Entries Tagged as 'sandwiches'

Roasted Tomato Focaccia

Posted on: September 3, 2012

Happy Labor Day! It’s Monday morning and I am still at home instead of out camping. This tropical storm Issac has caused rain, rain, and more rain for the whole weekend here in the Midwest. We had everything packed and ready to go for camping and then woke up Saturday morning to a storm…followed by all day of rain….and the same thing again on Sunday. Perhaps it was not meant to be because the thought of having to spend the weekend cooped up in a tiny tent with a muddy dog is probably not ideal. Plus, it gave us time to be lazy around the house and spruce things up around here a bit (in the form of soooooo much plant shopping! Yay!) and finally framing all those posters we have hung around the house.

Anyhow, It’s been too long since I blogged about focaccia (since last fall, to be exact). It’s one of those breads that we eat within the first two hours of it being baked because it’s just that good. And eating a whole loaf of bad is just not that good for you. So I try to resist as much as possible only make it on special occasions. The special occasion this time was that I hadn’t made it in a while and had beautiful mini heirloom tomatoes…that’s good enough, right?

This bread is delicious by itself, used with sandwiches, dipped in oils, or served with soup.

Roasted Tomato Focaccia

  • 2 teaspoons yeast
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 Tablespoons sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon salt
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup olive oil

For the topping:

  • 10 cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/4 cup red onion, sliced into long strips
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh thyme
  • Salt/Pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

In a large mixing bowl, combine the water and yeast. Let sit for five minutes or until it becomes foamy. Next, add in the sugar, salt, olive oil, and flour (add 1/2 cup of flour at a time). Use your hands (or a mixer with a dough attachment) to knead the dough for five minutes or until the dough has come together (add more flour if it’s sticky and add more olive if it’s too dry).

Grease a bowl, place the dough inside, and cover with a clean dish range. Let sit for an hour in a warm place or until it’s doubled in size.

Grease a sheet pan with olive oil (I used a 9×12 pan so that our bread is thick enough for sandwiches but use whatever works best for you) and roll the dough out onto a floured surface. Fit the dough into the pan and let rise for another 15 minutes.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. While it is rising the second time, prepare the toppings. Heat a tablespoon of olive in a skillet over medium heat-low. Add in the onions and sauté until just starting to caramelize (about 10-15 minutes).

Make dimples in the dough with your fingers and top the bread with olive oil, tomatoes, onions, garlic, and thyme. Cook for 15 to 20 minutes or until the bread has browned at the top and the cherries have roasted.

Serve warm with every meal!

Dinner Picnic Part 2: Southwestern Veggie Sliders with Avocado Mayo

Posted on: June 1, 2012

Continuing on with our discussion from Dinner Picnic Part 1, let’s chat about the main course! I don’t know about you guys but for me summer means sangria, grill outs, picnics, and veggie burgers. I love Morningstar’s Black Bean Burgers when I am in a hurry but I find too much processed food to be a big no-no for my diet. This has led me to experimenting loads with veggie burgers and often times ending up with negative outcomes. I mean, I understand what kind of veggie combination I enjoy but getting the correct consistency with a veggie patty is wayyyy harder than you’d think! I’ve made sweet potato burgers which where so mushy that I should have served them as mashed potatoes and I’ve made really damn good chickpea burgers (but I had to have them sit in the fridge overnight to firm up – very time consuming). After many discouraging endeavors, I discovered the perfect ratio between vegetables, beans, and the ingredients that mend everything together (with a bit of help from this recipe).

These sliders are going to be my new go-to burgers when it comes to grilling. Not only is the patty absolutely delicious and stays together firmly, but the avocado mayo is amazing lathered on it them (and on pretty much everything else you happen to be serving!).

Southwestern Veggie Sliders with Avocado Mayo

  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 15 oz can black beans, drain and thoroughly rinsed
  • 1/2 cup corn
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 1/2 bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup cornmeal
  • 1/2 cup salsa OR salsa verde
  • olive oil, for cooking
  • 12 Hawaiian rolls
  • pepper jack cheese, sliced

For the avocado mayo:

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 1/2 cup mayo
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • salt/pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon lime juice

In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and saute for 5 or so minutes or until they start to soften. Add the bell pepper and saute for another two or so minutes.

