Chocolate covered soft-pretzel donuts. Ahhhmazing.
- 1 1/2 cups warm
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 package active dry yeast
- 4.5 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 Tbs earth balance, melted
- Vegetable oil, for pan
- Water for boiling
- 2/3 cup baking soda
- Kosher salt
- 0.5 lb semisweet chocolate
- Combine the water, sugar, yeast, and kosher salt in a bowl and let it sit for 5 minutes.
- Add the flour and earth balance, a little at a time, to the yeast mixture. Stir until well combined.
- Knead the dough, for 5 minutes, on a lightly floured surface.
- Put 1 tsp of oil in a clean bowl and put the dough into the bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let it sit in a warm place an hour.
- Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
- Bring the water and the baking soda to a boil on the stove.
- Put the dough onto a lightly oiled work surface and divide into 15 equal pieces.
- Roll out each piece of dough so that it is about 5″ long.
- Put each piece of dough into a hole in the donut pan and push the dough down with your finger until it fills out the entire shape.
- Use a fork to carefully lift the dough out of the pan, and 1 by 1, place it into the boiling water for 30 seconds. Take the dough out of the boiling water and put it back into the donut pan.
- Once all of the donuts have been boiled and placed into the donut pan, sprinkle them with salt and stick the pan in the oven for 12 minutes, or until light brown.
- Let the donuts cool completely.
- Melt the chocolate in a bowl.
- Dip the top of the donuts into the chocolate and set it aside to harden.
I was perusing my copy of The BUST DIY Guide to Life (an awesome new book from BUST magazine) when I came across Easy-Breezy Ravioli under the section devoted to finger foods for parties. It’s pointed out that serving pasta at a party is close to impossible. It’s messy, gets stale fast, and certainly isin’t something you can eat with your fingers. The brilliant ladies at BUST came up with a way around this: ravioli served on a skewer with dipping sauces (sun-dried tomato tapenade, black-olive pesto, traditional basil pesto, etc.) on the side. I love this idea. After all, what isin’t better served on a stick? It was with this ravioli in mind that I came up with kabocha-sage tortellini.
I decided to go with tortellini instead of ravioli because I feel like mistakes are much more noticeable in homemade ravioli. There is a slim chance of me actually creating perfectly square-ish ravioli. Also the little piece of dough sticking up from the top of the tortellini acts as a perfect handle for dipping, thus making the skewers optional. Here is a good video on how to roll tortellini.
Fresh Pasta Dough
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1 cup semolina flour dash of salt
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- about 1/2 cup water)
Kabocha Stage Stuffing
- 1 cup soft, steamed kabocha (no need to peel it), mashed. Any pumpkin-like squash will work.
- 3 Sage leaves, diced
- 1/4 small onion, diced
- 2 tbs olive oil
- Salt & Pepper
- 2 garlic cloves, diced
- 1/2 cup water (or veggie broth)
- 1 tbs agave nectar or maple syrup
Dipping sauce(s) of your choice (pestos, tomato sauce, tapenades, OSG’s cheezy sauce, etc.)
- Make the pasta dough.
- Split the dough into three parts. Roll the dough to look like a snake (think back to your playdough days as a kid) and then, using a rolling pin (I don’t actually own a rolling pin so I used a cup turned on its side) make the snake 2″ wide. Do this for all three sections of the dough. Let the dough sit for 10 minutes.
- While the dough is sitting, make the kabocha-sage stuffing. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Add garlic and oinon and cook until fragrant and translucent.
- Add the squash, sage, water, and agave nectar to the pan and mix it all up. Let it cook for 1 or 2. If the mixture seems too thick add water, 1 tablespoon at a time.
- Add salt and pepper to taste. Be a little generous with the salt.
- Cut the dough into roughly 2″ x 2″ squares. I had 42 squares in the end.
- Using a teaspoon, put a dollop of the kabocha-sage stuffing in the center of the dough-square and fold up your tortellini. Do your best to imitate this amazing lady. Repeate until all of the tortellini are done. Store in the freezer until you are ready to eat.
- Boil the tortellini until they float. Don’t over-boil them or they will fall apart.
- Heat up 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a pan. Add the tortellini, 5 at a time, to the pan. Once the tortellini has turned golden, flip it over. This step is optional, but delicious.
- Serve on a skewer stick (optional) next to a dipping sauce.
Of course you can skip the homemade part all together and use your favorite frozen tortellini instead.
Steaming is a super easy way to cook veggies. Roy and I find ourselves steaming some kind of vegetable almost every day. They can be seasoned with all sorts of deliciousness- salt, lemon juice, vinegar, olive oil, agave nectar, or a sauce. After photographing this I ate the entire thing within five minutes. If an emoticon for a pig existed (does one?) I would put it here right now. =)
- 1 medium cauliflower
- Salt and freshly-ground black pepper
- Red wine vinegar
- Olive Oil
- Garlic, one small clove, finely diced
- Cut the core out of the cauliflower, separate the head into floretes, and cut the large florets into 2 pieces to make them the same size as the smaller ones.
- Wash the cauliflower in cold water.
- Steam the cauliflower until the stalks are tender to the touch with a fork (6-8 minutes once the water is boiling). You can use many different kinds of steaming contraptions- a basket, a rice cooker/steamer combo, or a bamboo steamer.
- Remove the cauliflower from the steamer.
- Sprinkle the cauliflower with salt, pepper, vinegar, and oil to taste. Stir in the parsley and garlic.
- Serve warm or cold.