Tag Archives: baking

The Kitchen Sink

I've spent many years looking out the kitchen window. Some views better than others, some in the country, some in the suburbs and some in the city. I first learned to wash dishes without a dishwasher standing at my mom's farmhouse sink with my sisters, one who usually had something she urgently needed to do when it was time to dry the dishes.
  Making today count by being thankful for what a day brings, even if the sun isn't shining...yet. French press coffee, a favorite coffee mug, green plants in the window, using a Christmas gift from a daughter, a spring dish towel and... ....a new way to practice hospitality
A gift from a dear friend who knew how much I love to bake and share with others. I spy a banana that needs to be used for banana bread!!
  I've often wondered what it is that makes me want to go to the kitchen, Why I Love to Bake, explains it all.  

“Happiness, not in another place but this place...not for another hour, but this hour.”Walt Whitman

 

Croissants or Bust

I don't know when my love for baking began or when it was instilled. Maybe it was the red Betty Crocker cookbook my mom had setting on her farm kitchen counter. My first recollection of baking is a young teen making chocolate chip cookies, trying to get them in the oven before my mom ate all the cookie dough!! Fast forward way too many years where I've given this farmer's daughter permission to slow down, enjoy a second cup of coffee and sharpen my baking skills beyond cookies. I've always wanted to make flakey, buttery croissants from scratch. Why, you ask? Several years ago I went to a bakery in Troy, NY where the main offering was croissants in any form you wanted, sweet, savory or plain. Little did I know it was a day long process that involved laminating dough, rolling, folding and chilling the dough. This isn't a very good picture, but it is the butter slab that goes in the middle of the dough.  I'm no food blogger, haha, so I didn't get as many pictures as I wanted, but this is the dough with the butter in the middle, and the process of laminating begins. I'm sorry to say, these were a big bust. They look good, but looks can be very deceiving, they are not flakey or buttery, but in fact quite dense and may take the advice of my sister-in-law who said to lacquer them as use them as decorations!! I've often wondered if baking is a creative art. I'm beginning to think so. I googled 'is baking a creative art?' coming up with  131,000,000 results, so yes. Maybe I've finally found my blogging niche'.  If you're local, join us at LaFayette Alliance Church  for worship, Bible in Life and coffee time from 9-9:30 at our new coffee bar and fellowship area. I'm happy to make coffee and serve muffins and cookies. I promise these croissants won't be there. Contact me at jodygates357@gmail.com

Monday Musings

I hope y'all had a great weekend. Mine included a bonfire, making apple cinnamon scones for a baby shower, homecoming dress shopping and making oodles of cupcakes for a certain girl who turns 16 today.  I also thought about...mason jars!! Mason jars are all the rage these days. In fact, at a recent wedding party, which was held in a refurbished barn, mason jars were the party favor. I'm a mason jar kind of girl. In fact, the older the better. I have some of these scattered throughout my kitchen and cupboards. I've seen jars used for everything, including baking. I've been pretty skeptical putting jars in a 350 oven, but gave it a try this week when we had company for the evening. The red apple peeler next to the sink has seen better days, but it sure is handy when making apple crisp. On a side note, if you've never lived or visited upstate New York, you're missing out. We live smack dab in the middle of apple country. Dozens of apple orchards dot the countryside, so apples are plentiful this year. Beak and Skiff is a favorite. In fact I just saw on their web site they are in the running for the Top 10 Apple Orchards in the country. The apples are in the bowl already to go, sprinkled with sugar, cinnamon and a dash of flour. I spy next to the paper towels the wedding party favors. The name of the couple was on the front of the jar. I spy one more jar in the corner of the picture on the right, where I store my ground coffee.apple2 I didn't take many pictures because of my anxiety about putting jars in the oven. But as I think back to my mom's canning days where scalding jars were holding hot peaches or green beans, going into a hot oven wouldn't be a problem. These are fresh out of the oven.apple6The flour, brown sugar and butter melded together to make a velvety caramel sauce.  Next time I will add more apples to the jar. Yes, I know when you cook apples they cook way down. But it wasn't a problem for my guests, they just had two jars instead of one!

apple5A big hit!