Category Archives: Bread

Whole Wheat Apple Muffins

whole wheat apple muffins

These muffins are a great use for those delicious fall apples that are in the grocery store and farmers market.  They are moist and flavorful with tender chunks of apple within.  As you can see I couldn’t resist munching a bit on one before I could take a picture.  I used Honey Crisp apples but any firm and tartish type will work, such as Granny Smith.

Whole Wheat Apple Muffins
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 Tbs cinnamon
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temp
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 cup buttermilk or plain yogurt
1 very large or 2 medium apples, peeled, cored and coarsely chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Grease and flour a muffin tin.

Mix together the fours, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.  In a separate bowl, cream the butter and then add the white sugar and 1/4 cup brown sugar.  Beat until fluffy.  Add the egg and blend.  Mix in the buttermilk (or yogurt) gently.  Stir in the gray ingredients and fold in the apple chunks.

Divide the batter evenly among the prepared muffin cups, sprinkling the remaining 1/4 cup brown sugar on top.  Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean.  Cool the muffins for 5 minutes in the tin, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

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Apricot Buttermilk Scones

I love fresh baked scones.  They are wonderfully simple to make and in under an hour you can have fragrant, moist, flavorful triangles of yummyness.  Last time my friend Cristy stopped by I figured it was a great opportunity to whip some up.  Scone recipes tend to use two different things to moisten the dough.  Sour cream or buttermilk.  As sour cream was conspicuously absent from my fridge I decided to use my favorite buttermilk recipe.
If you don’t have any buttermilk, which I usually don’t, there are two ways to make it.  First, you can put 1 tbs of white vinegar in a measuring cup and add enough milk to make 1 cup.  Leave it on the counter for 5 minutes.  Walla!  Buttermilk.  The second way is to buy Powdered Buttermilk.  You add this to the dry ingredients and then add water with the wet ingredients.  The powdered buttermilk can be stored in the fridge for a number of months which is great.  I found mine with the powdered milk at my local grocery store.
This recipe calls for cake flour as well as all-purpose.  Cake flour is a lower protein flour which gives the scones a lighter feel.  All-purpose flour can be substituted.  However, it will make a slightly more dense scone.
Apricot Buttermilk Scones
Adapted from the scone recipe in The Great Book of Chocolate
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup cake flour
1/4 cup sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
8 tbs unsalted butter, cold
1 cup dried apricots
1/2 cup buttermilk
Turbinado sugar for topping (optional)
1.  Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2.  Mix the flours, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt with a whisk.
3.  Cut the butter into cubes and add to the flour mixture.
 Apricot Scone
4.  Cut the butter (using fingers, pastry cutter or food processor) into the flour mixture until it looks like cornmeal.
5.  Cut the apricots into quarters.
6.  Stir in the apricots and buttermilk until just wet and sticky.
7.  Turn the dough out onto the floured work surface and pat into a 1-inch thick circle.  Cut into 8 wedges.
Apricot Scone
8.  Place on prepared baking sheet 1 inch apart.  Sprinkle with sugar.
8.  Bake until firm and golden brown.  15-20 minutes.
Apricot Scone


Filed under Bread, Breakfast, Recipes, Scone

Volcano Cheese Bread

Volcano Cheese Bread

This weekend I decided to try a recipe from the King Arthur Blog. This bread had a little something extra called cheeeeese. After a first rise, the dough is wrapped around a load of shredded cheese and left to rise again. The bread is then split into four pieces of cheese oozing loveliness. The recipe calls for Gruyere but at $18/lb I decided swiss would work just fine.

There was a big round of Uuuuuuuuus out of the guests when I bought this out of the oven.

Volcano Cheese Bread

from the King Arthur Blog

1 1/4 cups (5 1/4 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached Bread Flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon instant yeast
1/2 cup (4 ounces) cool water

all of the starter
1 cup + 2 tablespoons (9 ounces) to 1 1/4 cups (10 ounces) lukewarm water*
1 teaspoon salt
3 1/2 cups (14 3/4 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached Bread Flour
1/2 teaspoon instant yeast

*Use the greater amount of water in winter, when conditions are dry; and the lesser amount in summer, when the weather is humid.

2 1/2 cups (10 ounces) grated Gruyère cheese, or the grated/shredded cheese of your choice (I used swiss)

To make the starter: Mix the 1 1/4 cups flour, salt, yeast, and 1/2 cup water in a medium-sized bowl. Mix till well combined. Cover and let rest overnight at room temperature.

To make the dough: Combine the risen starter with the water, salt, flour, and yeast. Knead—by hand, mixer, or bread machine set on the dough cycle—to make a smooth dough. Place it in a lightly greased bowl, cover, and let it rise for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, till it’s nearly doubled in bulk.

Gently deflate the dough, and pat and stretch it into a ¾”-thick rectangle, about 9″ x 12″. Spritz with water, and sprinkle with the grated cheese. Starting with a long side, roll it into a log, pinching the seam to seal. Place the log, seam-side down, on a lightly floured or lightly oiled surface. Cover it and let it rise for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, till it’s puffy though not doubled in bulk. Towards the end of the rising time, preheat the oven to 425°F.

Gently cut the log into four crosswise slices, for mini-breads; or simply cut the dough in half, for two normal-sized loaves. Place them on one (for two loaves) or two (for four mini-loaves) lightly greased or parchment-lined baking sheets, cut side up. Spread them open a bit, if necessary, to more fully expose the cheese. Spritz with warm water, and immediately place them in the preheated oven. Bake for 20 minutes (for the mini-loaves), or 35 minutes (for the full-sized loaves), or until the cheese is melted and the loaves are a very deep golden brown. Remove them from the oven, and cool on a rack.
Yield: four mini-loaves or two standard-size loaves.

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