alcohol

Bready or Not Original: Pancetta Risotto

Posted by on Apr 28, 2021 in alcohol, bacon, Blog, boozy, Bready or Not, cheese galore, gluten-free, main dish, pork, side dish | Comments Off on Bready or Not Original: Pancetta Risotto

This Pancetta Risotto is a fantastic meal for two people, or a delicious side for a group. It’s time-consuming but very straightforward to make.

Bready or Not Original: Pancetta Risotto

I confess, I spent years being intimidated by the very idea of a risotto. I would see it done on cooking shows. So much stirring! When I finally got up the gumption to give it a try, I found risotto wasn’t hard at all. It really is about lots of stirring.

Bready or Not Original: Pancetta Risotto

This recipe here is my fancy occasion recipe, especially when I have some good pancetta on hand, such as the kind carried by Smoking Goose Meatery out of Indianapolis.

Bready or Not Original: Pancetta Risotto

As for the wine, I’ve tried this with fancier Sauvignon Blanc from Total Wine (Cloudy Bay from New Zealand) as well as a $6 Trader Joe’s Coastal Sauvignon Blanc. Both versions turned out great! You don’t need to go all-out, but get something that is (hopefully) drinkable with the finished meal.

Bready or Not Original: Pancetta Risotto

Bready or Not Original: Pancetta Risotto

Homemade risotto requires time standing at the stove, but makes for delicious results. This recipe takes about 45 minutes to an hour to completion, depending on your stove. Note that a small amount of bacon can be substituted for the pancetta, but it is much stronger in flavor and colors the risotto brown.
Course: Main Course, pork
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: alcohol, cheese, pork, rice
Author: Beth Cato

Equipment

  • large stock pot
  • medium saucepan

Ingredients

  • 8 oz pancetta diced
  • 1 Tablespoon dried shallots or fresh shallot, finely minced
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 1/4 cups Arborio rice
  • 1 cup dry white wine Sauvignon Blanc works well
  • 4 cups chicken broth or chicken stock, equal to a 32 oz box or 2 cans
  • 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan or Pecorino Romano or Grana Padano, plus more to top rice
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  • In a large stock pot, cook the pancetta for 10 to 12 minutes, until it starts to turn brown and crispy. At the same time, on another stove burner, use a medium sauce pan to bring the chicken broth to a very low simmer.
  • Use a slotted spoon to transfer pancetta to a paper towel-lined plate; set aside. Add dry shallots and garlic to the fat in the big pot. Sauté for two minutes. Add the Arborio rice and a pinch of salt. Sauté another 2 minutes, until the rice looks glossy with translucent edges.
  • Add the white wine and stir until it is absorbed. Add chicken broth in 1/2 cup increments, stirring well after each addition until it is absorbed. After about 12 to 15 minutes, when most of the broth has been added, begin to taste the rice. The goal is a chewy, al dente consistency. Add more broth as needed, and remember to turn off the burner for the broth pot when it is empty.
  • When the rice is creamy and al dente, stir in the pancetta and cheese. Taste the risotto again, adding more salt and pepper as needed. Serve with the remaining white wine.

OM NOM NOM!

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    Bready or Not: Cheddar Beer Bread Rolls

    Posted by on Apr 14, 2021 in alcohol, Blog, Bready or Not, cheese galore, yeast bread | 2 comments

    These Cheddar Beer Bread Rolls taste as good as they look. Seriously.

    Bready or Not: Cheddar Beer Bread Rolls

    When the pandemic sent everything topsy-turvy in spring 2020, my husband ended up working from home more often. That meant I needed to feed him more often.

    Bready or Not: Cheddar Beer Bread Rolls

    So, like so many people, I started baking more bread. These rolls were among the first of my experiments, and they were a major hit.

    Bready or Not: Cheddar Beer Bread Rolls

    The original recipe from New York Times Cooking made a huge batch of rolls. I needed enough rolls to feed one guy, with a extras frozen for later.

    Bready or Not: Cheddar Beer Bread Rolls

    I rewrote the recipe to delicious results. I used a Guilt Lifter beer to make these, which lent a refreshing hoppy flavor. A heavier and darker beer will create heavier and darker flavor. Try different beers to suit your tastes and match your meal.

