Thursday, December 5, 2019

Truffade Auvergnate

For a rustic treatment of potatoes and cheese, look no farther than France. There's Tartiflette (my recipe), also Aligot (my recipe), and then there's the glorious Truffade Auvergnate. The latter two dishes come from Auvergne where la France profonde (heartland) does its thing with excellent and just a few ingredients, serving up an unforgettable taste without much fuss. Truffade is gooey and substantial like another great comfort food, Macaroni and Cheese.

Sorrel, with its lemony taste, is managing to grow in our December garden. It makes a perfect topping for Truffade and per its saucy nature, mostly melts upon contact with the potatoes and cheese served piping hot from the cast iron skillet.

The cheese used traditionally in this recipe, that is, Tomme fraîche du Cantal, may be hard to come by so the very melty Comté can be substituted. I preferred Comté aged twenty months which has deep, complex flavour and welcome any opportunity to eat it. Here's an excerpt from my post on this fabulous cheese:

The flavour hovers between tangy and sweet tinged with caramel, and I mean hover, you're never quite sure which of those two tastes will dominate, keeping your palate awake. The texture is similar to the richest nougat, unctuous beyond belief with a touch of gooeyness before giving way to an umami cloud pervading every nook and cranny of my very fortunate mouth. 

2 ample or 4 smaller servings
adapted from Sarah's Kitchen

  • Potatoes, all-purpose, 500 g (I used Rosabelle potatoes from our potager)
  • Fat, duck or goose, 1 T (I used olive oil)
  • Tomme fraîche du Cantal or Comté (which I used), 200 g
  • Garlic clove, large, crushed
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Sorrel, fresh, a small handful

Cut the cheese into 1 cm/.4 inch cubes and the peeled potatoes into 2 cm/.8 inch cubes. The size is important allowing the potatoes to be cooked tender within the allotted time and for the cheese to melt quickly.

Peel and crush or mince fine one fat garlic glove.

Heat the fat or olive oil in a heavy-bottomed skillet, preferably cast iron. Toss in the potatoes. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Cook for twenty minutes over a low to medium low heat. Move the taters around with a sturdy spatula, scraping underneath them, from to time.

Add garlic and stir well, getting the tiny bits mixed throughout. Cook for another five minutes or until the largest potato cube is tender and all is golden brown.

Take the pan off the heat (don't forget to turn the burner off). Crush most of the potatoes with a fork or masher. Toss in the cheese cubes, steadily stirring until cheese is melted and has coated totally the potatoes, that is, you can hardly see any potato for the cheese. You can serve as is or you can compress and shape the cheesy mass into a thick pancake with a spatula or a potato masher which can be browned on both sides.

Top with chiffonade of sorrel (wash, dry, trim, stack leaves, roll into a cigar shape, and slice thinly). Perhaps because I substituted Comté for Tomme fraîche du Cantal, my version resembled the New York City street food like pizza and knishes with which I grew up, meaning warming food eaten out of hand. The tremendous amount of cheese becoming one with the  potato means the melty fusion passed to a stretchy, stringy state and then one of congealment so quickly that only determined fingers can take on the challenge of pulling off a chunk at least when it's served in a bowl. A challenge I met with gusto. I have since found a local source for Tomme fraîche du Cantal, the cheese used traditionally in this dish. When I remake this I will use that cheese and report back.

Any left-overs can be shaped into a pancake, put in a covered container, refrigerated, and reheated in a skillet with no additional fat. Eventually served on a plate, it was easy to cut with a knife into small pieces.

À la prochaine!

Thursday, November 28, 2019

Banana Bread a la Hot Bread Kitchen Cookbook

This dark, moist banana bread presents serious competition for a certain holiday bread. That's right, fruit cake, I am talking to you! Though the more common and lighter coloured version of banana bread can benefit from the addition of semi-sweet chocolate chips, walnuts, and cream-cheese frosting, this unadorned beauty stands its ground in the holiday season just by the dint of it being baked at a low temperature for two hours.

