I will do it one day.
One day when I have time.
Ag don’t be ridiculous.
Ag OK, then.
My first blog post in years and this time in English. #Day1 of #Lockdown seems as good as any other to reopen this space I call my own.
Call the following a disclaimer of sorts:
- You are welcome here: on my terms
- You might recognise yourself, if you are uncomfortable, let me know offline
- I speak English as a foreign language, grammar and language tips are welcome, let me know offline. However, posts will often contain other languages, if you don’t like it #loveyoubye
- If you don’t like what I am saying, nobody is forcing you to agree with me or read my opinions #loveyoubye
- Many posts will be about food, I will try my best to acknowledge all recipes, chefs, cooks, friends or foes who inspired me
- Try the recipes, let me know how it goes.
As I get better at this, the site will expand a bit but be patient, I am a tannie, after all.
So here goes.
I will be spending the 21 days #Lockdown on my own with my two dogs, whom you will meet sooner rather than later. As much as I like cooking, I also like eating, but there are some things I don’t eat. One of them is regular toaster bread, nothing wrong with it, but not for me thank you. A few months back I have been to ‘bread school’ with Babette’s Bread (I will soon learn how to put a hyperlink, in the meantime, Google is your friend). But my current lifestyle does not always allow for enough time, so I often fall back on the convenience of overnight ciabatta. Something I learned from books and my latest recipe comes from Bibby’s Kitchen, but I was fortunate to also spend some time in a real Italian kitchen recently to improve on my ciabatta skills – but that is a story I can only tell you once the TV programme is broadcast – De Kat TV is a good starting point…
Babette taught me many things, one is that gluten is not the enemy, COVID 19 turned out to be the enemy and judging by the rate every ‘Carin’ in Pretoria East panic bought bread and cake flour, gluten is the flavor of the month. If you buy flour, it must be stone ground and I prefer Eureka Mills’, mostly because Iove die Swartland and brown paper bags.
So last night I mixed the dough, it takes all of 10 minutes (I halved the recipe since I am on my own) and I am sorted for lunch, a possible midnight snack cheese sarmie, and breakfast/brunch tomorrow. Next up the recipe from Bibby, tips from the Italian and my take on things.
250 g white bread flour
250 g cake wheat flour
10 g instant yeast
7.5 ml salt
500 ml water at room temperature
30 ml olive oil and some extra to oil the bowl
Extra white bread flour for dusting
Put all the ingredients in the mixing bowl of an electric mixer and with the K-beater, beat on high speed for 5-7 minutes until the dough pulls away from the sides and comes together in a ball. It takes exactly 7 minutes in my Kenwood but has taken longer on cold and wet days. They say the weather has a direct impact on bread-baking, especially in domestic kitchens that are not temperature controlled. It is a very wet dough, I will never attempt mixing this by hand, it will be a moerse mess.
Transfer the dough into a large oiled bowl, cover with cling wrap and chill overnight.
Next morning bring the dough to room temperature – I leave the cling wrap on during this time otherwise the condensation makes the dough wet. Once there are bubbles on the surface, the dough is ready.
Use a scraper or your hands (the Italian dips his hands in water to prevent dough from sticking) and drop dough on a lightly floured surface. Divide in two and gently (the word love comes to mind) tuck the dough into two neat balls and let 10 more minutes.
In the meantime heat, the oven to 230 C. Bibby says you must also warm the baking tray in the oven and then flour it well just before you put the bread on it. I have done the same, but learned differently in the Italian kitchen, so you decide.
Shape the dough like the ciabatta you buy at Woolies and put them on the baking tray, make sure the bread is well dusted with flour. Those who know say Ciabatta means something like old ladies’ slippers, I am not that old yet, it looks nothing like my slippers though.
So the Italian makes a swift, deepish cut on top of the bread with a very sharp knife, I use my bread loom from Babette’s Bread, Bibby does not make a cut into the bread. He also sprinkles some Maldon salt, dried rosemary and oregano on top. I like it that way too.
Of course, you can eat it any which way you like, my #Lockdown lunch was dipped in olive oil with a garden tomato, rocket, and avocado salad and a few slivers of hard Italian cheese, I am too lazy to go check the label now, and a hand full of olives. It was a workday, so no wine, but tomorrow is another day.
Maybe we will not survive on bread alone for the next 20 days, but it was good enough for #day1. I ate it in my garden, where I will be spending most of the next 20 days.
Placed with courtesy of https://veraldaschmidt.wordpress.com/