Thursday, December 15, 2011

Irish Potato Bread

You'll Need
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 3 tsp.yeast
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 3 T butter
  • 1 cup mashed potatoes at room temperature
  • 4 T sugar
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 6 cups flour
  • 1 egg (for glaze)
If You Have A Food Processor pour warm water into the bowl. (The water should be about 85 to 115° F. Test it with your hand. It should feel very warm, but comfortable. )
Sprinkle the yeast over the water and mix at low speed.
Let stand for five minutes.
Slowly mix in milk, potatoes, salt and sugar.
Gradually mix in flour.
Mix on high for about a minute or two.
The dough should turn into a ball and roll around the processor.
If the dough does not ball up because it's to dry, add water one tablespoon at a time until it does.
If your mixture is more like a batter, add flour one tablespoon at a time. (Adding water or flour as needed to get the right consistency will assure you always get a perfect dough. Just remember to do it in small amounts.)
After Your Dough Is Made transfer dough to an oiled bowl, cover with a clean towel and let rise until doubled (about 1 1/2 hours).
Grease 2 loaf pans and pre-heat oven to 375°F.
Punch down dough and divide into two pieces.
Shape each piece into loaf shape and place in greased pans.
Cover pans with clean towel and let rise till doubled (about 1 hour).
Use a pastry brush to brush beaten egg over the tops of the loaves.
Bake for 40-45 minutes or until golden brown.

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Monday, December 5, 2011

Duck L'Orange

You've GOT to try this ... as a wonderful alternative to standard holiday meals. 

The best part about it -- besides the amazing flavor -- is that it is SO much easier than it sounds!! 

Here's What You'll Need

  • 2 cups freshly squeezed orange juice (orange rinds reserved)
  • 1 (5-pound) duck, cleaned, with innards and wing tips removed
  • 2 oranges, zested
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon Bitters
  • 1 1/2 cups duck or chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons corn starch dissolved in 2 tablespoons cold water
  • 1/2 cup Grand Marnier 

Now Here's What You Do

Preheat oven to 500 degrees F. Roughly chop the orange rinds and place in the cleaned duck cavity. Put the stuffed duck on a baking rack over a baking sheet with 1/2-inch of water. Bake until skin turns golden brown and lightly crisps, about 30 minutes. 
Reduce temperature to 300 degrees and continue cooking until duck reaches an internal temperature of 170 degrees, about 1 hour.
In a medium heavy saucepan combine the orange juice, zest and sugar over medium high heat and reduce to 3/4 cup. Add the bitters to the orange juice and set aside.
Add hot duck stock to reduced orange gastrique and simmer over medium low heat for 10 minutes to reduce. Add the thickener to ... thicken!! 
Remove duck from roasting pan, and discard the fat from pan. Remove orange rinds from duck cavity. Let rest 10 minutes before carving.
Add the Grand Marnier to the roasting pan and place over 2 burners on medium high heat. You will use this to deglaze the pan, scraping continuously with a large wooden spoon. 

Reduce for 5 to 10 minutes. Pour the orange sauce in the pan into a gravy boat and serve with carved duck.
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