Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Pizza Spirals for a great Back to School Lunch

It's always difficult to trade in those beach chairs and coolers for backpacks and lunch bags, but somehow September is upon us again and the kids are heading back to school.  As days get busier and time more valuable planning ahead is key.  Although we all love a good PB and J sandwich, surprise your children with a fun lunch in their lunch box such as these Pizza Spirals!

Pizza Spirals
Makes approximately 3 dozen spirals



Ingredients

Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Make pizza dough according to box instructions.  Split evenly into two balls of dough.
  3. Roll one ball of dough out on a generously floured surface into an 8x12-inch rectangle
  4. Spread a thin layer of pizza sauce over dough.  Top with one half of the cheese and one half of the basil.  Roll dough into a spiraled log starting at the longest side.  Press and seal firmly.  Cut into 1/2-inch thick rounds.

5. Lightly grease a 12-well muffin tin with olive oil.  Place one spiral in each well. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the pizza dough is golden brown.



6. Repeat procedure with other pizza dough ball.
7. Pizza spirals can be served warm or room temperature.


Tips:
  • If the cheese is too soft to grate place it in the freezer for about 15-30 minutes.  The partially frozen cheese will be easier to grate.
  • Stack the basil leaves on top of each other and roll them up starting with the longer side of the leaf.  Chop along the roll forming thin strips of basil leaves.
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For more of our favorite Back to School recipes and products, visit our Back to School Pinterest Board!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Add a little spice to your cooking with fresh Ginger Root

Whether adding it to soups, sauces, stir fry or baked goods, fresh ginger is one of my favorite fresh spices to incorporate into my recipes!  Ginger root is the knobby and bumpy rhizome of a plant that grows in tropical and subtropical regions.  Its botanical name is Zinzibar officinale.  Most Ginger comes from Jamaica, India, Africa and China.  The flavor is peppery and slightly sweet and has a wonderful spicy and pungent aroma.



Ginger is available year round.  Spring ginger, also called young ginger, has a pale, thin skin that does not have to be peeled before using it.  Mature finger has a thick rough skin that should be peeled before using it.  Mature ginger is hotter and more fibrous than young ginger.  The flesh can be yellow, white or red depending on the variety.
 
When purchasing ginger root:
Look for smooth skin (wrinkles indicate that the root is dry and past its prime) with a fresh, spicy aroma.  The tubers should be firm and feel heavy.

Storing Ginger root:
Tightly wrap ginger in plastic wrap. This can be refrigerated for up to 3 weeks or frozen for up to 6 months.  You can also make candied ginger by cooking sliced ginger in a simply syrup until soft and then rolling the ginger in granulated sugar after it has cooled.  This is delicious to eat on its own or added to baked goods such as gingerbread or ginger cookies.  One of my favorite ginger cookie recipes calls for a combination of ground ginger, grated ginger and candied ginger...yum!

Tips:
  • Use a spoon to peel the skin off gingerroot.  A peeler works well, but by scraping the tip of a spoon down the sides of the gingerroot it is easier to get the skin off around the knobs of the root.
  • Use a microplane to grate the ginger.  It is much easier than mincing the root with a knife.  The stringy part of the ginger is removed and the fine grated ginger disperses nicely into your recipe.
  • Sliced ginger rounds are a wonderful way to flavor oil before sauteing or a flavorful addition to soup broth.  For just a hint of ginger, remove ginger rounds before serving.

Love Ginger?  Try some of our ginger-y favorites!

Friday, August 9, 2013

Foodie Getaway Giveaway - Win a free trip to Maine!

Have you always wanted to come to Maine?  Or maybe come back for a visit?  Now is your chance!  We are giving away a foodie getaway - complete with travel accomodations, tickets to Harvest on the Harbor Events, a gift card to shop in our store and more!  To enter to win, visit www.stonewallkitchen.com/sweeps
 

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Baking Tip: Creating a Parchment Paper Sling





Part of my job here at Stonewall Kitchen is preparing food for photographs. As you can imagine, the images we need for packaging or on our website need to look perfect as well as delicious. Here’s a little trick that I use that you may find useful too. When baking brownies, lemon bars, or basically any baked good cooked in a square or rectangular pan, I find that using a parchment sling makes it easier to cut the baked good and keep your pan from getting ruined by cut marks made by the knife.
Equipment needed:
  • Baking pan
  • Nonstick parchment paper (if not nonstick, grease this as well), or foil
  • Bench scraper or knife
  • Cutting board
Instructions:
  1. Grease the pan.
  2. Cut a piece of parchment paper as wide as the pan and long enough to overhang the edges of the pan by 2-inches. Some people like to use two slings placed perpendicular to each other in the pan, but I find one piece works well most often.
  3. Make batter according to recipe instructions. Spread batter in pan without disturbing the parchment.
  4. Bake according to recipe instructions. Cool.
  5. Run knife or bench scraper along edge where the baked good touches the pan to loosen.
  6. Gently remove the baked good out of the pan by holding onto the parchment paper and lifting. Place on a cutting board.
  7. Cut baked good into squares using a knife or bench scraper.

Additional tips-
  • If cutting something like fudge, cheesecake or lemon bars rinse the bench scraper or knife with warm water and dry with a towel several times during the process to assure a clean cut.
  • If your baked good has cooled and is stuck in the pan and will not lift out turn your stove burner on low and run the bottom of the pan over the heat source in a circular motion for 5-10 seconds. Use oven mitts if the pan gets hot. The baked good will warm slightly and should lift out of the pan easily.