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14 July 2010

Some Thoughts, New Stuff, and an Experiment

I just applied for a new job, could everyone reading this send some good vibes my way? I'm sure I can do the job, and pretty sure I would like it more than my job now. I'd probably get paid more too. So start rooting for me!! :)
I love candy bars, and I just noticed the the price is really going up (10 whole cents! 99 cents for a candy bar!) which seems like a real shame. Is it the economy? Is it inflation? Is it temporary and will be back down in a week? I guess I'll just have to be better than ever about buying them when they are on sale, buy one get one free, or 2/$1.
The Lovemuffin is out of town for a couple of weeks, and I have to feed the missionaries on Thursday all by myself. The sister from Korea said "we will eat everything" (I think she meant "anything," second language, you know) What on earth should I make? I'm kind of thinking quiche with something crazy like artichoke hearts and fennel, something like that. I learned how to make quiche from a guy that I worked with, and I haven't tried it at home yet. Or maybe I'll just get a huge Papa Murphy's pizza. Any ideas? Let me know.
There are finally some tomatoes ripening on my plant, they are very pretty and I hope it keeps doing well. The one big pepper on my bell pepper plant also looks like it is ripening, I'm very excited. But my zucchini plant is pretty much dead. I thought it might recover, it looked like it wanted to produce more fruits, but the leaves are shriveling up and I just don't think it can support itself anymore. Oh well.

Some Stuff:
For my birthday I treated myself to a trip to Sur la Table; I bought a kitchen scale, a pastry cloth/rolling pin cover and a new pastry brush. Our last silicone pastry brush got lost in one of our moves and I've been missing it. The pastry cloth was kind of an unnecessary splurge, but I'm interested to see if it makes it easier to roll out pie crusts. I also might try to do a strudel. But the scale, ah, to have a kitchen scale. Now I can make things from this book, that only gives measurments by weight. I'll have to check out "The Bread Bible" (Rose Levy Berenbaum) and "The Bread Baker's Apprentice" (Peter Reinhart) from the library. I've never read "The Bread Baker's Apprentice." It looks intimidating. But I think they both give recipes and talk about making breads by weighing ingredients, and how you can get more consistant results and do some interesting experiments by changing the ratio of water to flour. I'm very excited.

An Experiment:
I am trying to make a sourdough starter using my brand new scale (hooray!!) and these instructions. I'm not sure if it's working. It's pretty stinky right now, and it looks like it is rising, but both of those things could be from the bacteria that likes to live in it before the pH changes and makes it not habitable for bacteria. I wonder if this is really a good experiment for me, because I don't even like sourdough bread. But I think it can be made more or less sour, depending on the temperature that you keep it at. I'll have to read up on balance between lactic acid and acetic acid. It should be nice to have a 100% hydration starter, because you can maybe use it in all sorts of things, like this chocolate bread. Hopefully it works and isn't too yucky.

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