The Ultra Busy

Erhmagerh so much busy lately. No time for writing. Any who, here’s what I’ve been up to lately.

 

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Coconut dino coconut panna cotta. Vegan-ified by using agar agar. This stuff is good. I’m on a huge coconut kick lately.

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New hot water heater installed (not by me). Yay hot water that lasts longer than 10 minutes and doesn’t make loud sounds after use. This is especially nice in December when it’s all chilly.20151126_144157[1]

Gingerbread Ninjas Maka brought up for Thankgiving in Amherst, MA.

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A blueberry pie by Papa Amherst. I think I ate half of this (don’t worry, there was another pie for other people)

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3 roasted ducks for 6 people. No turkey this year. Duck all the way.

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One of the most beautiful plates ever.

20151126_172439[1]20151128_104202[1]And duck cracklins for breakfast. Be still my fat-filled heart.

Oatmeal Toasting Sandwich Loaf (All Bread Flour)

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Breadku:

This is tasty bread
What I wanted homemade bread
to be as a child

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Homemade bread was always great as a kid for the first hour or two out of the oven, until it turned into a hard, grainy and dry loaf later on. But these were the dark ages. Days without internet feedback with trial and error, and documented recipe nuances. I recently had a flashback of this when I tried some bread made in a bread machine at a demo, with that familiar toughness and dryness. The kind that leads to cotton mouth and easily gives way to crumbs.
This oatmeal toasting/sandwich bread from King Arthur Flour is what I always wanted in a homemade loaf of bread. It turned out wonderfully. It uses all bread flour, and a hearty cup of oats. The bread stays soft after you cut it. All hand kneaded and baked over here. I remain skeptical of a bread machine’s ability to put out a decent loaf of bread, even sandwich bread.

Half of this loaf went to a dear friend. The rest I sliced up for ease of consumption (while the Mr cringes at my knife skills, I still remain the only one in our household who is able to slice an even slice of bread from a loaf). It retained moisture overnight and made for both good toast and sandwich bread the next day. Even pre-cut it retained moisture and pliancy. Consider this a sandwich bread we’ll keep on rotation in our kitchen.

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I tweaked the recipe ever so slightly, using 1 T molasses and 1.5 T sugar in place of the 3 T sugar, and approximately 2.5-2.75 C of bread flour in total (2 mixed in initially, the remainder added during hand kneading).  Butter slathered on top for a nice and soft loaf overall. Seriously, that interior was nicely springy and soft.