The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Floydm's blog

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Floydm's picture
Floydm

I'm trying to make a few improvements here to make things easier for the non-techy user. You'll notice I've installed TinyMCE, a javascript-based editor. I think this will help most folks, but if you don't like it you can go into your account settings and turn it off.

I've noticed a few quirky things about it, like that you must have a chunk of text selected before the link button activates. It also is a little weird about deletes, at least in Camino.

Which reminds me: TinyMCE doesn't work in Safari, so Mac users will need to use something else. I recommend Camino. It is a lighter weight version of Firefox. I use Firefox all day when I need to get work done, but when I am browsing for pleasure I use Camino.

Please send any feedback you have about the recent changes I've made to me, either via the feedback link or by posting your thoughts on the site.

On the topic of bread, I baked Rustic Bread and a Whole Wheat Bread last weekend. I'm not sure how much baking I'll get in this weekend. Hopefully some.

 

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Floydm

I made a simple dough this morning with the intent of making some type of a picnic bread today. Something with cheese and onion, perhaps olives or sausage mixed in. But then we ended up picnicing at the lake today as well. After a long day in the sun, I just couldn't face the prospect of baking in 90 degree weather. Actually, it wasn't the baking as much as having the house heat up, particularly the upstairs bedroom, which get sweltering on hot days. So I froze the dough for a later date.

The heat did not stop my son, however:

His toy broom, which has hardly a bristle left, has recently been transformed into a peel. A super peel, perhaps?

;^)

He spent a good half hour loading and unloading loaves in the oven (hot tub lid) while we made dinner.

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Floydm

For father's day, I chose to stick around the house, play with the kids, and bake. I made Dan Lepard's Flax Seed Wheat Bread again.

flax seed bread

Really good stuff.

flax seed bread

The big dessert was a cheesecake (store bought) with a raspberry sauce made with fresh, local berries. The strawberries are beginning to fade, but now we move into my favorite time of the year, when fresh Oregon raspberries and peaches are abundant.

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Floydm

I don't know if anyone else noticed, but today smiddlet posted the 1000th node on this site. Thank you, everyone who has contributed and made this site a useful place to visit.

I continue to be slammed at work, which accounts for my inability to provide fresh content here. There has also been the spring cleaning, getting the garden going, family visits, hyperactive children, and a nasty outbreak of moths (clothes moths, not grain moths) in our house to keep me occupied. I am determined to bake and post new content again soon.

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Floydm

I made a couple of mediocre loaves of my daily bread today. Too little salt? Something wasn't spot on. We ended up using much of it as dunkers for a batch of white trash chili cheese fondue tonight.

Sunday we hit Winco, a warehouse grocery store kind of like Food 4 Less. They had Saf Yeast for 2.50 a pound! I couldn't believe it: I usually pay 4 times that for 4 ounces at the local grocery store. Needless to say, I picked some up.

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Floydm

I upgrade the site to Drupal 4.7.1. Knock on wood, it was mostly painless. Contact me if you notice anything acting too squirrelly here.

Hopefully the UI will be a little less confusing now. There are a few little improvements folks will see, but for the most part the site should look and feel the same.

Not too much baking on my part, of late. I did bake pizza last weekend:

pizza

as well as a porridge whole wheat bread that I was pleased with.

Oregon strawberries are finally in season, so we've been having excellent strawberry shortcake lately.

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Floydm

I'm trying to upgrade the site to Drupal 4.7 tonight. Wish me luck!

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Floydm

It was a rainy weekend, so today I stayed in and baked. I baked Honey Whole Wheat Bread, which, as I mention, was an attempt to recreate the Good Earth rolls, which I've been fixating on recently. They tasted really good. I've been trying to decide why my whole wheat breads are tasting better, whether it is because I've gotten better at baking techniques, am using better ingredients (King Arthur's Whole Wheat Flour instead of Bob's Red Mill Whole Wheat Flour), or have just acquired a taste for whole wheat finally.

I also baked a couple of loaves of a white french bread (basically using the daily bread recipe) that weren't bad. I left my poolish out for about 18 hours before making the final dough, I noticed a bit of an off flavor... the bread was less "sweet and nutty" and more "tart and cheesy." No matter, it was still better than anything I could pick up at the local grocery store.

I also set up another website: Ajax Hacking. Setting that up is giving me a chance to play with Drupal 4.7 (this site is running 4.6). I'm liking 4.7 a lot, so I suspect I'll be upgrading this site in the next few weeks. People will enjoy the improvements.

That is all for now.

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Floydm

I couple of pics just to prove I've not been totally neglecting my baking:

daily bread

A loaf of my daily bread I made a week or two past. Actually, I used about 20% whole wheat flour, so I suppose it was more like Hamelman's rustic bread.

ciabatta bread

A ciabatta like loaf I made this weekend. The dough was a bit too goopy. I should have done another series of folds, but I was getting impatient. Tsk, tsk...

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Floydm

What with spring cleaning, business at work, helping family move, my baking has been seriously curtailed the past month. This weekend, hopefully, I'll get a chance to spend a day puttering around the garden and baking a couple of batches of bread.

I've redirected my enthusiasm for good bread in another direction. I recently discovered Banh Mi, Vietnamese sandwiches. My office is in an area with a number of Vietnamese shops. I've tried the sandwiches in 5 or 6 different places now and totally fallen in love. The toppings are good, but for me the bread is what it is all about. Seriously, I don't think I've found better French bread in town as I've found at my favorite Banh Mi shop, a little hole-in-the-wall place next to a laundromat that always has a half dozen chain-smoking Vietnamese guys sitting out front. Two bucks a sandwich too: can't beat that.

Now that I'm looking for them, every day I'm discovering additional Banh Mi shops. Pho in the fall and winter, Banh Mi in the spring and summer. Vietnamese food is my new favorite cuisine.

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