France, bread and courgettes
Been away a while enjoying the fruits of someone else's baking labours, very relaxing. Managed to stop scrutinising the daily baguette and pain a l'ancienne for crust and crumb after a couple of days and just enjoyed eating good artisan bread - a rare treat for me. As usual came home determined to 1: go to france more and 2: bake better bread!
Coming home always makes me feel a little strange, mostly because I see things through "stranger's eyes" for a day or two and this time the strangest thing were the freezers! I had quite simply forgotten the astonishing array of baked goods that I have been squirrelling away over the past few months so, feeling ashamed of my lack of domestic organisation skills we have been eating the strange assortment as I attempt to "spring clean" (!) the freezers. Major resolution - NO more baking until we've eaten the freezers!
After kaiser rolls, potato bread, more rolls and rye crispbreads with soup and cheese and there is half a sliced white sandwich loaf defrosting on the counter - two more equally unidentifiable sliced loaves are still there - I really can't tell whilst they are still in rock form what they are ...note to self: LABEL FOOD BAGS!
The site of a fat round disk heavily sealed in foil and plastic confused me completely, especially since it was in the vegetable drawer but I finally remembered using up two oranges and the last of my ground almonds to make the simple mediterranean orange cake that we both love in the summer the night before we went away ... another note: buy almonds.
I was determined to stay with the resolution bu then checked out the veggie patch. Oh those courgettes! Why do they alwys grow when I'm away so (carefully avoiding the sight of the bags of frozen ones under the cake in the freezer), I gave in, decided against defrosting further and made a large chocolate cougette loaf using the recipe from the Green and Black's organic chocolate cookbook. It always works well, is low in fat and sugar and moist with a plain rather than milk chocolate flavour. It rose well and I felt warm and fuzzy about home baking again. Maybe I'll just start a sponge for a rustic boule or two ...