Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Baptism Luncheon Recipes From the Hubby

The Hubby made ALL the food for the Baptism on Sunday and it was just sooo yummy! I thought it would be nice to post the recipes since the food was such a hit. Hubby is an amazing cook (he actually went to culinary school) and all the dishes were to die for! So here are the recipes for some of the biggest hits from the party.
                                                           **My hubby the chef!!**

Braised Brisket Recipe


  • 1 (4 pound) beef brisket, first-cut
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
  • Coarsely ground black pepper
  • 3 large carrots, cut into chunks
  • 1 onion, halved
  • 2 celery stalks, cut into chunks
  • 1 head garlic, cut in 1/2
  • 1 (28-ounce) can whole tomatoes, hand-crushed (recommended: San Marzano)
  • 3/4 bottle dry red wine
  • 1 bay leaves
  • 1/4 bunch fresh thyme, leaves only
  • 4 sprigs fresh rosemary, leaves only
  • 1 handful fresh flat-leaf parsley


Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.

Drizzle brisket liberally with olive oil then season the meat on both sides with salt and pepper.

Place a large Dutch oven or heavy-based pot over medium-high heat and add a 3-count of olive oil. Place the brisket in the pot and sear on both sides to form a nice brown crust. Remove from pot and set aside before adding carrots, onion and celery. Brown vegetables, then add the garlic, tomatoes, red wine, bay leaf, thyme, rosemary, and parsley. Add the brisket back to the pot, cover and roast in the oven for 3 hours until the brisket is fork tender.

Remove the brisket to a cutting board and let it rest for 15 minutes. Strain out the vegetables and pour off some of the excess fat, then pour over the brisket.

Slice brisket across the grain and serve over parsnip puree with roasted red onions and garnish with parsley.

Vienna Bread


Serves: 12
Units: US | Metric

Sponge or Biga



  1. 1
    Biga or Sponge:.
  2. 2
    Make the sponge the day before 12 to 20 hours before.
  3. 3
    1 tsp yeast sprinkled over the one cup warm water, let it become foamy and bubbly, that way you know the yeast is good and active. Add in the one cup flour, and stir well to combine, it will be soupy. Cover tightly with saran wrap and place on counter top overnight. I place in my microwave out of the way, and out of drafts. This biga will bubbly and come up to the top of your bowl but then will fall back down into the bowl after a while, so just make sure your bowl is a larger one to begin with.
  4. 4
    When baking time is ready the next day, or 20 hours later, I then proceed.
  5. 5
    First step one: sprinkle the 1 teaspoon yeast over 1/4 cup warm water and let stand until bubbly about five or ten minutes. This shows that yeast is fresh and active.
  6. 6
    In your large mixing machine bowl, place yesterdays biga which is bubbly and soupy looking again, and very elastic into the bowl with flat beater.
  7. 7
    Add 1/4 cup cold water with the beater going slowly just to mix .
  8. 8
    Add after the five or ten minutes of resting the new yeast mixture, and continue with the flat beater slowly combining well.
  9. 9
    Add the remainder 3/4 cup cold water and blend.
  10. 10
    Add the 1 cup all purpose or bread flour, and combine, still using just a slow speed.
  11. 11
    Change now to the dough hook and add the other 2 1/4 cups flour and table salt.
  12. 12
    With the dough hook still on low speed .
  13. 13
    You will have a sticky dough.
  14. 14
    The dough will be soft sticky but holding itself around the dough hook, while at the same time cleaning the sides and bottom of the bowl.
  15. 15
    If at that time its still puddles at the bottom of the bowl while kneading on number three or four speed, add in the tablespoons of flour, one at a time kneading all the while. I have added two to three tablespoons as listed in ingredients for this purpose. Remember just add until its cleaning the bottom and sides of bowl, this must be a wet and sticky dough, not firm and heavy. Weather is an important factor with flour.
  16. 16
    Sticky to touch the dough, but yet doesn't stick gobs of dough to your fingers.
  17. 17
    It will be sticky, elastic and soft.
  18. 18
    Knead a good ten minutes with your hook.
  19. 19
    Oil bottom and sides of a very large bowl.
  20. 20
    With wet fingers drop the dough into the bowl and turn dough over so all is oiled well.
  21. 21
    Cover with saran wrap and then a towel, and place out of the way of drafts.
  22. 22
    Rise until it is 2 1/2 to 3 times its size. It will look blistered and soft.
  23. 23
    Line a large jelly roll pan with parchment and lightly flour, set aside.
  24. 24
    Place some flour onto the bread board or counter top and with wet fingertips, scrape the dough from the sides and bottom of the bowl gently.
  25. 25
    Slightly stretch dough brushing the flour off the bottom and out of the way.
  26. 26
    You just want the flour there to keep it from sticking, you are not adding more flour into the risen dough.
  27. 27
    Place shaped stretched loaf onto the floured parchment, lightly flour top so that saran doesn't stick.
  28. 28
    Cover with the saran , again with a towel, and let rise for 1 1/2 hours to 2 hours, until doubled.
  29. 29
    It has risen sufficiently when you poke it with two fingers gently and it leaves the impression, it doesn't spring back. If it springs back then leave a little while longer to rise.
  30. 30
    Place in hot preheated oven 425 degrees, and bake 30 minutes, turn upside down and continue another 10 minutes, until golden brown, and hollow sounding when tapped.
  31. 31
    Remove to wire rack to cool completely.
  32. 32
    Do not cut and eat -- Let cool Completely this will give you a better flavoured bread.
    Olive and Sun Dried tomato Bread

