We like Toast
We make Toast
From our own Bread
We like Toasts
Celery Toast (topped with Celery, Blue Cheese, Garlic and Onions
Avocado Toast (topped with mashed Avocado, maybe over a hummus base)
Hummus Toast (topped with Giardineria)
Invaluable for making Blue Cheese Dressing,
but most importantly, our favorite Celery Toast
Both include Blue Cheese, Garlic and Onion
You can’t make either without Blue Cheese Crumbles
You can’t make your own Blue Cheese Crumbles
You will always fail
We always believed that Blue Cheese Crumbles were an inferior product, but they are a necessary (and irreplaceable) ingredient
Try crumbling Blue Cheese on your own
You will always fail
We like the idea of a sour-dough sponge, with creates continuity between loaves, provides complex flavor and an extended shelf life.
Whenever possible we like use as much whole grain flour as necessary, with a variety of fruits, seeds and meals. However, we found that some white bread flour is always necessary to achieve an adequate rise. After reserving a sponge for the next loaf, we add dry yeast to insure a good rise.
Recently we found ourselves out of yeast, ordered from a different supplier and did not realize that we had purchased quick yeast. The rise in the dough was fabulous!
(previously we bought yeast from Bob’s Red Mill, we like the company, but has become increasingly expensive, with only half the rising power – we even contacted the company to inquire why they had no special packaging as most yeast)
After the first stage, where we add flour and beer to develop the prior sponge (this can be done up to a day in advance, especially in the winter when room temperature is cooler) we bloom the yeast.
We were in the habit of adding a few pinches of sugar to a Tablespoon of yeast, cover it with water and stir to eliminate lumps of dry yeast.
Once the yeast blooms and threatens to overflow its small dish, it is time to add oatmeal, beer, whole wheat flour and flavorings. A handful of this sponge can be removed as soon as the dough comes together into a ball.
The yeast is added with some white flour and maybe some beer. Eventually we add the mix-ins, the dried fruit with liquid to hydrate,
We add some whole seeds for texture, crunch and flavor.
We coffee-grind some seeds for the benefit of nutrition (i.e. ground flax seed can be digested and provide nutrition better than whole flax seeds which may not be digested (broken-down in the digestive tract)
The lift of Instant Yeast is so powerful the loaf seems almost twice as big, needs to be trimmed before it can be stored, and so the slices fit in the toaster.
the ground seeds and meals (flax meal, malto-meal and ground seeds)
After exploring Rye Bread – adding caraway to our signature bread, we considered adding whole caraway or ground caraway
Turns-out, we like the intense burst of biting into a whole caraway seed
This lead us toward a version of Cardamom bread.
Without Cardamom, the internet suggested a combination of spices: Cinnamon, Ginger, Nutmeg and Cloves
Nothing is better than freshly ground spices and we ground whole nutmeg and allspice (because we lacked cloves)
The result was great.
We found this same combination from David Lebovitz, one of our favorite sources of good things to eat in Paris
Pain d’epices Recipe (David Lebovitz)
When ever someone has asked us to grill for a major event our priorities are:
Fresh Italian bread, served warm from the grill
Freshly Ground Spices, as simple as freshly ground Black Peppercorns mixed with kosher salt, remember to season to taste
Portion or par-cook items for fast cooking:
-pound poultry breasts (including ducks)
-pre-grill bratwurst to color before cooking in beer and onions
-smoke, then grill sausages, finish with sauce, balsamic, etc
A wide variety of condiments, mustards, relishes and sauces
Grilled Balsamic Onions
Grill Bell Peppers
Cook Beans in pressure cooker or instant pot
Use Pinto Beans, Kidney Beans, Black Beans
Sautée Onions and Garlic
Add cooked Beans to Sautée and cook down
Add Worchestershire and Hot Sauce
Add to Torillas
(with Mayonaise or Cheese)
Such an exciting bird
And so AFFORDABLE
There are some interesting documentaries, about why it is cheap
(and the chicken externalities)
The Fat dissolves into the stock
(which then rises to the top of chilled stock, to be removed)
There are two varieties of meat
-White Meat and
There are the Funny Parts
-The Gizzard, the Liver, The Heart and the Neck
How we have recommend for Cooking the Whole Chicken