waste. We made 40 biscuits from this recipe.
Place your biscuits on a greased cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees F for 25-30 minutes, or until the biscuits are golden brown.
Even with no preservatives, these will keep fresh and crisp for at least a week (store them in a cookie jar or paper bag).


2 cups whole wheat flour
2 jars of baby food (4 ounce jars/container). The possibilities are endless.
1/4 cup water (add more as needed depending upon the baby food)

Mix the ingredients in your EZ DOH (or another mixer), adding water as needed to get the right dough consistency. We used the blueberry/banana baby food, but nearly all baby foods have only healthy ingredients clearly listed on their labels. Again, we rolled the dough out to a 1/4" thickness and then cut it onto various shapes using cookie cutters, and repeated the process to use up all the dough. 
We baked them for 25-30 minutes at 350 degrees F. When they turn brown and are crispy, take them out and let them cool down.

NOTES: Few if any baby foods contain onions, grapes, or raisins (which are not good for dogs!!) It's always a good idea to double-check. Consult with your vet or do your own research to determine what ingredients are best for your pet.


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