Remove from heat and add to a large mixing bowl. Add the corn, carrot, black beans, bread crumbs, and cornmeal. Fold in salsa until everything is combined.

Divide the mixture into 12 equal parts and form patties. Heat another 2 Tablespoons of olive over medium heat and cook each side of the patty for about (depending on how hot your skillet gets) 2 minutes on each side.

To make the sauce: mash together the avocado, mayo, garlic, and lime juice. Season with salt and pepper to your liking.

To assemble: Slice each roll in half. Lather the avocado mayo on the bottom with a slice of cheese and then stick the patty on. Feel free to top with tomatoes, lettuce, or whatever else you’d like. Enjoy warm and on a beautiful porch or blanket outside!

PS Or feel free to cook these on the grill outside as well!

Moody Monday: Dog Park Picnic

Posted on: April 16, 2012

Why hello Monday, is that you…AGAIN? Okay, well I least I just had a beautiful weekend to hold me over. This weekend was filled with picnics, the farmer’s market, and live music so I can’t complain too much.

Today’s Moody Monday is about picnics (and how much I freaking love them). But to be more exact, it’s about the picnic I had yesterday. As you probably know if you’ve ever read my blog previously, I have a really really cute boxer puppy that has more energy in a day than I have in an year. Luckily, Bloomington has an amazing dog park that backs up to a lake with lots of dog friendly trails.

Anyways, so yesterday I made up a few yummy veggie sandwiches stocked full of farmer’s market produce and carrot slaw and we headed to the park. We took our puppy for a hike and had a beautiful picnic out in the woods. It was a perfect ending to an eventful weekend.

 

 

 

Oatmeal Honey Buttermilk Bread

Posted on: April 1, 2012

I realize a lot of you already know this but I live in a house of five girls but what you don’t know is that really translates to 6 girls, 2 boys, and a dog if you count all the baggage that comes along with college ladies (boyfriends, siblings, animals, etc). Anyways, my point is there is always SOMEONE around which is fantastic because I love the company but baking is one of my stress reliever and every once in a while I just want to bake in peace. Luckily, Saturday was one of those days where I took the kitchen all to myself. I woke up extra early because I knew that would give me time with two of my roommates being late sleepers, one being in Chicago, another in New York checking out Cornell for the fall, and my boyfriend at work. It was wonderful to just be able to put a vinyl on and go to work.

I love my breadmaker because it gives me the ability to just throw everything in the machine and come back at lunch to fresh bread for sandwiches but making it by hand is so simple and satisfying when you have the time. I realize it seems daunting thinking you have to plan for 3 hours to make this bread but really there is about 20 to 30 minutes of hands on time so when you are busy around the house anyways, letting it rise for an hour by itself is not a big deal. Anyhow, this bread is delicious and anyone who appreciates fresh bread with their sandwiches, I highly suggest making this recipe!

The recipe makes two 8×9 loaves of bread but since I only had one pan I made one loaf and 4 big sandwich rolls (yum!). The bread turned out super moist (still just as moist today – the day after!) and very hearty with the ever-so slightly hint of sweet from the honey.

Oatmeal Honey Buttermilk Bread

adapted from Confections of a Foodie Bride
  • 1 3/4 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 3 Tbsp + 1 tsp honey
  • 2 tsp yeast
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp salt

Combine 1 cup of oats and hot water in a bowl and let sit for 10 minutes or until the oats absorbs the water up.

In the bowl of your mixer, add in 1 tbsp of honey with 1/4 cup warm water and sprinkle the yeast on top; let sit for 5 minutes so the yeast can react to the water.

Next, add in the soaked oats, buttermilk, oil, 2 tbsp honey, oil, whole wheat flour, all purpose flour, and salt. Turn the mixer (with the bread hook) on low until everything is combined and then turn up to medium for 10 minutes.

Place dough in a greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap for one hour or until it doubles in size.

Wait, go play with your puppy, do some dancing to David Bowie, wait.

Tuco helping me bake

Place the dough onto a floured surface and knead for about five minutes to get the air bubbles out of it. Divide the dough in half and place in two oiled pans (or form into circles if you’re making rolls). Mix the remaining tsp of honey with 1 tsp of very hot water and brush on top of the loaves. Sprinkle the remaining oats on top.

Let sit for about 30 minutes to let it rise a bit more.

