unbibium: (Default)
so I let the whole wheat dough rise overnight.

I opened the lid, and it seems to have risen to the exact right level.

So I started to move it to the fridge to store it for later cooking, and I dropped the bowl.

It didn't spill, but all the air went out of the dough.

I guess I'll try baking it anyway.
unbibium: (Default)
The 100% Whole Wheat recipe in the book had a lot of new, viscous ingredients in it, like oil and honey and milk, in strange amounts, which grew even stranger as I only had a big enough bowl to do a 2/3 batch.

I got all the ingredients except the flour together, and then I spilled the bowl. FUCK.

I could have given up, but instead I started over.

The dough is resting and rising now. I probably won't have time to bake it tonight.
unbibium: (bread)
This batch of cheese bread has a lot more cheese in it. But the dough is a lot looser and it doesn't seem to keep itself in a tight ball while I'm letting it sit to rise.

If it turns out OK, I'll have it as a packed lunch tomorrow, and perhaps dinner.
unbibium: (Default)
The new Cornish Pasty Company location is so much larger than the old one. And brighter, too; not like a coal mine at all.

Ordering a Royale with Cheese, and enjoying a Guinness, why the hell not.

Incidentally, I tried some of the cheese bread before I left. It's not that different tasting from the cheeseless bread I've been baking. Either it's supposed to be subtle, or I need to add more cheese next time.
unbibium: (bread)
That bread book I have has recipes for beignets, both regular and chocolate-filled.

If I replace the chocolate with sweet red bean paste, I'll have the perfect dessert product.

Well, not quite perfect -- the powdered sugar is messy and full of empty calories, and you have to eat them while they're still warm. And my kitchen isn't really equipped for deep frying just yet. The only reason I considered frying my own chicken was because Good Eats pan-fried it in a cast-iron skillet.

In practice, I'll probably make some other kind of chocolate-filled bread and replace the chocolate in that recipe.
unbibium: (Default)
Bread turned out the best yet.

And I have freshly-ground peanut butter from Whole Foods to spread on it.

But eating it now would impede my sleep, so I'll save it for breakfast.
unbibium: (bread)
I was working from home today, and couldn't quite get a grip on my work, so I threw the rest of my bread dough in the oven, in two separate loaves.

The first one burnt. I think it was because I left the oven on the pre-heat setting.

The second one was undercooked, and also the loaf didn't split properly at the top, so the bread rose out the bottom in a lopsided fashion. I think I'm starting to understand how the crust is supposed to work.
unbibium: (Default)


OK, I think I didn't pre-heat it enough. Even though it doesn't look very brown, the crust is very stiff. Also, I don't think I used enough dough; even after two hours of resting at room temperature, the dough didn't fill the bottom of the loaf pan, and after 40 minutes of baking, it was still the same size and shape it seemed; sliding around the loaf pan when I took it out....

I'm letting it cool down overnight. I'll bring it to work and share it.
unbibium: (Default)
Found my book, and my second attempt should be coming out of the oven any time now. I'll probably be giving it away at work, considering I won't really have time to eat it before it goes stale, what with election night plans, and all my plastic containers are full of red beans and rice, so if I make tuna salad, I have to use it all. Funny, I remember having more than three. Maybe I'll make sandwiches and ziploc them until it's all used up... the trick, of course, will be slicing the bread properly.
unbibium: (Default)
shit, I lost the book that tells me how to finish up this bread.

where the hell did I stash it?

Update: I even got my last load of garbage out of the dumpster. Still no luck. But I guess this means it's still in the apartment somewhere. But I'll never get back the hour and a half I spent searching for it, during which time I finished up that bread, burnt the top, found a loaf pan that's actually nine by four inches, and started letting that one rise.

I had work I needed to get done.

oh well. I can always buy another copy. And it'll show up right when I find my original copy.

Poor little original copy. It's sitting around somewhere, with the book jacket tucked into that sandwich bread recipe, just itching to tell me how the hell I'm supposed to slice it neatly without a mandolin.
unbibium: (Default)
Does anyone local to Tempe have a copy of Zelda: Twilight Princess for the Nintendo Wii?

