Thursday, April 30, 2015

Staff of Life 12 Grain Loaves

THROWBACK THURSDAY: I have been baking since I was a young child, both with my family and in the professional world, but over the course of the past couple of years I have learned that as a Baker, it is all about the product. As an Artisan, it is all about the technique and as a Miller, it is all about the grains and how they are ground. When you start to intertwine all three together you get a wonderful stack of loaves known as the "STAFF OF LIFE" bread. After a couple of modern tweaks to a very, very old recipe that was recently given to me by an artisan baker friend...

I give you my Recipe:
In a large bowl add 3 cups hot water ( I used half milk / half water),
next add small hand full of salt and sugar mixture (1 tablespoon of each)
Stir with fingers until desolved.
Next add 2 dips of fresh butter (about a half of stick)
And next add start for leavening. (1 cup sour dough start or 2 tablespoons yeast)
Add 2 handfuls of fresh course ground 10 grain mixture, Mix and let set until just before room temperature.
Now mix in 3 handfuls of whole wheat flour and 3-4 handfuls of white flour. Mix well, add more flour as needed until no longer sticky (this was the tricky part for me, I added flour until it no longer stuck to my fingers, similar to roll dough)
Knead for 5 minutes and place back in greased bowl. Let rise until double in size, punch down and let rise again. Next punch down and shape into loaves, let rise to double in size and bake until loaves are golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped upon. If you like it dark and crusty bake longer. (I baked mine in a regular 350* oven for about 45 minutes)

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

TWD: "Baking Chez Moi"- Coconut Tapioca with Spiced Hibiscus Syrup

Our TUESDAYS WITH DORIE challenge for today was "Coconut Tapioca" (page 382) with spiced hibiscus syrup.

Now, one of my all time favorite desserts is homemade Tapicoa and I was a little surprised by how few ingredients this recipe called for. It was really easy make. We also made the Spiced Hibiscus Syrup (page 450) and used it to sweeten the whipped cream garnish.

We loved the flavor and we chose to serve it at room temperature with fresh pineapple slices and cherries.

Check out the other variations at "TUESDAYS WITH DORIE"

Friday, April 24, 2015

FFWD: Sardines Escabeche

Another "Fishy" French FRIDAY with Dori and my friends. Today our challenge was to make: "Sardines Escabeche". Even though I am a big fan of sardines it took me a while to find the desire to make this recipe when it first posted. Then I decided it would be good served with my leftover Matzos from Tuesday. Next problem was finding the fresh sardines here at the canyon... So we used canned. Those of us who tried this dish actually really enjoyed it, most here at the pantry were not that adventurace. I would definitely make this again. :)

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

TWD: "Baking With Juilia" - Matzos

I have made a lot of flat breads through the years, but I don't think I have ever actually made MATZOS. 

We created ours using a fresh milled flour mixture of white, barley and pecans (for flavor) and then we added sesame seeds, poppy seeds, black pepper for taste and texture. The recipe calls for sea salt to be sprinkled to top just before baking so we used pink Himalayan sea salt. Not sure we will do that again, because the chucks of salt were hard and extra salty. Other than being a little time consuming with all the rolling, they are a very tasty cracker style flat bread. We served ours with Mozzerella Capresse Salad and Sardine Escabeche.

They reminded me of the Sardinia Crispbread that we made a couple of years ago. 

Saturday, April 18, 2015

"Unique Sweets" - Sidecar Doughnuts

After watch the segment on "Unique Sweets" several times, we had a great desire to try the huckleberry doughnuts at Sidecar. So when the opportunity arose and we found our selves one early morning in Costa Masa / Balboa waiting to ride the ferry to Catalina, we grabed a variety box of very warm and yummy looking gems. But much to our disappointment, our mouthwatering goodies were cold, semi-dry and a little over priced. Other than the different flavors of icings on top, we felt like all the doughnuts were the same base, whether it be the cake variety or regular. The shop itself was very clean and staff was friendly and ingageing. For me... it just wasn't all it was made out to be.