Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Cornmeal wheat pizza crust

3/4 cup warm water
1 envelope yeast
1 Tbsp honey
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cracked black pepper
1/2 cup cornmeal
3/4 cup whole wheat flour (or more)
3/4 cup white flour (or more)

Combine warm water, yeast, and honey in a bowl and let sit for five minutes. Add olive oil, salt, and black pepper.

Combine cornmeal and both flours. Add yeast mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer, attach dough hook, and turn on low while adding flour mixture slowly. Scrape the sides of the bowl if necessary.

Allow to mix for 2 minutes. Add additional flour, one tablespoon at a time, until the dough forms a ball and pulls away from the sides of the bowl.

Remove dough hook and lightly coat dough with olive oil. Allow to rise, covered, in a warm place until doubled in size, or about 2 hours. Punch down and roll out into desired shape.

Dough can be frozen until needed, but allow to thaw before use.


Note: This also makes great breadsticks!

Friday, October 3, 2008

Pecan Crusted Tofu with Maple Dijon Sauce

3 10oz blocks of extra firm tofu
12oz pecans
1 egg
Salt and pepper

Marinade:

1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
2 tsp salt
1 tsp fresh ground pepper
2 tsp dried thyme


Maple Dijon sauce:

1/4 cup maple syrup (real stuff, not pancake syrup)
1/4 cup Dijon mustard
1 tsp olive oil
Salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 325 F

Drain the tofu and slice in half though the center, to create two blocks that are the same size as before, but half as thick. Place between layers of paper towels with a baking sheet and heavy object on top. Press tofu for 30-60 minutes.

While tofu is pressing, combine marinade ingredients. When tofu is pressed, put tofu in a baking dish or ziploc bag and marinate for at least one hour or overnight.

Place a metal cooling rack on top of a baking sheet, evenly place tofu on rack, and bake for two hours, until firm to the touch. Flip tofu over every 30 minutes, and do not burn. (the previous steps can be completed the day before)

Toast pecans in a skillet over medium heat until they become aromatic, around 7 minutes. Watch to ensure they do not burn. Let cool and pulse in a food processor until they are finely chopped. Place in a shallow, wide dish and add salt and pepper.

Beat egg in a shallow, wide bowl. Slice cooled tofu in half across the center, to give 12 total pieces. Dip each piece in egg, then pecans. Ensure that each piece of tofu is well coated, patting on coating if necessary.

Raise or preheat oven to 375 F.

Place each coated tofu piece on a large baking sheet. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes or until pecan coating is well browned.

For sauce, combine syrup, mustard, olive oil, and salt in pepper in a bowl. Briefly heat on the stove or in the microwave.

(Notes: this may look complicated, but if you have pre-baked and pre-marinated tofu on hand, it goes fairly quickly. Marinating and baking large amounts of tofu on the weekend helps make dinner faster during the week!)