Sunday, January 31, 2010

Six Word Saturday: 16 Shevat, 5760

alef bais 001Take sourdough rise times VERY seriously.  :-(

alef bais 003

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Have I mentioned before how magical bread is?

How simply amazing?

How perfectly incredible?

Ted asked at supper tonight, “what’s in this?”  (yes, the disastrously flat semolina sourdough bread)

And I just sat there, smiling, and said, “flour… and water.”

Okay, there’s a bit of salt, and I realized this bread also included a bit of honey.

But basically, flour and water.

You mix it one way, you get one thing.

You bake it differently, you get another thing.

It’s like the magical desserts we used to make as kids, in the cool hidden part of the garage:  water in a little teeny ring mold.  My brother swore if we left it in the ring mold long enough, it would turn to jello.  It never did:  I just figured we didn’t leave it long enough.

We used to psych each other out, convincing each other we could turn our spit to concrete.  I’d find a blob on top of the concrete of the back steps and show him, saying, “see?  I spit there last week and now it’s hardened.”

And he’d do the same, showing me a blob of “hardened spit”… each of us knowing we were lying, each of us half-believing the other.

Bread is like that.  All over the Internet, there are blogs and sites and there are even books dedicated to authors bragging, “look what I made… just out of flour and water!”

Should I believe them?

And then there’s my own blog, with its sometimes-impressive shots of lovely breads I have made and we have eaten, though some are less than impressive.  I made them all… just out of flour and water!

Should you believe me?

Sourdough is the ultimate alchemy, to me, because you really don’t have to put anything else in.  Flour, water, leave it on the fridge, and you have this magical potion that you add to stuff to make it puff up as much or as little as you want.

Magic.

Sometimes, I don’t even believe it myself.

Semolina & Sour

As promised, tonight’s bread (ungrateful child:  “do we always have to have bread??!?”) is a web version of Maggie Glezer’s Sourdough Semolina, courtesy of The Fresh Loaf.

A few new techniques here, beyond just resuscitating my existing sourdough, which took two days even before I started this bread:

1) Using a stiff starter to raise a sourdough

2) Converting 100% (pancake-batter) starter to 50% (stiff) starter, as described in last night’s post.

3) Using semolina flour in a bread dough – very authentic, rustic, Italian, mmm…

4) Shaping baguette-type long breads

I guess that’s it for new stuff.

Anyway, I am sorrowed to report mixed results:  fine performance from the sourdough (yay!), nice taste and outstanding texture of the bread (mmm!)… but a yinky flat toad-shape in the final loaves (blech!), as you’ll see see. 

Initial firm (50%) sourdough left to ferment overnight:

puppet 007 

Now, in the morning, autolyse, mix and knead… and fast-forward 2 hours to… shaping the loaves.  Gaw-geous!  Little hint of the mess that is to come.

puppet 010

Fast forward three hours to… blah.  Concealed in the oven (not that there’s anything I really could have done to save them), the loaves have spread out hopelessly.

Duh, now I understand why baguettes are traditionally raised in a special pan and/or with towels wedged between them.  I think this moist dough would have held up nicely if it had just had a little support.  Without it… pancake city.

semolina 001_thumb

Baked up beautifully, even a bit of good oven spring, but nothing much to be done about those sad FLAT breads.  Blah.

 semolina 004_thumb

Here it is, sliced, looking more like biscotti (mandelbroit, for any Jews reading this!) than a baguette.  See that miserable cross-section?

 semolina 007_thumb

The bread itself, as I said, was flavourful and full of holes, probably exactly as it should be.  Not too sour but with a hint of lovely, rich sourdough flavour.   At least, I thought it had, in those tiny precious morsels of “inner” bread that I was able to glean.

Yes, irony of ironies, these loaves came out with such a lovely, crispy crust… just what you don’t want when your bread is essentially ALL crust.  It made for some mighty tough eating, even with tomato soup to dip it in.

So, for next time… and there WILL be a next time:  Drop it in a loaf pan, support it with a towel, do something, anything to ensure that this bread cannot spread out within an unlimited flat space.

Anyway, onwards and upwards, to another Maggie Glezer recipe that will hopefully not turn into a saggy old toad in the oven:  Sourdough Challah.  No semolina in this one, though there is a semolina variation I might want to make later on.  I like to make every recipe “straight up” the first time through, and only vary it once I’ve got it right.

Speaking of which, I really MUST make that roasted garlic-and-potato no-knead bread again next week.  Oh, and revive my rye starter. 

