Today my cooking and baking adventures were extensive. Although I may be the only one in the house who truly appreciates my work, I am going to share it anyways.
I started today by taking inventory of the pantry. I wanted to make yeast bread and at least one batch of cookies and I only had a ¾ cup of white flour, and about a ½ a cup of bread flour. That’s not ENOUGH!
But, I found I had a ¾ full jar of oatmeal and I found a jar of steel cut oats.
So that is how I will make up for running out of flour.
I decided to blend-process in my high speed blender all the oats. I started with the regular oatmeal and sifted it into a bowl as I went. I pureed all but a handful. I then did the steel cut oats. I blended them all up. I made 3-4 bowls of oat flour to start my projects.
The first bowl was about 2 ½ cups of oat flour. I sprinkled some salt, and a few tablespoons of corn starch. I then cut in about 2/3 of cold butter straight from the fridge, until my hands were killing me. Then added a little bit of water and rolled into a ball, shaped into a disk, wrapped in plastic wrap and saved it in the fridge for a future gluten free pie crust.
The second bowl I added the last of my bread flour and some sugar and salt and about 2 ½ teaspoons of yeast, I then added about a cup and 1 ½ cup of warm half and half and worked into a dough. I let it rise while melting some butter, like 1/3 of a cup of butter. Once the loaf doubled in size, I folded in the butter, put it into a oiled pan and stuck it into the hot oven.
I had a very flat, oat-like buttery loaf that resulted and I love the flavor. I have been yeast experimenting in the last month and out of about 10 breads I have tried to make, only 2 have come out the consistency that I want in a bread; pillow soft and moist and crunchy on the outside. Pillow soft bread comes from the correct proof and I know my flour-yeast ratio was a little off today and it could have proofed more. So I have frequently come up with very dense breads, that taste fine, but are not pillow soft. I guess I will have to try try again.
I also made some gluten free oatmeal thumbprint jam cookies with the oat flour. I used some of the oat flour with the last handful of oats, and added some baking powder and salt to it. I then creamed some shortening and sugar together, I added about a ½ cup of sour cream,an egg and a dash of vanilla and creamed that with the sugar mix, I then added it to the dry, mixed well and drop style scooped them unto a baking sheet. I thumb printed each one and added some strawberry preserve to the thumb print and baked in the oven on 350 until golden brown.
They turned out ok, but I think they could have used more sugar, or maybe some apple sauce to sweeten the dough. The sour cream made them moist and chewy, but took away from the sweetness. I just got 5 lbs of sour cream delivered to me for free, so I am trying to think of creative ways to use it. And that’s not the only way I creatively used some of my Tub o’ cream tonight. Next way in a few.
OK, now here’s where I decided to use the real flour. I wanted another batch of snicker doodles. I really like snicker doodle cookies. That was the cookie my mom made most frequently when I was growing up and her recipe is the BEST!! They are huge. When my mother makes cookies, apparently she uses a 1/3 cup scoop each time or bigger she says,.. now that’s a huge cookie.
Anyways, I wanted to make some. So I did. My cookie tale here is not about the recipe, its about storage. I made a refrigerator snicker doodle cookie dough, with the last of my white flour. Even added a dash of cinnamon into the dough, and I do not normally do that. Anyways, I divided the dough in half and wrapped it in plastic wrap to put into the fridge.
Now you shape refrigerator cookies into cylinders before you store them, right?! Well, how is it supposed to keep that shape without a mold? Its sometimes hard, I have gotten cookies that have an indent in them from the freezer rack from storing them in the freezer just on the rack. So here is a great cookie hack and a household recycling tip. Use an empty tolit paper roll to keep them in, it keeps them round! I used this hack and I am storing those cookies in the freezer until I want to make them.
Now on to dinner, I checked in the fridge and I had a bag of leftover homemade baked stuffing that I had to resurrect to eat, before it entered the land of no return,the back of the fridge..lol j/k the garbage. And a new found tub of sour cream. It was a match made in heaven.
Super over baked and crunchy dried cubes of bread that needed a liquid but not too liquid pick me up.. so I herbed some sour cream and whipped it up with the electric mixer, I then folded it into my stuffing mix, and poured it into a cast iron. I topped the whole mix with cheese and I baked it until I almost forgot about it. It was amazing and almost a bread pudding but savory, it cut like a scone.. lol I am really odd when it comes to making up leftover inventions, so bare with me, it was edible in my book.
I made meatballs with diced onions and paprika and marjoram for the boys, and Elijah found the onions in his third meatball and decided he wasn’t eating anymore. He doesn’t like onions at all. He will scream at me cooking “ Those onions are not going into MY FOOD, RIGHT MOM?!” Its crazy, I love cooking with onions. Anyways, I also made my lil family some baked potatos, yes cause I have unlimited sour cream.. duh.
Funny thing is, my husband said my meatballs were too dry, my bread looked too dense and only ate baked potato for dinner. My son only ate some cleverly disguised meatballs, and some veggies, which, thank god, I decided to make on the side, just in case no one liked my food. I finely diced a sweet potato with some carrots and roasted it with some cinnamon sugar sprinkled on top, who wouldn’t love that.. gosh darn it.
Earlier in the day, I tried my oatmeal jam cookies and told my husband that my oat flour consistency has to get better, that its like eating really good sand with jam on top, and he has not tried one since.. I think I should keep my critic reviews to myself, Elijah has eaten like 6 of them since this morning.
Hey, you win some days, you lose some days. At least now I am completely out of all my flour and my oats..
I do not get food stamps until the 10th of every month and I will get paid sometime before that, but I have lots of bills and laundry to do, so I am unsure if I can afford flour. Well until tomorrow, have a good day and I hope you had a better baking day then I did.