Thursday, April 23, 2009

You gotta make this bread!

I had read about a "no-knead" bread recipe from the New York Times out on on the blogosphere, but I was a non-believer. Then one of my favorite bloggers wrote about it, I just had to try it for myself.

Even since I got my KitchenAid in December, I've been trying to find the perfect bread recipe, and most of the time I was disapointed with my results. Who woulda thunk that a recipe this simple would be so fabulous?

I've seen several variations on the recipe, but I followed this one, where the blogger shows her 4-year-old son making the bread to prove how easy it is:

3 cups bread flour
1/4 teaspoon instant yeast
3/4 tablespoon kosher salt
1 1/2 cups warm water

You mix up those ingredients in a big bowl with a wooden spoon. That's it. It's not pretty, it's not supposed to be.

Cover with saran wrap and let it sit overnight on the counter. The recipe says 12-20 hours. I've made it twice, and both times it was more like 20 hours. I mixed the dough before going to bed. Ricardo asked what I was doing, and when I told him I was making bread, he thought I was nuts. I looked at the clock. The whole process took 4 minutes. Even I have the energy for that at 9:30 pm.

The next evening, the bread looks like this.

You take it out of the bowl, fold the ends over, and form a nice ball. Put the dough on a floured (non-terrycloth) towel.

Wrap it up and put it back on the counter for 2 hours.

At the 1.5 hour mark, turn on the oven to 450 and put your covered pot into the oven to heat. My imitation Le Crueset pot works perfect for this. I have to say, I love love love this pot, and one of these days I'll break down and buy the real thing.

When you unwrap the dough you'll notice that it's looking nice and smooth.

Drop the dough into the pot, and give it a shake to even it out. Put the cover back on and set the timer for 30 minutes

When the buzzer goes off, take off the lid and set the timer for 15 more minutes.

When you take the bread out it's beautiful and starts to crackle. Now comes the hardest part: waiting for it to cool!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Spring bulbs

Sorry for the lack of posts lately. This year there's been so many beautiful spring blooms -- it's hard to keep up.

My baby boy, Clyde, enjoying the shade of the daffodils.

One of the first tulips of the season,

White crocus.

Some kinda lilly-looking thing -- I don't know it's name but it's gorgeous.

Little purple flowers.

Several different blooms.

It's hard to tell in the photo, but this is a mini daffodil.

Purple crocus.

A white and yellow daffodil.

Another lily-like flower -- this one in coral.

A big 'ol yellow daffodil.

Pink hyacinths.

Lastly, a white and coral daffodil.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Cat found in Brightwood

1333 Tuckerman St NW

Saturday April 11, 2009
young, very friendly, thin, female
gray with splotches of beige and white
gray nose, yellow/green eyes


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