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Garlic Cheddar Beer Bread

So, getting rid of my leavening for the Days of Unleavened Bread is generally a very easy thing.  I get rid of my baking powder, baking soda, and yeast, and that’s pretty much all she wrote.  But this year at the last minute I found a brand-new bag of self-rising flour hiding under a pile of dry goods.

Garlic Cheddar Beer Bread done

Yes, I could have just thrown it away (it’s like $2), but that felt weird, so I looked up recipes that would use it in large quantities.  I saw several crazy easy recipes for beer bread, and was instantly sold.

Garlic Cheddar Beer Bread slice

It’s beer, sugar, and self-rising flour.  It literally doesn’t get easier than that.  I added garlic, parsley, and cheddar because—duh.

Garlic Cheddar Beer Bread

Throw some melted butter on the top in the last few minutes of cooking, and you have a yeasty, cheesy, moist, dense treat. [Read more…]

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14 of My Favorite Thanksgiving Recipes

Thanksgiving is a BIG deal in my family.  I always fly home a day or two before, and stay through the weekend.  I have a big extended family, so my mom and sisters and I (and my aunts) spend the day before baking, cooking, and prepping.  The morning of Thanksgiving is always insane—my mom’s up super early with the turkey, then leaves around 10:30 to get down to my grandma’s.  I get up a little later, go for a run, finish up all the remaining dishes, and head down around noon.

We eat a huge lunch, then graze all afternoon and have leftovers for dinner.  We play football, watch football, play cards, and talk.  Chase the kids around.  We also usually get together Friday night, Saturday night, and Sunday morning for brunch.  It is a LOT of cooking all weekend.

When you’re cooking for a big crowd (anywhere from 25 to 50 in past years; usually around 25-30 these days), there are some realities in the kinds of dishes that make sense.  Anything super time-intensive that doesn’t yield many servings is automatically out.  So these are some of my favorite dishes that I’ve contributed.  There’s no turkey or main dish here, because we always make a couple simple turkeys or turkey breasts.  Nothing fancy, because it’s all about the sides, breads, and desserts.  Hope you enjoy and everyone has a safe, happy (American) Thanksgiving with family and friends!

14 Favorite Thanksgiving Recipes [Read more…]

Crusty French Baguettes in 30 Minutes

You know those times when you realize that you’re having a bunch of people over and that you forgot to figure out a bread? But you’re like an hour from dinner and pretty much everything would take way too long?

30-Minute Crusty Baguettes

(yeah, me neither)

30-Minute Crusty Baguettes with Homemade Butter

Lucky for me, I’ve found a couple of pretty quick bread recipes that are pretty quick (and aren’t just biscuits). I have this 1-hour focaccia bread and a 1-hour french bread, but this goes even further. You can have this thing done start to finish in about a half hour (give or take a few minutes depending on how long it takes to bake). And the flavor is AMAZING!

30-minute crusty baguette dough wine

This is a key part of bread making…

30-Minute Crusty Baguette

Bread is a non-negotiable part of meals for my mom, so super happy to have another great recipe in the arsenal. [Read more…]

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