Walnut Winner, no Fooling

WOW, 3 announcements today!

1. No joke, I have a winner today: the name of the lucky person who gets to receive a sample bag of the best walnuts in the world (I think) graciously offered by the the folks over at the California Walnut Commission in collaboration with Faye Clack Communications.

And our winner is…..drum roll please…..

Mary of Mary Mary Culinary


2. Today, April 1st, is also my mother’s birthday so I’ll be cooking all day. Happy Birthday Mommy! Yes one of her presents is an April Fool’s themed joke!

3. This month’s Daring Baker’s Challenge is hosted by yours truly. The challenge was announced on The Daring Kitchen today but if you are not a participating member you’ll have to wait till April 27th to find out what the challenge was and see the results.

On a non serious note here are a couple of ideas if you want to play a food trick on someone today….

– Put blue food coloring in the milk carton (great one to do at work)

– Make a sundae out of mashed potatoes instead of ice cream

– Make a fake cake with meatloaf in cake pans and used mashed potatoes as the icing

– A fake grill cheese made with toasted pound cake and cake icing with yellow and red food coloring to look like the cheese

Got any food gags of your own to share?



Thursday’s Thingamajig: Bread is Pain, or is it?

So what where those 2 mystery pictures?

First was, as many guessed, risen bread dough. My container was too small and the dough mushroomed out, pretty funny. So when I tossed half out I got that stringy air filled dough.

Second pic is a close up of the VIP dinner table at DNA – review to follow soon –  which is made out mostly of tiger’s eye stone.

I WON, yes thanks to Duo Dishes I won a cookbook of my choice from a certain listing. Thank you so much for this amazing book Chrystal and Amir. OK so what was the book? And better yet why is it Thursday’s Thingamajig worthy?

This is the book I received: Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day: The Discovery That Revolutionizes Home Baking and after reading most of it, it truly is REVOLUTIONARY when it comes to making bread.

Fresh baked bread just out of the oven is one of the best things one can  smell, taste, admire. Making bread is a royal PAIN in the butt (side note Pain in French is Bread, also a friend’s blog is called breadispain.com lol). The normal testing of the yeast, kneading, raising, kneading, raising is so time consuming most of us cannot be bothered.

This book will teach you how to prepare a bunch of bread good for the next 2 weeks with very little effort.  And it WORKS. I swear 10 min of active work day one preparing the dough…raising time and storage not counted. It can be raised and stored for up to 2 weeks. When you want to bake a bread just take the amount of dough you need, make a ball, let it raise 40 min and cook 20 min. The actual working time for this bread is really 5 min worth of your active time.

It really works! This book will teach you the basic master recipe and then how to make variations such as fun shapes, savory recipes and sweet ones. I won’t give you thr recipe because you really should get the book. If you bake GET THE BOOK lol. You won’t regret it. But I will do a show and tell of my first attempts.

Toss all ingredients in a bowl just till well mixed. NO KNEADING. In large container let rise 2 hours. Store in a non airtight container. Basic recipe if 4 bread and you have up to 14 days to bake them.

Cut a 1/4 of dough and dust a bit. Shape as indicated.

Let rise on a sheet sprinkled with cornmeal 40 min. Preheat oven after 20 min.

Bread baking try no 1

Bread baking try no 2

Tastings: Best damn breads I have ever made from scratch in my life. So worth it. I totally recommend the Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day: The Discovery That Revolutionizes Home Baking Book.