We’re in the throws of winter here in the Midwest – although we managed to dodge big blizzard, ‘Jonas’, of 2016 and for that I am grateful (I mean seriously, 40-inches of snow in 24 hours?!!). However, there is something to be said about being snowbound while the white stuff tumbles furiously from the sky – it can be magical. But when you live in the country like we do, there is always the fear and trepidation of loss of power that usually accompanies said blizzard.
It’s been a great summer here at the Smith Bites Homestead; it is the first summer where The Professor didn’t teach during the break and we’ve had more than eight weeks to dig in our garden, work on our home and just simple be – sleep late, stay up late, read books, have friends over, bake, grill, eat and repeat. It has been glorious and was exactly what I needed to fill my soul.
It’s the day before Thanksgiving and while the family celebration will not be in our home this year, we still find ourselves in the kitchen baking; I guess some habits are hard to break. My family is spread out all over the United States from one coast to the other and a few States in between so we aren’t together for holidays; The Professor’s family is anchored in Indiana with a brother in close proximity in the Cincinnati area – it’s nice to share a meal with the family and to visit with the nieces and nephew who are out conquering the world.
Did we even have November??? I know I’ve said this a lot lately but, dang, people – did someone put earth and it’s calendar on the spin cycle of a washing machine and walk away???
I’ve been working with gluten-free sourdough since May and have had some success . . . with many failures; baking regular bread can be tricky on its own, gluten-free breads are even more difficult. And oh boy, do I wish I could say I’ve unlocked the secrets but I can’t. Here’s what I’ve learned so far as well as a recipe for these gluten-free sourdough baguettes – which also makes terrific pizza dough.
There’s a new man in my life. These past several months while The Professor lay sleeping beside me, I’ve been snuggled up with Thomas Keller – well not literally, but I have been snuggled up with his latest book, Bouchon.
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Musical pairing – Holy Moses by Washington
This is one of those recipes I’ve wanted to share for a couple of years now; the anticipation of fall and the harvesting of concord grapes makes me feel nothing less than giddy. But Concord grape season is short, my attention span is short and one of three things has happened: (a) I completely miss said Concord grape season, (b) I remember Concord grape season but can’t find any at my local store and (c) by some miracle I actually remember Concord grape season, find said Concord grapes and make this fabulous recipe . . . but then I forget to take photos . . .
Gluten-free Blueberry Scone – it’s absolutely possible to make a buttery, flaky gf scone that tastes like it came from a great bakery – video post coming soon!
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Musical pairing – Brighter Than the Sun by Colbie Caillat
I promised you scones this week and I’m here to deliver with not only white chocolate but I’m also topping these with a Meyer lemon curd . . . you’re quite welcome!
I am a butter lover . . . not quite in the same league as a certain Paula or Ina but I think it’s safe to say I could give them a run for their money . . . I’ll leave it up to you to decide if that’s good or bad . . .
Follow Your Nose . . .
Fun fact: one of my favorite smells in the whole world is the smell of a brewery. Living near the Christian Moerlein brewery in Cincinnati, I’ve spent my whole life breathing in the rich, yeasty smell that comes wafting through the city periodically, which it does particularly frequently on cool September and October days, so that I connect the smell most vividly with the return of early mornings and back-to-school.