Rainy day baking and cooking... What are you cooking today?

agmss15April 22, 2012

Our winter/spring drought is being broken by a couple of much needed rain here in the NE. So I'm cooking. I have a bunch turnip greens from last year budding up - I'm going to prepare them like Raab. I have some local sausage that I will cook with onions, celery, peppers and tomatos to be served with brown rice/oat groat mix. I'm making pain a l'ancienne which is ridiculously easy and delicious. Sticky mess turns into such a lovely dough. I'm cheating though and gave it a 3 hour rest in the frig rather than overnight.

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It's sunny here but cool and we are expecting 10-15 centimeters of snow tomorrow! WTH

Today I'm baking a batch of Annie's Honey WheatLoaf and a mess of Jasdip's Mom's Butter tarts.

The house smells wonderful!

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 3:30PM
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How dare you!!!! Posting a photo of your pain a l'ancienne without the recipe! Seriously the picture and the phrase "ridiculously easy" caught my eye and my attention.

Recipe please, pretty please?


    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 3:46PM
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Just made some morel soup. There's a boneless pork shoulder roast cooking and we'll have potatoes and gravy, applesauce and mixed vegetables for dinner.

Cool, about 47F but sunny here in N MI with a pretty good breeze.


    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 4:27PM
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Oatmeal cookies. Later, a pot of blackeyed peas will go into the crockpot. I am so thankful for the rain!

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 4:37PM
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Rainy and 45 degrees here, supposed to be the same all week if the weatherpeople are correct.
A pot of ham and split pea soup is simmering on the front burner. Wayne made rolls yesterday so that will be dinner tonight. Ariel made angel food cake yesterday so that will be dessert along with a strawberry sauce.
We are also out of biscotti so we will be making lemon blueberry, orange cranberry, double chocolate, and hazelnut after dinner.
Cooking and baking is a comforting thing to do on a rainy day. NancyLouise

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 5:12PM
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Yesterday was GORGEOUS here in NJ... 80 degrees, sunny, breezy. Today... not so much... rainy, maybe 50, dreary. Think rest of this week will be about the same??

Just threw together a veggie casserole with stuff around kitchen. Layered thing sliced onions, zukes, tomatoes, last of some seasoned croutons, and cheese. Will top it with ample layer of cheese in a while and enjoy something bubbly and hot in a little while. Even if weather is nice, like to cook over weekend and then have left-overs next day or for lunch.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 5:25PM
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I feel so like a slackard. We had a big meal out after church, so we're having Roasted Garlic Tomato Soup I POOF with grilled cheese sandwiches....bread from 2 loaves a friend brought a couple of days ago. Temp right now is low 50's, low of 42 tonight.


    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 5:49PM
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Everything sounds delicious! It's chilly and gray in central Maine today. Tomorrow is going to be a downpour - needed but uncomfortable. My neighbor just brought me a wheelbarrow full of Foxglove seedlings - so I need to put on my boots and gloves and go back out into the cold. Brrrr..

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 5:53PM
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Sunny with a nice breeze here in Fl so we cooked out on the grill, made Filets and shrimp kabobs with 2 bean salad

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 6:11PM
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Jude - I tend to wing it when making bread. I usually make heavier whole grain breads - but recently was craving a more open lighter bread. So this is my piecing together of recipes I've read recently - those more expert than I feel free to correct. Also I don't have a mixer which would make this dough easier to handle.

6 cups flour - in this case 5 1/2 bread flour 1/2 whole wheat flour
2 and a bit cups of ice cold water
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp yeast

Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl. It will be a very, very sticky dough. I try to knead it for a few minutes until I give up do to stickiness.

Try to pull and stretch the dough into a ball and place on a lightly oiled surface. It will be a mess - don't worry. Let the dough rest for ten minutes. Pick it up and again attempt to make a ball and let it rest again. Repeat 2 more times. By the 3rd and 4th time the dough will be silkier and more pliant although still wet.

Put the dough into an oiled bowl and refrigerate overnight - today I cheated and only chilled for a few hours. The next day let it rest at room temperature for 6 or so hours (depends on your house's temp).

Oil and flour your pans. Place the dough on a floured surface - shape your loaves gently. You want to keep some of the larger bubbles. Let rise for an hour or so. Slash your loaves and put into a hot steamy oven. I think the recipes were talking about 450 or 500. I need to go a little lower. I am using a toaster oven so things burn they rise too much. The time depends on the size of your loaves. I am doing very small loaves - again toaster oven. I think I would get 3-4 baguettes if I was baking in a regular oven.

Sorry I'm so long winded - but this is really very easy. And the long slow cold ferment makes for a really good flavor. Off to play with Foxgloves..

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 6:14PM
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Thank you so much Agmiss. I envy the foxgloves, but I have never had any luck with them. I've had them in semi-shade, full sun, full shade and no luck. I kept getting advice from people who were successful with them and they had different theories.... I can't do delphiniums either. I do Hostas and Lenten Roses well though. Bumper crops this year! And the Camellias outdid themselves. I have to give credit to the good Lord and the weather though, nothing I did.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 8:18PM
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They had predicted rain/wet snow today, so I had planned to stay in all day. Lo and behold if the sun didn't shine most of the afternoon. I would have put clothes out on the line if I thought it would be nice! It was cool all day though.

