Here I share a recipe that isn't mine, some baking that isn't mine and the aforementioned tulips.
I also might have a forum-based development to share with you...
Firstly, the recipe that isn't mine.
Not everything I bake is bread. These American Biscuits are not bread. Neither are they biscuits, as I understand the term, but no matter. They are, probably, American.
I've been in correspondence with a lovely lady called Margaret. Hi Margaret! (*waves*). Margaret and I have been chatting about bread and baking and she gave me her recipe for American biscuits.
When she told me they were very quick and easy to make, she was not exaggerating. Here are some I rustled up in a matter of minutes:
Being new to the world of American biscuits, I was surprised how scone-like they turned out. Like scones, I remarked, only quicker.
The recipe is two cups of self raising flour and one cup of whipping cream. That's it! Though you could add just about any flavouring you fancy: cheese, garlic, herbs, fruit, sugar, chocolate chips... But not all at once.
Simply combine the ingredients to make a dough, press it flat (to about an inch thick) on the worktop and cut it into rounds. Bake at 180oC/360F for about ten minutes then (and I like this bit) brush the tops with melted butter.
Because it was my first time, I made them plain. I served them with chopped fruit and vegetables and chunks of cheese.
Very nice! Thanks Margaret!
Later in the week, I made tiger bread again. Lots of people have told me that they have enjoyed trying this recipe and I felt inspired to make it for lunch when some more friends came over.
This time, instead of having the paste all sloppy and running off the loaf to puddle and burn on the tray, I followed Bob's advice, from the Freshly Baked Facebook Page, which was to let the rice absorb the liquid for a while before spreading it on the loaf. Here's mine, prepared in advance, as the loaf proves.
Alas, you can't see the finished loaf because I went ahead and burnt it anyway(!) And not just the slopped-off liquid this time; the whole crust. Black :o( But the inside was soft and tasty, so all was not lost.
At the weekend, we went to Carluccio's. "Authentic Italian food at sensible prices" (it's a chain, I think). It has to be said, I go there (not as often as I would like) for the hot chocolate and biscuits, but the focaccia is worth a mention here (mostly because this is a bread website and it's bad enough having gratuitous tulips without having hot chocolate as well). So, the focaccia:
*Whispers* It wasn't as good as mine. I mean, I like focaccia with a bit more flavour on top. It had some salt, sure, and it came with the balsamic and olive oil combo, but disappointingly, no herbs. I love my rosemary and sea salt focaccia but, you know, maybe this is more Italian? I'm prepared to believe it. And, even if I didn't think their focaccia was the greatest, let's pause for a moment to give Carluccio's credit for that awesome platter you see in the background. Yeah, that was delicious.
And the biscuits weren't bad either. Funny how I didn't manage to get a photo of them before they were hoovered up(!)
More Gorgeous Bread-ness That Isn't Mine
Let's hear it for my mother-in-law. She's an amazing artist and a great cook. Just look at this bread she created at the weekend:
Isn't that pretty?
And rolls too:
Which, I can report, tasted as excellent as they looked. Thank you, Abuelita!
It's coming! At long last, the discussion forum is nearly ready to be added to the site!
I am so excited to be able to host discussions of all things bread-related, here at Freshly Baked. I'm also a bit nervous. I've never moderated a forum before and I'm sure there will be a few tweaks and alterations to attend to before I have it all running smoothly.
In the next (dare I say it?) week or so, I'd like to invite some people to join me in testing out the forum. I think we need to use it a bit, not only to start generating some discussions but to find out what needs to be improved.
If you'd like to be among the first people onto the forum, maybe posting your own questions or starting your own discussions, please email me and I'll send you an invitation. It'll just be a private link, at first, (which you are welcome to share with interested friends) until I am ready to go live and launch it publicly. Let's do this!
My complete (and ever expanding) recipe collection is available at the click of a button or two.
30+ bread recipes in no-scroll (printable if you like) format, for your convenience.
Hurry, it's selling like