Sunday, November 27, 2011

Fage Honey Vanilla Panna Cotta

As I've posted before, I love Fage Greek Yogurt. So when Foodbuzz asked if I'd be interested in featuring it in some recipes, I didn't hesitate. (Here's another of my posts featuring Fage Yogurt.)

One of the things I eat at least twice a week is the Fage Yogurt and Honey. I love how the honey is in a separate compartment, so you can decide how much honey you want with each bite of delicious, thick and tangy yogurt.

So I used that combination to inspire a new recipe. Instead of buttermilk based Panna Cotta, I decided to substitute plain Fage yogurt for the buttermilk, and add honey to bottom of a glass with the panna cotta on top.

This dish was delicious. Just slightly sweet but with that delicious tang remaining. Give it a try, I bet you like it.

Ingredients and Method:

1 envelope gelatin
2 tablespoons warm water
1 1/2 cups whipping cream
2 small containers plain Fage Yogurt
1/2 cup sugar
1 vanilla bean, split and scraped of seeds
ground nutmeg for garnish

For the Panna Cotta, combine sugar, vanilla, yogurt and heavy cream in a saucepan over
medium heat and bring to a boil, immediately then turning off the heat.

Allow the gelatin to soften in 1/4 cup water and then add to the heavy cream mixture
and stir well.

I usually give a quick run through my handheld mixer to ensure everything is blended well.

Take 6 to 8 ramekins and pour one to two tablespoons of honey into the bottom of each.

Allow the panna cotta to cool for at least 45 minutes.

Slowly pour the panna cotta on top of the honey in each ramekin and sprinkle with nutmeg and allow to cool and set up in the refrigerator. Serve immediately.


“As a selected blogger, I have been entered for the chance to win a trip to Greece courtesy of FAGE. You too can enter to win one of three trips to Greece by entering the FAGE Plain Extraordinary Greek Getaway here:”

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Home Made Bagels

I love Bagels. Haven't eaten them much until about 8 years ago or so. And I tend now to be on a steady
breakfast regimen of a bagel, and a bit of cream cheese, and occasionally, jelly also.

 I'm not an exotic bagel person. The Jalapeno/Asiago/Cheddar/Bacon Bagel is not my choice. Nor is even the Garlic Bagel.... Who want's garlic bagel breath first thing in the morning?

And frankly, I'm still pissed that Starbucks cancelled their Hawaiian Bagel.... I loved those things. About twice a week for the seven years I worked for Starbucks, it was walk in the lobby, order a Hawaiian Bagel, one cream cheese, not toasted.....  and go to work and savor that bagel, with my hand made choice of morning beverage.

Anyway, working in a new location now, I went to Panera Bread the other morning and ordered a plain bagle. Absolutely delicious. One of the best bagels I've ever had.

That spurred me to make my own. Mine came out nothing like Panera's Bread but they are awfully darn
good, and SO easy to make. I'm pretty sure I'll be making my own bagels from now on.

Give them a try. Adapted from Sophisticated Gourmet.

Directions and Method:

2 tablespoons sugar
2 pkgs active dry yeast
1 1/2 cups warm water
3 3/4 cups bread flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 egg white and 1 tablespoon water, blended

In a mixer bowl mix yeast and sugar. Stir in warm water. (You want very warm, but not hot)

Let mixture sit for 15 minutes. It should foam up nicely. If it does, it means the yeast is active and the
dough will rise just fine.

Add 3 cups flour, sprinkle salt over the top of the flour, and mix thoroughly.  Add flour in 1/4 increments
until you have a barely stiff, dough ball.

Grease a bowl, and place the mixed dough ball in it, cover with plastic and place in a warm place to let rise
for one hour. (I preheat my oven at 200 degrees for 10 minutes)

Scrape the dough onto a floured board.   Punch down, and let rest. It's important to let bagel dough rest
because you don't want a tough dough, ya know?   Let rest for twenty minutes.....  Roll up into a ball, knead 5 or 6 times, and with a floured rolling pin, roll it out into a small rectangle.  Cut the dough into 8 roughly even squares. Doesn't matter how equal they are, one of the beautiful things about homemade breads, I think, is the individuality, of the finished project.

Now, take a square or rectangle, however you've cut it, and roll into a ball by tucking the corners underneath to the bottom of the dough and pressing in firmly. Do it a few times, and then when it's ball shaped, flatten with your hand on board, and from the bottom, press up your index finger through the
middle of the dough ball until there's a hole.  then spread the dough apart to make the hole as large as
you want.

Let rise for 10 minutes....  meanwhile, heat a large saucepan with water and 2 tablespoons sugar....
When water is at a rolling boil, turn down slightly, and gently add two bagels at a time into the water.

Boil for 1 minute on one side and 1 minute on the other, and immediately remove from water and place on slightly oiled baking sheet.

At this point I brush the bagels with one egg white and one tablespoon water combined, and then you can add toppings, sesame, poppy, cheese or whatever, as I've already said, I'm kinda a plain bagel guy.

Let them all rest for another 20 minutes.... and then, pop them into a 400 degree oven for 20 minutes, if not golden brown, give them a few minutes more... watch them carefully is what I'm saying.... My first batch actually took 35 minutes, so there ya go.

Remove from oven, cool slightly, slice one open, smear with cream cheese and jelly, after toasting of course, if you want, and Enjoy!