It's so good that instead of making banana bread for the express purpose of using up bananas too ripe to eat out of hand, I can envision my snapping up any over-ripe bananas at the market and/or leaving some bananas to ripen too much on purpose.

This fabulous recipe comes from The Hot Bread Kitchen Cookbook mostly unchanged except for my substituting maple sugar for brown sugar.

By maple sugar I don't mean crystallised maple syrup but white sugar with the addition of maple syrup in a ratio of two tablespoons of syrup to 237 ml (American 8 fluid ounce cup) of sugar.

makes 1 loaf (I used a 25 x 10 cm/9.5 x 4 inch pan, but the more typical 23 x 13 cm/9 x 5 inch bread pan is fine also.

recipe can be doubled

  • Bananas, very ripe, 3 medium
  • Sugar, granulated, white, 100 g (1/2 American 8 fluid oz cup)
  • Sugar, granulated, white, 100g (1/2 American 8 fluid oz cup) with added:
  • Maple syrup, 2 T
  • Baking soda, 2 1/2 tsp
  • Salt, coarse or Kosher, 1/2 tsp
  • Eggs, large, 2 (I used 3 medium)
  • Yogurt, plain, whole milk, 177 ml (3/4 American 8 fluid oz cup)
  • Oil, Canola (I used safflower), 4 T
  • Flour, all-purpose (I used French T55), 250 g/2 American 8 fluid oz cups)
  • Unsalted butter to grease pan

Place a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat  to 135 degrees C/275 degrees F. Grease the pan's insides well with butter. Trace with pencil the outside bottom of the pan onto parchment paper and cut out. Place into the pan and grease this bottom liner. If using a food processor fitted with the steel blade, puree bananas until smooth. Add both sugars, baking soda, and salt. Mix until combined. Add eggs, yogurt, and oil. Mix again. Transfer mixture to a large bowl and add the flour. Stir just until all the flour disappears and batter is nearly smooth. If mixing by hand, mash bananas in a large bowl using first a potato masher then a wire whisk once it becomes more liquid. Whisk till smooth which took me about five minutes from start to finish. Ooooh, such a lovely fragrance!

Add both sugars, baking soda, and salt. Whisk until incorporated.

Crack eggs into bowl, add yogurt, and pour in the oil. Whisk well.

Add flour and stir with a wooden spoon until all the flour is dissolved and the batter is mostly smooth.

Spoon or pour batter into the prepared pan. My pans were filled to just a bit under the top edge. Bake for around 2 to 2.5 hours.

My pans (I doubled the recipe) are thinner and longer than a regular bread pan, and they took 2 hours to finish baking. Make sure that the top springs back when tapped rather vigorously and/or when a wooden toothpick is inserted, it comes out clean.

This luscious sweet bread is versatile. In the below photo a thick slice (I suppose one could do thin slices, but why bother? The scrumptious texture needs at least 2.5 cm/1 inch of thickness in order to be duly appreciated) is taking a rest before it gets slathered with unsweetened, creamy, natural peanut butter which makes a wonderful quick breakfast or a snack.

For dessert, it will eagerly take on a deluge of maple syrup (see below photo) or a mound of ice cream or both! It can be topped with fresh fruit and whipped cream. Its delightful sponginess could take a good splash of alcohol, allowing it to be used in trifle (cut banana bread slices into sticks to mimic lady fingers) or a square-shaped rum baba. It could be cut into different forms like circles or stars and stacked, an architectural mound layered and filled, perhaps with mascarpone cream, in the manner of small, individual naked cakes. The bits left over could be crushed for layering and topping parfaits or toasted for croutons in fruit salad.

As for a savoury presentation? I am thinking a nice slab of banana bread accompanying eggs scrambled with blue cheese. All of this is possible just in time for the holidays because there is a full loaf plus a good chunk of another one sitting in our freezer. This bread will retain its flavour when frozen for three months.