There is no end of breads in sight, despite criticism from the aforementioned Ungrateful Child.

Okay, actually there is an End of Breads in sight, but I am studiously ignoring it.  Yes, we now have exactly TWO MONTHS until Pesach.  Maybe that’s why I’m feeling a certain urgency in breadland these days.

Since this blog most definitely falls within the category of chometz, I plan to go completely “dark” for that week-and-a-bit.  But then come back with a vengeance the minute it’s all over.  My post-Pesach “shlissel” challah is legendary!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Okay, I’ve got it… sourdough time again!

Figured out the perfect applications – plural! – for the sourdough that has been coming back to life on top of my fridge all week.  Two Maggie Glezer recipes (my mother probably has her book, A Blessing of Bread, if I wanted to hold and caress it in person instead of just steal recipes over the Internet):

But first… here’s the fun part, which I can actually do now that I have a scale:  all of Maggie Glezer’s recipes apparently call for a FIRM starter.  And my starter is pancake-battery; I believe it’s known as 100% hydration, which means that by weight I add about as much flour as water. 

So I must spend a day converting the starter to 50% hydration…

Here’s the technique I plan to follow.

So much bread-geeky, scale-happy fun…

Wait a minute!  That technique (Maggie Glezer’s conversion formula) is apparently WRONG, and according to this site, I am apparently not the biggest, funnest bread-geek on the block.

The author there says the following  formula is more accurate to convert a 100% (pancake-batter) starter to a 50% (thick) starter:

40 g starter (40g of 100% starter = 20g water + 20g flour)

then add

15g water (+ the original 20g = 35g water)

50g flour (+ the original 20g = 70g flour)

And, as everyone knows, 35/70 = 50% hydration.  Whew!

So that’s what I’m doing right now, before I go in to fold the laundry.  If it’s ready, it should quadruple in 8 hours or less.  Here’s hoping!

NOTE TO SELF:  Ambitious but beautiful braiding technique to try, also from Maggie Glezer:  http://www.finecooking.com/videos/braiding-challah.aspx

Focaccia and Ciabatta – two days from one dough!

Inspired by Matt, husband of Kath Eats, at  her blog, I attempted to follow his formula for Focaccia and Ciabatta.  He adapted these from a single ciabatta recipe out of Bread:  A Baker’s Book, by Jeffrey Hamelman, which is probably the #1 “Bread Book I Would Love to Own if I Had $50 Hanging About Doing Nothing.”

I definitely like how, after the poolish stage, he splits the dough into small enough batches (1/3 for the ciabatta, 2/3 for the focaccia) that I could run them individually through my food processor.  No hand kneading!  My hands are still tired from last week’s challah.

No idea why, but I didn’t have quite the amount of poolish as I should have.  Maybe lost some against the sides of the bowl?  I mean, I weighed everything going in, so… .it’s a mystery.

Anyway, the two doughs turned out beautifully, but were not exactly the “pancake batter” consistency he describes in his blog entry.  I used all-purpose flour, not bread flour, but that shouldn’t have made the bread more gluten-y, which I think it was. 

When the food processor was finished, each batch was fairly shiny, with what I’d consider a well-chewed chewing-gum consistency.  Not exactly pourable, but lots of strengh; it felt nice and smooth.

Here’s one of the batches (focaccia?), after the first rise:

allen gardens 002 

And after the first folding:

allen gardens 003

Gloppy, but it worked.  Here are both doughs resting in bowls after their first fold.  Yes, the bigger dough is in the smaller bowl and vice versa.

 allen gardens 004

This is a fun one:  three fermentations going on simultaneously above the microwave, above the fridge.  Bottom:  ciabatta, middle:  focaccia, top:  sourdough starter that I am reviving to use later on this week.

 allen gardens 006 

Okay, I admit, I miscalculated and by the time I started yesterday, I knew I wouldn’t have time for the full final rise (eek).  I allotted twenty minutes between stretching instead of half an hour as Matt says to do… and I think these turned out okay.

allen gardens 012 

The focaccia distorted pretty early on and was really too soft to do much with.  The final product definitely suffered, as you will see.

With the oven preheated, the ciabatta went flop onto the pan and into the oven.
allen gardens 013 

emerging 25 minutes later a deep, rich brown, almost burnt but not quite and as LIGHT as a feather.  Wow!  I was very impressed, and surprised by the weight.

allen gardens 015 

I had to go out to an event at our shul, but I told Ted to take pictures when they opened the bread:  hopefully, I’ll post them at a later time. 

