Saturday, August 11, 2007

Remedial Baking 101

Again I am reminded that we live in a climate of extremes. It wasn’t so long ago that you heard me complaining about the heat and the humidity. Well, the expression, if you don’t like the weather, wait five minutes holds true.

It’s about 10 degrees Celsius here today and the forecast for next week is for high teens.

While this is excellent for the A/C goal, we may need to turn on the bloody furnace but whatever!

However, the cooler weather has motivated me to actually cook again. We’ve been surviving on BBQ only for the last month and I can’t remember the last time I baked anything. So yesterday I got the urge to bake some buns, the delectable homemade buns that Mom made weekly when I was a kid. The recipe requires that the buns rise overnight which means breakfast the next day consists of fresh, hot from the oven buns. Mmmmm, with butter that gets all melty and warm honey….

I could taste them as I started the yeast a‘risin in the bowl. The yeast did as it should, it multiplied like only yeast can, I added the eggs, some salt and then began the process of kneading 10 cups of flour in. After about 4 cups, the dough, well it was done. It was dry, and not wanting any more of that there flour, no way, no how.

Now, I am notorious for not reading recipes carefully enough. In my youth there was an angel food cake debacle that haunts me to this day. You would think I would have learned, but NO, once again, I missed something key. Um, like about 3 cups of warm water.

Right, so you do realize that you can’t actually add that much liquid to a mass of dough? Yeah, so I found out. There’s a reason you add ingredients in a certain order. I knew that but the part of me that didn’t feel right about wasting all those eggs, sugar and flour thought, what the heck, we’ll give ‘er a go.

Round two. After dumping the lump of useless dough in the trash we tried again, with the addition of 3 cups of warm water things were going great. I set the dough to rise and came back later to form the knots that would be the buns.

I wake up this morning and the buns, well, they look a bit flat and smell a bit like fermenting yeast. Hmmm, not what I remember Mom’s buns looking and smelling like.

Yeah, guess what? I am fairly certain I forgot the salt, which is key to the whole rising process and I may or may not have doubled the yeast amount.

Right, on to round three… I am stubborn, I can do this. In fact, I have done it before.

Three tries for a quarter?

I sign up for remedial baking classes first thing Monday morning. Or maybe I need Hooked on Phonics?


Angella said...

Hee hee.

I made corn bread once (had made it many times before), and while it LOOKED good, and SMELLED good, it tasted AWFUL.

I had used Baking SODA instead of baking POWDER.

Hope your most recent attempt works!

Hannah said...

Well I think you are very good attempting it for the 3rd time!! I would have given up and gone down the road to buy some buns!!! Hope the next attempt works ... and you are rewarded for ALL your hard work!! :-)