There are some parts of my life that I just can't blog about.
Tuesday's are always Baking Days and I can blog about that. I have not been very motivated on Baking Day of late. The most successful Baking Days are when you plan several days ahead so that you are sure to have all the ingredients as well as allow the other bakers to gather what they need. The last...month or so...I have not been planning ahead. I typically arrive, sit at the island with a cookbook and see what I can whip up.
For this week I did plan ahead...sort of. I have had two acorn squashes sitting on my counter for I don't know how long. I found a recipe on-line for acorn squash bread. It sounded really yummy! Spice Cake-like. I forgot, however, to let the rest of the group know so I was the only one with acorn squash.
Patti made a wheat berry salad. Wheat berries are wheat kernels. Laurel of course made the bread. Ezekiel bread this week! Stacy and Caren made a high protein granola.
My acorn squash recipe began by baking the squash for 45 min. This was disappointing to me. I mean, did I not read the directions before deciding to make this? After they were baked I had to let them cool. More time wasted. Boo. Finally I could begin. There was enough squash that I could double my recipe. I doubled the sugar, the spices, the oil, and the eggs. I paused at the baking soda and baking powder.
"Um...when you guys double a recipe do you double the baking powder and soda as well?"
Laurel laughed as she went to the pantry to mill grain.
"I always double it," someone said.
"I do like 1 and a 1/2," said another.
I glared into my bowl trying to decide what to do.
"I laughed, Michal, because I knew you would get all different answers," Laurel said.
"Oh. I figured you laughed because most of what I bake tastes like baking soda or powder."
I went with the one and half idea. Not quite doubling but still an increase. After all ingredients had been added and mixed, I poured it into two greased and floured bread pans and placed it in the oven to bake for...
"Another 45 minutes?! Ug! This takes forever."
During the wait I ate lunch, did a few dishes and chatted with the other ladies. Finally my bread was ready. I opened the oven to find that the loaves had fallen. My countenance went with it.
"Poop," I said as I took one loaf out and plopped it onto the island. The man-handling caused the bread to fall in even more. It just deflated.
"Grrrr. What the heck?"
"You can't throw it around," Caren said, "You have to handle bread gently."
"Yeah, but it fell before I even took it out. Look!" I said pulling the other loaf out for proof.
"Oooo smells good! What's that?" Stacy asked.
"Crap. Baked Crap." I replied.
"You used too much leavening product," added Stacy. "I never double the baking powder or soda. I didn't say anything since you were already getting all kinds of different answers."
"Did you increase the flour?" Caren asked.
"You have to increase the flour for the higher altitude." I've been coming to Baking Day for about 8 months now. Why can I not remember to do that?
"Like cream cheese frosting..." I thought.
I sliced the loaves in half to share with the other bakers.
"It's not cooked through. It's all gooey inside! Damn."
"Well, maybe that's why it fell." (Caren trying to make me feel better again.) "Let's try baking it a little longer."
So we did. Still gooey. I stared at the bread with my nastiest pout but it still refused to change.
"They look like slippers," I said.
"It doesn't matter how it looks," encouraged Caren. "How does it taste?"
We cut off a slice. It's good!
"It's good but it's still gooey. We need to just throw it away."
"No, no. It's nothing a toaster can't fix." exclaimed Caren/Polly Anna.
"You could pour some sort of cream sauce over it," suggested Stacy, probably because the gooey-ness reminded her of bread pudding.
Both good ideas. I think mine is better though and I plan to trash it.
Aaron just got home and asked about Baking Day.
"What'd you bake?"
"What do you mean?" he says through laughter. I showed him the bread. "Looks to me like someone is doing too much talking and not paying enough attention to the baking..." he said turning his hand into a puppet. A mocking puppet.
"Shut up. You don't know. It's either because I used to much baking powder and soda or because I didn't increase the flour for altitude."
"How long have you been baking at this altitude?"
"After about one or two times of that happening one would think that..."
He cuts a slice. "Kind of gooey...It does taste good though."