    1 large clove of garlic, finely chopped
    1 small onion finely chopped
    2 tbsp of olive oil, from a jar of sun dried tomatoes
    2 tsp of salt
    1 package of active dry yeast
    1/2 to 1 cup lukewarm water
    4-5 cups all-purpose flour
    1/4 tsp rosemary leaves
    1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes packed, chopped
    12 black olives pitted and coarsely chopped
    2 tsp of melted butter (optional)
    In a small pan, mix the onion and garlic with 1tbs of the oil and1/4 tsp of the salt, cover the pan
    and cook over low heat 4-5 minutes until the onion is tender, but not browned, remove the lid and
    set the pan aside to cool. Stir the yeast into 1/2 cup of lukewarm water and let stand 10 minutes or
    until frothy. Mix 4 cups of flour and the remaining salt in a large bowl, add yeast, flour, and
    remaining water, and briefly mix
    Add the garlic and onions, the remaining 1 tbsp of oil, and the rosemary, about one third of the
    sun dried tomatoes, about one third of the olives. Mix by hand or in a food processor, adding
    more lukewarm water to create dough. Knead the dough by hand, adding the rest of the tomatoes
    and olives to evenly distribute them.Knead the dough 5 minutes longer by processor until the dough has a silky texture and doesn’t
    stick to your hands or the bowl, shape the dough into a ball and place it in a greased bowl, cover
    the bowl with a large plastic bag and let stand in a draft free spot for 1/2 or 2 hours or dough has
    doubled in size. Knock the dough down by slipping it on the counter, knead for 2-3 minutes later,
    then divide the dough into two equal portions form them into balls or ovals, line a baking tray
    with parchment paper, place the loaves on the tray and let proof again 45-65 minutes.
    Preheat the oven at 425 degrees. Make four slashes on the bread, set aside covered for 10
    minutes. Bake the loaves for 10minutes, then reduce the oven temp to 375 degrees, test the loaves
    for doneness by rapping them on the bottom with your knuckles/ If the bread sounds hollow, it's
    done. Remove bread from the pan and place on a cooling rack. This recipe makes two loaves.


    • 1 English cucumber, seeded and diced
    • 1/2 Vidalia onion, diced
    • Salt
    • 2 cups/500 ml of low-fat Greek yogurt
    • 3 cloves garlic, minced
    • 1 tablespoon/15 ml of olive oil
    • Juice of 1 lemon
    • 1/2 cup/125 ml of dill, chopped
    • 1/2 cup/125 ml of chives
    • Freshly ground peppertkik


    In a sieve set over a bowl, toss the diced cucumber and onions with 1 teaspoon salt. Let it drain at least 1 hour at room temperature, or cover and refrigerate up to 8 hours.

    With flat-side of chef's knife, mash garlic with 1/2 teaspoon salt and make a paste. Add garlic paste to the yogurt mixture with olive oil, lemon juice, dill, and chive. Season with salt and pepper.

    Pat the chopped cucumber dry with paper towels, and add to the yogurt mixture. Keep the mixture refrigerated until ready to use and serve it with fried skate chicken, burgers or as a dip for veggies.

    Cook's Note: You can make your own thick yogurt by letting it sit overnight in paper towel over a sieve.
    **I took the recipes off several websites such as Food network and the cooking channel so you may be able to use the links to go to the sites yourself.**
Now  the Hubby always tweaks the recipes to make them his own so you can feel free to put your own spin on the recipes. But I do assure they were all delightful!!


Much love,


  1. yeah...you can ship some of that olive/tomato bread to me ANYTIME. Thanks.

  2. Maintain up the excellent perform people this really brilliant.