Month: November 2016

Preparing Bread for Thanksgiving Turkey Stuffing

I’m prepping for roasting my turkey tomorrow, ahead of Thursday. This allows me to make the gravy and slice the turkey, get all the turkey packaged and into the refrigerator, only having to re-heat turkey in gravy for Thursday’s dinner. That means having all the other time on Thursday to make the rest of the meal.

Wednesday is Pie day. Tradition.

Today I am making onion bread, egg bread, and whole grain spelt bread. Currently onion bread is in the oven, egg bread is on it’s last bowl rise, and spelt whole grain is soaking in buttermilk.

Onion Bread in the oven

Onion Bread in the oven

Egg Bread Rising in Bowl

Egg Bread Rising in Bowl

Whole Grain Spelt & Whole Grain Spelt Flour in Buttermilk

Whole Grain Spelt & Whole Grain Spelt Flour in Buttermilk

What is all this bread for? Stuffing the turkey, of course! I love stuffing. In The Bird Stuffing is heaven.

I usually put raisins in it, sometimes walnuts too. Start with onion and celery in butter, then add rubbed sage, oh the scents are incredible! Chicken stock, some sea salt, a couple of eggs (wisked in), any other things I want added, then the bread sliced into cubes and added, mixed around, stuffed into the bird, rest into a casserole.

It’s been cooler of late, and since yesterday rather a smokey smell to the air.

I looked at alerts yesterday, but I only saw one for NC but assumed it had to be associated … there is an alert today for us today, FWIW.


Pans; Cookware

My older cookware is what I mostly use now. It had been in storage, but has a few pieces that work well for our current stove, thick disc flat bottoms.

I’d gotten that cookware, Sitram, in the 2000’s, but got NEW cookware when we got this Electrolux glass top stove. The new stuff was OK, good, at first, but the most used pieces end up getting rounded on the bottom when hot and some have held that shape, some are more round, and a few just uneven and ugh it’s a pain. [Plus I don’t think it’s good to cook with that variety of cookware condition.]

What that means is my pot rack is fuller than full and I still don’t have as many pans as I want to work with. That newer bad stuff is in the back and I avoid it mostly, others in my family use it sometimes to cook something, though I do most of the actual “cooking” as well as controlling the pans one uses to cook something for the family.

My biggest fry/sauce pan is actually a Costco pan, and it’s just about the same as my Sitram pans, just a tad beefier, lovely thick flat bottom disc and metal lid.

My newer pans have glass lids with metal rims: all of this stuff, my newer and older lids, work pretty good with all the different pans. That’s the one saving grace.

French Bread Baguettes using Dough Function of Bread Machine

1 cup water

4 cups flour

1 tsp. sea salt

1 tsp. active dry yeast.

Add to bread machine and choose Dough Only function. When cycle completes remove from machine and put in a lightly oiled bowl and cover. Allow to rise an 1 1/2 hrs. Punch down.

Rest dough for 10 minutes. Divide dough into portions for baguettes. Determine how long you want them and then the width to calculate how many baguettes you can make.

Width will double while rising after shaping, so take that into consideration for final sizing.

Place shaped baguettes on parchment paper lined cookie sheets, allow to double in size, then bake as directed below.

Place an oven-safe dish with at least 2 cups of hot water into the bottom of the oven. Turn the heat to 350 degrees F. When oven is ready, quickly (to avoid losing more moisture than you want to) move the cookie sheets into the oven’s middle racks and allow to bake for about 20 minutes, more or less as needed, until baguettes are golden and have a hollow sound when bottom is tapped.

White Spelt Large Loaf in Bread Machine

1 1/4 Cups Water (additional liquid, as needed at around 5 beeps)
1 1/2 Teaspoons Salt
3 Tablespoons Butter, cut into small pieces
1 Tablespoon Sugar or Honey
4 Cups Spelt Flour (addition flour, as needed at around 5 beeps)
1 1/2 Teaspoons Active Yeast

Put ingredients into bread machine pan in order of recipe. Choose White Bread as the cycle, Large for loaf size, Light for crust color.

White Spelt flour (as well as whole spelt flour) requires less liquid in bread recipes, compared to other wheat flours.

I prefer to use less liquid rather than less flour in recipes.

French Bread

1 tsp. Sea Salt

1 tsp. active dry yeast

3 cups White Spelt Flour

3/4 cup water (+more, as needed)

Add sea salt and active dry yeast to the flour. Mix well. Add water slowly and when dough forms into a ball easily, cleaning sides of bowl, knead for awhile longer until it’s very pliable and conditioned, not tacky or too dry. Add water or flour by Tablespoon as needed.

Slowly add water while mixing with spoon or in bread machine or stand mixer, once all water is added, depending on dough consistency, add more water or flour a Tablespoon at a time until dough is pulling away from bowl edge and not sticky, but pliable and can form a ball.

Let rise an hour, then punch down. Allow to rise again until doubled.

Punch down, allow to rest for 10 minutes, then form into two pieces, roll into long ropes and put onto parchment paper lined cookie sheet, allow to double in size, then slash across several times down each baguette with a sharp knife.

Bake in 350F oven for 25 minutes, or until lightly browned and sounds hollow when tapped on bottom.

For crispy crust, while pre-heating oven put an oven-able container of hot water on the bottom of the oven. In a fast motion get the cookie sheet into the oven when it’s to 350F and quickly close the door.

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