two skinny jenkins

090515 – pizza nite already!
090515, 8:12 pm
Filed under: DINNER | Tags: ,

joe got his hands dirty!tonight we used whole wheat dough that i made a while ago (maybe two months?) and froze.  I transferred the dough from the freezer to fridge a day ago and out of the fridge a couple hours in advance of baking to let the yeast come back to life.  I have to admit, i have constantly struggled with wheat dough.  just intuitively, it seems like the graininess of the wheat flour prevents it from rising well.  chemically, wheat flour is lower gluten than the nice white bread flour that is typically used. tonight i did two things differently; i left the dough a bit thicker than usual, and while shaping it, had my hands coated with olive oil.

On my half of the pizza, i used a spinach pesto sauce with red onions (sauteed for 5 min. w/S + P and a little thyme), kalamata olives, and mozzarella.

  • 6 T warm water (may need up to 1 or 2 tablespoons more water)
  • 2 T white wine (or 2 T more water)
  • 3/4 t active dry yeast
  • 1/2 t honey
  • 1 t salt (heaping)
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 3/4 C wheat flour
  • 3/4 C all purpose or bread flour
  • Cornmeal for sprinkling
  • Flour for dusting counter
  1. Whisk wine, water and yeast in a medium bowl until yeast has dissolved. Add honey, salt and olive oil and stir. Add flour and no matter how dry it looks, work it with a spoon and your fingers until it comes together as a dough. Add more water one tablespoon at a time if you need, but in my experience, this is almost never necessary.
  2. Sprinkle some flour on the counter and knead the dough for a couple minutes.
  3. For Joe’s sake, i try to reduce the number of dirty dishes left at the end of the night.  Just rinse the bowl you made the dough in, dry it and coat the inside with olive oil. Put the dough in, cover it with plastic wrap, and let it rise for an hour or up to two, until it is doubled.
  4. Preheat your oven to its highest temperature (typ. 550°F). Put your pizza stone in the oven as it heats up!
  5. Once the dough has doubled, turn it out onto a floured counter and gently deflate the dough with the palm of your hands. Form it into a ball and let it rest on a floured spot with either plastic wrap over it (sprinkle the top of the dough with a little flour so it doesn’t stick) for 15 minutes.
  6. Stretch the dough out into your crust shape, either on a conrmeal dusted baking sheet or a piece of parchment paper.
  7. Slide the pizza from the baking sheet to your preheated pizza stone, or just transfer the parchment paper onto the stone.
  8. Bake for about 7 minutes, checking at 5. Slice and serve immediately.



090515 – ‘baked’ apples – sweet, cheap, and healthy
090515, 2:18 pm
Filed under: DESSERT, SNACK | Tags:

'baked' apples

a quick lunchtime dessert while i read up on my next BREAD BAKER’s APPRENTICE CHALLENGE.

  • 1 fuji apple, sliced
  • 1 T raisins
  • 2 T honey (i used 1 T honey + a splenda packet – my vice)
  • 1 t cinnamon
  • 1/4 t salt
  1. place apples and raisins in a small, microwave safe dish.  drizzle w/honey and sprinkle with cinnamon and salt.
  2. bake in microwave for 5 minutes on 70% power.

090515 – pickle time!
090515, 12:04 pm
Filed under: SNACK | Tags: ,

can it!

a slight variation on the last time i made pickles.  i used apple cider vinegar and i’m really happy with the results.  you can boil them to your crunchiness preferences.  I let them cook for a total of 10 minutes and they were boiling for about 4 of that.

  • 2 large cucumbers, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 C salt
  • 1 C (white or apple cider) vinegar
  • 1/2 C sugar
  • 1 T mustard seeds
  1. soak cucumber slices in salted water for about 8 hours or overnight.
  2. drain cucumber and bring vinegar, sugar, and mustard seeds to a boil over medium-high heat in medium-sized saucepan.
  3. add cucumber to the pot and cook for 10 minutes.
  4. can and keep for a month or two.

090514 – my 100 dishes
090514, 3:30 pm
Filed under: FUN

090514 - My 100

As i delve deeper into the food blog world, i have discovered more and more foods that i want to try making.

Please send me your favorite recipes from the list, or ones that you think i am missing!


  1. Naan
  2. Injera
  3. Zucchini bread
  4. Bread pudding
  5. southern biscuits
  6. New England Cheese Bread – made Castiello (close enough!)
  7. Brioche
  8. Sourdough bread (like San Fran)
  9. Greek Celebration Bread
  10. Rye bread
  11. Stollen
  12. Corn Bead
  13. Panettone
  14. Ciabatta
  15. Bagels
  16. English Muffins


  1. Eggs Florentine
  2. quiche
  3. yogurt muffins (chocolate chip!)
  4. Rugelach
  5. granola bars (i’ve made granola and it disappears…)
  6. cinnamon buns (sim. to rugelach)
  7. French toast


  1. Falafel (successfully – I’ve tried it before)
  2. Cole slaw
  3. Fennel greens (with something…)


  1. mushroom risotto (like on Hell’s Kitchen)
  2. paella (as soon as i can afford saffron!)
  3. stuffed artichokes
  4. home made linguine pasta
  5. mozzarella cheese
  6. French Onion Soup
  7. Spanish tortilla
  8. Portobello burgers
  9. grilled Cactus
  10. Miso Soup
  11. Lobster (when we move to Boston)
  12. Crab Cakes
  13. Spring rolls
  14. Crostini
  15. Pepper steak


