Currently Browsing: Bread
Above: Deconstructing the State Fair in my journal. This sketch from yesterday builds on sketches I made of Bantams at this year's Minnesota State Fair. I am working out some compositions for a series of paintings. Paintings I'd hoped to work on Thursday. I'll continue working on this project over the weekend. Right now it's a random, on-going thought.
Yesterday Dick and I made Thanksgiving Day dinner for his folks and an 85-year-old long-time family friend. It used to be that I did everything and there were many courses. With the annexation of the dining room by the studio and the site move to the folks' where they have ELECTRIC (come on, everyone knows you need gas to cook) the meals have been both more simple and still adventuresome. But they still have to be planned and life has been tightly wound here lately so planning took place Wednesday night before a trip to the coop.
Friday night, after visiting a gallery with my friend Linda, she recalled her father mentioning a new pizza restaurant opening up on Washington Ave. North, in Minneapolis. Linda has a great memory for locations. We were only a couple blocks away and decided to stop in.
Black Sheep Pizza at 600 Washington Ave. North, Minneapolis, makes the best pizza I have ever eaten. They use coal to fuel their ovens. Their menu says:
Years ago I made bread almost daily. I worked at a job which allowed me to get home early and deal with a second rising (I was also running over 10 miles a day). Many life interventions later I missed the bread but wasn't enthused about all the labor I'd be taking on again. Then in January a friend recommended a book: Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day.
You can watch authors Jeff Hertzberg and Zoe Francois talk about their straightforward approach at YouTube. (I wanted to embed the video in my blog but YouTube is doing some house cleaning tonight and I can't set that up. I hope this link works instead.) Their method calls for making a large sponge or batch of dough which you store in the refrigerator. When you want bread you cut off a hunk of this, form a loaf, let it rise, and bake it. The authors' techniques include using a baking stone and pouring water into a boiler pan in the oven to create steam. The resultant loaves are crusty, delicious, and easily reproducible.