Monday, April 19, 2010

Whole Wheat Bread

I think I finally found a whole wheat bread recipe I can make.  I've always wanted to use my Kitchenaid mixer to make bread.  But, everytime I tried all I made were brown bricks.  The dog loved them. These look great.  I can't wait for them to cool down.

Adapted from Kitchenaid Conversation Forums.

Zarqy's 100% Whole Wheat Bread

Makes 2 loaves, 2 pizzas, or 1 of each

(For proofing the yeast)
1/2 cup Warm water (105-115f)
1 tsp Sugar
4 tsp Yeast ( I used Rapid Rise)

Combine warm water, sugar, and yeast. Give a quick stir with a fork and let stand until foamy (about 5-10 mins)
1 1/2 cup Warm water (105-115f)
1/3 cup Sugar/Honey/Molasses ( I used honey)
2 tb Margarine
2 tsp Salt
5 cups Whole Wheat flour, (less 5 tb if using vital wheat gluten)
5 tb Vital Wheat Gluten (do not use if using bread flour)

Place margarine, warm water and your already proofed yeast into your Kitchen Aid mixing bowl.
Add flour, sugar and salt
Put in your dough hook and turn your KitchenAid mixer to speed 2. Make sure you lock the head in place so it doesn't thump and bang.
Mix until dough pulls clean away from the bowl (about 5 or so mins)
Turn out onto a clean surface. Lightly knead for 30 seconds or so just to take away a bit of the stickiness. Do not add flour, this dough should still be a bit sticky. It's the hydration that's key in making a light bread. Over flour it and you'll end up with a nice brown brick.

Shape into a nice round ball. Add a little olive oil to your KitchenAid bowl and then put the dough back in it, turning so the entire dough is lightly covered with oil. Cover with a lid if you have one or plastic wrap and allow to rise somewhere warm (24-29C) for about an hour(only took 30min with rapid rise yeast) to bulk rise. (I use the oven with the light turned on and sometimes I place a small pot of boiled water in on a really cold day)
Once doubled turn out onto a clean surface. Divide dough and punch down.
(If you are making pizzas place your dough on a greased pan with cornmeal and form into pizza crust. This
will make 2 16" pizzas with a nice thick crust. Bake your pizzas at 450f for 15-20 mins)

Form your loaves and place them in greased and floured pans and put them somewhere warm (24-29C) to double in size again. (45-60 mins)

Bake at 400F on lower rack for 25-30 mins.
Remove to wire rack to cool

Thursday, April 15, 2010

I've made it through week one

Well I made it through the first week of school.  Not too bad, considering the number of baseball games I had to go to.  I spent several very late nights reading, writing and discussing on the blackboard for IWU.  I really do love it.  I'm also working on a new craft.  Coffee filter roses.  I was blog hopping and found a link to Martha Stewart's page.  She had a video tutorial and I thought they look beautiful and I'd like to give it a try.  I'm on my third attempt.  I'm happy to say each attempt looks more and more like a flower, maybe not quite a rose yet but I'll get there.  When I do I'll share some pics.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Yea Me!!

As of Monday, I am officially a college student again.  I am taking online courses with Indiana Wesleyan in order to finish my Bachelors degree.  The degree I started 29 years ago.  That's right 29 years ago. 
Yea Me!! 
Also, I've found a new craft that I want to try.  It uses coffee filters to make roses.  going to cut out my templates this week.  After I finish my nightly homework that is. This weekend I'll put them together and see how they turn out.  I can't wait. 

Friday, April 9, 2010

Happy Birthday To AMANDA

Today is my oldest daughters birthday.  She's a blessing to me and I'm ever so proud of her. 
Happy 23rd birthday MJ. 
Love Mommy.
Here is she is with her 15 yo baby brother. 

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Cookie decorating

These are the picks of the cookie decorating I mention in a previous post.  We had fun, Rylee wanted to just eat the sugar. 
My neice Molly and her boyfreind Evan gave it a try. Good Job Evan.  The only guy to step up.  BTW, he make an awesome Eclair cake.
Here is a sample of the fun.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Beginning Modge Podger, but I love it.

Here is my first attempt at modge podge.  The first attempt that I can remember anyway.  I'm sure I used this stuff when I was little.  They look pretty rudimentary but I'm not giving up. 

A bittersweet Easter Celebration

We had the usual Easter dinner on the Pike.  Great food and lots of fun.  This was our first year in a really long time for an egg hunt.  We have two beautiful granddaughters in the family (not  mine, however) that are old enough to look for eggs.  Great job Aubrey Tate and Rylee Grace.  Next year we'll have a third child, with the birth of Xander Able on Friday, April 2nd.  After the egg hunt we all came in and the girls decorated sugar cookies.  I'll post pics later.  I need to thank my boys, Darryl (husband) and Dan (son) for helping get the house and yard ready for dinner and especially my lovely daughter Olivia for helping with the meal.  She really step in to help where her older sister usually takes charge.  Unfortunately Amanda, our oldest daughter couldn't make it home for the fun.  The meal wasn't the same without her and I hope it doesn't happen next year. Even though she wasn't here we had a great time and are truly blessed with a loving family. 
Here's a pic of Olivia.  She's an amazing young lady. 

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Chocolate Egg Topiary

I got this idea from Disney's Family Fun website.  It looked pretty simple at the time. Was it?  Yes and no!  It was simple to put together but it took forever And some of the chocolate eggs kept falling off and the cats would bat them around the floor like they were mice.  It took way more chocolate than I thought. 
You would have thought I would have stopped after the first one, but no that's not my style.  I had to keep going until I got it right.  I started with the two small one and then moved to the large one last.  I bought the bunnies at the Dollar Store.  I think I'm going to add my own ribbon around their necks.  Ribbon I also picked up at the Dollar Store.
Looks like I could have gotten the chocolate a little closer together, but I was so tired of sticking myself with the toothpicks I didn't care after a while.

I'll take more pic Saturday night when I finish my table.   I kind of like my Dollar Store bunnies. After all the chocolate is gone I'm going to hot glue tissue roses to the styrofoam balls and leave them out all through the summer.