Saturday, December 6, 2008

A Day of Baking

It was too cold and snowy to do anything outside today, the perfect day for staying inside and baking yummy food. I was inspired by Paula at Fraker Farm (who was inspired by Susan at Farmgirl Fare) to try my hand at making bread bowls. Seems we're all an inspiration to each other.

Following the bread bowl recipe in my bread maker's recipe book, I made these neat little dough balls. I let them rise on top of the dryer for an hour (warmest place in the house at the time) then baked them for 20 minutes. They came out perfect! I made shrimp and corn chowder to go inside them. I cut off the tops and tore out some of the bread inside them then ladled the chowder into them. It was very good and very filling! We barely had room for cookies.

They make a nice presentation, no? The really nice part about bread bowls is you get to eat the bowl, so you don't have to wash it. Since the chowder is very simple to make and perfect for making the day before, this meal would be a great one for company. Make everything the day before then heat up the chowder and away you go. Easy!

Remember me kvetching about silicone hot pads yesterday? Well here's why I hate them so much. See that little pink thing poking out? That's my thumb! Every time I take a loaf of bread out of my bread maker the edge of the pan tears a chunk of silicone out of my oven mitt. It's gotten to this point now. Silicone is not at all durable. Heat resistant, yes, but not durable.

Paula was brave enough to show what her kitchen looked like during her bread baking/chowder cooking. I thought I'd keep the ball rolling. Here's what my kitchen looked like today during all the activity.

While I was waiting for the bread bowl dough to rise I made a loaf of potato bread which can be seen cooling on the bar behind the kitchen sink. It's a really good recipe and everyone loves it. To the right of the bread is that horrid
Chrysanthemum cake from yesterday. And if you think you see cookie dough on the counter, you're right. While the bread bowls were baking I whipped up a batch of chocolate chip cookies in the KitchenAid. After the bread was done I proceded to bake cookies! Yum!

I put two quart sized storage bags full of cookies into the freezer to enjoy later. Don't worry, I saved this one for you!


  1. the top photo is beautiful, real nice.

    Everything looks so appealing except for the Chrysanthemum cake ;-)

    Don't ya just love your KitchenAid? You'd have to pry it out of my cold, dead fingers to wrestle it away from me.

  2. Yummy! I just LOVE homemade breads! Potato bread is my favorite too. What's your recipe? Everything looks so good... excuse me... I need to get some snacks :0)

  3. You are going to town. The bread bowls looked great,I have yet to make them.

  4. Amy, is there any land for sale near you?? If so I would love to be your neighbor and I promise I will come over often. lol Great looking bread and cookies. mmmmmm

  5. Only one cookie? I need at least 3 with a big ole glass of ice-cold milk to wash them down. The bread bowls look yummy. I'd have a hard time not just slicing one and slathering each slice with some soft butter. OMG, I can feel my butt/gut growing just thinking about it!

  6. Joanna, thank you! The ducks are determined not to give up their little patch of open water. They nibble the edge of the ice during the day. I don't use the KitchenAid as often as I should. I only bring it out for mixing up large quantities of dough, or anything really stiff. Stirring stiff dough is for the birds! Let the KA do the work! I have yet to try the bread hook either. I remember grandma used hers to do the bread kneading for her. I have to learn that technique.

    CCL, the potato bread is sooo good. Doughy, chewie, soft, just right for toasting and spreading with strawberry preserves. Sorry to tease you! LOL

    Kim, ya know, if I could get outside we'd be eating peanut butter and jelly! Winter does this to me. I have to stay busy or I make everyone around me miserable, so I BAKE.

    Chris, sorry, no land for sale anywhere around here. But you are welcome to stop by for a visit. I promise I'll feed you!

    Susan, I lied, I set aside 3 cookies for you! You bring the butta and we'll schmeer to our hearts content! I think I just felt my butt pop out another inch.

  7. Your blog has left me drooling, not only for the goodies you made, but the treasures you have found! Lucky you!
    Question...trapping the EHP and the Starlings...what do you use, and what do you do when you catch them...they have taken over my bird feeders and I want them GONE. I personally love the raptors and we have many around, but they have never helped me out with these pesky birds! LOL oh well, I guess I'll have to do that myself...hey the bunt cake sure would have been beautiful...sorry it didnt work out!!!!! If you cant view my blog (I went private cause of one solitary person..sad..anyway send me your email addy and I'll send you the your blog as usual!

  8. Rachel, I bought my sparrow trap last fall from this guy:

    It works exactly the way it he says it will. I've caught over 20+ sparrows at a time on a good day. I kill the birds by throwing them against our concrete approach. It sounds horrid, I know, but it is the most humane method I know of. My grandpa taught me how to do it when I was a little girl and I helped him kill non-natives.

    It takes a few weeks to make a good dent in your sparrow population but is well worth the effort, especially if you have Blue Birds, Chickadess or other cavity nesters that you've set up bird houses for. It really gives the native species a fighting chance. Cavity nests are very hard to find since the wooded areas of our country aren't as numerous as they once were.

  9. What a baker you are! The oils I mentioned, coconut and palm are a saturated oils which I realize in the past have gotten bad press but it was not warrented. They are lovely to use in the kitchen, I like their solid nature and they have a very high smoke point.

    Anything other than hydrogented shortening or plastic margerine has got to be "healthy". They have a very long shelf life, most of the common used oils have a very short life and beome rancid before we notice. Well heck there is a lot of information out there that would be more accurate than my retelling.

    We like to use whole foods, the closer to the natural state the better.

  10. Lanny, isn't it amazing how little we understand about oils and food in general? I agree with sticking with whole foods. Using unmolested ingredients to make your own food from scratch is the way to go. Processed foods are what's wrong with this country. Look at the French. They eat bread and sausage and drink wine every day and they aren't obese.

  11. BTW, I love the new look of the blog. Not near as much as the look of those cookies but I like it.


  12. That chowder in the bread bowl looks delicious (and is making me very hungry sitting here at work!):)

  13. Came to visit from Paula's at The Fraker Farm. Now I am even more hungry! Both of you have delicious bread bowls and soups. So enjoyed visiting. Blessings, Kathleen

  14. Whew! I was getting worried when you said you were almsot too full for cookies. How can that be!?

    And there it is...cookies and you even saved one for me....if I could only figure out who to remove it from my computer...sigh.

    And I'm loving those bread bowls. I haven't made those for years! I love any meals that doesn't require me to was dishes afterwards, too. hehe

    Well, my breadmaker burned up last week, so no more bread for a while...or at least until after Santa arrives and drops off my new and improved fancy breadmaker. lol!

    Ho! Ho! Ho!
    New Mexico

  15. I love that photo of the duck pond. And your bread bowls are wonderful! What a fun way to serve soup. I definitely have to make some of those. : )

  16. Looks like you did great on those bowls, Amy!! And the cookies.... YUMMO.

    By the way... thanks for joining me in keepin' it real with the kitchen photo! LOL

  17. Chris, thank you. I tried to decorate for the season.

    Wrensong, it was yummy! I really wanted potato chowder but didn't have any potatoes. Whuh???

    Kathleen, thanks for visiting!

    Lisa, so sorry to hear of your bread maker's demise! I hope Santa brings you a new one. Can't live without fresh bread you know!

    Susan, thanks for stopping by. The bread bowls were a good practice dough for me. I learned a lot that day! I am also learning a lot by reading your blogs about bread. Thanks for sharing such great information.

    Paula, you're welcome! See, you're not the only one who can make a mess in the kitchen.


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