Pitch Perfect 2  is an equally entertaining sequel to the blockbuster hit Pitch Perfect. The Barden Bellas once again find themselves having to defend their reputation after a mishap while performing, and this time they are battling for the world title. The Bellas manage to pull themselves together with plenty of music and even more laughs making Pitch Perfect 2 a great date night movie or movie night out with friends.

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When it comes to pairing food and drinks all that comes to mind is pizza and beer, Chinese takeout, and plenty of cookies, candy and coffee to keep me up for days.  Seems like just yesterday.

Here is the trailer, and following some recipes for us out of college with the time now to cook.

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Margherita Pizza

Recipe courtesy Gabriele Corcos and Debi Mazar

Total Time:

4 hr 19 min

Prep: 10 min |Inactive Prep: 4 hr |Cook: 9 min

Level:Easy

Yield:4 pizzas [Serves: 8 (2 servings per pizza)]

Margherita Pizza

INGREDIENTS

1 (28-ounce) can pelati tomatoes*

Kosher salt

All-purpose flour, for dusting

4 (12-ounce) pizza dough balls, at room temperature, recipe follows

8 ounce mozzarella, grated

Handful fresh basil leaves, torn

PIZZA DOUGH:

1 (.25-ounce) package dry active yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)

1/2 cup lukewarm water (about 105 to 115 degrees F)

4 cups bread flour

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

3/4 cup cold water

1/4 cup olive oil, plus more for bowl

DIRECTIONS

Preheat a wood-fired pizza oven to very hot 4 hours before cooking. Alternately, you can use a preheated pizza stone in your home oven. It’s best to heat it for 1 hour at 500 degrees F before baking.

Add tomatoes to a food processor and process until smooth. Season with salt.

Sprinkle some flour on your pizza peel. Using a rolling pin, stretch your dough to a very thin 10-inch round.

Using a spoon to spread, put 1/4 of the sauce on the dough, and spread leaving a 1-inch border. Sprinkle 1/4 of the mozzarella over the sauce.

Gently put the pizza on the floor of the pizza oven or pizza stone. Bake until golden and crisp, about 3 minutes. Top with hand torn basil.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the yeast, lukewarm water, and 1/2 cup bread flour. Mix well and let sit until bubbly, about 30 minutes.

Whisk together the remaining 3 1/2 cups bread flour and salt in another bowl so it will be evenly distributed.

Once the yeast mixture is nice and bubbly and looks like foamy beer, add 3/4 cup cold water and olive oil. Using a dough hook, turn the mixer on and add the flour in increments.

Mix the dough for about 5 minutes, until the dough starts creeping up the dough hook and comes away from the sides of the bowl.

Place the dough in a large bowl lightly greased with olive oil. Turn to coat all sides of the dough with oil. Cover the bowl loosely with a clean tea towel. Let rise until doubled in size, about 2 hours. Punch dough down, and let rise another hour.

Divide the dough into 4 equal disks. Lightly flour a work surface. Using your fingers or heels of your hands (and a rolling pin, if you prefer) stretch the disks out to a 10-inch round.

Repeat with the remaining 3 pizza dough disks.

 

Kung Pao Chicken

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Serves 2 | Prep time: 15 minutes | Cook time: 5 minutes

Kung Pao Chicken
Ingredients:

1 1/2 boneless & skinless chicken breasts
3 tablespoons roasted peanuts
6-8 dried red chilies, seeded and cut into halves
3 tablespoons oil
5 slices peeled fresh ginger
2 cloves garlic, sliced diagonally
1 stalk scallion, cut into rings

Marinade:

1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon Chinese Shaoxing rice wine, optional
1 teaspoon oil

Sauce:

1 1/2 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon dark soy sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon Chinese black vinegar
2 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon cornstarch
Method:
Cut the chicken meat into small cubes, rinse in water, pat dry with paper towels and marinate with the ingredients above for 30 minutes.
Mix the sauce ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.
Heat up a wok with one tablespoon of oil and stir-fry the marinated chicken until they are 70% cook. Dish out and set aside. Clean the wok and add in the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil until it’s fully heated. Add in the ginger and garlic slices and do a quick stir before adding in the dried red chilies.
Stir fry the dried red chilies until aromatic and smell spicy, then add in the chicken meat. Do a few quick stirs before adding in the roasted peanuts. Add the sauce and stir continuously until the chicken meat is nicely coated with the sauce. Add in the scallions, stir to combine well with the chicken, dish out and serve immediately with steamed rice.
Cook’s Notes:
You can use the same recipe and substitute chicken with shrimp, scallop, or vegetables for a vegetarian dish.
As different soy sauce tastes differently and has different level of sodium so please adjust the saltiness accordingly. If the sauce tastes too salty, add some more sugar and water. If it’s not salty, add a little salt to taste.

 

Omg Soft Batch Chocolate Chip Cookies! Pure Nirvana!

The Baking Chocolatess

Omg Soft Batch Chocolate Chip Cookies! Pure Nirvana!

Ingredients

14 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

1 cup granulated sugar

½ cup light brown sugar

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2½ cups flour (+ a few extra tablespoons, see ** in directions below–I used 2 extra tablespoons)

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt or sea salt

3 cups, any variation of chocolate chips or chocolate chunks

Instructions

  • 1 Preheat the oven to 350 and line a few trays with baking paper or spray with non-stick spray.
  • 2 In a metal bowl, place the butter inside the bowl and place in the preheating oven.
  • 3 Leave it just for a few minutes, until the butter starts to melt around the outside (approx 1/2 of the butter melted). Take out of oven to cool.
  • 4 Once the butter has cooled, add both sugars and beat with a mixer until light and fluffy.
  • 5 Add the vanilla and eggs, beating between each addition just until mixed.
  • 6 Add the flour, baking soda and salt or sea salt and beat on a low speed, just until combined.
  • 7 **If needed, add more flour, a tablespoon at a time, until the dough comes together in a ball and not sticking to the sides of the bowl.
  • 8 Fold in the chocolate chips until just incorporated.
  • 9 Use an ice cream or cookie scoop (1/4 cup for large, 1.5 tablespoons for medium) and drop the dough onto the prepared baking sheets, allowing room for spreading. Pat down cookies just a little and press additional chocolate chips on top of cookie dough if desired.
  • 10 Bake one tray of cookies at a time, for 10-12 minutes for large, 8-9 for small. Don’t over-bake and allow to cool on wire rack.
  • 11 Makes 1 dozen large or 2 dozen small cookies.
  • 12 Store cookies in air-tight container.
  • Enjoy!

Notes

I used 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips, 1 cup milk chocolate chocolate chips, and 1 cup dark chocolate chocolate chips in my recipe.

 

Pitch Perfect 2

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