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An Absolute Beginner’s Guide to Sourdough Starter and Bread via Kitchn

March 25th, 2020 Comments off
An Absolute Beginner's Guide to Sourdough Starter and Bread via Kitchn
As we stay home, wait out this crisis, and bake our hearts out, sourdough is surging. No yeast needed, sourdough lets anyone turn flour, water, and time into absolutely spectacular bread. If you’ve thought about trying sourdough yourself, now is the time. Today I and the rest of the Kitchn team are kicking off Sourdough for Beginners, the perfect starting place for a baking adventure. Are you in?
Read An Absolute Beginner’s Guide to Sourdough Starter and Bread via Kitchn




An interesting link found among my daily reading

Historical Cooking Books – 47 in a series – House and home : a complete housewife’s guide by Marion Harland (1889)

March 1st, 2020 Comments off

What might you find in these old cookbooks? What special recipes have been handed down to you? Share in the Comments!

Historical Cooking Books – 47 in a series – House and home : a complete housewife’s guide by Marion Harland (1889)

Historical Cooking Books - 47 in a series - House and home : a complete housewife's guide by Mario Harland (1889)

Historical Cooking Books - 47 in a series - House and home : a complete housewife's guide by Mario Harland (1889)

Available in PDF, Text, JPG formats, and more



* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!

Historical Cooking Books – 45 in a series – New York World’s Fair cook book: the American kitchen (1939) by Crosby Gaige

February 9th, 2020 Comments off

What might you find in these old cookbooks? What special recipes have been handed down to you? Share in the Comments!

Historical Cooking Books – 45 in a series – New York World’s Fair cook book: the American kitchen by Crosby Gaige

Historical Cooking Books - 45 in a series - New York World's Fair cook book: the American kitchen by Crosby GaigeHistorical Cooking Books - 45 in a series - New York World's Fair cook book: the American kitchen by Crosby Gaige

Historical Cooking Books - 45 in a series - New York World's Fair cook book: the American kitchen by Crosby GaigeHistorical Cooking Books - 45 in a series - New York World's Fair cook book: the American kitchen by Crosby Gaige

Available in PDF, Text, JPG formats, and more

Preface

The association of good food and fairs is traditional in America, its roots going back to the very beginnings of the country to the first live stock fairs held in agricultural communities. At these gatherings of the farming and village gentry there was a seemly display of American food on the hoof, in the raw so to speak. Fine hogs, little lambs that went baa-a, handsome cattle, proud and dignified, chickens, ducks, geese and turkeys, prize pumpkins, rosy apples, superb cabbages — shown, to be sure, not so much as prospective edibles to the admiring throng gath ered around them, but as examples of what the well-stocked farm should have as starters. Progenitors of a nation’s food supply were these displays. Incidentally some of the best things ever eaten by man were carried to these fairs in the basket lunches of the farm wives and vil lagers of the day.

From crossroads fairs we progressed to county and state fairs, and now in 1939 comes the greatest fair the land has ever known — an inter national exhibition representative of every industry and art in our broad continent and reflecting at the same time the arts and industries of nearly every country of the rest of the world.

Now since the character of our fairs has been expanded so widely there, nevertheless, is still an occasion for food to be discussed in rela tion to such an event. I doubt if there will be many basket lunches carried to the New York World’s Fair of 1939. Certainly there will be no need for such burdens, no matter how savory the contents, be cause to feed the hungry thousands who will attend there are distin guished restaurants set up, staffed and operated by foreign exhibitors, with their native dishes superbly cooked by native chefs. And of course, in addition, there will be many American restaurants on the grounds of the New York fair, not to mention the several thousands of tearooms, restaurants, hotel dining rooms and cafes of Manhattan which always function and which will be especially on their toes to appeal to the vis itors of the fair. Basket luncheons indeed!

Just the same, this occasion calls to mind those old-time baskets over flowing with the delicious simples of our early kitchens. And to those good housewives of bygone days whose arts of the kitchen were the forerunners of our modern cookery, I present my gratitude. No attempt has been made in this collection to present a uniform cook book in the pattern of the standard volumes usually prepared. This is a selection of recipes from the six geographical sections of the United States ; count less delicious dishes had to be omitted from each section, for one reason or another, but it is hoped that the most typical and characteristic dishes of each are included. Or if they are so similar to famous dishes of another state, as is often the case, then to avoid repetition they are omitted and other local favorites stressed.

