Saturday, November 21, 2009

Doughnuts and Crescent Rolls

I was rather productive in the kitchen this morning! I made a double batch of doughnuts from Deceptively Delicious - Jessica Seinfeld's book about using vegetable purees. This particular recipe calls for pumpkin and sweet potato purees. I've made my own purees in the past, but now I just use "Farmer's Market Organic" brand.

My boys absolutely love these doughnuts. Of course I love that they loaded with whole wheat flour and the vegetable purees AND are baked! For Halloween I made a batch with some cool gooey candy bugs...isn't Spider Man cute :)
Okay, back to today. I had the dry ingredients all ready mixed up and stored in my pantry, so it was a pretty quick turn-around to get these goodies in the oven. While they baked, I decided to mix up a batch of the Whole Wheat Brioche so I can make the Cinnamon Crescent Rolls from HBin5 in the next couple of days. They look amazingly tasty in the book, and I am anxious to give it a try. I'll report back!

One batch of the doughnuts goes to a friend who bid at Spider Man's school fundraiser. For the second year, I have been the co-chair of the Silent Auction and I donated two batches of homemade doughnuts and a "Granola of the Month" club good for six batches of homemade granola (using the recipe from ABin5, of course). The boys and I tried to deliver the doughnuts, but I found out my friend was home sick with a bad toothache. I hope she's doing better. I'll get them to her soon, or we'll eat them and I'll make her a fresh batch in a week or two.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Christmas Knitting

Last night I went to a friend's home and knit! She has started a new group that will meet twice a month. She has a beautiful home, and it was so wonderful to sit and knit for a couple of hours surrounded by such a talented group of women.

The project I took to work on was this lovely scarf pictured on the left. It's going to my Mom for Christmas (no worries about spoiling the surprise here - my parents don't even have Internet access at home.) The yarn is Rowan: Cocoon - a mix of merino wool and kid mohair. So soft and an easy knit!

If you are a fiber lover and a member of Ravelry, I'm known as "oregonknitter" over there. Come over and say "hi"! For those of you who are not familiar with Ravelry, it's this truly amazing resource for all things fiber related (yarn, knit, crochet, patterns, books, designers, dyers). It's been up for only a couple of years - maybe three? - and already has over 500,000 registered users. WOW. And they have the cutest dog, Bob :)

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Bread Braid: Pumpkin Pie Brioche

So I am one of the many who faithfully follow AB5's website and was excited by the invitation to join a Bread Braid (thank you for all your hard work, Michelle). Our challenge it to bake our way through the newest book, "Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day". I was lucky enough to get my copy on the same day it was released!

The bread baking challenge doesn't officially start until January, but we are getting a preview with a couple of special recipes from Jeff & Zoe. November's challenge: Pumpkin Pie Brioche.

I mixed the dough on Sunday night, but first started by baking a pie pumpkin. I am lucky enough to have joined a CSA program this year and we just happened to get a beautiful sugar (pie) pumpkin a couple of weeks ago. The dough didn't get mixed until after dinner that night, so I baked it Monday morning.

We cut into it Monday after I got home from work. Wow, we were all impressed. Our 2 yr old (who loves all my AB5 breads) took a piece, looked at it for a moment then licked it. Then he gobbled it up!

I will probably bake the other loaf today and give it to a friend, along with a bag of the granola from the AB5 book.
Take care and thanks for reading my first blog entry w/photos! I won't tell you how long it took me to finish :)

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Do I really want to go there?

It's not like I have any extra time in my day, but who doesn't have a blog these days? I have set this up with the idea of sharing my two favorite obsessions: baking bread and knitting.

I absolutely love the bread baking books by Jeff Hertzberg and Zoe Francois: "Artisan Breads in 5 Minutes A Day" and "Healthy Breads in 5 Minutes A Day". I've been baking from their books (the second book was just made available a few weeks ago) for about one and half years, and knitting for almost five years.

As I bake my way through their second book, I'll post photos here. And I never need an excuse to talk about my recent knitting projects!