Sunday, August 16, 2009
Not Rach. Well, OK, Rach, but also these (cue over-processed photo):
[click for big on the pictures]
I don't know about you, but I furkin' love crumpets. Bung 'em in the toaster, put butter on while they're hot so it goes straight through onto the breadboard, then jam, or cheese, or honey, or golden syrup, or whatever. You just cant beat bread with holes in it.
I've been having a go at making things that you normally only buy. So far, this has extended to croissants (success) and pita bread (was aiming for something different but they were nice anyway), as well as just normal bread.
Crumpets can't be hard, right? Let's see . . .
[photos might be a bit shit as I took them, Ella was otherwise engaged as you'll see]:
Delia Smith's recipe was pretty much the first one I found, and for this second go, I've stuck to it as it works very well. In the future I might try one where you use baking powder rather than yeast. Maybe this one?
Here's the milk, water, sugar and real yeast (not Surebake):
After 10 minutes on top of the dryer, there's a brown froth on top, which I forgot to take a picture of. It looks kind of like the scum you get at the bottom of waterfalls.
Meanwhile, beside me there was some sort of fight going on between Ella and Rach. Not entirely sure what was about, but it seemed to involve about two thirds of the world's supply of cocoa powder:
Betty was asleep so we were temporarily safe from total destruction.
I sifted some flour - here's a better picture of the floral sifter. No-one's asked, but I know that's just because you're shy:
I made a well in the flour:
The whatever-it-was continued unabated next to me, despite my protests:
I added the scum to the well:
and mixed them to a smoooooooooooooooooooooooooooth batter:
I left it on top of the dryer while those other two made pies or something, I dunno:
The batter had to rise for a bit, during which time the almost-solid-cocoa circles went into the kiln and came back out, looking like this:
I think something went a bit wrong, they look all puffy.
We all went off to Chartwell to get haircuts about now. This took longer than expected and I had visions of returning to find a laundry completely filled with expanded batter.
Sadly, this was not to be; it was only this big:
Close-up of the moonscape, glup glup:
I scooped up spoonsful of this (quite difficult as it's very very gluey, kind of like hot mozzarella):
which were then squeegee'd off the spoon and into the frying pan (butter in there already):
Full-on crumpets are meant to be done using metal rings, but the $2 Shop didn't have any, so we have free-form crumpets instead. After a while they look a bit like this:
at which point they get turned over for the other side to cook. This is what they look like at the end:
Not much like crumpets, right? Don't care, they taste bloody awesome, anyway, Delia said they'd be different. I think they're better once they've cooled down and gone a bit spongy, but they're pretty good when hot too.
They look a bit more like crumpets on the inside:
So, that's crumpets (and chocolate muffins), they're in the rotation now. Try it yourself and let me know how you go.
Saturday, August 15, 2009
Ah yeah, I bloody love flowers, mostly because I'm so old. If you don't like flowers, or pictures of them, you may want to self-censor. Some of the photos include children though . . .
[Click on pictures for big]
This tree flowers about this time of year, huge things, with no leaves on the tree at all. It's quite amazing.
They look like this once the petals fall off:
Hey look there's Ella (and her umbrella):
Ah god help they're multiplying!
Manuka/kanuka/tea tree (pretty sure it's manuka but you tell me):
Weird bush that smells like a tea tree or something:
This one's back, minus pants:
Daphne smells nice (she may be eating it):
I don't know what these are but they're probably weeds:
These are also unknown but are probably not weeds:
Ooo hello saucy:
These ones look like they're made of wax or plastic but that can't be right:
Don't need no umbrellas inside:
Please comment or Bethan comes to your house without pants and eats all your flowers.