This felt like my first really productive day in about two weeks.
📖 Read pages 40-57, Chapter 1. What is it About Bread: Classification of breads & beginning of 12 stages of bread, of The Bread Baker’s Apprentice: Mastering the Art of Extraordinary Bread by (Ten Speed Press, , ISBN: 978-1-60774-865-6)
Lots of nice definitions and categorization, though I can already tell from other readings that some of the definitions, particularly for pre-ferments, aren’t always as solid as I’d like them to be. As if he were a mathematician, however, he seems to delineate a pretty tight set here that he indicates he’ll stick to throughout the book.
Four types of pre-fermented dough
Stiff/firm: pâte fermentée and biga (no salt)
Wet: poolish and sponge (or levain levure)
The girls bicker and are at each other’s throats until mom comes home to say they’re expanding the house and adding on an extra room. Ramona gets it first.
Today’s word of the day: varlet!Syndicated copies to:
📖 Read pages i-39, Acknowledgements, Preface, Introduction, beginning of Chapter 1. What is it About Bread, of The Bread Baker’s Apprentice: Mastering the Art of Extraordinary Bread by (Ten Speed Press, , ISBN: 978-1-60774-865-6)
The opening is perhaps overly romanticized, though still interesting. He does relatively quickly get into the good stuff though.
Somehow this isn’t as entertaining as prior incarnations of Ramona, perhaps because it was written a few decades later? There’s still a kernel of Ramona, but something seems off.
Again, some unnecessary anti-girl statements that really weren’t necessary. While somewhat funny, not quite as funny a chapter as Cleary’s usual work.Syndicated copies to:
📖 Read pages 195-244, Part 5: The Custard Continuum, of Ratio: The Simple Codes Behind the Craft of Everyday Cooking by (Scribner, , ISBN: 978-1-4165-661-3)
The Custard Continuum may have been one of my favorite parts of the book. I particularly like that he includes a recipe for butterscotch, which he’s right in saying that there are so few.Syndicated copies to:
I am really struck by the dated anti-girl rhetoric in the story. The “you can’t take a girl anywhere” business is just a bit much in a more modern reading of this. While otherwise generally entertaining, I’m not sure I could recommend this to young boys or girls anymore without a touch of a rewrite to improve the gender equality in the piece.
I don’t mind that there’s a pointed difference in boy’s and girls’ bikes so much, but the ad hominem attack on Beezus “What could you expect when you went to an auction with a girl?” is just a bridge too far.Syndicated copies to:
I’m gender fluid, so I can help out!
–a Girl Scout’s 8 year old brother proudly exclaiming an excuse for helping sister when stopping by the house today to peddle Thin Mints.
📖 Read pages 163-194, Part 4: Fat-Based Sauces, of Ratio: The Simple Codes Behind the Craft of Everyday Cooking by (Scribner, , ISBN: 978-1-4165-661-3)
Mayonnaise: 20 parts oil: 1 part liquid: 1 part yolk
Hollandaise: 5 parts butter: 1 part liquid: 1 part yolk
Vinaigrette: 3 parts oil: 1 part vinegar
Rule of thumb: You probably don’t need as much yolk as you thought you did.
I like that he provides the simple ratios with some general advice up front and then includes some ideas about variations before throwing in a smattering of specific recipes that one could use. For my own part, most of these chapters could be cut down to two pages and then perhaps even then cut the book down to a single sheet for actual use in the kitchen.
Highlights, Quotes, & Marginalia
But what greatly helps the oil and water to remain separate is, among other things, a molecule in the yolk called lecithin, which, McGee explains, is part water soluble and part fat soluble.
Added on Sunday, February 4, 2018
The traditional ratio, not by weight, is excellent and works beautifully: Hollandaise = 1 pound butter: 6 yolks. This ratio seems to have originated with Escoffier. Some cookbooks call for considerably less butter per yok, as little as 3 and some even closer to 2 to 1, but then you’re creeping into sabayon territory; whats more, I believe it’s a cook’s moral obligation to add more butter given the chance.
more butter given the chance! Reminiscent of the Paula Deen phrase: “Mo’e butta is mo’e betta.”
Added on Sunday, February 4, 2018
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Hoping this will be enough beans for the base of my gargantuan 8 layer dip.
In the days of home newspaper delivery this is just awesome. A dog so good at fetching newspapers, he collects them from the entire neighborhood! What a good belly laugh at the childishness of it all.Syndicated copies to: