Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Waiting to turn 15

My beautiful sister is anxiously waiting to turn 15. But before becoming a woman, I wanted to capture her girlish innocence so that my family always has a picture to back at. They grow so fast. Tear.

Nena's Freshman Pic

Nena's Freshman Pic 2

Sunday, January 17, 2010

The BBA Challenge: Anadama Bread

After several months of following the Bread Baker's Apprentice Challenge that I first discovered on the Pinch My Salt blog, I have finally decided to bake along. This challenge is one that is taking place across many kitchens around the world with one goal in mind: to attempt every singe recipe in Peter Reinhart's The Bread Baker's Apprentice: Mastering the Art of Extraordinary Bread.

So here was my attempt at the first bread. This is Anadama Bread, which uses a corn meal soaker, or put simply: corn meal soaked in water. I left mine soaking overnight. The next day I mixed the soaker with part of the flour, yeast, and water then let it sit for 1 hour to ferment. Then I mixed in all the remaining ingredients: molasses, flour, salt, and butter. I mixed the dough using a Danish Dough Whisk - Large I ordered through Amazon.com. Then I kneaded the dough by hand using the method from this video. The dough should pass the "window pane test", but I always have a hard time accomplishing this. Most times I just give up and bake it anyway, but I think I got it somewhat right for this bread. Lastly, I let the dough rise until doubled in an oiled bowl for 90 minutes and then proofed it for 60 minutes in a bread pan. Unfortunately, after I removed the plastic wrap from pan, the dough deflated. I'll have to be more careful for the next time. Although the loaves turned out miniature after baking them, they were still very tasty and made great grilled cheese sandwhiches!

Anadama Bread

Source: For exact ingredients and measurements, see The Bread Baker's Apprentice: Mastering the Art of Extraordinary Bread.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

1st Winter Basket

I joined a CSA (Community Shared Agriculture) this year! This is the first basket I received for the Winter Share. Isn't it beautiful? The basket was full of bright healthy greens such as arugula, napa cabbage, cilantro, mixed greens, and buttercrunch lettuce. I can't wait to see what I get in my basket next week!

1st Food Basket

Joining a CSA is a great to eat local food that is organic and you minimize the distance that food has to travel to get to your plate. It keeps your dollars in your community by helping support your local farmer.

1st Food Basket 3

If you are interested in learning more about CSAs, check out this link for the one nearest you.

1st Food Basket 2