- Drain the chickpeas and reserve the liquid in a bowl. Put the chickpeas and garlic into a food processor and blend until coarsely ground. Scrape down the sides/redistribute as needed.
- While the food processor is running, pour in the lemon juice and 2 tbsp of the chickpea liquid. Scrape down the sides/redistribute as needed.
- While the food processor is running, add the tahini. Scrape down the sides/redistribute as needed.
- While the food processor is running, add the spices and salt. Continue to add the chickpea liquid one tablespoon at a time until you achieve the consistency you want.
Hummus, I'm beginning to think in my vast inexperience, seems to be rather like stone soup - you pretty much put whatever you want into a chickpea paste base "to taste" (there's probably hordes waiting in the wings to burn me for that comment). But after visiting half a dozen pages on the merits of texture vs silkiness, Greek tahini vs Arabic tahini, whether olive oil belongs in the hummus before or after, etc I'm pretty much just tossing whatever is nearby in until I'm willing to lick the spoon (or my finger) clean.
Much like the Post-Thanksgiving Scraps Turkey Shepherd's Pie, pretty much this is just to give some general guidelines and you can just go nuts with what you actually throw in. I know, I know, baking and bakers are all about precision, but this once, let your inner child loose and put as much of your favorite stuff in as you want. This is just to give you an idea of the possibilities.
This is the Frankenstein of all frankenstein mash-ups, and was born literally out of the seemingly incompatible states of being both restless and lazy at the same time. This took up the last of the Thanksgiving scraps, and though it initially was supposed to include marinara sauce and some crescent roll sheets on top, when I discovered the marinara sauce had gone bad, it was an abrupt appeal to some garlic herb butter and an egg to make it a sort of reverse shepherd's pie instead of the original pizza pot pie I had imagined. And it turned out AMAZING.
Yes, I did not include a whole lot of concrete portions, but that's the beauty of using leftovers. Everything's already been cooked and don't really need extra fussing with, and you're totally free to put more or less of anything according to taste (or what you want to get rid of).
I first got the serving idea on one of the food sites (I forget which one, maybe Epicurious), but cobbled together the dip recipe from research spread over half a dozen other sites. In fact, I was so casual with throwing in a bit of this, a dash of that, and adjusting things to taste that I honestly don't know if the ingredient amounts below are anywhere close to accurate. But I think that pretty much exemplifies dip recipes - pretty much anything goes, and you can experiment and never make it the same way twice, but it will all be delicious; just in different ways.
My family has traditionally not had much turkey during Thanksgiving, because the one or two times that we attempted to make our own bird had ended in hilariously disastrous results through various shenanigans that had nothing to do with the recipe or the ability to follow it. However, I was throwing a pre-Thanksgiving Friendsgiving potluck for which I vaguely didn't want to make solely dessert dishes for, and in the eleventh hour, this landed in my inbox from MyRecipes.com. So I thought I'd give it a try, because in theory, the slow cooker should trap most of the moisture in with far less danger of over-cooking. And lo and behold, it passed even my father's notoriously high bar for turkey!
I've always loved stuffed squash blossoms - I order them every chance I get, which is usually far and few between - but never seriously considered making them myself until I was wandering through a farmer's market and lo and behold, apparently it is blossom season because every other stand seemed to have bunches of them for sale. With such an opportunity literally at my fingertips, I immediately looked up some baked-versions of the recipe to see if it was something I could do on short notice.
As with most cooking, the filling is really up to a person's taste, and so I threw together a mish-mash of my favorite flavors. It's somewhat of a novelty to be able to taste-test before baking - I kept forgetting that I didn't have to guesstimate what to put in, I could immediately test whether the flavor's just right.
This recipe is from the now-sadly closed Cypress B&B in Florida. A beautiful little cottage in a beautiful area, the hosts were gracious enough to give me their recipes for some of their most popular breakfast items, including the delicious glazed mango pecan muffins.
While this is called "The Puff", I liken it most to a crust-less quiche, and due to all the varieties of cheeses, stays fabulously moist in the center instead of becoming all baked-out egg. And due to the large quantity, is a great way to just get a bunch of breakfasts out of the way if you're looking forward to a busy week!
Also, I really, really hate soggy over-cooked veggies in my quiches. I've discovered that for certain veggies such as asparagus and cauliflower, what works great is the ice-bath after a blanching, which stops the cooking process in its tracks. I try to boil them to JUST the point before they're just-right, and then when they're in the oven, they take that last step so that there's still a little crunch left to the asparagus and the cauliflower isn't just mush when the quiche is done. Mushrooms I sometimes don't bother cooking at all - the oven takes care of them well enough.
Found via a Tasting Table article, I couldn't stop thinking about this for a whole two months. I had never felt even the slightest urge to make my own pizzas, but how could I resist trying something so insanely simple, like the ice cream bread?
This amazingly worked (just like the ice cream bread). While it didn't exactly taste the same as the usual pizza dough, it did crisp like one and even had the same blooms of crisping patterns on its bottom. So, A+ for consistency, even if the taste needs a little work - but then, for just two ingredients, who am I to complain?
This also taught me that pizza is kind of like the Italian equivalent of fried rice - I was so enamored with the idea of making my own pizza dough that I totally forgot to get everything else that goes on top, and basically just scrounged up whatever leftovers I could find in the fridge to throw on top.
Part of the reason I started baking was because I like my goodies to be less obviously sweet - I want to taste the flavor, not just the sugar. So most of these recipes will have the sugar dialed down, and I avoid anything that uses corn syrup like the plague.