A Year of Living Breadfully – #2 – Pizza

Pizza dough was the second item I decided to tackle for my “Year of Living Breadfully”. Now I have to admit I am not a huge pizza fan, and the choice to make pizza came mostly from the fact that we had a lot of cheese left over from the holiday season. A LOT of cheese (as in, we must have been expecting a world cheese shortage or something!).

For this dough I decided to do a quick internet search and go with the first recipe I had the ingredients for. It has been super cold here, so I had no interest in having to run out to the store. Luckily pizza is a pretty simple recipe, so it took no time to find a recipe that matched my pantry ingredients.

The recipe pizza recipe I used was found on http://www.ricardocuisine.com , and the recipe can be found by clicking HERE .

Below is a pictoral account of our pizza making.

blog-mixing-dough-2017_1640-aMixing.

blog-dough-2017_1656-aFresh dough from the mixer.

blog-dough-2017_1665-aDough ready to be stretched.

blog-2017_1690-aAdding toppings.

blog-pizza-2017_1717-a

The finished cheese pizza.


The recipe was simple, the crust tasted very nice, and we had a ton of leftovers for lunch the next day (bonus!). Another successful cooking session.

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Photography by Debra Hunter

http://www.htheblog.wordpress.com

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Woolisaurus – another knitted adventure

Late Sunday night my youngest, most huggy, kissy son came up to me and asked “Mama can you knit me a dinosaur?” I gave my standard “We’ll see.” response and it was left at that. By midnight I was thinking of how sweet he had been and thought why not, how hard can it be (a la “Top Gear”), and so I trekked off to the basement to find some yarn suitable for a dinosaur.

hand knit dinosaur

hand knit dinosaur

Turquoise seemed the right color for a stuffie knitted dinosaur for a preschooler. Not having a pattern I decided to start with the head and see how it went, knitting well past midnight. I figured if it went bad I could just abandon the project and my littlest one would be none the wiser, in fact he would probably have forgotten about his request by morning.

The head went well and I even managed to get a nice curve to it, and of course then I just had to see if the neck would work. By 2 am I had winged it enough to have a recognizable dinosaur head, neck and top of body.

blog woolisaurus_2656In the morning he awoke to see the started project on the kitchen table and the excitement kicked in. This dinosaur was going to be knit….today. Our son ran to get his huge multi-color dinosaur book, plopped himself down next to me, and opened the book of cartoon dinosaurs to be used for reference. After a quick discussion regarding the fact that this dinosaur was never going to be a triceratops (ever), he found a picture of the type of dinosaur his stuffie could be.

Sitting next to me, my son was the foreman. He told me how to knit the tummy, the number of legs the dinosaur needed and how long his tail should be. We did have our creative differences over the tail; I convinced him some trendy yellow stripes would look better than the red and green Christmas colors he wanted. We knit all morning and all afternoon until the dinosaur  was knit, stuffed and assembled. There was NO downtime. Looking a little under dressed we decided he needed a wooly scarf and that was knit this evening while playing (and losing) a game of Ticket to Ride.

We have named our dinosaur Woolisaurus….what else do you name a wooly dinosaur!? He measures 18 inches long and 6.5 inches high, and he has been hugged a lot already.

Being a patternless project, I probably should have written down what I was knitting as I did it, as I have now had more dinosaur requests from our other children. Maybe it is best this dinosaur is one of a kind, maybe that makes him even more special.

( www.thehuntergroup.ca for other knit items…..just not dinosaurs!)

1:00 am Cookies

blog cookies 2Doesn’t everyone bake Christmas cookies at 1:00 am? Yesterday’s batch lasted a half hour, these will be gone by the end of lunch today as they will be packed in the kid’s lunches.

blog cookies 1Most people seem to do one big Christmas bake, but that doesn’t work in our house. It seems no matter how many dozens of cookies I bake the kids find a way to eat them instantly. Five kids, of which three are VERY hungry boys, can consume a lot of cookies.

Chances are some of these cookies may even disappear before morning…..of course my husband may have something to do with that!

Chocolate Snowflake Cookies

I decided to do another cookie post. Truth be known, doing another cookie post was decided for me, by a third grade teacher,  indicating in my daughter’s agenda, that she (my 8 year old) was responsible for cookies on Friday. No “please”, no “thank you”, no “would it be possible”, just that my daughter was responsible for cookies. Let’s just say I was, and still am, less than impressed, especially since we provided cookies last week as well.

So I have decided to blog my way through this cookie making experience to divert some of my attitude.
snowflake cookies

The recipe I used this evening was the Cut Out Chocolate Cookie recipe which can be found at www.hersheys.com. I particularily like this recipe as it is made with cocoa instead of melting chocolate. To me this seems a lot more convenient plus I always have cocoa in my pantry. I started the cookie dough at 10:30 pm which meant I needed to find ways to speed up the process. I quickly whipped up the cookie dough then realized I needed to chill the dough in order to be able to roll it out. The fastest way to chill the dough was to wrap it in wax paper and set it out on my deck. When it is -25 celsius outside dough chills quickly.

dough cooling outsideOnce the dough was chilled I got to work rolling and cutting out the snowflake shaped cookies.

cutting out the cookies

Into the oven they went. Out they came. I still needed to decorate the cookies this evening so I again popped them out on the deck to cool. I hoped that Danica, the dog next door, wasn’t roaming the neighborhood and about to find a yummy treat.

cooling baked cookies outsideThe cookies cooled and all were accounted for. It was time for a very quick cookie decorating session. I put together a mixture of 3 tablespoons melted margerine, 2 and a half cups icing sugar, a teaspoon of vanilla and a few drops of food coloring. I put the mixture in a zip lock bag with a piping tip on the end and quickly piped on some snow flake details. My husband was put in charge of the little silver balls in the center of the cookies; popping them on as quickly as possible before the icing firmed up.

chocolate snowflake cookies

By the end of the evening we had made 6 dozen chocolate snowflake cookies.

O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree

A forest of Christmas tree pencil toppers.

A forest of Christmas tree pencil toppers.

We are really getting into the spirit of Christmas in our house. Christmas lights are up. We’ve baked some cookies (and eaten them as well!) We’ve had school Christmas celebrations. We’ve wrapped presents. One little tradition we started a few years ago was putting a little Christmas “something” in the mail boxes of people in our neighborhood and other acquaintances we have. Our children love running up to the mail boxes doing the deliveries; it brings a little bit of Christmas fun to those around us and it has been a great way to meet new neighbors as well.

christmas tree pencil toppersThis year I decided to make Christmas tree pencil toppers. It was an inexpensive and fairly easy craft, just a little bit time-consuming. The nice thing is all the materials can be found at a dollar store. The main part of the tree is felt shaped into a cone and then glued with hot glue. I then hot glued the cone on to the pencil. The rest of the craft is just decorating. I used hot glitter glue for the garland and bobbles on the majority of the trees. This was my first experience with hot glitter glue and I love it, what an easy way to add bling to a craft. The first 18 trees I decorated with sequins. It was so time-consuming that I had to find another decorating option that had sparkle but was fast to use. Last count I have a forest of 108 tree topped pencils.

tree pencil topper with hot glitter gluetree pencil topper with sequins