Here is American cookery from coast to coast, and here, too, are some of the dishes you will eat when you visit the World of Tomorrow as it is depicted by the imagination and engineering and skill of those who planned the New York World’s Fair of 1939.

March 1, 1939.



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Reading – Toast and Jam by Sarah Owens – 16 in a series

April 12th, 2018 Comments off

I’ll be highlighting books that I am reading (or re-reading) on all sorts of topics this year — Douglas

Reading – Toast and Jam by Sarah Owens – 16 in a series

While I am a fairly experienced cook, this book, despite its simple name, was a bit intimidating. Yes, it is truly a book devoted to Toast and Jam, but this is toast and bread unlike you have probably made in your home before.

I would classify this as a cookbook for advanced users — someone looking to challenge themselves and their skills. You’ll learn a great deal about baking by weight, bread made with tahini and sourdough starter and seeds of all description and jams made with melons and sage and sumac. This is certainly not your average, Joy of Cooking, cookbook for beginners.

Still, there is something to be said for taking on a challenge, even if you fail on occasion. If you learn from your mistakes you are sure to improve your baking skills and improve your life, too.

With that in mind, check out Toast and Jam and give it a try.

From Amazon.com…

Bread and butter, toast and jam, scones and clotted cream—baked goods have a long tradition of being paired with spreads to make their flavors and textures sing. As a baker with a passion for plants, Sarah Owens, author of the James Beard award–winning Sourdough, takes these simple pairings in fresh new directions. Spread some Strawberry & Meyer Lemon Preserves on a piece of Buckwheat Milk Bread for a special springtime treat. Top a slice of Pain de Mie with Watermelon Jelly for a bright taste of summer. Lather some Gingered Sweet Potato Butter on a piece of Spiced Carrot Levain for a warming fall breakfast. Make a batch of Dipping Chips to serve with Preserved Lemon and Fava Bean Hummus for an inspired snack. Wow brunch guests with a spread of Sourdough Whole-Grain Bagels, Lemony Herb Chèvre, and Beet-Cured Gravlax. The recipes here offer a thoroughly fresh sensibility for the comfort found in a simple slice of toast spread with jam.

* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!
† Available from the LA Public Library

Previously in (Re)Reading:

Categories: Baking, Books, Bread, Cooking, Food Tags:

21 KitchenAid Mixer | Douglas E. Welch Gift Guide 2017

December 6th, 2017 Comments off

Dew gift guide 2017 header

See all the 2017 Gift Guide Entries


21 KitchenAid Mixer | Douglas E. Welch Gift Guide 2017

Kitchenaid largeKitchenaid small

While these expensive mixers aren’t necessarily an impulse buy, if you have a dedicated home baker in your life this just might be the best present ever! I have both of these mixers and both are currently installed on my counter turning out the 80 dozen or so cookies I make each year for your annual cookie party. I’ve also used them for bread, cakes, ice cream (with optional attachment) and much more. It is rare I use a hand mixer anymore as these beast do the job much better and much more quickly.

…and they come in a bunch of cool coolers, too! (SMILE) — Douglas


 

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Categories: Baking, Bread, Cooking, Food, Gift Guide, Home, Products Tags:

29 Egg Recipes for Much More Than Breakfast via Food52

July 18th, 2017 Comments off
“The Incredible, Edible Egg” — as the old advertisement used to say. I found several different recipes I want to try from this article. My favorites include Shakshuka Focaccia, Bacon & Egg Ramen. Savory Ris-Oat-to with Poached Egg by Ali Conklin, and Sheet Pan Eggs by Ali Slagle. To be honest, I’m still reading my way through all the recipes and I might find even more I like. — Douglas
 
 

In culinary school my cooking instructors touted the importance of eggs: The traditional chef’s toque is rumored to have 100 folds, one fold to represent the hundred ways to prepare an egg. We’d be forewarned that sometimes the skills test given during line cook interviews would simply be to cook an egg.

Regardless of technique and form, it’s undeniable that eggs are an indispensable ingredient, well suited for any time of the day. Here are 29 of our favorite ways to use them:

Read 29 Egg Recipes for Much More Than Breakfast via Food52



* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!


