easiest strawberry puree
This time of year is all about the berries! If you have a bunch of strawberries then I have a recipe for you! This recipe is super easy and it tastes amazing on ice cream. The key to making this recipe incredibly easy is either a high powered blender or a food processor. I've had a Vitamix for years and I love it. It was a splurge on a daily QVC deal quite a few years ago and it's still going strong today.
Ok, here's what you'll need!
-approximately 2lbs of strawberries (you can halve or double the recipe to suit your needs)
-1 cup sugar
-juice of 1/3 lemon
Wash the strawberries and remove the green tops. Process the berries in your blender or food processor. Throw the berries into a pot, add the sugar and lemon juice. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer until the puree thickens to the point where it sticks to the back of a spoon. Let cool and store in an airtight jar in the fridge.
Top on ice cream and enjoy!
prime day kitchen deals
Ok home bakers and foodies! Prime Day is here for today and tomorrow so I've got a last minute round up of some sweet deals you might enjoy to help with your baked goods and coffee time. Before I go further, it's important that I let you know that these products are based solely on my opinion from using them or research I've done during my hunt for kitchen items. I am not sponsored by any of these companies; however, I am registered as an Amazon Affiliate so I would receive a small commission should you choose to purchase from one of these links. I think transparency is super important so thank you for sticking with me this far.
Ok, back to some of the sweet shopping deals.
The first one I have to point out is a little gadget that I have on my counter and it can take your regular, ole' cup of coffee and quickly turn it into a barista worthy beverage. This little milk frother is simple to use, takes up hardly any room and brings a latte to your kitchen counter without a big, fancy machine.
Next, this French Door Air Fryer, Convection Oven 10 in 1 gadget is not the exact model that I have on my counter. The one I received as a Christmas gift is from Gourmia, which unfortunately does not have a Prime Day deal associated with it at this time; however, I use this appliance daily. We got rid of our toaster. We use it to reheat meals. I air fry all. the. time. Annnddd it is my intention to whip up some single or two person cookie recipes in this little guy. This appliance gets a ton of use in our house.
Next up is some information on high speed blenders. First up is the Vitamix. I own a Vitamix. I've had it for close to 10 years....it was a splurge on a QVC sale when I bought it and it has not let me down. I swear that you could make a smoothie out of nails if you wanted to. It's great for different bread recipes, pancakes from scratch, waffles, soups, smoothies, ice cream, grinding coffee beans, grinding flour, whipping cream...I could keep going. And it is tough as nails. While this particular sale does not seem to be related to Prime Day, this price point definitely has my attention.
While I don't personally own a Ninja blender, I've heard all good things about them and this blender has a pretty sweet deal going on if you're looking for something lower cost than a Vitamix.
I used to feel intimidated by baking with a scale to measure ingredients. I've used it when I dove into make my first ever batch of macarons when one of my daughters desperately wanted a Paris themed birthday and I use it in sourdough baking. I've learned that it isn't intimidating and I usually have a food scale on my counter now quite regularly. They're also inexpensive and there's a deal this week!
Moving to cakes, you all know how I love my 6 inch cakes. This cake pan set has 4 x 6 inch cake pans with 120 sheets of parchment paper! That's a lot of cakes!
So there's a few deals that caught my attention! I hope that you have a great day today!
If you've been around here for a little bit, you know that I'm a huge fan of homemade bread. Irish Bread is what sparked my interest in baking...and carbs. I have a full post here with multiple options for baking a beautiful, authentic loaf of Irish bread that shouldn't only be saved for St. Patrick's Day. You can also find my Lessons in Sourdough post, which is about my journey into Sourdough bread baking. I highly recommend you check out Lion's Bread for all the information that assisted me as I got going with this bread baking technique. Sourdough bread used to intimidate me so I kept pushing it off. It turns out that it's truly simple and only takes a little bit of patience and time, most of which is time where the baker doesn't have to actively do anything.
