Sunday, November 18, 2012

purple potato knish

Things are just so much more fun in color, aren't they?

You know what else is so much more fun? NATURAL LIGHT! See all that beautiful, non-artificial lighting? It makes my heart happy.

I found this recipe on one of my new favorite blogs, Smitten Kitchen. If you haven't been there, seriously. Go. Like, now. I pretty much want to make all the things (and made maybe four recipes of hers this week already? I've lost count). I started following Deb when a good friend of mine alerted me to the fact that she would be in town for a book signing for her first cookbook (Deb, not my friend. My friend doesn't write books). We braved the crowds (seriously, the place was packed) and left with signed copies of the Smitten Kitchen Cookbook! I'm so special.

These knish were the first recipe of Deb's I made, and they turned out really well! The butter-sauteed onions lend a nice flavor to the potato filling (I mean, what doesn't taste better with butter?), and the crust holds everything together really well, without being too heavy. The best part? This recipe was easy

Ok, the best part may be that the main ingredient is potato. Because we all know how I feel about potatoes...

(Purple) Potato Knish (makes 10 medium or 6 large) slightly adapted from Smitten Kitchen

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1/2 cup water
1 egg yolk plus 1 teaspoon water for finishing

1 1/2 pounds potatoes (russet is classic, I used baby purple), peeled and quartered
1 small yellow onion, minced
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 tablespoon butter
salt and pepper, to taste

Prepare the dough: Stir together dry ingredients in a medium bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together wet ingredients, and then pour over the dry ingredients. Mix everything (I used my hands) until the dough just comes together. Knead the dough until it's a smooth ball, and set aside for at least an hour (up to 3 days in the refrigerator). 

While the dough is resting: Bring a pot of salted water to boil and cook potatoes until they are fork-tender, 15-20 minutes. You can cook the potatoes into the water whole, but they'll take longer to cook. While the potatoes are cooking, melt butter in a pan with the oil, and saute onions until soft and slightly browned, about 10 minutes. Once the potatoes and onions are cooked, mash them together in a bowl. 

Preheat your oven to 375*. Once the dough is ready, cut it into two pieces. Roll each half into squares about 1 foot. Arrange potato filling in a log about 2" round towards the end of the square, lining the potato up with the end of the dough. Roll the dough/potato twice, and trim off any extra dough leftover. Make indentations in the log depending on how large you want your knish - I made 5 knish per log, so indentations were about 1.5" to 2" apart. Twist the log apart at each indentation, and pinch one side of each piece shut once broken off. Flatten each piece a little so it's round but flat on the bottom, and the top is slightly open (see the finished product above). Arrange your knish on a baking sheet (I lined mine with parchment paper), and brush with the egg yolk/water mix to help them brown while baking. Bake 35-45 minutes, until the knish are nice and golden. 

If you want to enjoy that wonderful sense that is taste, let those knish sit for a bit before digging in! They will hold a super ton of heat from the oven, and I guarantee you will burn your mouth if you try to eat one immediately. 

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

tuesday reviewsday: trader joe's french onion soup

Tuesday Reviewsday is a review series, if you can call it that, that I like to write well, whenever I feel I have something worth sharing. As long as it's Tuesday. As far as I know, no one is paying me or persuading me to write these reviews. If you're trying to pay me, please let me know. I accept payment in free food and cookbooks. 


When we first moved to our new apartment, I was in need of food that would be quick and easy to prepare until we had a) time to do a proper grocery trip, b) space to store all the spoils from said trip, and 3) everything unpacked so we could actually cook.

Since we now live around the corner (!!!) from our local Trader Joe's, and I know they have a fantastic reputation for their prepared/frozen items, I figured I'd pick up a few odds and ends to stock the freezer. One of the first things that caught my eye was their frozen French onion soup, which sounded like a fabulous dinner for that night.

Of course, that was before I opened the box and realized that this soup was literally a frozen block of soup wrapped in plastic. Even if I had a dish to cook the soup in, I had no idea where to even begin looking. Box number 3? Box number 15392310? Sadly, the soup had to wait.

Finally, we found the perfect dishes (Le Creuset mini cocottes FTW!) and tried the soup. It was actually pretty good! Obviously it's no authentic French restaurant schmancy onion soup, but for a freezer dinner, and clocking in at just 210 calories for a serving, I was pretty happy. The only downside is that it took about an hour to prepare, between preheating the oven and baking (40 minute bake time!), but in TJ's defense it is microwaveable and we just don't have a microwave.

I would definitely recommend this soup! And maybe serve it with some roasted potatoes. Because everything is better with potatoes!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

blt pizza


cooked, crispy bacon

lettuce (a little mayo or ranch, if you please)

chopped tomatoes (under the cheese)

Bake 10-12 minutes at 400F.

Do this, like now.