2010 August: Simple Ideas

Z-licious

Appetizers are hot. Go beyond the typical fried mozzarella or bruschetta and offer your customers a zucchini Parmigiana that will have them coming back for more. Take a fresh zucchini peel and trim off the stem end. Slice the zucchini lengthwise and dip in fl our. Shake off the excess and dip into a beaten egg. When covered, coat in breadcrumbs and grated Parmesan. Fry until golden and serve with warm marinara sauce for dipping.

Yeast Affection

We frequently get questions about the differences between fresh, instant and active dry yeast and whether they can be interchanged in recipes. First, don’t confuse the three. They are different products that require their own unique handling. Secondly, yes, with a little work you can convert recipes to conform to your chosen yeast. For instance, one pound of fresh yeast can be replaced with eight ounces of active dry yeast and eight ounces of water. Or it can be replaced with 5½ ounces of instant dry yeast and 10½ ounces of water.

Thrill of the Grill

Grilled pizza is easier than you think. The hardest part is making room in your kitchen for a grill, which a pizzeria really doesn’t need. In other words, don’t go out and buy a grill simply to offer a few grilled pizzas. On the other hand, if you happen to have a grill — make use of it! Start by rolling dough out thin and brushing it with seasoned olive oil. Grill the oiled side until it’s lightly browned. While it’s on the grill, brush the top with olive oil. When the bottom is browned, remove from the grill,flip it over and add sauce and toppings. Return to the grill and cook until finished.

Going to Sicily?

Here are some tips to keep in mind should you be thinking of adding a Sicilian pie to your menu:
? Use a dough that has some olive oil in its formulation for a lighter, more flavorful crust.
? For a really light crust, allow the dough to go through three risings: two outside the pan, one inside it.
? Generously oil the baking pan. Use vegetable oil for this — it’s cheaper.
? If you want a crunch to the bottom of the crust, sprinkle the bottom of the baking pan with cornmeal.