I made 2 loaves of white bread and some cookies. We love these cookies, made with granola, chocolate chip, walnuts, coconut. Had meatloaf with roasted potatoes, carrots and onions, and boiled cabbage for dinner.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 8:26PM
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sunny and nearly 60 here today, I helped Ashley cover a dog run for her monstrous beasts and then came home and had a peanut butter sandwich. At least the bread was homemade, but it came out of the freezer.....


    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 11:41PM
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We bought one of those huge Costco steak packages, grilled them all on Friday. Steaks with the inlaws on Friday, leftovers in Thai noodle steak salad with a friend on Saturday who asked for the recipe, and then last incarnation as beef barley soup. Somewhere in between I baked up a bunch of persimmon cookies.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2012 at 12:20AM
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Agmss15 I just want to say thanks for posting that recipe. I too like pain l'ancienne but have a devil of a time getting it right. I just don't have the right utensils for the baking part--the right pan and the right stuff to get a steamy oven. I've been baking mine in round Corningware covered casseroles but the bread raises and fills up the casserole so I can't keep the lid on while it bakes. I think I need to split the bread dough into two halves and bake in two casseroles. I have two. That's the only way I know how to get the nice crust. I have tried putting pots of water in my oven to create steam, but it just doesn't cut it. I think the oven just isn't airtight enough, it all seems to leak out. I need some good covers for the stovetop burners! I tend to ruin them by accidentally turning on the wrong burner!

    Bookmark   April 23, 2012 at 10:18AM
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Although it seems like a forgiving dough - I can taste that I cheated on the overnight ferment. Sorry your casserole dishes aren't big enough. I bake in a toaster oven so when my bread rises it burns on top. Another reason P a L'A is good - it spreads out more than up. I brush the bread with some slightly salty water right before it goes in the oven. But I lose that lovely floury rustic surface. Do you have a pizza stone? That helped me get a better crust back when I last had an oven - now I use it in my grill to make pitas. Also I read somewhere or another about using a SS restaurant dish lid as a cloche though I've never seen one large enough.

I am currently jealously watching a neighbor build a stone wood-fired bread oven by his pond - the ultimate bread oven. He says he will advise me when I am ready to build one - and I definitely do not lack for rocks. However right now my 'yard' is festooned with logs, brush and firewood piles. Hopefully in the near future the logs will become a woodshed and I can move the firewood inside. Then maybe a bread oven - which will entail moving rocks. I'm tired just thinking about it all. Making some tea and toast and taking a nap.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2012 at 12:33PM
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It was cool (65F) and overcase here yesterday, but we had already decided to barbeque outside. Kevin had picked up a turkey breast with back attached, and I flattened it out a bit and put it in a pan with my Cajun seasoning to smoke. I parboiled some Yukon gold potatoes to add to the grill and also grilled some garlic toast. I made a mushroom sauce for some frozen petite peas but did not get around to cooking the peas. Earlier in the day I made new valances for Kevin's bedroom using some silk damask fabric and trim that I got for free at work. The fabric has a black background with leopards and tigers on it and some beige/gold colored Italianate style embellishments on it. I might post pictures later. Anyway, I was too tired to cook more and went to bed early.


    Bookmark   April 23, 2012 at 4:05PM
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Wow the valances sound beautiful. There are such very talented people on this forum! I made some insulated blinds last winter, but I petered out at 5 finished. I cut out the 6th for a big window. There it sits waiting for my attention. Hopefully by next winter. I'm not totally pleased with the blinds but prefer them to my curtains. And the only way to make blinds that please me is to practice.

Your dinner sounds delicious too!

    Bookmark   April 23, 2012 at 4:40PM
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I kind of took advantage of the rain here and removed my removable greenhouse for my tomato plants to enjoy the warmer weather. I also used my rototiller converted hole digger to rework part of my garden.

Too exhausted to cook I just made leftover squash soup and leftover lamb salad.


    Bookmark   April 23, 2012 at 11:03PM
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I made calorie-laden over-the-top spinach and cheese casserole - ricotta, asiago, parmesan, AND mozzarella - rigatoni pasta, thawed spinach, an egg, lots of heavy cream, sauteed onions with several mashed spicy garlic cloves. Set the table with some homemade bread, four puny leftover heated meatballs, a glass of chilled homemade bloody mary mix, and NO dessert.

I love Italian food that does NOT have tomatoes in/on it. Decided just a few years ago that I love tomatoes cold, not hot. Same with eggs. Weird, huh?


    Bookmark   April 24, 2012 at 10:57AM
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Nope, Nancy, not weird. I like tomatoes fresh from the garden, in salads or on sandwiches, but I don't care for tomato sauces, pizza sauce, etc., so I guess I like them cold and not hot too.

Today I made oatmeal. (grin)


    Bookmark   April 24, 2012 at 2:45PM
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I missed this thread, but at the time, I was cooking tomato soup from the almost-last of the frozen roasted tomatoes from last summer, gf barbeque chicken grilled cheese and gf mac and cheese (rice shells, cheese sauce made with a rice flour roux). Everyone's treats look so good!

    Bookmark   April 24, 2012 at 10:34PM
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Believe it or not, it's been in the upper 40's here in NW Florida every morning this week!

Today: cinnamon rolls for my office mates, a cherry pie for a friend who is undergoing chemotherapy (at his request), and crockpot lasagna for the pickiest kid on earth.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2012 at 7:44AM
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It is pouring rain here today. Which is okay with me since today was going to be a bake day anyway. I have a double batch of dough in the fridge that has been there since Monday. Enough to bake 6 to 8 loaves.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2012 at 8:23AM
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