Sunday, February 24, 2008

A Tea-Riffic Birthday Party!

Here are some pictures from TOH's sixth birthday party. She had a tea party with all her little girl friends. Ace and Deuce were bribed to go by permitting them to go see the
Spiderwick Chronicles
afterwards. But I think they had a nice time nevertheless.

The tea party was held at a local B&B, and a very nice lady-owner ran the tea and made the very scrumptious looking treats and sandwiches and stuff. The little girls really used their best manners. It was a very sweet scene. Afterwards, the kids were allowed to look at the neat bedrooms and check out the balconies.

My daughter's favorite gift was a Disney Cinderella digital clock (?) She loved it so much she slept with it last night. I imagine it was lumpy.

Now to get on to writing those thank you notes!

Friday, February 8, 2008

Potato Bread

This is the bread I made today. It is a tall, soft loaf. Very delicious. The recipe is from the "Best Breads of 1987" - No idea what magazine, maybe Good Housekeeping, or BH & G.

Potato Bread

2 Tablespoons sugar
4 teaspoons salt
2 pks. active dry yeast (I used 4 tsps.)
about 8 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cups water (I used the water I cooked the potatoes in)
1 1/2 cup mashed potatoes (about 2 medium)
1 1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup butter or margarine
2 eggs

In a large bowl, combine sugar, salt, yeast and 1 1/2 cup flour. In a 2 quart saucepan mix water, mashed potatoes, and milk; add butter or margarine; over low heat, heat until very warm (120 to 130 degrees F), stirring often. (Butter or margarine does not have to melt completely.) With a mixer at low speed (or a wooden spoon!) gradually beat liquid into the dry ingredients just until blended; beat in eggs. Increase speed to medium; beat 2 more minutes, occasionally scraping the bowl. Beat in 1 cup flour to make a thick batter; continue beating 2 more minutes. Stir in enough flour to make a soft dough (about 3 cups).

Turn the dough out onto a well-floured surface and knead about 10 minutes, until smooth and elastic, kneading in more flour (about 2 cups or so). Shape into a large bowl. Roll in oil so it is coated, cover, and let rise until about double.

Punch down, turn onto a lightly floured surface and cut dough in half. Put each half into a large loaf pan. (The original recipe had you putting each half into a casserole dish and slashing the top. I used regular large loaf pans and my bread was very good. You decide which you want to do.) Cut two parallel slashes on top. Cover, and let raise until double again, about 1 hour. Preheat oven to 4oo degrees, brush each loaf with milk, bake 40 minutes until loaves are well browned and sound hollow when tapped. Remove from pans and cool on a rack.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008


Sunday, February 3, 2008


I've been baking our family's bread for a few months. I think it is healthier and tastier. Normally I bake 4 loaves a time. I use the Hillbilly Housewife family bread recipe. It is just fine for our daily bread. Usually the first loaf is gone within 30 minutes of coming out of the oven. The next is gone by the end of the day. The third and fourth loaves take a couple of days. I think I'm saving money, not sure, but with bread loaves costing $2.00 or more a piece at the store, and I can get 2 whole bags of flour for that price (white at Aldi), I somehow feel that I'm coming out ahead. Not to mention the idea that my family isn't eating a whole bunch of additives and preservatives. I'm not a real fanatic about that, just would rather not, thanks.

So today I made Italian Bread. (No recipe, just basic white bread with the addition of olive oil and some sesame seeds over the top.) I was able to snap a picture of it before the kids got their hands on it. What do you think?? Can you smell it though your computer?