So ultimately I didn’t even get to taste the ciabatta, but Elisheva assured me it turned out just the way I wanted:  more air than bread.  What I saw of it looked perfect, but I was so stuffed by the time I got home that I didn’t feel like washing just so I could try a piece.  What a letdown.

Oh, yeah, so the focaccia… further to Matt’s suggestion in an email, I tossed the thing, fully risen, onto a pan, sprayed it with Pam, and threw it in the fridge overnight.

This afternoon when we came home exhausted and ready to eat, I just preheated the oven and brought the focaccia back to room temperature while that was happening.

Then, sprinkled it with dried (gasp!) rosemary – I suspect that my real rosemary topiaries are too infested with aphids to eat – and tossed it in the oven.  25 minutes later…

allen gardens 063 

Okay, you can see that the bits that got distorted and thinned out too much basically baked into soda crackers.  Yummy, but crackers.  The parts that actually baked up into bread were a real experience.

allen gardens 066

Cornmeal definitely makes this a very hearty bread.  I think I expected a little more of a sour “zing” after an overnight poolish contributing to basically two days of fermentation.  I think I was also hoping for more of the bubbliness of the ciabatta.

But, of course, you’re never going to get that with all the cornmeal in this dough.  I love corn, and I love cornbread… is it fair – when I put the corn in there in the first place – to say I was a bit disappointed by the frank corniness of this focaccia?

It WAS incredibly tasty.  And I did make mistakes, dumb mistakes, including the uneven shape of the bread… oh, and accidentally leaving out the rosemary and olive oil from the dough (sprinkling it on top just isn’t the same). 

Mistakes that probably warrant doing the whole thing over just to see if I can’t get it a teeny bit closer to perfection.

All of which said, I think cornmeal is a lot like semolina, which I finally managed to buy the other day.  This bread has gotten me wondering once again about all the wonderfully authentic Italian possibilities inherent in semolina bread.

However, before I go the poolish-and-two-days route again, I may just see what the Artisan Bread in Five folks have to say about semolina.  Quick and dirty.

OR… maybe semolina bread is the perfect application for the sourdough still lurking atop my fridge!

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Postscript to this week’s challah

In case you’ve been following my Adventures in Challah with bated breath, and were wondering how this week’s brand-new challah endeavour fared.

Postscript:  It was GOOD.  It was VERY good.  It was very moist.  However…it was not at all sweet.  I knew that going in, but I wanted to commit to, at least the first time, making it “verbatim.” 

Because I can’t stand it when people do recipes wrong the very first time and then complain that it isn’t a good recipe.  It is a good recipe, and I think tweaking it to be as sweet as I like will not be a hard thing. 

It is a very soft, sticky dough, but with some working, becomes quite friendly.  Very doughy, if that’s a good word to describe dough.  We ended up taking a ball of it that I’d separated and using it to play catch with.  It was nice and rubbery; if I was a baker, I might call that “well-developed.”

That could also be because I actually took the time and trouble to hand-knead it for about ten minutes on Thursday evening.  Lots of creaking and groaning from the legs of the old faithful wooden table, but it held up and I think the dough was probably improved by the personal attention.

It is lovely to be kneading by hand, but now that it becomes obvious that our weekly challah needs have expanded beyond the capabilities of my 14-cup cuisinart (which I used to use all the time!) I find myself wishing I had a stand mixer.

I weighed everything out and the recipe made three BIG challahs… I want to say they were 2-pound loaves, but now I am wondering if they were maybe 1.5 pounds each.  I guess I could tally it up from the recipe.  Let’s see…

The New Challah
  • 35 g active dry yeast  (3 tbsp) => I used 30g; my yeast seems to weigh 10g/tbsp
  • 950 ml warm water (4 cups) = approx 944g
  • 35 g salt  (2 tbsp) => I used 45g; my kosher salt seems to weigh 15g/tbsp, and I like a bit more salt)
  • 100 g white sugar (1/2 cup)
  • 235 ml vegetable oil (1 cup)  = approx 224g
  • 4 eggs = approx 200g
  • 1700 g all-purpose flour (Allrecipes converted this as 1200g, but I stuck with 1700g, and the consistency looks good so far)

Okay, now I remember.  I was going to do three 2-pound loaves, but there was a little left over.  So I made three bigger-than-2-pound loaves.  :-o

My calculator says each one would have been around 1000g.

Anyway, they were huge, but they were delicious and the texture was just about right.

