Weather: Going to be a lovely day! Lots of sun after yesterdays rains. Strong winds forecast, but I love variety.
School: It’s official. We are on our ‘summer’ break. I take December off so I can truly enjoy the holidays.
Cooking: My friend Ginger, here’s her blog, educated me on bread. As always, this is more of a formula versus a recipe. Here are the basics:
Artisan Bread, a la Ginger
1. Put the following into your mixer and beat for 10 minutes, really, 10 minutes. This will develop some serious gluten strands. Very beautiful.
2 1/2 c hot water
1 T yeast
2-3 c freshly milled, whole wheat flour (this is approx 1/2 the total amt of flour you are going to use)
2. Add in the rest of your flour (whatever it takes to make the dough come together) and the following:
2 t salt
1/4 c sucanat
nuts – opt
flax seed – opt
dried fruit – opt
3. Knead all of this for 5 more minutes.
4. Let your dough rise an hour or so.
5. Shape your loaf into baguette shape or boule shape and liberally COAT THE BREAD IN FLOUR! (I watched youtube for specific help in shaping these loaves)
6. Preheat your oven to 450.
7. I have put a cast iron griddle into my oven and heat it along with the oven. If you don’t have that, improvise. My 1st loaf I baked in a colander and the bread and the colander turned out OK.
8. Slash the tops of your bread with your bread knife. This gives the bread the ability to rise. Place bread in oven and QUICKLY throw 1/2 cup cold water into the bottom of the oven.
9. Throw 1/2 more water into the bottom of the oven frequently. This produces steam that makes an incredibly, crisp crust.
10. Bake 25-30 minutes. The bread will be quite brown and hard.
11. Wait as long as you can before digging in.