Thanks to Ana at Sweet Almond Tree for this pick, Rosemary Bread. This was easy to make and I liked the taste of the fresh rosemary in it. And it was a nice bonus to get two loaves, so I could freeze one for later. Very tasty and fun to make. Although I got frustrated with the dough hook – it was making so much noise, I finally pulled the dough out and kneaded it by hand it at the end.
Today’s project was crepes, chosen by Tiny Skillet. I first made crepes when I was about 8. My mom had an electric crepe maker. It was an inverted pan that you would dip into a special bowl that came with it then flip it over and let it cook, sitting on the counter. The batter would stick to the concave pan and you would use a special spatula to loosen it and then flip it. I remember loving dipping that pan into the batter.
When we went to Montreal when our kids were young, we ended up eating at a crepe restaurant twice in the same weekend because there was something there every picky eater could enjoy. My last experience with crepes was last summer in Colorado Springs. We ate lunch at a creperie that made all organic buckwheat crepes. The place had won all sorts of local “best of” awards, but we did not enjoy it at all. Their crepes were just too heavy.
So, I was happy to try making my own, something I don’t think I have done since I was a kid. I have the perfect pan for this – a Green pan that didn’t even need any butter (although I used a little) and even my first crepe turned out perfectly, which is never the case. I made the buckwheat version in the recipe and made up a chicken, carrot, spinach and cheese filling (it wasn’t perfect, so I’m not including my recipe for that). The crepes themselves were nice though and I had fun making them!
Perfecting Pru chose Hot Cross Buns with Dried Cherries for this week. I’ve made hot cross buns once before, a Martha recipe, but I liked that this recipe had dried cherries since I don’t like raisins. The recipe actually has half cherries and half raisins. I thought that this did not rise quite as much as I would have liked it to, but other than it turned out well. I cheated and did not use a pastry bag for the frosting, thus the messy look. We all shared one here and enjoyed it, then I sent the rest away since we also had cake to eat from Teen Martha’s birthday (she turned 20 so from now on, we’ll be referring to her as College Martha). We’re taking a break for the next two Mondays and will get going again with a new project after that.
Today’s project was leek, bacon and pea risotto, chosen by Sassy Suppers. I liked this a lot, even though I usually don’t care for leeks. It had just the right balance of flavors. Adding that spurt of lemon juice at the end is genius I think. It was creamy and flavorful and just hit the spot. Two thumbs up on this one, even if I find all the stirring a bit tedious! I’ll be interested to hear if everyone else enjoyed it as well.
Thank you Martha for a recipe that was so easy to throw together! This recipe for Lime Bars has only 4 steps, which is unheard of in Martha’s world. I feel as though mine did not make enough filling. I pushed the crust an inch up the side but my filling didn’t even come close to reaching that. I ended up going around the edges, smushing it down so it didn’t look so stupid. And only 15 minutes to bake? What’s up with that?
We liked these. They are almost key lime pie really. Quick and easy and tasty – thumbs up.
Ana at Sweet Almond Tree chose Brie and Ham Sandwich for this week. It was definitely an easy recipe, that’s for sure. I ended up wrapping mine in parchment and putting them in the oven to heat them up and melt the cheese. I also used a ciabatta baguette, which is a little flatter and softer than the baguettes in my store, which I find nearly impossible to bite into. I thought it was fine, but not up to the complicated standard most of Martha’s recipes reach! I felt like it just cried out for something more. Maybe a slice of tomato or a tiny bit of raspberry preserves, just something to make it interesting and different. Not that I didn’t enjoy it – I did and so did Mr. MarthaAndMe, who was raised on what his mother calls “hot ham sandwiches.”
We’re taking a break for next week, and I’ll be choosing our project for 2/27 which I will post soon.
Thanks to Sassy Suppers for choosing today’s project, Coconut Ice Cream Sandwiches. I am not a huge fan of coconut, but in recent years, I’ve liked it a bit more. For this recipe, you make the dough, freeze it, slice it, bake it, fill with ice cream and freeze again. I thought the dough was kind of hard to mix up. I ended up getting in it with my hands to get it to come together. The recipe said to slice with a serrated knife, but I found a regular knife was better. I thought they were actually pretty good, given that coconut is not at the top of my list. They’re a different play on an ice cream sandwich, which is definitely fun.
Today’s project was Chicken with Artichokes, Capers, and Angel Hair Pasta, chosen by Megan at Megan’s Cookin’. I have to say, it sounded kind of plain, and it pretty much was. I had some grated Parmesan cheese at the ready but even that didn’t do much to help it. I also added some onion powder to the sauce thinking that might boost it a bit. It didn’t. Not a fan of this one unfortunately. What did everyone else think?
Ana at Sweet Almond Tree chose Chicken and Dumplings for this week. I grew up eating chicken and biscuits. I’ve had chicken and dumplings at The Cracker Barrel, but those are rolled, flat dumplings. I actually have the recipe for those and have made it from time to time. I don’t think I’ve ever had drop dumplings before, so this was a new thing to try. This was essentially like making chicken soup, or the base for chicken and biscuits, except I normally don’t use turnips and parsnips. When I make chicken and biscuits, I thicken it with flour. This remains thin, like a soup. The dumplings were easy to make and puffed up so prettily in the pot. It was almost like eating matzoh ball soup in a way, but the dumplings are lighter than that. We really enjoyed this. I would definitely make this again as alternative to chicken soup or chicken and biscuits. It was better the second day, since the broth thickened a bit from the dumplings.
Tiny Skillet chose today’s project, pumpkin chocolate chip squares and it was a winner in my house! These are like a blond brownie with pumpkin in the batter. Very yummy, very moist and hard to stop eating. I made pumpkin swirl brownies once from a Martha recipe and did not care for them (so I was worried these were not going to be any good), but these were great, proving once again how fun Martha Mondays is, because sometimes you stumble upon something fantastic. I’m definitely going to make these again.