So, for next week, I will probably do exactly the same thing, just double the sugar.  I will probably add a bit more water, or I may double the sugar by using honey, which will have the same moisturizing effect.

Fun, fun, fun!

And a happy new cake!

I wanted to make a pareve banana cake for Shabbos, but didn’t have any tofutti sour cream (= Sour Supreme)… plus I wanted to see if I could get away from the creamy-margarine-based cake thing.

So I found this oil-based, super-easy banana cake recipe at RecipeZaar.  Much easier than creaming, not to mention finding and buying the Sour Supreme, and nobody noticed the difference.

No picture because the cake was gone about fifteen minutes after lunch ended this afternoon.  I guess that means it was good!

Maybe I’ll take its picture next time.

Six Word Saturday: 9 Shevat, 5760

This week:  wake up, sleepy starters!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Pouffy Master-Dough Pizza

newsprouts 009Further to Tuesday night’s AB5 Master Dough, here’s more of the same in the form of two pizzas!

I wouldn’t say these were a rollicking success.  The crust was certainly tasty, but it was definitely more bread than pizza.  I wonder why it pouffed so much…?

This was all oven spring, by the way.  It was very, very thin when I stretched it out in the pan.

Anyway, delicious supper had by all.  Not a single complaint; just a lot of bread.

Now, who could complain about that?newsprouts 007 

Super-easy to make, also.  The dough was very elastic and easy to stretch out (I used 1.5lbs on each pan). 

And there’s still enough of this double batch to make one more loaf!  And it is developing a lovely tangy sour smell… maybe I’ll save it and bake it up for supper on Monday.

Argh! Flour? And a total Challah revamp!

Okay, I’m stuck.  It’s Thursday night, and I’m supposed to be making challah, but HOW?  I am stuck on the most basic of basics:  how to measure flour.

I had an astonishing insight:  rather than rely on various sites’ guidelines for how much all-purpose flour is supposed to weigh, I can simply weigh my own and average it out.

Well.

Ten scoops later, it turns out my flour averages a little less than 150g per cup.  Which is very nice and interesting, except then I realized that I’m weighing the bottom of the bag, which is more compressed than the top.

So then I weighed the “fluffed-out” flour that I had weighed previously.  Well, so that stuff only weighs around 135g – almost a full 15g less per cup! 

(and since we’re aiming for a challah recipe which calls for 12-13 cups of flour, that discrepancy could mean a full cup, more or less)

Just to totally confuse me, the unit-conversion site I’ve been using for baking recipes, the one I was so excited about when I first posted the link here, says a cup of flour weighs only 99.3 g.  Sheesh!

Anyway, it seems that despite my problems with bread this week, the Artisan Bread in 5 folks are probably more or less accurate at estimating 5 ounces per cup – around 141.7g; somewhere in between my “bottom of the bag” and “fluffed-out” averages.

So I’m going to try subbing this quantity into a new recipe.  In looking for a recipe, I decided the main criteria for me are MOISTNESS and KEEPING POWER.  I cannot stand most challahs the second day – ie for Shabbos lunch.

For some reason, I usually end up enjoying water challahs more, but everybody insists that eggs give the bread more staying power, so I am going to try another egg-based challah. 

I am re-reading Alton Brown’s baking book, and was hoping it would give some insight into challah, but in fact, I am finding it less than illuminating in the breads department, and I am not at all interested in making muffins, cakes, etc., so … no go.

I also considered Rose Levy Beranbaum’s challah, but don’t have any sourdough starter ready to go at the moment.  I may dig some out to try for next week, because she says the sourdough gives it lots of moisture.  Intriguing!

So here it is, after a long, careful selection process.  This week’s contender is… an anonymous “Shabbat Challah” recipe at Allrecipes, which has the advantage of almost 46 rave reviews and many comments along the lines that it is quite moist.

(along, I’m sure, with the two or three usual low-rating morons who say, “I divided the recipe in half, took out all the gluten, subbed sucralose for the honey, threw in some rancid sunflower seeds and baked it for an hour and a half and I just have to say this was THE WORST BREAD I’VE EVER TASTED.”)

I’ll be sure to keep ya posted!

Oh… just for my own reference, here’s Allrecipes’ metric conversion of the original recipe, which was in cups and whatnot.  This is what I’m going to be following (with comments and corrections as noted).  However, Allrecipes uses a weight of only 125g per cup of flour, so I’ll be sticking with the 141.75 (5oz) of AB5 until proven otherwise.