À la prochaine!


Tortillas de Tiesto a la Hot Bread Kitchen Cookbook

Raisin Challah a la Hot Bread Kitchen Cookbook

Bialys a la Hot Bread Kitchen Cookbook

Book Review / Hot Bread Kitchen Cookbook: Artisanal Baking From Around The World by Jessamyn Waldman Rodriguez with Julia Turshen


Hot Bread Kitchen Cookbook at Amazon

Hot Bread Kitchen Website: Handmade Authentic Multi-Ethnic Breads, Preserving Tradition, Rising Expectations

Thursday, November 21, 2019

Winter Preparation 2019: Storage of Glass Ornaments & Frost-Tender Plants Plus Preservation of Carrots

The other day, I did the last preparation for the winter garden which was to bring indoors the four, handblown glass flowersa bluebell, a burgundy digitalis, and two mottled pansiespositioned in the potager's centre bed of sweet alyssum. It was just in time as upon awakening today I saw the garden covered in hoar frost.



One of the two pansies

As appreciative as I am of their beauty, when they are tucked in the bed's four corners, they serve as hose guards.

However sunny, cold days alternating with the typical nightly winter temperature drop means the glass will be subjected to quite a lot of stress. They could be boxed up but then I won't be able to marvel at them. Sooooooooo . . . The Calm One came up with the idea of inserting a large vase into an earthenware urn. The vase was swaddled with bubble wrapping and foam peanuts were stuffed into the vase. They get to see the garden from my office, and I get to see them.

About a week or so ago, several osteospermums and a couple of lantana were dug up from their garden beds and put into pots. Soon after, they along with an already potted bougainvillea were transported into the sous sol and placed near a sunny window.

Several days ago, all the carrots were spaded, rinsed off with a hose, sealed in containers/plastic bags, and placed in the sous sol's fridge. The variety is Carentan (a slightly different strain of Chantenay), a husky bruiser, insisting on developing despite any stones in its way, and believe me, there are lots of tiny pebbles in our soil. The upper third of the carrot is where most of the growth is, that is, lateral growth, so though they tend to be stubby in our garden, there's still a lot of carrot there. The large, carrot-filled colander in the below picture is a small fraction of the total haul.

The process of preserving is still ongoing. They are scrubbed well, sliced or diced according to need, put in a cauldron of boiling waterlots of boiling water to proportion of carrotand boiled for three minutes to kill any taste-destroying bacteria that would grow, albeit slowly, while the carrots are frozen. They are then drained, dried, and packed into freezer bags while squeezing out as much air as possible. Though this preparation is labour-intensive at the moment because of the large number of carrots, in the future all I have to do is get a bag of prepared carrots from the freezer. I am looking forward to that!

Based on the amount I already have processed, I would say I grew enough to last six months. Yay! That's another item that The Calm One, the official grocery shopper chez nous, doesn't have to lug into his shopping cart for a while. He hasn't needed to buy potatoes since August, and they should last another two months. I love growing vegetables as they are fresher and tastier than store-bought, but they are also much more convenient as they are never too far away, either in the garden or in the freezer. In the coming months, the carrots will appear as a side of peas and carrots for our Pot Roast Of Leg Of Lamb, in Chicken Pot Pie (changes from this old post is that I now make the pastry with butter and reduce the amount of broth a bit), in Cream Of Carrot Soup (below photo), and . . .

Served with a slab of Coulommiers and some rye crackers

. . . Minestrone (ingredient list from this very old post is still valid, but I now start the soup with a soffrito/mirepoix of garlic, carrots, porcini, peas, greens, tomato paste, basil, bay leaf, and with potatoes added towards the end of sauteing before adding stock and the remaining ingredients) which included our frozen peas harvested this past early summer. There's probably enough peas in the freezer to last another month. Sadness always descends even after growing food for ten years when I run out of our garden produce. Of course, I am glad our supply of vegetables and fruits can be topped up from the supermarket. But still . . .

