Tuesday, February 09, 2010

New electric tea kettle and artisan bread...woohoo!

Yesterday I met my friend, Pat, at Michael's to look for some crafting supplies.  I was actually looking for some adhesive to use on my Cricut mat to make it sticky again (but that will be another post).  We stopped into Ross next door but I had already made up my mind that I didn't want to spend any more money.  We tend to look for teacups and teapots while there but I had no idea I'd find a Capresso H2O electric tea kettle!  I tried talking myself out of it but thought I'd better carry it around in case someone else saw it.  I've been coveting this tea kettle for quite awhile but didn't want to spend $60 for it.  How much did I spend?  $40!   I love it!  It's so pretty and I love the fact that it's glass instead of plastic but most of all I love the speed at which it boils water.  Of course, as soon as we got back to Pat's house we had to test it out.  We filled it up (48oz) and it probably took no more than 3-4 minutes to come to a boil!  No off odors or tastes that some reviewers complained of, thank goodness!

Now, about the artisan bread.  I borrowed a copy of Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day by Jeff Hertzberg and Zoe Francois after getting interested in refrigerator bread doughs such as that mentioned in one of the Tightwad Gazette books I read years ago.  This book gives a master bread recipe that requires no kneading and can stay in the refrigerator for a couple of weeks.  The longer it remains refrigerated, the more of a sourdough flavor it takes on.  I was interested in the "no kneading" aspect of the dough as well as being able to take a hunk of dough and bake a loaf of bread with only 40 minutes of rising time as preparation.  Now, my loaf didn't exactly look like the one on the cover of the book, but it really reminded me of something I'd tasted in a restaurant.  It was crunchy on the outside and chewy on the inside, like ciabatta.  The hardest part of all was doing what the book instructed and waiting until the bread had completely cooled before cutting it.  The only thing I don't like is that the recipe seems rather salty to me.  Next batch, I'll decrease the salt and see if it affects the outcome at all.   With another portion of this batch I'll try the Sticky Pecan Caramel Rolls.  Yum!  Can't wait.

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