Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Bread - my take on the "no knead bread"

Last night, I spent a ridiculous amount of time over at CSN, they sell everything from furniture to wall art and decor. I had intended to write about the bread I finally mastered - if it turns out 2x in a row, that's mastered, right? - but I guess it's obvious that post didn't happen, so here goes!

Did you know that jarred yeast is to be refrigerated after opening? I didn't. oops.
I also didn't realize that I should be using VERY warm water - as in 55 deg warm! wow.

I guess bread making is a science after all!
what I also found REALLY helped my bread making was allowing the 2nd rise to happen right in this very pot that I was going to bake it in. I sprayed the pot with cooking spray - all over - and generously floured it.

when all was said and done - beautiful, squishy, soft, fresh bread that I made! (and you can too!)
The only (small) glitch is a bottom that is browned more than I'd like, but I'm going to work on that...a over browned bottom is fine by me if the rest is de-lish!

now, here's how:

2.5 cups white flour
1/2 c whole wheat flour (or you could use 3 cups of regular flour)
1.5 c very warm water (55 deg)
1/4 tsp Quick Rise instant yeast
1.5 tsp salt

Mix yeast in with: 1/2 cup flour, 1/2 cup whole wheat flour, add salt
Stir in water, mix thoroughly.
Add in remaining flour, stir til flour is combined.

cover with a damp dishcloth, Leave to rise 10 hours - overnight works great - in pre warmed oven (200 deg then turn it off )

when dough is done rising, put on floured surface, flour your hands, turn dough into itself once or twice, cover with plastic wrap, let rest 15 min.

Spray cooking spray to Dutch oven, flour generously (including sides)
Plunk dough in Dutch oven, sprinkle with flour, put dutch oven lid on
let rise in pre-warmed oven for 1 hour 30 min.

Turn oven on to 450 (leave dough in oven as it preheats)

once up to temp, bake 30 min. Take out of pan. Let rest for min 30 min

enjoy (preferably with butter and some soup)

Saturday, January 22, 2011

These days

these days are passing so quickly.

Our dear girl is 11 months old.
I hate thinking "she's almost 1", not because I don't want her to be one. I do, I'm excited for all she's going to learn and see and do.
I just don't want to rush past month #11 to get there.

We (ok, just me) are still enjoying the typewriter. I have been tapping (clunking) out random bits of our sweet little one's days and lives. I like seeing it stamped out there. mistakes and all, no delete key on that machine.

I have finally got all the Christmas stuff packed away from all the "up high" places little hands can't yet reach. time consuming to say the least. I was sad to pack it all away - we had such a lovely Christmas - our first as a family of 4. Our sweet girl's first Christmas was very different from our dear boy's. She was just over 10 months - and "walking" around hanging on to furniture, getting right in there pulling paper and chewing toys. Our boy, well, he was just shy of 3 months at his first Christmas.

The last couple of days have seen our valentine heart garland develop. I've been able to squeeze in a stitch here and there (without too much (un)help from the 11 month old and the 2 year old!) it's been fun to stitch and watch their faces. so full of expression.

I've been making this bread for the last little while now.
Sherrie, over at Twenty Two Pleasant posted it a while back (2009) but I didn't really come across it until about October last year. Every now and then I'd give it a go... I liked it, it was good for soup dipping. almost like a sourdough, But I longed for more of a french bread type texture. this recipe is just so easy, that I kept coming back to it. and a few little changes, I had the bread I have been dreaming of making - squishy, soft, light and so tasty!

Saturday, January 01, 2011

Moments of Christmas 2010

a tradition I am going to start right now! I saw it posted over here and love the idea. Mark says I'll need a bigger jar - I think he might be right! I am actually going to go back a few years and (try to) do one for 2008 and 2009 too. here's hoping that happens!

Lachlan's doll - she's almost done, her hair is in the works, and I'm hoping to have it done and sewn on next week - I keep changing my mind on her hair colour - I think it needs to feel right somehow!

Lachlan's first Christmas ornament - hand painted snowman :)

our tree - what a wonderful, full christmas we had.

Some new felted friends have joined our Christmas time family - it'll be hard to put these cuties away!