Archive | April, 2011

Bagels

6 Apr

Speaking of bread, these are the bagels I baked earlier on.

I sometimes like to eat them for breakfast.

Plain bagles are good with cream cheese and blueberry jam…

These are whole wheat bagels.

Bagels are good for lunch, too.

We had them with ratatuille one day,

and with teriyaki on another day!

For our small trip.

But I miss NY bagels. Nothing can beat NY bagels and cream cheese…

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Breakfast with Petit French Baguette!

4 Apr

I wanted to enjoy Swiss cheese with some nice baguette, so decided to bake it on my own. (I sometimes bake breads, too…)

A few years ago when I was baking bread almost every weekend, I was so excited to bake that was waking up as early as going to work to have just baked bread for breakfast.

So just like those days, I woke up around 5am this morning to bake french baguette:)

When baking bread you normally use high-protein flour, but for french baguette you use medium-protein flour, which can be made by mixing all purpose flour : high protein flour = 1:1 (same amount). I also made it that way.

Since medium-protein flour has less protein and is harder to form gluten, it was so difficult to make the dough into shape! It kept sticking to my hands that I almost gave up on it. But after mixing the dough for about an hour(!?) believing that mixing will sure make gluten, it finally came into some shape. phew…

So this is the dough after 1st furmentation.

With my hard effort, we could enjoy freshly baked bread with Swiss cheese for breakfast! The cheese is a Gruyere cheese, which is from the moutainous regent of Gruyere. Next to coffee is olive oil which my husband also brought back from Italy end of last year when he shot some movie in an olive farm at Tuscany. It tasted really nice, too.

Needless to say, my baguette was excellent! It was crunchy outside and chewy inside… I’d like to make this again.

Swiss Chocolate with Coffee

3 Apr

My husband bought me back some chocolates from Switzerland!

This time he went to a small town in Switzerland called Fribourg (which is approx. 1 and a half hour train ride from Zurich), so with limited time and shops he bought me some chocolates, cheese and cake plate. I quite like his taste of souvenir (haha…), so I always look forward to them whenever he travels.

This can grabbed my eyes immediately! What a lovely drawing! It’s “The Fox and the Crow” from Aesop fables. Inside was filled with 4 kinds of chocolates containing Praline my favorite taste! Hmm… Swiss chocolate really melts in your mouth!

 

This chocolate seems to be made with 200 year-old recipes. Since it’s such a precious chocolate, I decided to have it with coffee. My daughter has become 3 months old so I think I can slowly start drinknig coffee and tea. Finally…!

 

It was an exquisite experience! These Swiss chocolates are in a class of its own.

Tea Roll Cake

2 Apr

Last weekend four of my friends came to my house to see me and my daughter! They are my ex-collegues; 2 Japanese and 2 local friends.

Since one of my Japanese friends had gone back to Japan and we hadn’t seen each other for about a year, we were all looking forward to have this moment. She was visiting Malaysia with her family, and was telling us about the recent terrible situation in Japan. As you know, the earthquakes are still happening daily and the radiation problem has even started to affect Tokyo. Tap water, vegetables, milk… so many foods are being affected by radiation. The situation seems to have gone worse than we all thought and it’s threatening their lives… My friend was telling us that it’s been a while since she slept soundly and is really enjoying visiting here.

Anyway, this is the tea roll cake I baked for our reunion.

I think I put too much tea leaves this time;). But my friends enjoyed it and I was happy.

Weekend au Citron

1 Apr

Today I baked Weekend au Citron (Lemon butter cake).

Like its name, this cake is originally baked on weekends. The shape is normally in stylish square with lemon flavoring glace a l’eau (icing)  and pistache (pistachio) coated on top. I wanted to make it in square shape as well, originally was going to flip over the cake before the coating, but since the cake grew nicely into a mountain shape, I decided to just keep it this way.

The icing – Glace a l’eau – is very important for this cake. It gives the cake its lemon flavoring. This refreshing cake also goes well with coffee!