January 14, 2011

Panera and Pastor Ryan

When I made the menu plan I knew I would be home on Thursday afternoon so I would have more time than usual to make a more involved dinner. I planned all week on making the Panera Bread's Creamy Potato Soup and Pastor Ryan's Bloomin' Herb Bread. It was delicious. I struggled a little with the bread and will be making it again to see if I can make it better this time. Don't get me wrong it was not a complete failure. . . it tasted great and I enjoyed it (I think everyone else did too). I really enjoyed the soup too. The ground red pepper added a bit of a kick to the soup which was a nice variation to other potato soups I have eaten.

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Panera Bread’s Creamy Potato Soup
from Lynn’s Kitchen Creations
Print Recipe

6 cups chicken broth
6 cups potatoes, peeled and cubed
1/2 teaspoon seasoning salt
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, cut into chunks, room temperature
4 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled (optional)
sharp cheddar cheese, shredded (optional)

Combine broth, potatoes and spices. Boil on medium heat until potatoes are tender. Smash a few of the potatoes to release their starch for thickening. If you like it smooth smash more, if you like it chunky just smash a little of it. You can decide the texture of it. Reduce to low heat. Add cream cheese. Heat, stirring frequently, until cheese melts. Ladle into bowls. Sprinkle a little bacon over each bowl of soup.

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Pastor Ryan’s Bloomin’ Herb Bread
from The Pioneer Woman Cooks
Print Recipe

20 ounces, weight bread flour (all purpose is okay, too) - About 4 Cups
8 ounces, fluid water
4 ounces, fluid melted butter with chopped herbs of choice (chives, rosemary, or thyme)
2 tsp salt
1 tsp active or instant yeast (if active, it would be best to sprinkle yeast over the water to let it start to work before mixing it in)

Combine all ingredients together in a stand mixer with the dough hook (it can be done by hand…it just takes longer). Mix them together for about 10 minutes or so until a windowpane can be successfully achieved with the dough. This is where you can pull off a small chunk of the dough you’re kneading and stretch it gently to see if it is somewhat translucent. If you can do this without it tearing, it’s ready. Once this elasticity has been achieved, the dough can sit out with plastic wrap over it for 1-4 hours to double in size. After it’s gotten bigger, it should be kneaded for a minute or two so that the yeast can redistribute. Preheat oven to 450. Form it into a dome and place in a covered cast iron pan after coating it with olive oil and a sprinkling of kosher salt. Cut a large ‘X’ into the surface of the bread dough so it can bloom! Bake inside a covered cast iron pan after coating the rounded dough with olive oil and sprinkling with kosher salt. Bake for 30 minutes with the lid on, then remove lid to finish it off for another 15 to 30 minutes (internal temperature should be between 200 and 210).

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