Monday, January 18, 2010

Garlic and Rosemary Focaccia Bread

AMAZING, easy bread adapted from This took about 3 1/2 hours from start to finish, though it was delayed thanks to our carbon monoxide alarm going off in the middle of the rising process, which resulted in a visit from some very friendly Cambridge firefighters who brought a little gadget that looked kind of like the one from Ghostbusters . . . except it tested for carbon monoxide, not ghosts. Luckily, our apartment has neither.

9 large garlic cloves, sliced thinly
1/2 cup olive oil
3 (1/4-oz) packages active dry yeast
2 1/4 cups warm water (95°F-105°F)
7 cups all-purpose or bread flour
1 tablespoon table salt
1 tablespoon coarsely chopped fresh rosemary
Coarse salt for sprinkling
Freshly ground black pepper for sprinkling

Combine 6 of the sliced garlic cloves and oil in a pan and cook on VERY low heat for about 10 minutes, until garlic is softened and becomes sweet and fragrant. (You could also roast the garlic whole in the same amount of oil if you have time). Remove the garlic slices from the oil and use them for something else (we ate them by themselves -- yum!).

In a large bowl, whisk together yeast and warm water and let stand about 5 minutes, until it looks slightly creamy. Stir 1/3 cup garlic oil into yeast mixture.

In another bowl, whisk together the flour and table salt. Stir half of flour into yeast mixture, until combined. Add the rest of the flour, mixing with hands when necessary. Knead the dough in the bowl for 5 minutes, or until it's soft and slightly sticky. (Note: I needed to add a little bit more warm water in order to get the right consistency, but none of the other reviewers on epicurious seemed to have this problem). Transfer dough to a large oiled bowl, turning with floured hands to coat with oil. Cover bowl with a wet towel and let dough rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour. I usually turn on the oven, let it heat for a minute or two, then turn in off and place the bowl in there so it has a nice warm place to rise.

Oil a 17- by 11-inch baking pan with some of the garlic oil. Gently press dough into pan, allowing dough to rest 5 minutes if difficult to work with. Cover the pan with the cloth and let rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk, about 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Make indentations in dough at 1-inch intervals with oiled fingertips. Drizzle with remaining garlic oil, and press the remaining thinly sliced garlic in the indentations (make sure each slice has some oil on it, so the slices will roast while the bread is baking). Sprinkle the bread with rosemary, coarse salt, and pepper. Bake in lower third of oven until deep golden on top and pale golden on bottom, 25 to 30 minutes. Transfer bread to a rack and serve warm or at room temperature.

We used the bread to make sandwiches with goat cheese, broiled tomatoes, and sauteed portobellas -- yum!!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Spicy Jamaican Jerk Tempeh

This was adapted from the International Vegetarian Union (, which adapted it from Vegetarian Times . . . yes, a long list of adaptations, from which has come a sweet, spicy, and delicious dish. Matt describes it as "Christmas-y" thanks to the lovely combination of allspice, ginger, nutmeg, and cinnamon :). The list of ingredients is long, but it comes together very quickly with the help of a blender!

3 large cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup minced fresh ginger
1/3 cup sliced scallions (I used both white and green parts)
1/2 tsp cayenne (less if you don't want it to be quite so spicy)
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp allspice
2 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground nutmeg
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbs lemon juice
3/4 cup fruit juice - I used a juice that was a combination of apple, orange, and pineapple. You could also use apricot, peach, or mango juice.
2 tbsp maple syrup
2 8 oz packages tempeh, cut into triangles

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Prepare marinade by dumping all ingredients (except tempeh) into a blender. Press "on." Now you're done! (Alternately, if you don't have a blender, you could just whisk all the ingredients together).

Brush a pan with olive oil; place the tempeh inside (it doesn't necessarily have to be in one layer). Pour the marinade over the tempeh and turn to coat. Bake for about 30 minutes, until browned and bubbly. Yum!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Blackout Tempeh

. . . so named because we managed to blow a fuse as this was cooking, and had to finish glazing the tempeh by a combination of candle and flashlight. This yummy sweet-and-savory dish is adapted from

for marinade:
4 tablespoons soy sauce
4 tablespoons maple syrup
1 1/2 teaspoons rice vinegar
2 cloves garlic, peeled, crushed and chopped
1/2 teaspoon cayenne

8 ounces tempeh
2 portobello mushrooms, sliced and sauteed in a little olive oil until soft
2 1/2 cups cooked quinoa or brown rice
a handful of blanched green beans

Combine ingredients for marinade in a small bowl.

Slice tempeh into small triangles. Lay the pieces flat in a dish and pour the marinade over it; let it sit for at least half an hour. Heat a small amount of canola oil in a pan; add the tempeh and saute for a few minutes on each side until browned. Then, pour the remaining marinade in the pan and cook for a few minutes, shaking the pan so the tempeh gets a lovely glaze.

Serve the tempeh over the rice/quinoa, mushrooms, and green beans.