Served with freshly grated Parmesan

À la prochaine!

Thursday, November 14, 2019

Cream of Mushroom Soup Redux

There's an old post with a recipe for cream of mushroom buried somewhere at the beginning of my seven years of blogging. Its tang came from crème fraîche, and it tasted good enough. However the consistency was not as pleasing especially after being defrosted which became watery and clumpy at the same time. A batch soup hostile to freezing isn't what batch cooking is all about. Through time, I conveniently forgot to make it. I always suspected the proportions of butter, flour, and stock was off hence the disappointing texture. After a little research, I tried different amounts of those ingredients which resulted in wonderful mushroomy flavour along with an equally wonderful creaminess that held up through defrosting.

around four to six servings, recipe can be doubled

  • Mushrooms, fresh,  554 g (1 pound) I added a small handful of rehydrated porcini
  • Onion, large, chopped
  • Thyme, fresh leaves, 1/2 T
  • Broth, chicken or veggie or dried porcini 'liquor' (I used a mix of half chicken broth and half porcini 'liquor'), 946 ml (32 fluid oz/1 quart)
  • Flour, all-purpose, 5 T plus 1 tsp
  • Butter, unsalted, 90 g (6 T)
  • Heavy cream, 237 ml (8 fluid oz)
  • Dry sherry or unsweetened apple juice (which I used), 4 T
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Garnish: a few fresh mushrooms and crumbled blue cheese (I used Bleu d'Auvergne)

If using porcini whether for a mixture or the total amount of stock, pour boiling water over the porcini in a small bowl to submerge. Let sit around twenty minutes. Via a sieve placed over a large mixing jug, drain well. Put the porcini back in the small bowl and cover with fresh cool water. Sieve and drain again. Repeat until water runs mostly clear, making sure the sediment is caught in the sieve. Reserve the amount of the dark 'liquor' needed before its runs clear. Clean the fresh mushrooms by wiping them with a paper towel to get rid of any compost flakes. Usually there's enough moisture on the mushrooms so most likely the paper towel won't need to be slightly moistened. 'Srooms quickly absorb moisture, diluting their flavour so no running them under a free-flowing faucet. Thinly slice the fresh mushrooms. If large, halve them first and then slice the halves. For decades I use to go to the trouble of finely mincing them because a certain cookbook insisted on doing that for best flavour. They are actually more tasty when sliced.

Melt the butter in a heavy-bottomed pot, preferably a cast-iron one. Saute the chopped onion for around ten minutes or until soft, yellow, transparent, and fragrant. Add sliced mushrooms and the porcini if using. Sprinkle some salt and pepper, stirring from time to time for ten minutes. Add flour while stirring well until it is all incorporated. Pour in the sherry or apple juice and give it a good stir. Add the stock and the thyme and bring to a boil. Reduce flame and let simmer, partially covered, for twenty minutes.

Remove half the soup and blend smooth (I used a stick mixer). Pour the blended soup back into the pot and add the cream. Adjust seasonings. Reheat gently.

Slice some mushrooms thinly and float a few in each bowl. Top the slices with crumbled blue cheese. Don't tell the older recipe languishing forgotten in the dusty archives that this one is much better.

À la prochaine!


Health benefits and nutritional content of mushrooms

Thursday, November 7, 2019

Book Review / Inferior: The True Power of Women and the Science that Shows It by Angela Saini

Ms Saini's presentation despite being one of concise clarity manages to cover, and even more importantly, uncover much ground, providing for an exhilarating, informative read. In her introduction, she lights upon a point that on its own pierces centuries of fog by identifying the manner in which women are perceived. Their inferiority is whispered constantly and everywhere. Certainly this dismissive attitude can be loud and clear, even brutal at times; but to sustain such a direct disregard would be a taxing endeavour. Therefore the approach morphed into an omnipresent implicit bias.