  1. plantain chips
  2. graham crackers
  3. dolmas


  1. cheesecake  – any kind
  2. flour-less chocolate cake
  3. frozen yogurt (esp. grasshopper/ mint chip flavored)
  4. Souffle
  5. red bean pastries (the right way!)
  6. Carrot cake
  7. Fortune Cookies
  8. Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie
  9. Pineapple upside-down cake
  10. Better Than Sex cake
  11. crumb cake
  12. Strudel
  13. Truffles
  14. Red Velvet Cake
  15. Black Bean Brownies
  16. Candied orange slices
  17. Bread Pudding
  18. Rice pudding
  19. Coconut cake


  1. Bloody Mary
  2. Cucumber Dill lemonade
  3. Dark and Stormy
  4. Limeade
  5. Old Fashioned Rickey (DC-style)
  6. Mojito
  7. Gin
  8. Beer
  9. Margarita

090513 – lasagna
090513, 10:08 pm
Filed under: DINNER | Tags: , , , ,

lasagnaAt long last… my ‘famous’ lasagna recipe!  A few people have been, ahem, pestering me to post this one.  It tastes better than it looks – promise!

this was originally my uncle’s recipe and i had to improvise the quantities.  He is one of those cooks who magically throws ingredients together and makes it come out just right.  I think this tastes a like his, but was a tad watery, probably from the frozen spinach i used.

  • 1 lb ground beef (we use Laura’s 92% lean)
  • 1 T evoo
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 32 oz. cans of whole tomatoes
  • 1 t fennel seed
  • 1 t mustard powder
  • 1 t onion powder
  • 2 t basil
  • 1 T salt
  • 2 t sugar
  • 4 C spinach (i used frozen- it was all i had on hand)
  • 15 oz. ricotta cheese
  • 1 T thyme
  • 1 bag mozzarella cheese
  • 1 package (no boil) lasagna noodles
  1. brown ground beef in a large saucepan, rinse and drain.  heat oil in the saucepan and saute garlic and onion.  before adding the tomatoes, slice them into chunks using a sharp knife in the can.
  2. Preheat oven to 450° F.
  3. add the tomatoes, fennel, mustard powder, onion powder, basil, salt, and sugar and bring to a boil.  stir in meat and continue simmer.
  4. mix ricotta cheese, thyme and 1/3 C of mozzarella cheese.
  5. layer, starting with sauce, then noodles, ricotta mixture, and spinach.  Repeat, finishing with noodles, then sauce, and remaining mozzarella cheese.  I like to sprinkle a little exra basil on top.
  6. Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes.

090513 – Bread Pudding | BBA #1
090513, 9:14 pm
Filed under: BBA Challenge, DESSERT | Tags: ,

Puddin'I am becoming wary that a batch of bread a week is going to be too much for two skinny jenkins….

luckily, thanks to some friends in the BBA Challenge, this week i found a way to use a little extra Anadama bread and complete one of the recipes on my 100 dish list. Thank you Rebeca!  This was easy and delicious!

  • 5 slices day-old bread (approx 4 C when torn into pieces)
  • 1 1/2 T butter, melted
  • 1/2 C raisins
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 2 C SKIM milk
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1 t orange juice (or zest if available)
  • 1/3 C brown sugar
  • 1 1/2  t ground cinnamon
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  1. Preheat oven to 350° F.
  2. Place bread pieces into an 8 inch (sq or round) baking pan, drizzle with melted butter, and sprinkle with raisins.
  3. In a medium mixing bowl, combine eggs, milk, sugar, orange juice, cinnamon, salt, and vanilla. Beat until well mixed. Pour over bread, and lightly push down with a fork until bread is covered and soaking up the egg mixture.
  4. Bake in the preheated oven for 45 minutes, or until the top springs back when lightly tapped, and a knife comes out clean.

090512 – black bean quesadillas
090512, 10:04 pm
Filed under: DINNER | Tags: , ,

K-sa-dillaKe•sa•dilla – a delicious meal that consists of black black bean filling and cheese sandwiched between two grilled flour tortillas.  The most influential part of the dish, is the filling. Second most important is the method of cooking the tortilla.  I used some leftover red bell pepper and green onion from the thai peanut curry chicken from last night. This recipe made 3 quesadillas.  One for me, two for Joe.

  • 2 T evoo
  • 1 small red onion, diced
  • 2/3 C (roughly) red pepper, chopped
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1/4 t red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 t oregano
  • 1/4 C salsa
  • 1 T brown sugar (essential!)
  • 6 8″ flour tortillas
  • 2 T butter, cut into 3 pieces
  • 12 jalapeño slices, per preferences
  • romaine lettuce, cut into thin strips
  • 2 green onions, chopped for garnish
  1. heat oil in a large skillet and saute onion for a couple minutes.
  2. add red pepper for a minute, then black beans, oregano, salsa, red pepper flakes, and brown sugar.  cook for 3 more minutes, until heated through.
  3. pour black bean mixture into a bowl and set aside (i left mine on the warming eye of the stove).  rinse out the skillet, heat over medium and melt 1 piece of butter.  add a tortilla, sprinkle evenly with cheese, add jalapeño slices, then one-third of the black bean mixture, and top with tortilla.
  4. cook until golden brown, then flip and cook the other side.  serve with lettuce, green onion, and salsa.