nicole bakes for braden cooks for nicole

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lentil soup with cornbread muffins. 

back in the states after four months and together again

Sweet Potato Bread

Sweet Potato Loaf Bread
not very sweet, good for sandwiches and dipping in soups. A nice chewy loaf bread with sweet potatoes! Adapted from this recipe, which is the most poorly-formatted and hard to follow recipe which I neverthless make all the time. 

4 1/2 tsp. active dry yeast
1 cup milk
1 cup buttermilk or substitute or more regular milk
1 cup cooked & mashed sweet potato
1 1/2 tsp. good salt
3 tbsp. butter, softened
2 eggs, slightly beaten
2 cups whole wheat flour
4 cups all purpose or bread flour
water

  1. Preheat your oven to 300 degrees.
  2. Warm milk & buttermilk to room temperature in two separate bowls. (Or use regular, whole, or almond milk for both.)
  3. Add 1/2 cup water, 1 tbsp sugar, and yeast to a bowl and stir. (This should begin to foam up by the time you’re ready to add it to the flour in step 7.)
  4. In first bowl, add butter to regular milk and stir.  
  5. In the second bowl, take the room-temperature buttermilk and pour over the mashed sweet potatoes. Mash with a fork. 
  6. In a separate large bowl, add your flours, salt, eggs, and 1 tbsp water.
  7. Add both milk mixtures (milk + potato and milk + yeast + butter) and the yeast mixture to your flour mixture. 
  8. Knead dough for five minutes. If there’s still unincorporated flour, add flour by tsp until dough is sticky and wet. 
  9. Turn onto floured surface and knead for 10 minutes. 
    (Note: I usually make this bread in New Orleans, aka at sea level and 80%+ humidity, the dough remains pretty sticky and wet throughout this. When I made it today in Eugene, OR (~600ft above sea level), dough became elastic and springy after about 6 minutes of kneading and stuck to itself, not my fingers.)
  10. Put dough in an oiled bowl and let rise until doubled in size. 
  11. Punch down the dough and divide into two equal parts. Shape into loaves and place into buttered loaf pans.
  12. If you want, sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds and bake for 1 hr. 
  13. Brush with milk or melted butter before serving. 

what I learned today: purple yam + lime sorbet needs tequila

but when you add tequila, it’s fucking delicious. 

recipe adapted from here.

Ingredients

2 purple yams 
juice from 4 limes
zest from 2 limes
2 c water
2 c sugar
2 shots (2 oz) of tequila 

1. Make simple syrup by putting sugar and water together on the stove and heating until sugar dissolves.

2. Skin the yams, cut them into quarter-inch chunks, and cook in boiling water until you can push a fork into them with no resistance. 

3. In a blender (or food processor), add the cooked yams, the lime juice, the lime zest, and the simple syrup. Blend until it’s all mushy.

4. Pour the mixture into a dish and freeze it until it’s solid. We left ours overnight. 

5. Take the frozen mixture out of the freezer and put it in the blender again. Blend until smooth (will take a while). Taste it. Kind of like starchy frozen mashed potatoes? Now add the tequila and blend again. Suddenly it becomes softer, more like sorbet! Now taste it. Open your eyes wide at the newfound burst of citrus and sour and deliciousness.

6. Stick it in a tupperware in a freezer, and eat it all week long. 

monday night rocks: after movies on the couch, dinner is cheese grits (alton’s recipe), slow-cooked pork (pork shoulder + bacon + onions/carrots/potatoes + slow cooker for 8 hours), spicy rainbow chard, and fancy tangy crispy fruity Greek wine

Jun 9

N’s welcome home dinner: fresh-caught trout with brown rice and asparagus, wine from France, sweet tea, and fresh-picked flowers

two pies: smores pie (graham cracker crust, brownies with nutella, chocolate chips, and marshmallows on top) and Oregon Royal Anne Cherry Pie (with oatmeal topping)

two pies: smores pie (graham cracker crust, brownies with nutella, chocolate chips, and marshmallows on top) and Oregon Royal Anne Cherry Pie (with oatmeal topping)

May 9
N packs bentos, one: leftover stir-fry Thai peanut-pineapple-pork with rice, and sliced carrots and pears with cinnamon(the secret of successful bento is leftovers)

N packs bentos, one: leftover stir-fry Thai peanut-pineapple-pork with rice, and sliced carrots and pears with cinnamon
(the secret of successful bento is leftovers)

May 8

brunch #47: red lentil dal, broccoli potato curry, and chai marsala fruit

in honor of having the illustrious Faine Greenwood for brunch, we made Indian food. (We would have made Cambodian breakfast, but had no pork.)

broccoli potato curry

dal cooking

plated with rice. The fruit was watermelon and orange slices with chai marsala spice on them.

May 7

brunch #46: oatmeal scones, fruit, eggs, bacon, home fries

Oatmeal Scones from Cook’s Illustrated

oranges and strawberries

our special brunch guest with bacon, eggs, homefries (N ate hers before she photographed it). We served the homefries with the very last of B’s homemade cranberry BBQ sauce. If only cranberries were in season, it would happen again.

May 6

salt-baked fish, rice pilaf, and sliced zucchini for dinner