Preheat oven to 375. Cook the loaves for 20 to 25 minutes and the buns for 15 to 20 minutes.

Enjoy hot with butter or make sandwiches like I did below!

wishing I had some avocado

Wild Rice Chowder and Open Faced Grilled Cheese

Posted on: March 14, 2012

It’s hard to believe with this 80 degree weather that I was craving soup just two days ago. But, putting myself in those shoes, it was a beautiful 60 degree day last Saturday and we enjoyed sandwiches and big coffee mug fulls of wild rice soup during a lovely picnic on the porch.

The chowder was delicious. I honestly have never hard wild rice soup before. This whole thing came about because I was at the store awhile back and saw the wild rice gleaming at me from the bulk section. It’s so colorful and vibrant and I’ve never tackled a recipe with it so I decided purchasing some would be a good challenge. Unfortunately, it sat on my shelf for the next three months before I decided that this avoidance had to come to an end. I looked up recipes with wild rice in them and came across dozens of patties, salads, thanksgiving sides, and soups.

I was sold on the idea of soups but most of them used meats and the “vegetarian” ones were just blander versions of the original. I decided to take one of the meat recipes and completely revamp it for all your vegetarian needs!

I was nervous that I’d end up with a flavorless soup myself but this was not the case. It was so delicious! And thank goodness at that because it made enough leftovers for me to eat it three times a day for the next two weeks (AKA I may suggest cutting this recipe in half if you aren’t looking for a large amount of yummy leftovers).

 

Wild Rice Chowder

  • 1 cup wild rice, rinsed
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped onions
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 potatoes, cubed
  • 3 carrots, sliced
  • 1 tsp. dried thyme leaves
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • 2 cups frozen corn
  • 2 cups half and half
  • 2 cups meatless crumbles
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Bring the two cups of water to a boil in a large saucepan. Add the rice and let simmer for 30 minutes or until the rice is tender. Remove from heat and set aside (do not drain so the rice can absorb up the excess water!)

In a large cooking pot, heat the olive oil up over medium heat. Add the onions and saute for about five minutes. Then add the garlic and saute for another minute.

Next, add in the flour and stir constantly for a minute. Then add the broth and whisk until a milk mixture is created. Add in the potatoes, carrots, thyme, and nutmeg. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer for 20 minutes.

Next, add in the corn and meatless crumbles and simmer for another 20 minutes (or until the vegetables are tender). Then add the half and half and cooked rice and stir until everything is warmed up and creamy.

Serve warm in cute animal mugs with yummy sandwiches!

 

We also made these simple and delicious sandwiches to go with the soup! Enjoy!

Open Faced Grilled Cheese

  • Half a baguette, sliced in half length-wise
  • 1 fresh tomato, sliced
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 Tablespoon dried basil
  • 2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 4 slices of Swiss cheese (or however many to your liking)
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Turn your broiler on low (if you have two options). Combine the olive oil, basil, oregano, and salt/pepper in a small bowl. Lather the bread pieces evenly with the mixture.

Top with the tomatoes, swiss, and then garnish with a few a bit more dried basil.

Broil for only a few minutes (I don’t want to give exact times because everyone’s broiler is so touchy and different). I would just turn the light on and watch it until the top gets brown. No more than 2 or 3 minutes.

Enjoy with yummy soup and your favorite porch spot!

Nom Nom.

Tuko being so cute and good while we enjoy our picnic on the porch!


Moody Monday

Posted on: March 12, 2012

Monday, again? Thankfully I have a semi-easy week with it being Spring Break…although I remember when spring break meant having a week off…now I only manage to have Tuesday and Thursday off and have to work the other days. Oh well, I like my job…alot..so no complaining.

Anyways, my Moody Monday post is about my huuuuuuuge brick porch that could be a house in itself. It’s absolutely amazing and I love spending all of my free time on it. It was so nice this weekend that I was able to not have one but TWO picnics on it!

On Saturday, Ella (my wonderful roommate), Tuco (pictured below), and I had a coffee date with biscotti and Turkish tea! Mmmm

And then last night, Wyatt and I had a dinner picnic full of yummy soup (post about this adventure to happen ASAP) and open faced sandwiches.

And my porch has the best view for me to lean against the brick and watch my boys play!

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