i think the second loaf of bread is more beautiful than the first. i'm obsessed!
i made my first batch of no-knead bread. seems like it was on everybody's blog last year, but i just got around to it. SO DELICIOUS! i was happy i read the original new york times article. Mark Bittman's pretty laid back about the directions, the pot you use, etc…which was great to know. he has a second article too.
we had this bread with soup last night. we ate more than half the loaf. it has a great crunchy, but not too thick, crust and a moist inside. truly an amazing loaf of bread!
(i thought chuck might like making it just to see the dough at all the funny stage and i thought rich might like making it for the easy making bread recipe)
it was windy and grey today with a winter storm warning in effect (there's about 2" on the deck right now). there's something about spending all day outside 2 miles from your car with the weather blowing and spinning around you that makes you feel like you got away with something when you get home and you're still dry and you had a great time.
we wanted to go to a pumpkin festival at Rock Bottom Ranch in Leon (Basalt). they have very little parking so we drove our car, with bikes on the back, to Catherine Store. then we rode the Rio Grande Trail to the little eco ranch.
We carved pumpkins, helped make apple cider, had a great lunch, tilly rode a giant horse with her cubs hat on and best of all chased chickens. tilly's so great and gentle though that she got to pet the chickens and the giant turkey.
here's another picture from the snowstorm. the kids are so fun during these first snows. tilly sledded all day at school and as soon as she got home she wanted to go back out into the snow and build a snowman. it's only tough here because are snow doesn't really pack together (which makes it outstanding for skiing and snowboarding!)
tilly hasn't been interested in drawing with me for a long time. i try not to get on her case about it.
at the doctor's office two weeks ago she drew a man for the nurse (upside down so it would be facing the nurse).
then last week her best friend taught her how to draw flowers, suns, oceans, etc…and suddenly she is a drawing fanatic.
she's been into tracing – especially letters – for a while now.
but last night while we were working on a project together, she asked me for a piece of paper from a Paper Source bag and left the room we were in. i didn't think much about it, but when i walked into the living room she had written 'paper source' just from looking at the package. maybe normal, i have no idea, i thought this was amazing!
so during our month of eating local, Martha Stewart had a recipe for Molasses-Spice Cake in the magazine. Because we couldn't find local flour I didn't really bake during the month. I was obsessed with this cake. It looked sooo good!
So with an imminent first snow we stayed home today and baked this cake…with so much hope though it was just ok. Tilly and Jeremy both really liked it – like good carrot cake without the icky raisins. I hoped it would be moister and denser – but it was pretty good for a rainy day.
I've been through a lot of coffee, tea and wine today.
we had tilly's best friend over this afternoon. i took the girls for a walk – which meant dressing up of course. they looked fabulous out in the sun on this gorgeous fall day.
they love each other so much. it's fun to be able to watch two little humans become such good friends and the ways the play.
the leaves fell off the trees this week.
i see that i haven't posted in a while. suddenly the fall is moving fast – and it's been a beautiful long warm fall. around here though we are waiting for the snow.
usually its quiet here in the off season. not this year though. i think the warm weather has kept everyone moving.
so tonight with a bunch of really ripe pears (had to bake tonight) and a pie crust ready to go in the fridge Tilly and I made Pear Almond Pizza from Moosewood Desserts. Pretty easy and really yummy. I would probably reduce the almond extract next time so the pears wouldn't have so much competition. (and yes – we've already eaten part of it – the cubs were on and i'm lucky i got a picture at all.)
so the eat local challenge is done. we did pretty well. i think everything we ate in our house over the course of the month was from within about 100 miles of where we live. we enjoyed lots of local wine, cheese and tortillas. items we will definitely keep around. all local veggies, fruit and trout. those fresh items are slowly becoming harder to get as the choice at farmer's market gets smaller every week.
i know as the month progressed it felt like i ate more lunches out. eating out wasn't held to the same standard. in general, i was hungrier without all the bread and pasta in my diet. eating was more fun in some ways – i was more appreciative of interesting flavors and required a lot less sweet to fill that dessert space.
with the month over i was excited to bake – with flour and all. we still went to the trouble of making a homemade pumpkin pie – with an actual sugar pumpkin we roasted and pureed. it was well worth it. i mostly followed the recipe from cook's illustrated. i used their filling ingredients and their crust recipe. i believe it is the best pumpkin pie we've ever had. i made homemade whip cream last night and tonight. so yummy!
Halloween is a pretty big deal around our house. Tilly loves deciding on her costume, we love the decorations and it just has to be the best kids holiday. No toys expected, buckets of candy and days of playing dress-up in public.
We went to Michael's this weekend and we picked out the 'glitter bones' project from Martha Stewart. It's like she knows my kid – there is little Tilly likes more than body stuff and crafty glitter stuff – combining the two is a dream come true.
It's kind of a messy project – since glitter never really goes away. She's been pretty patient about waiting for me to do it with her. And the finished pieces are looking great.
We're going to use some of the smaller bones in invitations for our halloween party. I'll have to see if the post office will hand cancel…?