The foggy pestilence is left to billow about because of the nonchalant attitude of well that's what science says even though that is not what science says. It obscures the truth from being seen, an inconvenient one of women being denied their birthright of equality. There's a cough there, a sneeze there, but the fog remains. Mingling with the miasma is yet another poisonous whispering, that there never was any intellectually vigorous analysis opposing the arbitrary proposition of women intrinsically having pared-down worth.

Challenging the notion of innate male superiority and corralling their righteous anger into brilliant and potent late-nineteenth-century rebuttalswomen like Caroline Kennard* and Eliza Burt Gamble were ignored by science. Because women. Whisper, whisper. See how that fog seeps over everything a woman does? It stays put so well that an egalitarian society hasn't surfaced yet as women still are not spared from being sexually harassed/assaulted, still earn less pay for doing the same work as men, still not mentored as thoroughly as men hence making success into male-dominated fields beyond university graduation fraught with difficulties that has nothing to with their intellectual ability, and still not have complete control over their reproductive functions and of ones that they have, those human rights are under constant threat.

Caroline Kennard

Eliza Burt Gamble

What makes a woman a woman? Data collected from varied, large samples shows that though men on average are taller and have greater upper body strength, woman are more robust. Less males survive birth and stay alive longer.  Eliza Burt Gamble challenging the notion of the weaker sex in her book, The Evolution of Women: An Inquiry Into the Dogma of Her Inferiority to Man, had intimated as much when she wrote:
When a man and woman are put into competition, both possessed of every mental quality in equal perfection, save that one has higher energy, more patience and a somewhat great degree of physical courage, while the other has superior powers of intuition, finer and more rapid perceptions and a greater degree of endurance . . . the chances of the latter for gaining the ascendancy will doubtless be equal to those of the former.
Living longer may be a nifty evolutionary fitness edge, but nothing is free, especially in evolution. Women experience more pain because a physical price is paid when you are left standing while your male counterpart is resting quietly in a coffin. The female immune system is not necessarily stronger, but instead it is more flexible which is derived from being able to turn off the autoimmune response to the foreign body developing inside the womb.

The systemic curtailing of women's potential can be traced to when agriculture became entrenched. Due to a historic windfall, that is, basically luck, men were able to build societies catering solely to their needs. And with even more luck, white men could shape the world to fit them like a tailored-made suit. With hoarded inter-generational wealth, especially land, certain white men could lord it over even other men to the present spectacle of white, male billionaires who have never known an emotion they are able to regulate weeping on televised broadcasts because they might be taxed more appropriately.

For most of history, that is, before humans switched to an agricultural focus, women were able to acquire power by networking with each other. When I was a young woman in the 1970s I was fond of saying that the only reason why women were making advances (my goodness there goes a woman firefighter! Wow, a woman police officer!) was that such changes improved men's lives. That is, men allowed such changes after all it is their world. With increasing inflation, the single male earner household went out the window. It became advantageous to the family's financial health if the woman made more than she traditionally did hence some fields begrudgingly accepted female candidates as long as their pay was less. Of course she simultaneously would do unpaid housework as usual.

My observing as time passed allowed adding to this earlier understanding that at present the male power structure has sufficiently supported men pushing technological advances, of the kind, that unwittingly permits women to network easily and rapidly with each other, such as the Web. Women finding and amplifying their voices have not gone by unnoticed as the ever present backlash to #metoo and #TimesUp shows and by my own recent experience of a 'reply guy' wedded to the whispering style plaguing discourses on women's equality unashamedly insisting during an online discussion that the words 'patriarchy' and 'feminism' be not used as if not naming what exists and why it does somehow will erase magically what is problematically and egregiously extant.

