Each week when I make a batch of bread it yields three mid-sized loaves. I usually give one or two loaves away to friends, leaving me with one for the week. Last week I didn't give any away. Not for any reason in particular, they just didn't make it out of the house. Rather then be a bread eating fiend all week, I froze it.
Freezing bread is a hotly debated topic. But freezing good bread is a way to preserve it. The important thing is to SLICE your loaf before freezing. The same goes for bagels, english muffins or anything else that you don't eat whole. Then take a freezer gallon bag, put all the slices in and press the air our before sealing. Then BLAMO- ready for the toaster, single serving, sliced bread. Perfect for breakfast, ad hoc grilled cheese dinners or the random craving for toast and pimento cheese. Support for this theory can be found in this New York Times article about the secret to the best toast, and I don't disagree.
Long weekends mean I cook ALL THE THINGS. In addition to too much bread last weekend I made buckwheat pancakes. I'm still trying to work through my bags of alternative flours and buckwheat is the one I'm having a hard time using up. These pancakes are good, I mean, real good. The rising agent is mainly yeast and then after it's risen overnight (so, prep) adding a little baking soda after the bulk rise gives these a fluffiness not see in buckwheat or whole wheat pancakes before. Make these, eat them up or as this the theme of this letter, freeze them on a cutting board then transfer to a sealed bag once they're hard. This will help prevent them from sticking together. To eat them, pop them in the toaster, in a heated pan or the oven if you're doing a bunch. Who said you can't have pancakes on a weekday?
Yeasted Buckwheat Pancakes
1 T active dry yeast
1/2 warm water
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup buckwheat flour
3/4 t salt
1 cup cold water
1 T sugar, white or brown
2 T melted butter
1/2 t baking soda
1/4 cup hot (from the tap hot, not the kettle) water
- Dissolve yeast in 1/4 cup warm water. Combine whole wheat pastry flour, organic buckwheat flour, and salt. Stir in yeast mixture and 1 cup cold water. Cover and refrigerate overnight or several hours.
- Combine melted margarine, baking soda, hot water and sugar. Add this mixture to the flour mixture and let stand 30 minutes.
- Cook pancakes on a lightly greased griddle. Makes 8 pancakes.
What else I've been cooking, reading, listening and watching
Last weekend I made this pasta and cauliflower dish from the cookbook Dinner; which of course I promptly changed everything in it. I used campanelle past, because it's what I had on hand. I added more veggie that the recipe calls for but it was worth it. I added yellow summer squash, onions, roasted banana peppers and olives. I also switched up the parmesan cheese for feta. But man, it's good. The capers and olives give it the salty brineness, followed by a lemon punch and the cauliflower and past a hearty sweetness. Add chicken or heck, any other protein and you are set.
I made this same dish this weekend but my veg mix was zucchini, red onion, roasted green pepper with olives, whole wheat fusilli pasta and left over rotisserie chicken. Hellloooooo this week's lunches.
I have been loving the Amazon show All or Nothing. This mini docu series follows a sports team through one season. Coving all there about that team and the sport. From the actual game to the business of a pro-team. I started with Manchester City, a primer league soccer team; to the All Blacks New Zealand rugby team and I just finished the Arizona Cardinals 2015 - 2016 season.
The hidden, horrifying costs of being single article from the Guardian wasn't a huge shock to me because I feel it in nearly every aspect of my life. Being single and a woman requires more resources, "over a lifetime, unmarried women can pay as much as a million dollars more than their married counterparts.” In addition to reading that this week, my friend Cindy posted this diagram on Instagram of why she's still single in her 30's. Needless to say, we're in the same boat.
While on the hunt for a new podcast I stumbled on Friendshipping. Two friends answering submitted friendship and really any relationship questions. The banter between the hosts is great as they talk through and then workshop language to solve the conflict between two people. I'd recommend starting with Please Respect My Bedtime, aka friendship in your thirties.
The cool weather and feel of fall this weekend has refreshed me and given me renewed energy. Short weeks are hard weeks. Last week was no different. I'm looking forward to this week, Monday's are a fresh start.