Friday, April 8, 2011

Warmth

On a day like today....rainy and chilly, here in PA, I thought some *warmth* would do us all some good (at least it will comfort me!).

Outside, the rain sometimes comes down so hard, we have to talk louder, and it feels like a miracle that the roof holds. It makes for a coziness and a gratefulness, too, that you have the choice to not be out in it. You can sit at the table and look out the window and not have to feel what you see.
~Elizabeth Berg


Yesterday, I did some bread baking using THIS recipe for country white bread. Instead of making the third section of dough into a loaf, like the other two below, I braided it together to make the fun bread pictured above! :)

It's a delicious bread to try! If, however, you are looking for a bread recipe that doesn't take quite as much time as that one does...I recommend Cuban Bread (that I have made and pictured in THIS post). This recipe comes from the book: The Tightwad Gazette II.

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Cuban Bread

5-6 c. all purpose flour
2 T dry yeast
2 T sugar
1 T salt
2 c. hot water (120-130*)
1 T sesame or poppy seeds (I didn't have these at the time, so I just left them off!)

Mix 4 cups of the flour with the yeast, sugar, and salt. Pour in hot water and beat 100 strokes, or 3 minutes with a mixer. Stir in the remaining flour until the dough is no longer sticky. Knead 8 minutes. Place the dough in a greased bowl, and cover with a damp towel. Let rise 15 minutes. Punch down. Divide into two pieces. Shape into two round loaves and place on a baking sheet. Cut an X 1/2 in. deep on top with a sharp knife. Brush with water and sprinkle with seeds. Place on the middle shelf of a cold oven. Place a cake pan of hot water on the lowest shelf. Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Bake 40-50 minutes until a deep golden brown.

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It is the perfect bread to have with soup, dips or pasta...or just as a snack dish! :) Plus, it only takes an hour and 15 minutes ~ from start to finish (and the largest chunk of that time is baking!).

Some warmth from inside my home...

A sweet-smelling candle, a gift from my mom! :)

A corner of the kitchen...

A little helper...

A mild-enough day to open the windows, letting the breeze blow in, gently...

Clothes, brought in, fresh from the line...

Supper, outside!


Last evening, Madelyn and Jaxson played *hookey* from our church's play practice (although they both have played their parts, each year, for such a long time that they could almost be designated professionals, anyway!) to go with Chris's parents (Ma and Pa) to watch how sap from maple trees gets boiled into maple syrup! It was a great educational experience for them and I was happy they got to go! Xavier chose to go to play practice because he "wants to make sure he does a really good job in the play, this year!". I was okay with that, as well...glad that he was taking his role seriously!

I am looking forward to receiving this lovely apron, I found on etsy, in the mail soon....

I associate aprons with *making my house a home*. Wearing them over my clothing makes me smile. :) Oh! Oh! And I must share with you, before I go, a place I found online, last evening, that I just love. Now, I truly *do* need to get my own sewing accomplished...but until then...THIS shop I found has some beautiful items that I adore. I have contacted them about possibly ordering a few things! :)

Well, I really must go. Despite the gloomy weather outside, I still have things that need to be done...including getting to see my niece (Have you seen pictures of her lately? Oh my...she is growing so quickly and is as-sweet-as-can-be! Like THIS one...or THIS one...or even THIS short video!). So...off I go! I hope you have a great weekend!!!

Warmly,
Katy :)
He must increase, but I must decrease. ~John 3:30

9 comments:

  1. That bread looks SO good! I am recovering form shoulder surgery, so snuggled in on the couch watching the frustrating news, our government REALLY needs to get it together! Hope you enjoy the day!

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  2. It doesn't get any better than this! Love your life! The bread looks yummy! Have a great weekend. Liv-Loretta

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  3. Your bread posts always leave my mouth watering! :-) Your family is so blessed!! Well, you inspired me this morning, and I just took some Cuban Bread loaves out of the oven ~ delish!!! Thank you for sharing! I also wanted to let you know that a post of yours awhile back with Chicken Fingers and Oven Fries inspired me to make that soon after as well. I am hoping to do a post soon featuring recipes I've tried from blogging friends, and yours will be among them, if that's ok by you!

    Also ~ lovely apron! I'm hoping to do a post on aprons soon as well after I finish making a few. =)

    Your blog is so refreshing...I don't stop by often, but I love the encouragement I continually find her.

    In His love,
    Katie

    Have a great weekend!

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  4. such a beautiful refreshing post! This is how I want to live life too...savor and enjoy life however it is this day. For me today it's one of packing and a roadtrip. Tomorrow will be visiting and working together with dear friends. The day after Gods word and celebration and then the roas trip home. Each day is wonderful in its own way.
    Now I better scoot! The bread is rising and the children are almost home from school for lunch!

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  5. That bread does look wonderful, Katy! Think I may try the cuban bread! Joy has a 13 year old friend in our homeschooling group that is making bread to sale (for her small business) and she's had us fixed up on bread, but we're out now!

    I thought of you at the Homeschool Convention when I saw the Homestead Blessing DVDs. I so want that series! I'm hoping to find a great deal on them somewhere along the way!

    Have a great weekend!
    Tammy

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  6. Love the look of your braided loaf! You have inspired my to try it when I bake again.

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  7. Hi Katy, its been such a long time since I've had the opportunity to post on your blog. Feels good to catch up again with your inspiring words. I can totally relate to you about your thoughts on aprons. My apron always makes me feels as though I'm carrying on my mother's legacy as a homemaker, it makes the kitchen feel complete. Take care, Christina

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  8. Lovely post!

    Have a wonderful weekend!

    Deanna

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  9. i collect aprons too! what a beautiful find :)

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I am always so grateful to read your comments! I thank you for the time you took to visit and share your thoughts with me. :o)
May you enter as a stranger and leave as a friend!
Warmly, Katy