    Bready or Not: Cheddar Beer Bread Rolls

    Make a batch of about a dozen cheesy rolls with this straightforward yeast bread recipe! Beer lends some hoppy flavor to the dough, along with a boost of yeast. These rolls are fantastic fresh, but can also be frozen and heated up later for a delicious side dish. This recipe is halved and otherwise modified from a New York Times Cooking recipe.
    Course: Bread
    Cuisine: American
    Keyword: alcohol, beer, cheese, yeast bread
    Servings: 12 rolls
    Author: Beth Cato

    Equipment

    • 2 8-or 9-inch cake pans
    • 2.5-inch round cutter
    • plastic wrap
    • basting brush

    Ingredients

    • 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter divided
    • 3 cups all-purpose flour or bread flour
    • 1/2 Tablespoons instant yeast
    • 1 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
    • 2 Tablespoons honey
    • 1 cup beer room temperature
    • 1 cup shredded cheese 120 grams

    Instructions

    • Divide the two tablespoons of butter in half, separating them to soften at room temperature.
    • In a stand mixer with a bread hook attachment, stir together the flour, yeast, and salt. Follow up with 1 tablespoon of softened butter, honey, and beer. Mix on low speed for 4 minutes, scraping the bowl as needed. Increase the speed to medium for another 2 minutes, pulling the dough from the hook a few times. Add about half the cheese, reserving the rest to go on top later. Mix the cheese until it's distributed through the dough.
    • Lightly grease a large bowl. Transfer the dough there and cover with plastic wrap or a towel to let it rise until it's about doubled in size, about an hour.
    • Grease the two cake pans. Prepare a lightly floured surface and tip the dough onto it. Pat the dough out into a thick, even layer. Use the cutter to slice out rolls. Place them not quite touching in the pans. Reform scraps as much as possible to shape into more rolls. The rolls likely won't quite fill both pans.
    • Cover pans with plastic wrap and set in a warm place to rise again for 35 to 45 minutes. They may not increase a lot in size, but they should look puffy.
    • Preheat oven at 400-degrees.
    • Pull out remaining pat of butter and cheese. Brush the soft butter over the rolls, and follow up with a sprinkling of cheese. Try to keep the cheese from touching the edge of the pan, where it could burn.
    • Place both pans in the oven and bake until the rolls are browned and cheese is melted, 15 to 20 minutes. A digital thermometer in a center roll should read 190-degrees at minimum.
    • Let cool for at least 10 minutes before (carefully) pulling apart and serving.
    • Rolls can keep in a sealed bag at room temperature for up to 2 days. They can also be frozen and thawed for later enjoyment. They taste best hot. For best results, wrap them in foil and bake at 400 for about 10 minutes to warm them through.

    OM NOM NOM!

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      Bready or Not Original: Apple Calvados Galette

      Posted by on Nov 4, 2020 in alcohol, apples, Blog, boozy, Bready or Not, breakfast, French, pie | Comments Off on Bready or Not Original: Apple Calvados Galette

      This Apple Calvados Galette is a perfect dessert for one or two people. Plus, it’s rustic and pretty to behold!

      Bready or Not Original: Apple Calvados Galette

      Calvados is an apple brandy made in Normandy. The price point of it can vary quite a bit. Feel free to use another kind of apple brandy in the recipe.

      Bready or Not Original: Apple Calvados Galette

      The delicious, original aspect of this treat is that you use the calvados to make a quick stovetop jelly that you then coat the apples with at the end of the bake time.

      Bready or Not Original: Apple Calvados Galette

      The alcohol flavor doesn’t linger. What you get is a concentrated sweet flavor of apples, right atop the fresh apples.

      or Not Original: Apple Calvados Galette

      The baked galette keeps for days wrapped up in foil in the fridge. A quarter slice is the perfect amount for breakfast or dessert, and it’s not anywhere near as bready and dense as a full piece of pie.

