Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Pantry Essentials = Made From Scratch



Yesterday I talked to you about what I called the Pantry Essentials.  These are the products I feel every pantry should have to start saving money.  Did you forget what those essentials were?  Here's the list again to refresh your memory.


Baking Powder
Baking Soda
Cornmeal  
Cornstarch
Flour  
Pasta
Rice
Sugar
Yeast
Shortening
Cooking Oil 



So what can you make with these items?  Let's take a look....


Basic Biscuits
2 cups All Purpose Flour
1 Tablespoon Baking Powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup shortening
3/4 cup milk

Directions:  Put all of the dry ingredients into a bowl and mix up a little bit with a whisk to make certain there are no lumps.  Cut in the shortening with a pastry blender or fork until it resembles crumbs.  Pour the milk in slowly while mixing with a fork until your dough pulls away from the bowl.  Lightly flour a surface and put your dough on top of it.  Roll it out with a rolling pin to about 1/2 inch thick.  Cut out with a biscuit cutter (I use a glass dipped in water) and put on a ungreased cookie or baking sheet.  Cook in the over on 450 degrees for about 10 minutes.  Sweet and Simple

Pancakes Anyone?
2 cups All Purpose Flour
2-1/2 Teaspoons Baking Powder
3 Tablespoons Sugar
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
2 Eggs
1-1/2 Cups Milk
2 Tablespoons Melted Butter

Sift or whisk the dry ingredients in one bowl to make certain there are no lumps.  In a second bowl beat the eggs and milk together.  Slowly beat the egg/milk mixture into the dry ingredients until you have a batter.  Now add in the melted butter.  If your batter seems a little bit too thick to your liking, you can always add a little more milk but don't add to much or then the batter will be too thin and not work well.

Some people like to pour the batter straight from the bowl onto a hot greased griddle or electric skillet but I prefer to use a gravy ladle to pour it onto the hot greased electric skillet or griddle.  I turn my skillet on medium high when I do this.  Bubbles will start appearing in the batter and the edges will start to turn golden brown.  Once I start seeing bubbles in the batter I take a spatula and lift up the pancake a little bit to see if it is the color I want on the bottom.  If so, then gently flip your pancake and cook for about a minute on the other side and you're done.

How About a Basic Cake?
2-1/4 cups All Purpose Flour
1-1/2 cups Sugar
2 Teaspoons Baking Powder
3/4 cup salted butter softened
4 large eggs
1 cup milk
2 Teaspoons Vanilla Extract

Mix butter, sugar, baking powder and vanilla until fluffy.  Add in eggs one at a time beating each one in pretty good before you put the next one in.  Ad in 1/2 of the flour and beat on low speed until well mixed.  Then add in 1/2 of the milk.  Alternate back and forth until the flour and milk are completely added in.  Pour into round cake pans or an 8 x 8 square baking pan and bake on 350 degrees for about 35 to 40 minutes.  You want to start checking your cake at 30 minutes.  Simply do the toothpick trick.  Insert the toothpick into the cake and pull it straight back out.  If it is clean then the cake is done.  If it still has batter on it, throw it away and cook the cake for 5 minutes more.  Check with toothpick again after 5 minutes.  Continue this process until done.  Don't check it the first time until it has cooked for at least 30 minutes.


Maybe Some Basic Muffins
2 cups All Purpose Flour
4 Teaspoons Baking Powder
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
2 Tablespoons Sugar
1 cup milk
2 eggs beaten
3 Tablespoons melted butter

Mix all dry ingredients in one bowl.  Mix all wet ingredients in another bowl.  Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients.  Pour into muffin tins and bake 8 to 10 minutes at 400 degrees.  It's really that simple.

See the Trend?

By now I hope that you can see that by having the "Essentials" in your pantry, you can whip up these favorite food items in no time.  As you can see from these 4 basic recipes, everyone one of them contains ingredients that are in the Essentials list.

Next time we will talk about some new family members to join the pantry family.  Until then....

Hugs,


 

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