Ms Saini discusses the extensive research on brain dimorphism in humans and concludes there is no significant evidence male and female brains are much different, but rather they are intersex, with a bit of both, of which the proportion varies from person to person creating an individual mosaic in each and every one of us. Yet researchers insist on looking for a biological holy grail which would overtake numerous, substantial studies underlining the longstanding inequality between men and women is caused by cultural forces.

This page-turning book which I hardly put down since I wanted to keep on lessening my ignorance as quickly as possible is one I highly recommend. The content is riveting in its detailed elaboration regarding women's supposed inferiority. Dr. Jess Wade's crowd-sourced fund secured enough donations for a copy of Inferior to be sent to each UK state school. You can be a crowd-sourced fund of one and give a copy to a friend or relative because it is an essential tool in promoting equality.

*Caroline Kennard wrote two letters to Charles Darwin, the first asking in disbelief that since a distinguished scientist couldn't be so wrong in believing evolution only made men productive and intelligent that perhaps his views have been misinterpreted. He replied women were passive and less intelligent because evolution didn't push them in that direction since women were unable to hunt and make tools. Her reply not surprisedly was written in a less neat script than the first. Fast forward a bunch of decades and there's evidence women probably made the first tools, created out of fibre such as slings to carry babies and baskets with which to forage and they hunted smaller animals sometimes with the help of dogs which brought in a more consistent food supply than men did with their larger game.

À la prochaine!


Book review / The Golden Thread : How Fabric Changed History by Kassia St Clair

Book review / Lolly Willowes by Sylvia Warner Townsend

Book Review / Against Empathy by Paul Bloom

Book Review / The Tulip by Anna Pavord

Book Review / The Asshole Survival Guide: How to Deal with People Who Treat You Like Dirt by Robert I. Sutton

Book Review / Florike Egmond's An Eye For Detail: Images of Plants and Animals in Art and Science, 1500-1630

Book Review / Hot Bread Kitchen Cookbook: Artisanal

Baking From Around The World by Jessamyn Waldman

Rodriguez with Julia Turshen

Book Review/The Confidence Game: The Psychology Of The Con And Why We Fall For It Every Time By Maria Konnikova

Book Review / The Faith of a Writer: Life, Craft, Art by Joyce Carol Oates


Dr Jess Wade at Twitter 

Angela Saini at Twitter

Inferior at Amazon

Thursday, October 31, 2019

Iron Cookware Series: Tortillas De Tiesto

This fluffy, grilled, yeasted, lightly sweetened, Ecuadoran flatbread boasts of a buttery, milky, egg-rich gorgeousness replete with a good amount of whole wheat flour AND as if that was not already more than enough, it is stuffed with salty fresh cheese. Not that I would turn down milk and cookies on their own for a late afternoon snack, but if I had to choose between that old standby and these tortillas, warm off the griddle, paired with a cup of spiced tea, I would just have to reject les petites gateaux. Tiesto refers to the large, shallow clay pan that is traditionally used. A thoroughly seasoned cast-iron skillet is a worthy substitute, resulting in well-toasted tortillas. Depending on where in Ecuador, these can be made entirely with corn, or a mix of corn and wheat, or just wheat as in this recipe from Hot Bread Kitchen Cookbook by contributor Fanny Perez.

makes twelve approximately 10 cm (4 inch) diameter flatbreads

  • Whole wheat flour, 455 g (3.5 American 8 fluid oz cups)
  • All-purpose flour, 225 g (1.75 American 8 fluid oz cups)
  • Sugar, white, 5 T
  • Active dry yeast, 1 tsp
  • Kosher salt, 1 tsp
  • Whole milk, 340 g (scant 1.5 American 8 fluid oz cups)
  • Large egg, beaten
  • Unsalted butter, 225 g (16 T)
  • Quesco fresco or Feta cheese (which I used)

If using a stand mixer, just put everything except the cheese in its bowl. Toss the butter in the flour and cut into small cubes. This way the floured butter doesn't stick to the knife. Start with low speed for about two minutes or until all of the ingredients have come together and then increase the speed to medium for about five minutes or until the dough is smooth and doesn't stick to your hands. If mixing by hand, measure out the first five ingredients and put in a large bowl. Measure out milk and crack the egg into a mixing jug and whisk until blended. Put the butter into the bowl and toss with flour, then cut in small cubes. Work the butter using your fingertips until the texture is like coarse sand which takes about five minutes.

