In my next life I'm coming back as Buddy the baker. My youngest Isabella is 6 years old and absolutely obsessed with the Cake Boss series on TLC. On her birthday she asks for Cake Boss DVDs, on her iPod she watches Cake Boss clips on YouTube, the girl is obsessed. Of course, her own dad can hold his own in the kitchen. I can make a stack of waffles topped with fresh berries and whipped cream. I can grill a steak with her name seared on it. I can make her fried chicken just like the Colonel does... But until the day that I can make her a life sized cake in the shape of a Zhu Zhu Pet, I'll always be second in her eyes to Buddy.
So, when she comes crawling into my bed on a weekend morning and says "Daddy, let's bake something for momma to eat in bed" I'm a sucker. I plod downstairs, prod my eyes open and make a quick cup of coffee. We do ourselves up in our aprons and we bake. Of all the cooking I do, it is probably baking I enjoy the least. But I would not trade those mornings for anything in the world. The house is quiet, everyone else is asleep, and Isabella and I are elbows deep in dough.
Most recently we made these really easy and delicious Sweet Potato Biscuits. Served warm, split open with a pat of butter and a cup of coffee, there is no better way to wake up someone you love on the weekend. What do you all like to make for breakfast in bed?
Adapted from Paula Deen for Food Network Magazine
Prep Time: 20 min
Cook Time: 15 min
Serves: 9-12 biscuits
3/4 cup cooked mashed sweet potato (I used canned to save time/effort)
1/3 to 1/2 cup milk, as needed
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small bits
1. Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 425 degrees F. Grease a baking sheet with cooking spray.
2. In a small bowl, whisk together the sweet potato and 1/3 cup milk. Set aside.
3. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Cut in the butter with your hands, a pastry blender or two knives until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add the sweet potato mixture and fold gently to combine. Add the remaining milk a little at a time until all the flour is moistened. The amount of milk you will need will depend on the moisture of the sweet potato.
4. Sprinkle a small handful of flour on a work surface. Turn the dough out onto the surface and knead lightly 2 to 3 times with the palm of your hand until the mixture comes together. Pat the dough out into a 1/2-inch-thick round.
5. Using a 2 1/2-inch-round biscuit cutter, cut the dough into biscuits. Gently re-roll the scraps and cut out more biscuits. Place the biscuits on the prepared baking sheet and bake until light golden brown and firm to the touch, 12 to 14 minutes.
Important life lesson: They can't keep you out of the club just because you have a penis.
As I sit down to write my first post for YummyMummyClub I kind of have to wonder how I'm once again writing for a website written for, about and by women. Maybe that's what happens when you grow up with three sisters and no brothers; or maybe I'm being punished for some transgression in a past life. It's kind of funny though, it's not like there are a shortage of sites out there that might have been a more natural fit. What are you thinking Martell? I mean no one likes walking into a group and being the new kid to begin with and here I am with a very clear "one of these things is not like the other" sticker on my forehead. It's sort of the equivalent of walking into football tryouts in a tutu, or showing up to your first yoga class with a zebra hide as your mat...
All kidding aside, I'm really excited to be here. YMC has so many entertaining and talented writers. It's pretty overwhelming!
So who am I and what the heck am I doing here? I love to cook and I'll be filling this space with some great food ideas, recipes, and stories about being a dad to three awesome kids (one of whom has an unhealthy obsession with Cake Boss). In the meantime though, I wanted to do something special for you all seeing as this is my initial post. Normally, if you show up at any club with a plate full of s'mores brownies, that will get you in the front door regardless of age, gender or race. So, since I can't bring you all brownies I'm going to be giving away a Cuisinart 5-in-1 Griddler to one lucky member. Just leave a comment below telling me what kind of recipes you'd like me to feature and you'll be entered to win.
While it can be used as a grill and griddle it gets the most use in our house as a panini maker. When an appliance can make food this yummy with little clean-up, it's bound to find a permanent spot on your countertop too. The recipe below is one I threw together for you all to enjoy. Come on, you like me now, right?
The YMC Panini
8 slices sourdough bread, cut 1/2 inch thick
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for brushing
1/4 pound cremini mushrooms, sliced
1 yellow onion, sliced
Salt and ground pepper, to taste
1 pound roast beef deli
1 roasted red pepper, sliced
4 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 tablespoon prepared horseradish
1 garlic clove, minced
4 large slices aged cheddar
1. Heat oil in a pan over Medium heat. Add sliced onion, season with salt and pepper to taste, cook down until onions begin to brown, about 15 minutes. Add mushrooms and cook until softened, about 3 more minutes.
2. Preheat closed panini maker on High.
3. In a small bowl mix together mayonnaise, garlic and horseradish.
4. Brush one side of each bread slice with olive oil. Lay the slices, oiled side down. Assemble sandwich by spreading 1 tablespoon of the mayonnaise mix on one slice of the bread. Add roast beef, caramelized onions & mushrooms, roasted pepper and cheese, dividing evenly. Top with the other slice of bread, oiled side up.
5. Place the sandwiches on the panini maker and cook until the cheese is melted, about 4 minutes.
6. Cut and serve.
p.s. If you don't win the Cuisinart 5-in-1 Griddler, you can always purchase it at Canadian Tire.
Yummy Rules and Regs for Book Giveaway: You must be a YummyMummyClub.ca member to win. Click to sign up! It's free and filled with perks. One comment per member. Entries accepted until October 31, 2011. Contest open to Canadian residents. Winners will be picked using www.random.org.