Archive for January, 2013

Yeast-free Pizza Dough – A small batch


Thought you had yeast buried in your pantry somewhere and actually didn’t? You’ll need a pizza stone in your oven for this crust to become crispy, and it’s nowhere near New York-style pizza, but pretty good in a pinch.

1 cup self-rising flour
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/3 cup water, plus additional as needed
1 tablespoon oil
1/2 teaspoon sugar

Place a pizza stone in the oven and preheat to 500°F

In a large mixing bowl whisk self-rising flour, cornstarch, salt, and garlic powder
in a separate bowl, combine water, olive oil, and sugar
add the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until a cohesive ball forms
adding more water if necessary
wrap dough and refrigerate for a minimum of 30 minutes

On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough
transfer the dough to the hot pizza stone and cook in the oven for 2 minutes
(a pizza peel or a cookie sheet without sides makes this very easy)

Remove the dough from the oven
top the pizza as you wish
cook until crust is very crisp, approximately 7-10 minutes
cool for 3-5 minutes before serving

Makes 1 individual-sized pizzas


January 27, 2013 at 4:24 pm Leave a comment

Homemade Butter – A small batch

Basically, butter is just whipped heavy cream that’s gone farther than dessert topping. I’m sure there are many cooks out there, who have made butter by accident. I had some cream left over from another recipe, and instead of garnishing a dessert, I made a batch of butter to post. It’s not cheaper or frugal, just a nice change. I recommend a stand mixer, since it always takes longer than you think, or remember.


Whip cream until it becomes grainy, yellow, and buttermilk forms at the bottom of the bowl.


butter 2

Drain away the buttermilk in a sieve.


butter 4

Return the churned cream to the mixer
begin whipping again
add about a cup of cold water to rinse (Rinsing slows down the time before spoiling. Remember, there are no preservatives, though the cream is pasteurized.)

Drain through a clean dish towel, placed in a colander.


Squeeze out the water.

Store the butter in any container.

January 21, 2013 at 4:32 pm Leave a comment

Homemade Pop Tarts – A small batch


I was amazed while researching this recipe, how many of the authors claim to not really being fans of the original. I can’t say that. I’m a BIG fan, cold out of the box or toasted as instructed. This version, though damn tasty and satisfying, doesn’t really taste like the store-bought version… but in a good way.

1 cup AP flour
pinch of salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1 stick butter, cold, cut into small cubes
2-3 tablespoons ice water
1 egg, lightly beaten

Combine flour, salt, sugar, and butter in food processor
pulse until butter is completely cut into the flour
add water one tablespoon at a time, until dough forms a ball
wrap in plastic and chill for about 15 minutes


Roll dough out to about 1/4” thickness
roughly measure 14 rectangles measuring 3”x4” and cut (no need for perfection, just kind of close)
top one rectangle with filling, leaving an edge
brush edges with beaten egg
place second rectangle on top and seal first with your fingertips and then with a fork
brush the tops with egg wash
sprinkle with sugar (I don’t like mine iced, but see recipe below)
dock with a fork to release the steam while baking

Place the tarts on a lightly greased or parchment-lined baking sheet
refrigerate the tarts, uncovered for 30 minutes, while you preheat your oven to 350°F

Bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden brown

Fillings (the sky’s the limit)
1/2 cup jam, any flavor, mixed with 1 teaspoon cornstarch and 1 teaspoon cold water

Guava paste
Apple Butter
Chocolate & Marshmallow

Brown Sugar Cinnamon
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3 teaspoons AP flour

1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon milk
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon light corn syrup

These freeze well and reheated for 5-7 minutes in the toaster oven … perfection.

January 17, 2013 at 5:19 pm Leave a comment

Homemade Yogurt


No yogurt maker needed for this version. Started on the stove top, then finished in an oven warmed only by the pilot light. The result has a tender texture and a very mild flavor, just the way I like my yogurt. I found the instructions on

1 quart milk (any kind)
1/4 cup yogurt, plain, unflavored, room-temperature
1/4 cup dry milk powder
1 tablespoon white sugar
pinch of salt
candy thermometer

yogurt 1

In a double boiler, heat milk to 185°F
then cool milk to 110°F (I do this in a water bath)
whisk in dry milk powder
whisk in sugar and salt
whisk in room-temperature yogurt

Pour into clean containers
cover well with lid or plastic wrap
then place containers in a gas oven, warmed by the pilot light for 7 hours

Makes just over a quart of yogurt

For those who don’t have a gas oven, the optimal temp is 100°F.

January 7, 2013 at 3:30 pm Leave a comment

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