      Bready or Not Original: Apple Calvados Galette

      This Apple Calvados Galette evokes the yummy goodness of apple pie, but in a more rustic, simple form. This is the perfect dessert for one or two people! If French calvados isn’t available, use another apple brandy.
      Course: Breakfast, Dessert, Snack
      Cuisine: French
      Keyword: alcohol, apple, pie
      Author: Beth Cato

      Equipment

      • baking sheet
      • parchment paper
      • basting brush

      Ingredients

      Galette

      • 1 single-layer pie dough store-bought or homemade
      • 4 medium apples such as Gala, Fuji, and Ambrosia
      • 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
      • 1/3 cup calvados or other apple brandy
      • 1 Tablespoon cornstarch
      • 3 Tablespoons brown sugar packed
      • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

      Glaze

      • 1 Tablespoon pure maple syrup
      • 1 Tablespoon maple sugar or turbinado sugar

      Instructions

      • Preheat oven at 400-degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
      • On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pie crust to about a 10-inch diameter circle. Transfer it to the baking sheet and set in fridge while the other ingredients are prepared.
      • Peel, core, and thinly slice the apples, placing them in a large bowl. Pour in the lemon juice, calvados, cornstarch, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Toss the apples to coat them completely.
      • Pull out the chilled crust. Begin to arrange apple slices in the middle, fanning them out and stacking them, but leaving a 2-inch border of dough around the outside. DO NOT DISCARD THE LIQUID IN THE BOWL! Once the apples are arranged, fold the dough over to partially cover the apples.
      • Start baking the galette for 15 minutes. While that is cooking, pour the leftover liquid into a small pot on medium-high. Stay close to the stove and stir liquid often. As soon as it gels, which is right at right about boiling temperature, remove it from heat. Set aside.
      • Reduce oven temperature to 350-degrees. Bake galette for another 20 minutes.
      • Pull out the galette. Drizzle the gel over the exposed apples in the middle of the galette then use basting brush to coat every nook and cranny. Measure out maple syrup. Use same brush (no need to wash it) to coat the top crust, then sprinkle maple sugar or coarse sugar over it to add a crystalline crunch.
      • Bake for another 10 to 15 minutes, until apples in middle are fork-tender.
      • Let cool slightly before cutting–a pizza cutter is ideal. Leftovers can be kept wrapped up in foil in the fridge for days.

      *OM NOM NOM!*

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        It’s fruitcake-making time!

        Posted by on Sep 16, 2019 in alcohol, Blog, boozy, Bready or Not, cake | Comments Off on It’s fruitcake-making time!

        Bready or Not Original: Mini Fruitcake Loaves

        Yes, the subject line is serious, because YES, fruitcake can be delicious–especially if you make it yourself and control the whole process! Follow my Mini Fruitcake Loaves recipe and you’ll see what I mean. Bake these babies now and you’ll have plenty of time to ripen them (that means brushing them down with a simple sugar mix once a week to soak in flavor) in time for holiday festivities.

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        Bready or Not Original: Iron-Skillet Apple Pie with Ginger Liqueur

        Posted by on Aug 21, 2019 in alcohol, apples, Blog, boozy, Bready or Not, pie | Comments Off on Bready or Not Original: Iron-Skillet Apple Pie with Ginger Liqueur

        A trusty cast iron skillet bakes up a beautiful apple pie in this delicious recipe.

        Bready or Not Original: Iron-Skillet Apple Pie with Ginger Liqueur

        This pie is also special because it includes a drizzle of ginger liqueur. I posted a recipe a few weeks ago on how to make a cheap, sublime version at home in under a week.

        Bready or Not Original: Iron-Skillet Apple Pie with Ginger Liqueur

        The ginger liqueur does add some lovely nuance to this pie, too–the complexity and freshness come across in a different way than, say, using some lemon juice on the sliced apples as I sometimes do to prevent them from browning.

        Bready or Not Original: Iron-Skillet Apple Pie with Ginger Liqueur

        The whole process of this recipe is pretty neat, too. The biggest dose of sweetness is actually at the bottom of the pie, as butter and brown sugar are baked into the bottom crust!

        Bready or Not Original: Iron-Skillet Apple Pie with Ginger Liqueur

        I had to make this recipe three times to finally figure out the right balance of ingredients and how best to bake it. The second try was the most disastrous, as I ended up with the dreaded soggy bottom.

        soggy bottom

        Do be sure to follow the advice to use a rimmed cookie sheet in the oven. It’ll catch the overflow from the skillet and save you from suffering a soggy bottom.