After playing around with bread baking for years, I decided to experiment in the kitchen to come up with a loaf recipe that I call a "Gateway" bread recipe, meaning it is my hope that this recipe may open up the world of bread baking to more home bakers. I want those interested in bread baking to know that you truly can have a beautiful, homemade loaf of bread on your table, to the extent you want it there, and that it is a simple and accessible process. This recipe is simple enough that you can decide to make all of your family's bread, if that's your preference, or you can save it for special occasions if you choose.
This recipe is also set up so that you can bake the bread via 3 options. The first is to use a Dutch Oven. I find that this method results in the most uniformly risen loaf, but it was important to me that the recipe did not require a Dutch Oven. We're going for as simple and budget friendly as possible here. If you are interested in a Dutch Oven, this product here is the same brand and similar to the one I currently use. I found that it was more budget friendly than some other options on the market.
The second method of baking is to simply place a piece of parchment paper on a cookie tray and bake the loaf without a Dutch Oven. This results in a more rustic looking loaf that doesn't necessarily have a uniform dome shape, but the bread still tastes amazing and it's a solid option for putting a loaf of homemade bread on the table.
The third option is to separate the risen dough into two halves and make two small "sandwich" shaped loaves in regular sized, greased loaf pans.
Let's dive into the ingredients and baking directions!
- 1 1/2 cups warm water
-2 1/4 tsp yeast
-1 TBS sugar
-2 TBS olive oil (optional: the loaf will be very slightly more dry without it; however, still delicious and it's not a show stopper if you don't have oil on hand or want to leave it out)
-3 cups all purpose flour
- 1 tsp salt
You will also need extra flour for kneading/shaping, plastic wrap, clean dish towels and either a Dutch Oven & parchment paper, a cookie tray & parchment paper or 2 standard sized loaf pans prepared with non-stick cooking spray.
In a large bowl, mix together the warm water, yeast and sugar. Allow the mixture to sit for approximately 5 minutes until you see the yeast has activated and is a little bubbly. If you are using the oil, add this now and stir to combine. Then add the flour and salt. Use a rubber spatula or your hands to combine all of the ingredients. Cover the bowl in plastic wrap and allow to sit out in your kitchen to rise for approximately 2 hours, or at least until doubled in size.
Generously cover a cutting board or clean counter top with flour.
For the single, large boule loaf option using either a cookie tray or Dutch Oven:
Dump the dough on to the surface and lightly knead by using flour covered hands to pick dough up from underneath and work it into the center of the loaf (Stay tuned to my Instagram for a video tutorial of this process). Flip the dough over so that the seam side is down, gently shape into round loaf. Slide the loaf onto a piece of parchment paper. Cover with a clean dish towel and allow to rest for an hour.
Pre-heat your oven to 425 degrees. If using a Dutch Oven, place it in the heating oven to pre-heat for about 15 minutes before baking. For the Dutch Oven baking method, carefully remove the heated Dutch Oven from the warm oven, use oven mitts to lift the top off and carefully pick up the loaf by the edges of the parchment paper and place the paper and loaf into the Dutch Oven. Cover. Bake covered for 20 minutes and then uncovered for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before slicing. This is very important as bread finishes baking when you take it out of the oven.
For the cookie tray method, slide the parchment paper and loaf onto the cookie tray and bake for 30 minutes until golden brown. Remove and allow to cool completely before slicing- very important.
For the two, small, sandwich shaped loafs, dump the dough onto your floured surface. Use a large knife or dough scraper to cut into two halves. Lightly knead each half with flour covered hands by taking the dough from the sides and bringing into the middle. Flip the dough over with the seam side down and gently shape into a longer oval shape. Repeat this for the second half of the dough. Place into the greased loaf pan and cover with a clean dish towel to rest for approximately an hour or until the dough rises to about the top of the loaf pan. Bake in the oven at 425 degrees for approximately 30 minutes or until golden brown. Remove and let cool completely before slicing.
I would love to hear from you if you try this recipe! Happy baking!
New England wife, mom & home baker. Faith, food, fitness, baking, cooking and constantly cleaning my kitchen.