The New Challah
  • 35 g active dry yeast  (3 tbsp) => I used 30g; my yeast seems to weigh 10g/tbsp
  • 950 ml warm water (4 cups)
  • 35 g salt  (2 tbsp) => I used 45g; my kosher salt seems to weigh 15g/tbsp, and I like a bit more salt)
  • 100 g white sugar (1/2 cup)
  • 235 ml vegetable oil (1 cup)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1700 g all-purpose flour (Allrecipes converted this as 1200g, but I stuck with 1700g, and the consistency looks good so far)

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

p.s. Semolina…?

I really really REALLY want to make bread with semolina.  I remember I  used to get it almost anywhere, back when I was making pasta.  Why haven’t I seen it anywhere lately?

Where, oh, where, is the semolina hiding?

Two bread epiphanies

ciabatta 007

Wait a minute! 

Last night’s bread (in photo at left) was not even as good as previous attempts to make the AB5 Master Dough.  Why??? 

Well, don’t waste too much time puzzling it through, because I just figured it out!

On their website, the authors of Artisan Bread in Five estimate a cup of flour at 5 ounces (ie 141g) BUT most people estimate it a bit less, like between 4 and 4.5 (closer to 125g).  It’s not a lot, but what I just realized that it is probably enough to make a difference. 

My trustworthy “Artisan Bread in Five” bread is suffering, ironically, due to my newfound snobbishness about exactitude and scaling all ingredients!  Oh… my… gosh.  If this is so, I totally feel betrayed!

Look at the crumb of the bread in the picture above.  Quite (um) crumbly, right???  Except…this is not, by nature, a crumbly bread.  Unless you have tossed in too much flour, which, of course I have, thanks to the authors’ own recommendations.

But, of course, dumb, dumb me for assuming that I can toss Canadian flour and a million other variables into the mix and still come out with a formula that will weigh exactly the same as I’m sure it really does in their test kitchens.

But still.  If I cannot rely on the authors’ recommendation of 5oz per cup, perhaps other recipes that give weights are going to give me problems as well.  Sheesh.  Frustrating.

So… what’s the other epiphany?  A happy one, I’m (um) happy to report!

I know what to do for Purim… bread!  Not just a challah loaf or whatever it is that other people do.  Something fresh and amazing.  Ugh; something yashan… I just thought of that.  Something pareve, of course.  Mini-baguettes, with an assortment of amusing spreads and dips?  With an overall “bread” theme.  Delivered fresh tied up in a tea towel with a lovely piece of ribbon.  How very… very.

Anyway, we shall see.  Let’s get the basic recipe working again and then I’ll mess around.

Hey… maybe that’s why I’m not loving our Shabbos challah anymore?  It really was kind of DRY and CRUMBLY last week.  Oh-kay.  Back to the drawing board indeed!

The Ciabatta/Focaccia thing…

ciabatta 005My latest challenge is a simple one:  create a delicious creamy airy fabulous artisan-quality Ciabatta… or Focaccia, because they are basically flip sides of the same thing.

First attempt yesterday was not amazing.  Not a flop, but not mind-blowing.

The bread, based on the Artisan Bread in Five (AB5) Master Dough, was TASTY, but it could not by any stretch be called either of the two paradigmatic bread-types above.  Basically, it was just bread.

  ciabatta 006ciabatta 003

Bread with a weird shape.  Yummy bread, and half the dough is still waiting to make a fabulous base for tomorrow night’s homemade pizza, but just bread, nonetheless.

SO… after weeks, if not months, of lazy bread lady slackishness, it seems that we are back to messing around starters and poolishes and whatnot.

First stop along the fun & delicious path to the perfect Ciabatta:  one of two sites:

Kath’s husband Matt’s dual-purpose-from-a-single-poolish Focaccia and Ciabatta.

or…

The highly fabled Jason's Quick Coccodrillo Ciabatta Bread over at The Fresh Loaf.

Stay tuned for one, or the other, or a head-to-head showdown!  Actually, scratch that.  No energy for a showdown, sorry!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Thinking I need a new “staple” challah … :-(

breads 013This variation on the no-knead dough has been tweaked to death.

It now performs beautifully!  Forms shapely loaves that look great and actually taste wonderful when fresh… but I do not like it by the next day.

Maybe it’s the egg?

I feel like water challahs lose less in the transition to “day-old,” but I dunno, because all the books tell you that egg helps keep breads moist and fresh longer.

Whatever it is, I don’t like egg in my challah.

