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Cinnamon Challah Rolls

A delightful “twist” on already delicious challah! These are made with whole wheat flour to add some extra flavor.

Ingredients:

Bread:
4 c. whole wheat flour
1/2 c. olive oil
1/2 c. honey
1 packet yeast
2 eggs
1 c. warm water
1 tsp. sugar

Filling:
3/4 c. brown sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/3 c. vegetable oil

Add yeast and sugar to warm water and allow to sit for 10 minutes to proof the yeast. In a large bowl, combine flour and salt. In a separate bowl, whisk eggs, honey, and olive oil. Pour all wet ingredients into flour bowl and mix (you may want to use your hands). Knead on a floured surface for about 5 minutes so that the dough is smooth throughout. Let the dough rise in a covered bowl for an hour so that the dough is roughly twice its original size. While it’s rising, combine all filling ingredients. Once risen, split the dough into 12-15 pieces. Roll each one into a rectangle, spread a line of filling on the center (but don’t go too close to the edges or it will leak out) and roll it into a long strand. Gently stretch the piece so that it is long enough to tie into a knot. Fold the ends underneath and place on a baking sheet. Bake on 350 for 15-20 minutes.

Challah

I had to trade my banana chocolate chip muffin recipe for this, but you guys get it for free! It’s a delicious recipe that will keep you wanting more. And remember, the secret is in the braid…

Ingredients:
4-1/4 c. flour
3-1/2 tbsp. sugar (3 for flour mix, 1/2 for yeast)
3 eggs (2 for bread, 1 for egg wash)
2 tbsp. vegetable oil
1 packet (2.5 tsp.) yeast
1 c. warm water

Mix warm water, yeast, and 1/2 tbsp. sugar in a small bowl, and let sit for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, in another small bowl mix eggs and oil. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, and salt. Stir in the yeast mixture and then the egg mixture with a spoon, and then knead on a floured surface for about 10 minutes or until smooth. Place in a bowl and cover for 1.5 hours so that the dough has doubled in size. Punch down the dough and divide into equal pieces (8 pieces if making two 4-stranded braids as I did…. you could also just make one larger loaf). You can actually choose how many strands you want in your braid – see this guide for braiding challah with all different numbers of strands! http://toriavey.com/how-to/2010/08/challah-bread-part-2-how-to-braid-challah/
Brush the braided challah with egg and allow to sit, covered, for 45 minutes. It will grow in size again. Preheat oven during this period to 375. Brush with egg once again and put in oven on a baking sheet for 15-30 minutes (depending on size of loaf). Allow to cool for a few minutes and enjoy!

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Potato Latkes

Happy Hanukkah! These are the best latkes you’ll ever eat. We tend to have large gatherings (12-15 people) and make six batches.

Ingredients:
3 large potatoes
1 small onion
2 eggs
2 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup vegetable oil

Wash and grate potatoes coarsely. Grate the onion and combine with the potato in a large bowl. Beat eggs and then add to the bowl along with flour, salt and pepper. Allow mixture to sit for 10 minutes to thicken and then pour off excess liquid. Heat oil in frying pan and drop scoops of mixture into the pan. Once browned around the edges, flip and cook until the other side is brown as well. Serve with sour cream and apple sauce.

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Chocolate Covered Matzah

Another killer Passover dessert! Thanks to my friend Sarah for this recipe.

Ingredients:
6 pieces of matzah
1 c. unsalted butter
1 c. packed brown sugar
1 bag semi-sweet chocolate chips

Cover 2 large baking sheets with aluminum foil and then cover that with parchment paper. Lay out matzah flat on baking sheets so that it covers the entire sheet – feel free to break matzah into pieces to cover full sheet. Combine butter and sugar in pot on medium and allow to come to a boil, stirring constantly. Let mixture boil (while still stirring) for 3 minutes, or until the liquid begins to recede from the sides of the pot. Pour over the matzah and spread with a spoon so that all matzah is covered. Bake at 350 for 5-10 minutes and check every minute or two to make sure it is not burning. Once the color and consistency has changed so that it is lighter and bubbling, remove from oven. Sprinkle chocolate chips on top and allow to stand for 5 minutes before spreading the melted chocolate over the matzah. Allow to cool and break into smaller pieces to serve. L’chaim!

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Chocolate Macaroons

The first of the Passover recipes! A very easy and delicious dessert – delicious for Passover and also all year round!

