Cooking fun

Yesterday was a good day. At work, I felt like I accomplished things and helped people out, allowing them to do their jobs better, more efficiently, or without whatever roadblocks that I was able to fix.

I accomplished things once I got home too: I got home and put away laundry that had been sitting clean and unfolded on our floor. I got a load of dishes done and put away, and the remaining dishes loaded into the dishwasher, effectively clearing my counter and sink and making me feel better. I decided to do a kitchen experiment and try to bake bread from scratch, a lofty goal for me who can't seem to get grilled cheese sandwiches quite right. I don't know why I wanted to do this, I think it was just to say I had, or something. I thought it would be a fun adventure, in a way. Also, Josh was at his first choir practice yesterday evening and I didn't have anything else to do.

So, my first goal was to find a recipe in which I had all the ingredients and equipment. The limiting factors included the fact that I don't own a bread machine or any loaf pans and, the primary factor, I had just over 3 cups of flour, and most bread recipes called for 7+. I finally settled on a white bread recipe I had the ingredients for, and I was ready to give it a try. I decided to not make the bread in the suggested shape of a turtle, however. My goal was to at least get the loaf shape right.

Well, an hour and a half or so later, just as Josh was walking in the door, my efforts succeeded! His first comment, before he was all the way in the door was, "Something smells good...", which I knew was a positive sign. The bread came out of the oven looking and tasting as it should! To my surprise, it was not much like bread-machine bread, the only other homemade white bread I can remember having, but still very yummy.

Of course I documented the adventure in pictures. The pictures before it was cooked were all taken with my phone- I'm still trying to figure out how to get a good picture out of the thing.

Check out the album:
Cooking Fun
Aug 30, 2006 - 11 Photos

And, to not leave out other happenings, Josh had a great time at choir practice. It's bigger than any choir he's been in before, but that's the nature of our church... I'm really glad he's involved, and I can't wait to hear them! Choir will be Josh's thing that he's involved in at church, and my thing will be ... yoga. That's right- yoga. There's a Tuesday aftenoon yoga class that's starting up at church that is free and taught by a certified instructor and not new-age-y-spiritual like most yoga classes are. I don't kow it I'm going to stick with it, but I'm going to give it a try next Tuesday.

Today, not to be outdone, Josh got off work at 3:00, went shopping to replenish our flour and milk, and made a delicious meal of biscuits and gravy. The biscuits were the best he or I have ever made, and my tummy is very happy now. I just added those to the above album. Josh is getting tired of me taking pictures of our food, I think.


beth said...

Yummy bread! I would have liked to have seen it in the shape of a turtle, though... :) And also good-looking biscuits and gravy. I'm very impressed, Josh (not to be sexist, but my man can brown beef and add soup to it and that's about it). BUT nothing beats his brats on the grill!

And make sure you let us know how that yoga thing turns out... take lots of pictures of that, too.

Melissa said...

You should post your favorite recipes so others can try. :)

Joanna said...

So, I don't think I'll be posting pictures of yoga... definitely not pictures of ME doing yoga... I look pretty ridiculous. Melissa will attest :)

I shoudl post recipesof this stuff-- I linked to the bread recipe, and I'll include the biscuits-and-gravy recipe below. It is copyright my mother-in-law Anne
Biscuits and gravy

- 2 C flour
- 3 tsp baking powder
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 - 1/3 C shortening
- 3/4 - 1 C milk
Mix dry ingedients. Cut in shortening with hands until lumpy. Use a fork to quickly mix in milk, with not too much stirring, just enough to get everything wet. It it is too dry, add a bit more milk. Roll the dough to 1/2 inch, dump on flour, and cut into squares or use a cup to get round biscuits.
Cook at 450 for 10-15 minutes

- 1/2 lb sausage
- 1/2 C flour
- 3 C milk
Lightly brown the sausage. If the sausage doesn't have much grease, add a teaspoon butter. Take the pan off the heat and mix in 1/2 C flour. Put back on the heat and add the milk 1/2 C at a time. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir occasionally until it boils. If the gravy gets too thick, add more milk.

Larissa said...

Congrats on the bread! I'm impressed. :)

Ashley said...

Oooh thanks for the biscuits recipe! I'll have to try that. I love cooking (er, baking) from scratch. :-) So much more fun!

Mrs. Burke said...

Mr. Burke uses buttermilk in his biscuits. That was the turning point from good to great in our biscuits and gravy world. He makes all our bread, pie crust, etc. What is it with programmers wanting to make bread all the time?

The bread looks very good, especially for your first attempt!


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