Friday, January 30, 2009

More bread, cheese... no whine!

Since Wednesday was an awful, icy, messy day, I decided to take the day off of work and be a domestic goddess. And goddess I was - but I'm getting ahead of myself.

First up was a new batch of bread to bolster my confidence. Even as a newbie, I've had amazing luck with the bread, and today was no exeption. I tried an oatmeal bread from the Quaker Oats web site: First, you make a wet mixture.

Then, you mix in enough flour to make a stiff dough.

Rise, punch down, rest, form into loaves, rise, and finally, bake those bad boys. They came out looking pretty fine.

And they taste pretty good, too. Phew! Then I was on to the cheese. If you read through my previous post, you can see I had three theories on why the cheese experiment failed the first time. Now I have a fourth. At the end, after you've heated and curdled and mixed, you separate the curds from the whey and put it in the microwave. The directions say to nuke it for about a minute, but if you read further, it says "the cheese must be 135 degrees to stretch". Aha! Turns out, we are so slow taking the curds out of the whey, the cheese cools down significantly. Heating for 1 minute doesn't get the cheese to the proper temperature. Using a thermometer this time, I nuked it until it was hot. And lo and behold, I had cheese! I didn't take any pictures, because I was kind of anxious and excited, but take my word for it. I made two 8 oz balls of creamy white mozzarella cheese, which taste quite heavenly. I think that some homemade pesto (from the freezer), homemade French bread (again, freezer), and a nice lookin' tomato (I know, it's not local) will make a beautiful little meal. I can't wait! (maybe this time I'll remember to take a picture).

To make up for it, here's a picture of my buddy "Patches" enjoying a snack I put out for him.


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