Ingredients:
1 (12 oz.) package semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 (12 oz.) package milk chocolate chips
4 egg whites
1 c. sugar
2 tsp. vanilla
12-16 oz. shredded coconut
pinch of salt

Melt chocolate chips. Beat egg whites until stiff. Mix in sugar, vanilla, salt, and coconut. Put tablespoon-size cookies onto baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes at 325.

Buche de Noël

This is one of the most complicated and intricate desserts we’ve ever made. Given the amount of time and number of ingredients and steps involved in the recipe, we are not going to put it all down on the blog, but feel free to send us a message if you want more details! The general process is as follows:

  1. Bake a thin chocolate sponge cake in a jellyroll pan. Roll in a towel dusted with powdered sugar and let it cool for several hours.
  2. Make marshmallow frosting and spread it all across the unrolled cake. If the cake cracks while being unrolled it is okay.
  3. Roll up the cake. This must be done very gently and there will probably still be some cracks, but they will go unnoticed later.
  4. Frost the top and sides with chocolate ganache icing, making lines in the ganache for the yule log appearance.
  5. Make meringues in the shape of mushroom stems and caps. See this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FKO-K9aqTN0 . We used some of the ganache to attach the mushroom stems and caps. Dust the meringues with cocoa powder to make them look dirty on the log.
  6. Arrange the Buche de Noël as you please.

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Chocolate Lava Cakes

A great way to warm up on a cold winter night is to eat a oozing chocolate lava cake. “If today was my last day on Earth, this would be dessert” – K. Enough said.

Ingredients:
3/8 c. flour
1/3 c. cocoa powder
2-1/2 tsp. espresso powder
3/4 tsp. baking powder
pinch of salt
1/8 c. butter
1/2 c. egg substitute
3/4 tsp. vanilla
1/3 c. granulated sugar
1/3 c. brown sugar
1.3 oz. dark chocolate

Chop up the chocolate finely. Beat together butter, sugar, brown sugar, vanilla, and egg substitute. In a separate bowl, combine flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, espresso powder, and salt. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix. Gently mix in the chocolate. Pour batter into six 4-oz. ramkins. Refrigerate for 4 hours. Bake at 350 for 12-14 minutes depending on desired texture. After 12 minutes the cakes will have more lava in the center and after 14 they will be more firm.

Buche de Noël

This is one of the most complicated and intricate desserts we’ve ever made. Given the amount of time and number of ingredients and steps involved in the recipe, we are not going to put it all down on the blog, but feel free to send us a message if you want more details! The general process is as follows:

  1. Bake a thin chocolate sponge cake in a jellyroll pan. Roll in a towel dusted with powdered sugar and let it cool for several hours.
  2. Make marshmallow frosting and spread it all across the unrolled cake. If the cake cracks while being unrolled it is okay.
  3. Roll up the cake. This must be done very gently and there will probably still be some cracks, but they will go unnoticed later.
  4. Frost the top and sides with chocolate ganache icing, making lines in the ganache for the yule log appearance.
  5. Make meringues in the shape of mushroom stems and caps. See this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FKO-K9aqTN0 . We used some of the ganache to attach the mushroom stems and caps. Dust the meringues with cocoa powder to make them look dirty on the log.
  6. Arrange the Buche de Noël as you please.

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Gingerbread Cookies

‘Tis the season to be jolly fa-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la. Love actually is all around. Bye buddy, hope you find your dad. Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow. Chestnuts roasting on an open fire. You go Glenn Coco. Happy Hanukkah.

It may not feel like Christmastime with the 50 degree weather, but the smell of these cookies will remind you that the holiday season has arrived. Don’t forget to leave some for Good Old St. Nick hoppin’ down the chimney. Merry Christmas!

Ingredients:
2 c. flour (and more for rolling)
2 tsp. ground ginger
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1/4 tsp. baking powder
pinch of salt
1/2 c. butter
1/3 c. brown sugar
1/3 c. molasses
1 egg

Combine flour, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, soften the butter and then stir in brown sugar, molasses, and egg. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix well. Split dough in half and make each into a circular disk, an inch or so thick. Allow dough to chill in refrigerator for at least 2 hours. Flour a surface well and roll out the dough until about 1/4-inch thick, and then use cookie cutters or your own creativity to make cookies into wonderful shapes. Bake for 15 minutes at 350 or until the edges begin to darken. Allow to cool before decorating.

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