D was not impressed when I woke up this Saturday wanting to bake bread. No, I should ammend that to say that he wasn't impressed that it would take a minimum of 2-3 hours, therefore too late for his eggs and bacon. It has been a while since I did a straight up white loaf. I have been doing Sour, Rye, and Wholewheat. D bought a new bag of White AP flour so I would do that and so I did. I got out one of my long time favourite recipies but it was for 2 loaves of French Bread and it called for less than a glass of beer for the two. I was not about to crack a whole beer for that. Plus, I only wanted to make 1 loaf. I was feeling bad enough making white bread as it was. I made some adjustments and added a Dry Chardonnay instead of the Beer. It would have added some acidity that beer would not have, and in retrospect, I should have offset that with some Baking Soda but I did not. The result was an even textured aromatic loaf. I really enjoyed it. I think I might have gotten more big uneven bubbles as you might expect, if I let it rise as long is it should but we did not have time.
Crusty Chardonnay Loaf
1/3 c Warm Water
1 t Honey
1 t Dry Active Yeast
1/3 c Chardonnay
1 1/2 c - 2 c All Purpose Flour
1 t Olive Oil
1 t Salt
1/2 c Water
2 T Cornmeal
In your mixing bowl, add the Warm water and the Honey. Stir. Sprinkle over the Yeast. Let stand for 5 minutes.
Attache the dough hook to the mixer. Add the Wine and Salt to the mixture. Then start to add the flour 1/2 cup at a time. You want the dough soft and slightly sticky to the touch but you do not want it mushy or too dry. This will depend alot on your location's humidity as well as the moisture of your flour. So watch as you mix. when you think you are close, stop adding flour and the let the mixer knead on medium low for a minute to see if it combines. You can add a Tablespoon of water at a time if you think you have added too much flour.
Let it knead on a 2-4 (on Kitchenaid) for 8 minutes. When the dough pulls away from the bowl cleanly, and it will. Pull from the bowl. Lightly oil with 1 t or less of oil. Swirl the dough around the bowl to oil the bowl then turn over oiled side up. Cover with a damp cloth and set aside somewhere warm. Since I wanted to rush things abit, I put it in our oven in a 'Rapid Proof' setting. It was basically a 80F (30C) oven. 45 minutes.
I do not condone the violence of punching down. Simply lift it out of the bowl and as you start to form it, large cavernous bubbles will deflate. As I mentioned I was in a rush and did not want to fuss with dusting a counter top. I simply formed the loaf between my two as if holding a squirming baby. When you have a baguette shapped loaf about 16-18" long, place on a baking sheet dusted with Corn Meal.
Let rise in a warm place again, or on 'Rapid Proof' for another 45 minutes.
Take out of the oven you were proofing and heat the oven to 450F with the rack at the lowest level.
Take a razor your sharpest knife and make 3 or 4 slanted gashes in the loaf. I had to go at it from both sides since I used a knife instead of a razor. Brush with Salt Water.
When the oven is preheated. Place the loaf in and have some unsalted water (1-2 Tablespoons) at hand and splash the bottom of the oven with it. The steam will help the crust form.
Cool on a rack and eat!
We BBQd for dinner. D made a few sauces to snack on as we prepared dinner. He made Guacamole and Fresh Tomato Salsa too.
We bought some burgers at Whole Foods. I got a Salmon Feta and Oregano Burger and D got a Angus Beef Burger and a Sausage. They have an extensive selection of fresh Burgers and Sausages at the Deli counter at the Whole Foods. As well, we bought some Corn on the Cob on Commercial. Not quite in season but it was reasonably priced. It was quite sweet as well!
We used the bread I baked earlier in the day for the buns. It was a rather large loaf and really I could have used half the bun for the burger. I toasted them on the upper level of the BBQ.
BBQ Corn on the Cob
I was on the grill. Watch out neighbours! D likes to leave the Husks on the Corn. I grew up either roasting them in foil or BBQing in the park with nothing. So I did not know that with the husks on, you should not put them over the Direct burner. The husks caught fire as you can see. No panic. It saved me from having to peel them away. But for future reference, if you leave the husks on, BBQ on Indirect heat for about 12 minutes turning occaisionly. They took about 10 on Direct and they had that Char and nice chewiness I like.
The Salmon burger did not want to stay together. I should have bought the plain salmon but I was lured by the feta. I oiled the burgers and sausage lightly before grilling.
Salmon Burger (fresh wild, chunk salmon, not processed) took 3 minutes a side.
D's Angus Beef Burger took about 4-5 minutes a side and the Sausage about 6-7 minutes a side. Do not poke or pierce the Sausage.
We had a Domaine de Cristia Cotes du Rhones 2008. It was quite a bit different from the previous vintage. A lot edgier and acidic. Not as much vanilla either. Nice but I`ll have to see how it developes.