Maybe I will take out the egg next week, and tweak the recipe so it uses lots and lots of water.  I’m very open to suggestions, because this is our Shabbos staple and I would really like to moan with pleasure every time I bite into it, whether it’s Friday night or the next afternoon…

Okay, maybe not moan.  Maybe just a modest little “mmmm…”

Must think.  Must tweeeeeeeek.

Six Word Saturday: 2 Shevat, 5760

 

breads 014 Shabbos is coming… let’s get baked!

(I’m over six words, but clockwise from top left:  PC from-a-mix buttery ginger cookies, chocolate mousse “boils” pie in honour of the plagues in this week’s parsha, onion/spinach quiche, and two some-knead challahs)

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Bubble, bubble, toil and trouble…

DSC06099I left a batch of basic Artisan Bread in Five no-knead master dough in the bucket in the fridge over the weekend.

Two days ago, I was making a delicious beany supper (not such a success with the small set, but anyway), so I hauled out the dough, expecting it to have perhaps separated (like sourdough does – speaking of which, my poor neglected starters!!! :-o)

Anyway, the dough looked GREAT!  A little bit of wetness at the bottom, but the dough itself was fine.  Except it had this surreal bubbly lunar landscape on top.

Once I sprinkled the dough with flour, it was great to work with.  It had a nice, mellow “developed” flavour (not exactly sour)without being overwhelming.

Anyway, I forgot to remember exactly how old the dough was… not quite a week, and I realize some of their doughs don’t keep for as long as the basic one (I wouldn’t want to keep an enriched dough, especially one with eggs, for very long at all), but it’s nice to know the dough has great staying power to keep it handy for “last-minute” breadmaking.

(forgot to take pictures, but out of this 4lb hunk, I made 1 boule and 1 loaf-pan loaf… only the loaf was in a tinfoil loaf pan which couldn’t contain the floppy wet dough, so it ended up being a very lazy-looking loaf indeed…doh!)

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Six Word Saturday: 24 Teves, 5760

gingies 009

Lots of baking… not much bread!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Scaling New Heights!

scale 008

Yup, it’s a tacky pun, but here I am, scaling the flour for yet another Artisan Bread in FiveBig Batch.

It sure ain’t pretty, though…

Since they’re aimed at home cooks, none of the recipes in the book include weight measures.  But at their website, the authors mention that they are weighing a cup of all-purpose at a standard 5 ounces.

And since we’re in Canada, my beautiful new Birthday Scale (thank you, Sara!) (if you’re crushed that you can no longer buy me a scale for my birthday, other lovely items are still available on my wish list!), weighs things only in metric.  Who cares about ounces once you’re north of the border???

Well, as everybody knows, 5 ounces equal 141.75 grams.  No problem!  (or at least, I knew this after using my Cool Cooking Web Tool site)

And that means if I’m making a double batch of the Master Bread recipe, I have to multiply the 6.5 cups it calls for by two, then by 141.75.  What you end up with is 1842-ish grams, give or take… and here it is, all lit up in beautiful digital blue on my brand new SCALE!

I am either going to make this into pizza or pletzl for supper.  The original plan was pizza, but it seems we are out of cheese.  Pletzl isn’t a meal in itself, however, so I will have to make soup.  Plus it requires a bit more prep time because of the onions. 

Okay, right, I’m just being lazy.  Pletzl it is!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Six Word Saturday: 17 Teves, 5760 (erev my birthday)

L’chaim!  To a year in BREAD!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Now THESE are chocolate-chip cookies! (tutorial link)

temp_kccbannerYay, me!  I’ve been selected to host an upcoming edition of the Kosher Cooking Carnival, a blog carnival focused on… okay, I won’t insult your intelligence.

Stay tuned in Adar for a round-up of exciting Purim-related posts from the blogosphere or blogoverse or bloggetty-blogland or whatever they call it these days.  And, of course, if you have something fun and foodie, please submit it because I haven’t a clue what I’m going to include!

Anyway.

DSC06054

I just posted a step-by-step tutorial for my roll-your-own “Pillsbury-style” freeze, slice and bake chocolate-chip cookies.  It’s more of a technique than a recipe, and I didn’t think it was entirely appropriate for this “baking” blog because it’s not bread OR cake.  But this is absolutely my favourite way to make never-fail ccc’s, so if you like them as much as I do, here’s the link yet again!

The freeze, slice and bake technique ensures perfect-looking cookies (okay, ignore the lopsided batch shown above) that are deliciously thick, crisp, chewy, perfectly baked and above all – fast and homemade!

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