My Daily Bread

30 May 2011

So I bake my own bread, which means I've tried many, many recipes for whole grain loaves. I am always looking for the holy grail of recipes.

Now, I am not writing to say I've discovered it; I'll keep looking and experimenting. But my search did lead me to this great website, The Fresh Loaf. It is a community of "amateur artisan bakers and bread enthusiasts" that hosts tutorials, forums, and of course, recipes. I just tried the aromatic and delicious Cinnamon Raisin Oatmeal Bread (sans raisins, since I didn't have those on hand and using active dry yeast in place of the instant). It didn't rise as much as some other recipes I've tried, but I think that was in my technique today rather than in the recipe. It is worth practicing to get this bread perfected.

Some of the other recipes I'm eager to try include Honey Whole Wheat Bread, Pretzels, Bagels, and Pain Aux Raisins and Cream Cheese Snails (these most assuredly).


26 May 2011

I love to wear aprons in the kitchen--not only are they useful for protecting my clothes from puffs of flour and splashes of tomato sauce, but also they help to set baking and cooking apart from my other household activities. Culinary pursuits require full-front aprons. Thus, when I set about sewing one, I drafted a full apron that slips over the head and ties in the back.

My inspiration for the design came from vintage patterns, particularly ones from the 1950s with scalloped hems. In order to accentuate the tulip hem and bodice edges, I bound them with black and white gingham, while I used French seams (my favorite and possibly overused finishing technique) to increase the apron's durability. Afterall, I hope this will see me through many a baking marathon!

You can also see this project in my BurdaStyle entry, Vintage-Inspired Apron.

24 May 2011

Mechanization is achieved by fragmentation of any process and by putting the fragmented parts in a series

-Marshall McLuhan, 1964