Thanks for the tip, JPB. Lots of good salads there.
Meanwhile, the bread...
Absolutely amazing. Thanks, osso and ehBeth for bringing it to my attention. That's a definite keeper.
Sozlet likes sourdough but usually discards the crust as being too tough -- she ate several pieces of this, crust and all (in fact I had to cut off her supply as she showed no sign of slowing down).
Will definitely be fun to play with it, add stuff, etc.
that bread is a show-stopper for a dinner party - the crust is just mmmm ... is there a better word than perfect?
Breadtopia - no-knead sourdough video (great site generally for, well, bread)
In the meantime, today I baked my old Pan Bigio (Carol Field's). Not really that big a deal, but it did take the ten minutes kneading.
I like to knead, and in that recipe, Fields suggest thwapping the dough ... and I like doing that. Excuse me, slam! slap! slam! knead some more...
It turned out delicious but underdone, as I hadn't done this in a while and I was thinking the dough seened a little dry as I panned it (I used cast iron frying pans put cold though laden with cornmeal into the hot oven - yes, I know the words against that, but it has worked for me) and took it out a smidge early. Still tasty.
But damn, I'm going to have to do it again for a true test loaf, before I try the NEW(old) way with full recipe semolina.
When I read Osso talking about food, I like to have a glass of red wine.
<howls, laughing, then settles down to giggles>
I'm getting there, slowly. Decided this morning to have a dinner get-together tonight (4 adults, 2 kids). I had a 3-lb pork roast in the fridge already, decided to make that and the full version of a salad I improvised/ adjusted last night. (Baby red potatoes, grape tomatoes, red onions, fresh corn [lots], fresh basil, fresh lemon juice, oil, salt + pepper.) Then fresh blueberries and pitted fresh cherries with varieties of white ice cream (red white & blue) for dessert. Worked out well, less stressful than usual. My scheme of making a real dinner (as in, one I'd serve to guests) every night is starting to pay off I think. Plus listening to you smart people of course.
This is great, Soz. Your strategy makes sense. You may not be able to always keep up with 7 days a week of real dinners, but I think doing a lot of them are a good idea for many reasons.
it can be a memorable evening
If one must absolutely go through with it one (given your general circumstances, i.e. a reciprocal gesture as a minimum), at the least it can be a relatively brief but a memorable evening. Unless of course you have no desire to impress them to the point where your name will become the talk of the faculty or community as a direct consequence of one recipr.night. A rule of them to show them you are a decent hostess includes the following: ensure you have a very good idea how many will be attending e.g. 10-12 people, not 10-25. Get an idea (precise is best) of the type of folk attending, all faculty, all profs, extended families of ex-faculties, elderlies, 25 y.o and under, vegetarians, vegans, all women, or better yet, ALL men? Knowing your mix of attendees is advantageous. Plan your meal to cater to the mix. Yeah, this requires a little legwork/homework, but it will immediately make your meal plan much more relevant. Relevant IS impressive. Next, decide your budget for meal and beverage. At this point, it would be more important to decide too if you are going to do a 3, 4 or 5 course meal. Mind you, successful dinners can also consist of say a choice of 8 hor dóeurves or 12 antipasti dish assortments for example. I apologise, have to run to help my neighbor with something if you send me a brief email i will be glad to continue the remaining rules of thumb. Sincerely, md