        Bready or Not Original: Iron-Skillet Apple Pie with Ginger Liqueur

         

        Click here for my Homemade Ginger Liqueur Recipe

         

        Bready or Not Original: Iron-Skillet Apple Pie with Ginger Liqueur

        Use a large iron skillet to bake up a delicious apple pie! Ginger liqueur adds complex flavor and elevates this beyond the average pie.
        Course: Dessert
        Keyword: alcohol, apple, pie
        Author: Beth Cato

        Ingredients

        Skillet base:

        • 1/4 cup unsalted butter half cube
        • 1/2 cup brown sugar packed

        Pie:

        • 2 prepared rounds of piecrust dough bought or made
        • 1/4 cup white sugar
        • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
        • 2 teaspoons flour
        • 5 Granny Smith and/or Honeycrisp apples peeled, cored, and sliced
        • 1/4 cup ginger liqueur

        For top:

        • 1 egg slightly beaten with 1 teaspoon water, for egg wash

        Instructions

        • Preheat oven at 350-degrees with a large rimmed cookie sheet in the oven. [THIS IS IMPORTANT. The skillet will likely overflow as it bakes and the hot cookie sheet will also reduce the likelihood of a soggy pie bottom.] Add butter to skillet and place in oven until butter is melted. Remove skillet; stir in brown sugar, then return to oven until sugar starts bubbling, about 10 to 15 more minutes.
        • In the meantime, in a small bowl combine the white sugar, cinnamon, and flour. Set aside.
        • Roll out one of the pie crusts, if not already done. Carefully lay crust inside hot skillet so that bottom and sides are covered. Pour apple slices inside. Drizzle liqueur over the apples, followed by the dry ingredients.
        • Roll out second pie crust. Lay atop the mounded pie. Wary of the hot pan, tuck the crusts together as much as possible. Cut several slits in the top of the pie.
        • Brush egg wash over the top crust. Set pie on top of hot cookie sheet in oven.
        • Bake until pie is golden brown and apples are tender when jabbed with a fork, about 45 to 50 minutes.
        • Let cool at least 30 minutes before cutting. Store covered with foil, at room temperature or in fridge.
        • OM NOM NOM!

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        Bready or Not Original: Homemade Ginger Liqueur

        Posted by on Jul 31, 2019 in alcohol, Blog, boozy, Bready or Not | 2 comments

        Make ginger liqueur at home in a matter of days, and save a lot of money over buying the store stuff!

        Bready or Not: Homemade Ginger Liqueur

        I’m frugal. I wanted to try an apple pie recipe that called for ginger liqueur, so I priced it. Um, no way was I paying for a $40 bottle when I needed just a smidge.

        Therefore, I utilized the powers of the internet to find a way to make my own ginger liqueur. I ended up combining a couple recipes, and to great result. I used Kirkland brand vodka, from Costco, which made this even more of a bargain.

        Bready or Not: Homemade Ginger Liqueur

        The result of the infusion is sublime. Citrus hits the palate first, followed by the ginger, leaving the mouth tasting fruity, zesty, and refreshed.

        Use this ginger liqueur in baking (that apple pie recipe will be up in a few weeks!), drink it straight, or mix it into cocktails. It’ll be delicious no matter how you drink it, and–thanks to the vodka–it will keep indefinitely.

        Bready or Not: Homemade Ginger Liqueur

         

        Bready or Not Original: Homemade Ginger Liqueur

        Make your own ginger liqueur and save a lot of money! Using store brand vodka from a place like Costco makes this an even better bargain. Use clean jars and lids, but you needn't sanitize as rigorously as when making homemade jams or jellies. Vodka itself is a sanitizing agent.
        Course: Drinks
        Keyword: alcohol
        Author: Beth Cato

        Ingredients

        • 4 ounces ginger root peeled and diced
        • 1/2 cup caster sugar
        • 1 vanilla bean halved
        • 16 fluid ounces vodka
        • orange zested

        Instructions

        • Combine all ingredients in a large jar or bottle with a good lid. Shake to mix. Let steep for 2 days, shaking the jar a few times a day.
        • Strain out the solids using a coffee filter or cheesecloth. Rebottle it and let it sit a day or two more to mellow before using it.
        • Store sealed. Drink straight, use in mixed drinks, or in recipes. Should keep indefinitely.
        • OM NOM NOM!

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