Friday, March 1, 2013

House warming tasty bits.

So, a few weeks ago a friend asked if I would make some gluten free snacks for a house warming party they are having this weekend. I agreed to do so and thought of this as an excuse to spend the weeks in between trying some of the fancier recipes I've put off trying.. gluten free eclairs, puff pastries, and the sort.
Then Hubby got laid off. It's been 3 weeks now and still nothing has presented itself. Lots of work in his field is coming... in April. That's great and all, but work, and a paycheck, NOW would be even better.
Anyway, this rather put the kibosh on some of my ideas, but I still wanted to do something for them, so I pulled out a few things that we'd already tried before, and then tried a few modifications on them. I won't be posting recipes today, because I used recipes that aren't mine, but I will post the links to the recipes along with notes as to what modifications were made.

So, first up, Thursday I spent making pop tarts, both a sweet, with some of my home made jams, and a savory version. For the savory version, I cut the sugar down to a third of what was called for and added about 2 more tablespoons of butter to the dough, and added some garlic powder, onion powder and paprika. For the filling, I used shredded chicken, refried beans, and nacho cheese sauce to make a chicken enchilada filling.
I cut them all this time with a biscuit cutter for uniformity in size and shape.

Then, for dinner we had nachos :)

Friday, I started off having allergic sneezing fits. *sigh* That is always the case when you have big plans. Anyway, once I got to the point where I had things under control enough to see what I was doing, I started in on pretzel dough and kringle dough. Both are yeast doughs and have sit/rise times, so, all told, I spent about 6 hours cooking today (and of course, Teenager now wants to know what is for dinner.. sheesh.. can I have a 10 minute break?? Someone needs to take out the trash and unload/reload the dishwasher so I have room to do any more cooking today... hrm.. we still have taco meat left over.. maybe nachos again tonight...)

Pretzel dough
My family LOVES pretzels and we had just found our favorite soft pretzel recipe shortly before I had to make the switch to gluten free, so finding a good GF soft pretzel recipe was a MUST. This recipe right here is the best one we've come across so far. They don't hold up well for long, but that is really rarely a problem as few of them last more then a day or two.

We decided to try things a little different with this recipe for this weekend. I'd been trying to come up with a good meat roll type item for this and the idea hit me earlier this week that I needed to try it with pretzels. So, pretzel piggies were born.

 I used the cheese flavored little smokies for this. We don't have them very often, but this seemed like a good time to pull them out. I took a little bit of the dough, rolled it into a ball then flattened it into an oblong disk.

Wrap the little smokie up and seal the edge.

 When your tray is full, wrap in plastic and let set for the second rise time.

Then on to the soda water bath.. 

Then back onto the tray to go into the oven.  Brush them with an egg wash and sprinkle with a little course salt.
Pretzel Piggies!

Next up are the kringles.
I did two of them, one following the instructions at the original site here. I opted for a cinnamon sugar and walnut filling for this one. Word of warning, sometimes the dough decided to be.. uncooperative.. This one fell apart on me while moving from the table to the pan. It still tastes wonderful, it just doesn't look as pretty as it could have... good thing I'm slicing them up anyway.
not so pretty kringle

For my second kringle, I decided to try a chocolate nutella one.
I added 2 tablespoons of cocoa powder and a dash of cinnamon to the dough.

And I got this.. lovely, lovely dough..

Which behaved itself much better for it's transfer, after being spread with a filling of nutella and brown sugar and cinnamon.
It got a little more cinnamon sugar over the top then into the oven it went.

Not much to look at at this point, but, oh did it ever smell nice.. It got set to cool, as had the other one, then it was time to add a little glaze and slice them up..

yummy gooey

cinnamon walnut swirly...

 So we have a nice plate of kringle...

And a nice pan of pretzel piggies and hand tarts (there is another layer under what is seen here...)

Here's hoping these will be as big of a hit at the housewarming on Saturday as they have been here at the house. I know I will be making pretzel piggies again in the future.


We had left over pretzel dough, which was planned... Hubby wanted me to try deep frying them.. so, I did..

First I formed them into bite sized bits and let them go for their second rise. Then they went into the soda bath and then into the fryer.

This is what came out. They formed a nice crunchy crust with a soft center. They aren't as pretty as the ones at a certain burger establishment that my husband adores, but, they were just as tasty (says he, I've never had their pretzel bites..)
We are trying to keep a few of these around for a few days to see how they will hold up, but I'm not sure they will last the night.

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