I can't believe we are done cooking Tessa Kiros' recipes over at I Heart Cooking Clubs this week! When we started with Tessa, I honestly hadn't even heard of her, so checked out two of her books from the library -- Apples for Jam and Falling Cloudberries, the only two of her books available in our state library database! As soon as those were returned I knew I would enjoy her books so bought them all over the past six months. I think my favorite would have to be Food From Many Greek Kitchens since I've always loved Greek food and didn't know too much about it. I also loved Twelve and Apples for Jam, although all her books are gorgeous.
This simple recipe for White Milk Bread (or rolls) is from Apples for Jam...
White Milk Bread
1 cup warm (comfortable to your fingers) milk
One 1/4 ounce package active dry yeast
1 teaspoon honey
3 and 2/3 cups bread flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg, lightly beaten
3 tablespoons butter, melted
Put the milk, yeast, and honey in a small bowl and stir until the honey melts. Leave it for about 10 minutes, or until it begins to froth a bit. Put the flour and 1/2 teaspoon salt into a larger bowl. Add the yeast mixture, the egg, and butter, and mix through well. Knead 10 minutes or so and, if it seems sticky, just hold the bowl firmly and move the dough around with your hand, rather than adding more flour. Cover the bowl with a cloth and leave in a warm, draft free place to rise for 1 and 1 1/2 to 2 hours until it has puffed up well.
Lightly grease a 12 by 4 inch loaf pan and dust it with flour. Punch down the dough to flatten it and shape it into a rough loaf of a size to fit the pan. Cover with a cloth and leave in the warm place for another 45 to 60 minutes, or until it puffs right up in the pan. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375.
Put the pan in the oven and bake for about 25 minutes, or until the top is firm and crusty and the loaf sounds hollow when tapped. Remove from oven, knock the loaf out of the pan, and cool on a rack in a fly-free zone. This is best sliced warm and spread with butter, but you can keep the loaf for a few days in an airtight container (not a plastic bag) for excellent toast. Makes one large loaf or about 18 small rolls.
Both the bread and soup were delicious. My whole family loved the bread and the leftovers made perfect French toast bread. I was a big fan of the soup. The rest of the family thought it was okay, they are their bowl for Saturday lunch but did not want seconds or left overs. Which means that I ate the left overs for about a week myself, but didn't mind one bit. I had never heard of Fasolada before and when I was looking it up online it was neat to find that it is considered the national soup of Greece, and that it is available in cans there already made! It was nice to use some of my huge bean stockpile and I would make this again but probably a half batch since I was the only real fan.
Since this is the last Tessa Kiros I Heart Cooking Clubs week, I thought I'd share my personal favorite recipes...a lot of these weren't big hits with picky husband or the kids, but I loved them :) Here are my top five in no particular order...
1. Ricotta Gnocchi with Tomato Pesto -- This was my first Tessa recipe, so yummy!
2. Whole Wheat Apple and Pluot Pie -- This was a hit with the kids and I loved using apples we had just picked at the orchard.
3. Winter Squash Pizza Bake -- I was the only one who really liked this but it had such a neat flavor combo that really got me.
4. Greek Almond Halva -- this was another one that only I liked, but it was so yummy, I'm just waiting for an occasion to make another batch!
5. Tuscan Baked Eggplant -- this was so yummy, I wanted to make batch after batch of this one, a must try for eggplant fans!
I had a great time cooking and baking along with the I Heart Cooking Clubs crew and can't wait to start on our next adventure cooking with Rick Bayless :)