An interesting link found among my daily reading

A Trusty Trick for Cooking Without a Recipe (& Anxiety) via Food52

May 17th, 2017 Comments off
I’m always looking for tips, tricks and rules of thumb for cooking and this article contains some great info. Learn how the fat you choose affects the taste and style of your dishes and more. — Douglas
 
Say you are making a beautiful carbonara. You’ve got the bacon crisping, the Parmesan shredded and at the ready, the pasta water simmering away, and—oh no. You used up all the olive oil making Maialino’s dreamy Olive Oil Cake! And all you’ve got on hand is… coconut oil. Drat. That won’t work!

Sure, it’ll fill the oily void, but the flavors of the dish will be all off. You might run out to buy more olive oil, or you might think of this instead as an opportunity for culinary experimentation. Up to you. Either way, it’s easy enough to tell that coconut oil isn’t exactly what the dish is calling for—and it’s certainly not what a nonna would reach for. At the same time, butter would be unusual in a stir-fry, and sesame oil very peculiar in a sauce for sole meunière.
 
Book mentioned in this article
 

An interesting link found among my daily reading

Noted: Here’s how to replace oil with applesauce and still make a delicious snack

March 26th, 2017 Comments off

I use applesauce to replace oil in almost every recipe I use including cakes, pancakes and quick breads. My cookies still require butter, but nearly everything else gets applesauce. It might be worth trying in your own recipes to see how it works. It has been very successful for me. — Douglas

Small Victories: Recipes, Advice + Hundreds of Ideas for Home-Cooking Triumphs by Julia Turshen [Book]

March 13th, 2017 Comments off

Small Victories
Recipes, Advice + Hundreds of Ideas for Home-Cooking Triumphs
Julia Turshen

When reading a cookbook I don’t tend to make grand proclamations that this book is good and that book is bad. Cookbooks are all about what you take away from the book and one person’s favorite is another’s failure. For me, my like or dislike of a cookbook directly relates to how well it works for me. Does its message resonate? Are the recipes actually something I would consider making? Can I put my new found knowledge to immediate use? With those criteria in mind, Small Victories certainly worked for me on a variety of levels.

First, even though I am a bit of a fussy eater, I found many recipes I want to try out as soon as possible. Each recipe is well described and also includes several variations you might want to try. Turshen includes old standards like her take on biscuits (Everything Biscuits), roast chicken (Roast Chicken with Fennel, Rosemary + Lemon) and desserts (Berry + Buttermilk Cobbler) while also exploring further afield with Roasted Salmon with Maple + Soy, Jennie’s Chicken Pelau, and Crisply Hominy + Cheddar Fritters.

In Small Victories, you’ll find sections dedicated to Breakfast, Soups + Salads, Vegetables, (maybe even a few that I would eat) (LAUGH), Grains, Beans + Pasta, Meat + Poultry, Shellfish + Fish, Desserts, A Few Drinks + Some Things To Keep On Hand and Seven Lists — which gives some great ideas on small bites to serve with drinks, 7 Things To Do With Pizza Dough, Leftover Roast Chicken and more.

Another reason I found Small Victories so enjoyable are the excellent stories attached to each recipe. Even when I wasn’t particularly interested in a recipe, I still made a point of reading each of these descriptions almost like I would read a regular book. These descriptions also contain the “Small Victories” which are the namesake of the book. These are small tips and hints are a great addition to the cookbook and provide yet another level of value.

As Turshen writes, “Think of small victories as the corners of the puzzle, the pieces that help us become inspired, relax cooks who know how to fill in the rest.

I found my copy of Small Victories at my local library and you might find it there, too. It’s always a great place to start when looking for new books in your life. However you get your hands on Small Victories, I highly recommend you do. I think you’ll find some interesting recipes, tips and maybe even the next step in your cooking adventures.

* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out! 

Noted: No-Knead Maple Challah, made with home-made maple syrup!

March 12th, 2017 Comments off
I love bread waaaaay to much…and maple syrup even more, so this recipe seems a perfect fit. I don’t have the wherewithal to make my own maple syrup (or the trees) but I am sure this is just a good with maple syrup from the store. — Douglas
 
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