Add the milk mixture, incorporating it with a large wooden spoon until it comes together into a shaggy dough

Knead until smooth which should take about five to ten minutes depending on your method. I use the spiral method which is how I learned how to knead large amounts of clay in my potter days decades ago. It's the quickest way to knead because your hands never leave the dough in order to turn it, instead it's rocked continuously on a pivot; unfortunately I have been unable to locate a vid showing how to do this. Here's a vid on the regular method. Cover with a damp tea cloth/dish towel (or plastic wrap/bag) and let rise around a hour. 

Divide roughly into twelve parts. Form into balls. Flatten them out into disks of about 10 cm (4 inches). Place them as they are done onto two parchment lined sheet pans. Keep them covered with a damp tea cloth (or plastic wrap/bag) as you work.

At first I thought that cutting the block of feta into squares would be neater and quicker than crumbling it and spooning out tablespoons. Unfortunately not only did I mistakenly cut more than the twelve needed, but the sharper edges and contained nature of a square meant the dough got torn a bit when pulling it over the cheese and the grilled tortilla did not have bits of cheese distributed throughout.

I switched to the cookbook's recommended method of crumbling and measuring out two tablespoons for each tortilla. Sprinkle the dough circles with cheese and pull up the sides to make a closed dumpling form. Form a ball and roll out a bit wider than before. Don't fret if you see some cheese poking through as feta does not melt much. You might hear a tiny bit of sizzling from time to time, but not much. Keep the filled tortillas covered with a damp tea towel/plastic wrap or bag as you work.

Grilling pancakes or flatbreads usually means the first one will be more miss than hit. After a few misses, the approach resulting in golden brown and fluffy tortillas instead of blackened and having the consistency of cooked cereal was heating the pan over a large-in-diameter, medium high burner until a few drops of water tossed into the skillet evaporated almost immediately, then placing the pan over a small-in-diameter, low flame. Once that is done, cook each tortilla for about fifteen minutes, flipping a few times. To test the degree of fluff, shielding your fingertips with paper towelling, squeeze the tortilla's top and bottom simultaneously to test for spongy springinessno indentation should remain for long

My skillet only accommodated one at a time so when I reached the half-way mark, the dough balls waiting to be toasted were way more risen which I say were the best of the lot. Look at that fluff!

I love the pocked-with-white-cheese surface which I thought this silky, white ribbon showed to advantage.

They are truly magnificent, nourishing but still a bit indulgent. Coffee and hot chocolate also go well with them. Hot Bread Kitchen Cookbook recommends serving them with Ecuadoran spiced morochoa sweet, warm, milky drink thickened with cracked white corn. There's a whole bunch in the standalone freezer waiting for me when the desire hits to pamper myself by defrosting a couple by popping them in a warm oven. YES to batch baking!

À la prochaine!


Lemon Basil Garlic Smashed Potatoes

Roasted Salmon & Spiced Rhubarb With Fresh Pea shoots

Mashed Potato Cantal Onion Pancakes


Raisin Challah a la Hot Bread Kitchen Cookbook

Bialys a la Hot Bread Kitchen Cookbook

Book Review / Hot Bread Kitchen Cookbook: Artisanal Baking From Around The World by Jessamyn Waldman Rodriguez with Julia Turshen


Hot Bread Kitchen Cookbook at Amazon

Hot Bread Kitchen Website: Handmade Authentic Multi-Ethnic Breads, Preserving Tradition, Rising Expectations