Tuesday, January 26

Another apple please! Or rather, make that 4!

My kid is a fruit fanatic.  He always has been.  Gunnar would turn down chocolates, cake, ice cream, candy, you name it, for a nice fresh bowl of berries.  He'd be in heaven with a platter of fine expensive cheeses, cut apples, strawberries, blueberries, bananas, watermelon, and fresh bread.  Yes, he has really good taste.  Really good.

But is there a point where it's too much?  Last night he ate 3 apples and fresh baguette for dinner.  Medium sized organic fuji's (so sad that honeycrisps are gone already!), leaving nothing but the core and well, half the skin (because he's only 2, so there has to be some level of finiky involved, of course).  And have I mentioned he can open the fridge on his own now?  Well, he can.  When he went for the third apple last night, Scott and I turned to each other with our jaws dropped.  Really?  Three apples?  My goodness kid.

And this morning, after downing two bowls of cheerios with frozen blueberries in it, what do you think he asked for?  Yup. Another apple.

Friday, January 22

Artisan bread part 2: Baguette

This one turned out sooo good!  Hubs bought me this baguette pan for my birthday last year and it hasn't gotten enough play.  I'm happy to say it definitely stepped up and the bread turned out awesome.  I really love how the baguette had those tiny little indentation all over the bottom, felt really authentic, lol, and the crunchy outside and soft inside was a really tasty combination.  I had expected the hardest part to be transferring the risen dough from the towel (I don't own a pizza peel) to the baguette pan without ruining the shape of the loaf or the rise, but actually the learning curve came with slashing the dough after you "paint" a bit of water over the top of the loaf.  It's a lot easier to slash with flour atop rather than water!  But it looked, and turned out just fine. :)  Another point for the Artisan Bread book!  Oh, and did I mention the baguette only needs 20 minutes to rise before baking?!  So easy! Bonus points!! 

PS- I've made about 4 more boule's since last posting.  All have been super!  The flavor of the dough even gets better as it ages in the fridge.  It's really fun to do different slash designs, too. lol!

Tuesday, January 19

The Artisan Way: Boule

(This loaf was way over-floured before slashing. Thats why it looks so white. Toddler got a 
little carried away!  He was so proud! I love how he loves to cook with me. <3)

So I decided that this year I'd make all our bread from scratch.  All of it.  Well, at least lunch breads and dinner breads.   I usually make *most* of the bread that we eat, so this isn't really a new concept for me.

I came across Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day at the library.  In short, you spend about 15 minutes prepping two weeks worth of dough that you keep in the refridgerator until you are ready to shape a loaf.  It takes all of 5 minutes (active time on your part) to go from refrigerator to table.  Refrigerator, huh?  And no kneading. Yep.  Definitely intriguing.  And the main dough recipe makes a bunch of different types of bread.  Even better!  Two weeks worth for all of 15 minutes initial work and 5 minutes per loaf, WAHOO was my thinking!                    

So off to Ace Mart I went to buy dough buckets and voila, dough in the fridge.  Easy peasy, you just dump all the ingredients in the mixer (you can do by hand as well), let the machine run for a bit, and let the dough have an initial rise before transferring to the fridge to be at your beckon call in a (40 minutes or less) moments notice.

Last night I made a boule. The family was definitely happy with the results!  Nice crusty crust and beautiful soft, slightly chewy crumb (that's means the interior in professional bread world.. which, why would they call the interior the crumb anyway?  Doesn't make any sense to me..).  We had just visited a local dairy farm and bought fresh butter, too.  Perfect accompaniment!

If only I had pizza peel and baking stone, *sigh*.  Someday.  Will definitely be on my birthday list! 
Oh and OH MY GOSH lookie what I found at Costco!

YES, that's ORGANIC flour!

I can't tell you how excited I was to make that discovery. Well, yes, I can, I was SUPER excited! I even sent the husband a cell phone pic of it right then and there, with a message of "Can you believe? Finally!!!!!!!" hehe.

Thursday, January 14

Logan is 3 months old!

Logan turned 3 months old this week!  Where does time go?  Although I'm now a full time stay-at-home mom for a few months, I went back to teaching (University level) when Logan was 2 weeks old.  He slept peacefully (thank goodness!) in my ring sling through class, twice weekly, for the rest of the semester.  The students loved him, and I think my 'performance' was better for having him there.  I actually felt incomplete and awkward the one time Scott was off work and was able to keep him while I lectured.  I missed my boy so much!  But while it worked out having Logan with me, and duty aside, I really do think I went back teaching too soon.  It sped up time when I should have been resting and recuperating, and just loving on my baby.  And it took a toll.  So now, I am beginning to *really* enjoy him and can do a bit of catching up.  So happy 3 months little man!  I look forward to life being all about you for a while.  Well, and your brother too of course.  But not lesson planning and office hours, student emails, grading...  Just my boys. :)

Saturday, January 9

Frog Surgery

Is he gonna make it mama?
 Yes, honey, yes. I think he's going to be just fine. :)