Tuesday, October 25, 2011
It has been a year since I began this blog. I don't know how I did it--more than 80 posts in the past year, with an average of more than one post each week. It has been a very rewarding experience. I have learned so much about different aspects of baking that it really augmented my knowledge and skill. However there are still a lot of unconquered areas that require me to practice more, like laminated dough making and techniques in working with chocolate.
Tuesday, October 18, 2011
There's some thing different about bagels that set them apart from bread. Instead of using regular 12% protein bread flour, it uses the highest percentage of protein: high gluten flour contains 14% protein. That is the highest gluten content in wheat flour available as far as I know. This high protein content lets it have the distinctive chewy texture that I love. Another factor that contributes to its special texture is the boiling before baking. It takes a bath of boiling water that contains some baking soda in it for about 20 seconds. The longer it boils, the chewier the skin.
Tuesday, October 11, 2011
The banana bread I made last time made me reminisce about my old baking days. Besides banana bread, carrot cake is also one of my old time favorites. This classic carrot cake recipe is also from Joanne Chang's new recipe book. Just like banana bread, this recipe is not very different from the one I have been using for a very long time. It does not use any magical or special ingredients. But what set it apart from other recipes is the way it is put together. The beating of eggs and sugar to incorporate air bubbles and the slow addition of oil are important factors for producing soft and moist crumb instead of dense and "doughy" cake.
Sunday, October 2, 2011
Many people say life is an adventure. Forrest Gump says it's like a box of chocolates."You never know what you're gonna get!" When I started this blog a year ago, I just wanted to share my recipes and love of baking with others. A few months ago, I wouldn't even envision myself "teaching" others how to bake bread.