Friday, September 13, 2019

Week Summary

Currently, I have a batch of pizza sauce in the canner. This is another thing I've not made before but since the farm share keeps offering unlimited produce I felt like it was a thing to try. I brought home just over 9 pounds of plum tomatoes yesterday, just enough to make a batch, using the recipe in the Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving, page 366. For this, I used the 12 ounce jars, since I feel that we often open a jar of pizza sauce and then only use half of it. Maybe this is still too much in a jar but we'll just have to commit to using more of it.

Also this week I turned in all my canning entries so I'm done making canned goods for the fair. I'm not done making things for the fair, though, but now we've turned to the baking part. In an experiment, I made my usual bread with a few changes in technique. First of all, I made the bread with all bread flour and a whole lot more water: 16 ounces starter (Legion), 38 ounces bread flour, 4 T. sugar, roughly 22-24 ounces water, 2 T. salt. Then I turned the dough into an oiled bowl and used the pinch and turn technique I used most recently for the baguettes a few weeks ago. This dough is much stiffer and difficult to do this way but I wanted to see what happened. What did happen was we got a nice, spongy crumb with a few extra air pockets in it. Not what I expected but still very good. I might try a few more tweaks before I have to make a batch for the fair.

Lastly, I made a cheesecake using the honey cheesecake recipe that won last year in the baking with honey division. I'd never actually tried it again so had no idea how it was. Well, it may now be my go-to cheesecake. It was the smoothest cheesecake I've ever made, and it didn't crack, either! My trick there was to turn the oven off just before I though it was done and then leave it in the oven to cool down more slowly. And so easy: 2 pounds of cream cheese, 2/3 cup honey, 4 eggs and some vanilla, poured over a graham cracker crust and baked at 300˚F for about an hour.

I'm still trying to decide what to bake for the fair in general. It depends on which day I can go on that first weekend as there are different categories competing on different days. I won't really know which day I can go until much closer to the actual weekend. It's also Parents' Weekend for the youngerchild's school and I'm starting a new job that week as well!

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