Thursday, May 28, 2015

Day 5 - Jam

Mixed Berry Jam

6 cups of crush berries
10 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 pouch of certo

Method: Prepare fruit and crush with potato masher to the desired chunkiness and put exact amount of fruit into a large pan. Stir sugar into fruit. Then bring mixture to full rolling boil and boil for exactly one minute stirring constantly. Next stir in certo quickly, returning it to a full boil for another minute. Remove from heat and skim off any foam with a spoon. Put into jars if canning, if not let cool and enjoy.

The Science of the Jam: If the sugar : fruit : pectin ratio is off, the consistency will be affected. It might be gelatin-like or in a liquid like state. Be careful during canning not to get botulism due to not sealing the jars correctly. This will cause you to because seriously ill and have a chance of death due to it paralyzing your face, body, and organs.

Steps of the baking process


Day 4 - Cupcakes

Ultimate Vanilla Cupcake

1 cup granulated sugar
1 3/4 cups cake flour not self-rising
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup + 2 table spoons of mayonnaise
1/3 cup full-fat sour cream
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
2/3 cup whole milk

Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In a medium-sized bowl, mix together cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add sugar and mix well. Next, add butter and mix on medium-low speed for three minutes. It should be a fine crumble texture. In a small mixing bowl add mayonnaise, sour cream, oil, and vanilla extract until smooth. Add mayonnaise mixture to the flour mixture until just combined slowly add milk and mix on low speed until just combined. The batter will be liquid. Fill cupcake liners just over 1/2 full. Bake for 20 minutes and test if they are done. If not, check every two minutes. They should not turn a golden brown. When the cupcakes are done, remove them immediately from the tins and leave them on a cooling rack to cool.

The science of the cupcakes: The sugar creates air pockets that give the cupcakes their light and fluffy texture, also absorbs the water in the batter during baking so they further solidify. The baking powder adds acid to the mixture which helps it to rise. Over mixing the batter can cause to the water to create more gluten which overworks the batter making it not rise as well leaving sunken cupcakes that could possibly compress together leaving a hard, solid brick.

 Dry ingredients
"wet" ingredients

Time to bake!

Day 3 - Chili

Hearty Three-Bean Chili

1 tsp vegetable oil
2 cups chopped onions
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp chili powder
1 1/2 tbsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp salt
1 (28 oz) ground tomatoes
2 (15 oz) cans black beans, drained
1 (16 oz) can kidney beans, drained
1 (15 oz) can pinto beans, drained
1 (14.5 oz) beef broth
1 large green pepper, chopped into 1 inch strips
1 large sweet red pepper, chopped into 1 inch strips
1/3 cup dried green pepper
1/3 cup dried sweet red pepper

Make: Drain and rinse beans and rinse under water to remove any excess salt. Heat oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat until hot then saute onion for five minutes. Saute garlic separately and add to onion, along with chili powder, cumin and salt. Saute for another minute. Next add tomato, beans, beef broth, and peppers. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes stirring occasionally. Enjoy!
To increase flavor: Ladle chili into bowls and top with 1 tablespoon sour cream and sprinkle desired amount of cheese.

Science of Chili:

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Day 2 - The Perfect Cookie

Original Nestle Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookies

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 sticks of butter softened
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 large eggs
2 cups Nestle Toll House Milk Chocolate Chips

Prep: Combine flour, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl. In another large mixing bowl put in butter, sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla extract an blend with an electric mixer until creamy. Add one egg and mix. Repeat again for last egg and mix until completely blended. Gradually add flour mixture and chocolate chips and mix together. Once all mixed, put into freezer for about an hour. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
Baking: Put clumps of frozen cookie dough on to a baking sheet with non-stick paper. Bake for 16-20 minutes* or until slightly browned on the bottom. Once done put onto cooling rack for 2-5 minutes. Enjoy.

Baked at high altitude*

The Science Behind Cookies: Freezing the cookie solidifies the butter. This will make them spread less during baking.

 Frozen batter
Putting it onto the baking sheet can be one tough cookie

Though success there is cookies

Half way baked (melted) - yea, they look funny

                           Done and Delicious

Our cookies our the second ones from the bottom of the picture! (The best of them all)

Day 1 - Guacamole


9 avocados
1 small onion - minced fine
Fresh squeezed lemon juice
2 tbsp salt
2 Romania tomatoes - diced

Easy Peasy Prep: Cut avocado in half just below the skin, peel away, and squish avocado into bowl, toss seed. Add onions and tomatoes. Next we need the lemon juice. For best results of getting all the juice: put lemon into microwave for 12-14 secs, then roll firmly, cut in half. Squeeze lemon into mix. Squish and mash ingredients together (best done with the use of hands).

Bonus: For a touch of spice to your guack! - add spoonfuls of super spicy salsa into mix and mash together. Add until satisfied with the heat.

The Science Behind the Scene: Avocados are good fats, and are high in potassium. They are good sources of vitamin C and E and are loaded with fiber plus their skin is cancer fighting.



Bonus: super spicy guack

Day 1 - Salsa

Super Spicy Salsa

1 1/2 onion, diced fine
4 Romanian tomatoes, diced small
One bunch cilantro leaves, chopped
2 tbsp lemon juice - freshly squeezed
2 jalapeno peppers
2 Serrano peppers
1 tbsp salt

Cut tomatoes, onions, and peppers and put into one medium-large bowl. Add chopped cilantro and lemon juice. Toss gently with a mixing spoon in order to mix without squishing tomatoes. Add salt to taste and Enjoy.

Use as much of the pepper as possible including all pepper seeds to increase spiciness.
Squeeze lemon face up for seeds not to enter the salsa.
Recipe is better if doubled

The Science behind the Making:
Chili peppers come from the nightshade family, which has capsaicin, which is a colorless, odorless, oily chemical found in most peppers. This gets your endorphins going.
Dice tomatoes

Cutting up the peppers

Dicing onions



                                 Toss                                              Lemon Squeeze