I'd like to borrow your copy, just for a moment, for totally legitimate purposes.

Thanks. You can try some of my bread while you're here.
unbibium: (Default)
[livejournal.com profile] tamtrible convinced me that herbs bought at the 99-cent store could be trusted. Plastic bags would have been unacceptable, but I chanced upon plastic jars, so I bought them. And I used some 99-cent rosemary and thyme in my latest half-batch of dough.

If you thought my apartment smelled good before, then just you wait.

Now, my nose isn't very well-trained, so if this stuff turns out to be mistletoe and crab grass, I can't say I'll be able to tell in time. I suppose I should at least buy a more expensive brand of dried herb. But later.

I suppose it might be in my best interest to grow an herb garden, but I have a very shady south-facing balcony; anything I grow wouldn't get all that much sun in the winter, and practically no direct sunlight in the summer.

addendum

Oct. 21st, 2008 12:10 am
unbibium: (Default)
The ciabatta turned out good, but I'm not sure that what I made really counts as ciabatta. Is it really just the shape of it, or should the texture be different enough to notice?

I don't have an experienced baker checking up on me, so what I'm making could be wildly different from what the books is trying to get me to make. It's a minor point now, as long as the bread tastes good, but I don't want to be an unwitting victim to my own bad habits.

Also, I definitely need to learn better knife technique. It's another thing that I wish I had learned through teaching in person, instead of written language.
unbibium: (Default)


Yeah, I think that's where it got snagged.

BAGUETTE!

Oct. 16th, 2008 08:51 pm
unbibium: (Default)
BAGUETTE TIME!

The book says I gotta lubricate with whole wheat flour instead of corn meal, so I bought a bunch of it, and now I'm equipped to try my hand at whole wheat bread. But first, the baguette.

Thing is, I rolled it in whole wheat flour since it was already on the peel, so I hope that in doing so I didn't work too much of it into the dough.

When complete, this should look like the bread you see sticking out of grocery bags in movies.

And if it turns out OK, I'll bring it to work.
unbibium: (Default)
I finally figured out what I did wrong with the last batch of dough.

I halved the recipe, but I didn't halve the number of loaves per batch. Well, I moved from fourths to thirds, but they still weren't big enough to survive 30 minutes at 450.

I figured my current lidded bowl was big enough for a full batch. Well, it wans't enough to let a full batch rise. So I moved a fourth of it into a second bowl, and baked it so it wouldn't dry out.

And it turned out perfect, too.

Didn't mix the herbs in like I'd planned. Next batch, for sure. I'll use this dough to make a baguette first.
unbibium: (Default)
Loaf 5 was a few days ago and I burnt the crust again....

I went for Loaf 6 today. I had the least trouble with dough sticking to my hands, and the easiest time shaping the dough, or so I thought. The refrigerated store of dough was starting to smell like beer.

I noticed that it didn't seem to rise very much when I left it out for 40 minutes, and actually I forgot to pre-heat the oven so it stayed out 60 minutes.

It doesn't look overcooked by much, but it's a bit oddly shaped.

unbibium: (Default)
I had very little dough left. This one didn't burn. It's cooling now.

As suggested by the book, I made my next batch of dough without washing out the original bowl. It's supposed to make the sourdough notes appear faster, as if I were using a starter, but my batches are so small that I don't know if I'll ever reach that point.
unbibium: (Default)


Loaf #2 on the left, loaf #3 on the right.

They're getting progressively smaller, because I haven't gotten portioning quite right; I probably should have used the entire bowl for #3, instead of using half of what was left. It's still difficult to get it out of the bowl and unstuck from my hand. I reduced the cooking time for the third one, but apparently not enough. Also, I haven't been checking my oven thermometer.
unbibium: (Default)
I put the second loaf in the oven about 20 minutes ago, and just realized that I forgot to score the hash mark in it like the first one.

I'll get the third loaf shaped now.

Update: FAIL. The whole top half is black. Internally it might be OK, and I'll let it cool so I can see what it's like, but I'm going to rely on my third one for tonight and tomorrow morning.

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