Thursday, August 13, 2009

English Muffins - BBA Challenge #12

Week 12's Bread Baker's Apprentice challenge is English muffins.

I decided to join in the fun that some of my fellow bakers were having by doing a bake off / throw down between two recipes.

Anyone who knows me, knows I'm a BIG fan of Rose Levy Beranbaum and her Bibles. Not only does she write very detailed cookbooks but she's also very supportive & giving to those on her website. I used her English Muffin recipe out of the Bread Bible (BB) and I had no doubt that her recipe would beat Peter's Bread Bakers Apprentice (BBA). But did it?

Both recipes came together quickly. The Bread Bible used a sponge that you can leave overnight in the refrigerator should you choose. Then mixed and baked the next day. The BBA used a direct method that took 4 hours from beginning to end.

The BB dough is rolled out and cut with a large biscuit cutter

While the BBA is shaped like a dinner roll.

BB's rising on corn meal

BBA's after rise

Both are cooked on the griddle until dark brown on both side.


The BBA's is placed in the oven for 5-8 minutes to finish baking.
Final product: BB


Crumb shots:

So which one did we like best?
Much to my surprise, I liked BBA's. The BB had a slight sour dough taste which some may find appealing.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

A New Apron to go with the New Job

My husband's sister, Becky, is an amazing seamstress. She has been whipping out aprons quicker than I can bat an eye. This is the second apron she has made for me. (the first on is a gorgeous half apron) Becky made this design up herself... she doesn't even use a pattern!
Even though it doesn't show in this picture, this design is very flattering to the chest area. My husband loves this apron. ;-)

This is the lovely Becky. She rocks! Thank you Becky! I love my apron! And you were right, it launders very well. I came home covered in chocolate, washed it, and it looks brand new. (the picture above is after I washed it... I wished I would have thought to take a "before" picture. I will next time and update this post with it)
Becky sent me the apron to celebrate my new job. At a bakery!!!! EEEkkkk! (that's me jumping up and down and squealing) I've been there a week and I absolutely love it. Everyone who works there is amazingly sweet and kind. This has been my dream job and now my dream has come true. Thank you Father!
I originally applied for this job back in January. I felt God's leading and I felt very confident I'd get the job. When I didn't, I was quite shocked. So, I turned it back over to Him and prayed about it constantly. And guess what. They sent me an email on June 30th asking if I was still interested. EEEKKKK! I thanked God instantly! (and continuously).
I went through three interviews. The first one was answering a lot of questions geared more for assessing some one's morals, honesty & integrity, the other two were practicals where I frosted a very moist chocolate cake with light colored frosting, made a pie and mixed up some cookies. The second practical I frosted another chocolate cake with white frosting & made a pie. The whole time I was working we were all chatting like sisters having a good time in the kitchen. ...and that's what it's like to work there. I am so impressed with all of the young ladies that bake from scratch. I thought it was becoming a lost art but not so. There are two other ladies around my age but the rest are young, smart and very talented.
How do I know God was in this? I got hired to work in their new location which would be baking favorite. It won't be a retail shop. God knew what was coming up and which job would fit me best. I just had to wait for his timing. (I get a little impatient waiting sometime...okay most of the time... sorry God) The things we will bake at the new location will be transported to the original location where they are so busy they can't keep up with sales. What a wonderful problem to have, eh? (they'll still be baking at the original location also)

That's the latest news is my life. What's up with you?

P.S. If you want an apron, I'm sure Becky would love to sale you one. Here's a sample of her work:

Doesn't she pick out the most wonderful materials? I love them all!