|The Ol'Buzzard in winter mode.|
Sunday, October 14, 2012
WINTER, MAKING BREAD AND OTHER STUFF
We have moved from fall to pre-winter here in northeastern
A big wind the other night pretty much stripped the trees. The night temps are in the thirties and day
temps in the fifties and it is time to pull out the winter clothes. Maine
Our house is small so I pack all my winter duds in a duffle in the spring, and bring them back out in the late fall. I am at heart a winter person and I actually love dressing in long johns, jeans, wool shirts and boots – that is what I have worn most of my life and what I am most comfortable in.
Last night I put together a blueberry bread in the bread machine, and even though I messed up on adding ingredients it came out great. The blue berries are local – we buy them at the farm market and freeze them for winter use. I had a piece of blueberry toast this morning with a cup of tea and tonight we will have French toast (made with the blueberry bread) and bacon.
My lovely wife and I have been using bread machines since 1985 when we began teaching in an Athabascan Indian village in Alaska and store bought bread wasn’t available. The machines are great, and once you get use to using them you can turn out a perfect loaf of bread every time.
THE BLUEBERRY RECIPE I USE:
½ cup of water
½ cup of milk
4 cups of stone ground white flour
½ cup of oatmeal
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1 teaspoon of nutmeg
1/3 cup of sugar
¾ teaspoon of salt
3 tablespoons of butter
1 ½ teaspoons of yeast
2/3 cups of blueberries
Mix the water, milk and egg and pour into the bread pan. Place all the rest ingredients in the pan except for the blueberries that you will add later. Set the machine to the two pound (or medium) fruit and nut cycle and press start. After one hour remove the dough and the paddle from the bread machine. Place the dough on a counter top and using your hands press it into a long sheet as wide as the bread machine bread pan is long and down to about ¾ inch thick. Distribute the blueberries on the sheet of dough and then roll the dough into a loaf and put it back into the bread pan without the paddle. Place the pan back into the bread machine to continue rising and baking. When the bell rings remove the blueberry loaf and let it coon for an hour before eating.
Leaving the paddle out at this stage keeps from having the hole in the bottom of the loaf that you always get from bread machines.
We use a Breadman Ultra that we bought at Target for less than $100. We have had four bread machines and this is the best we have used. You can get cheaper but they do not stand up to regular use, and there is no need to ever pay more than $100 because you are just getting name recognition and options that you will never use. In
we bought an expensive Swedish bread machine with two paddles and were never
satisfied with it. When we returned to Alaska we repurchased a
Well, the frost is definitely on the pumpkin and we are switching to our winter mode. We had some snow to the north of us this week; but I am holding off winterizing the motorcycle in hope of one or two more moderate days to ride. When we were younger (I was forty and she was in her twenties) my wife and I road a motorcycle (Yamaha 650) in all sorts of weather as our primary source of transportation: we don’t have to do that now.
We have our oil tank filled and our wood supply is in, the truck has 5w-30 oil and there is a new spark plug in the snow blower. So bring it on. I may complain in late February, but now I am looking forward to those dark, snowy, grey days when my wife and I will bask in front of the wood stove with good books and a bottle of wine.