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Old 12-08-2014, 08:09 PM   #15761
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Hi Splitwdw!

Yes, this was my first bread baking class. I started last year by going through the recipes in The Bread Baker's Apprentice by Reinhart. It is a great book and really got me hook. I love the science and procedural nature of it. Each time I do a recipe I take notes on adjustments I am trying--like a science notebook. :-)

The class I took covered about 35 different recipes including croissants, sourdough, brioche, etc. It was a total of 35 hours in the kitchen with a French Master Baker as the instructor. Really it doesn't get any better than that!

Have fun with your baking and post some pics!

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Can't remember if you were one of the people that posted on another thread that you made bread. If not, was this the first time you'd made bread or was this just first class. You made some nice looking bread........how'd it taste. I just had a slice of cranberry walnut bread that I made yesterday. I'll probably have some for a chicken sandwich later tonight. Don't laugh at the combination it tastes great. I always think it's funny when friends think bread making is hard to do. You can make just about any kind of bread you want. I love the designs you can make on the loaf before baking with a razor blade. My favorite is a wheat sheaf......or take cookie cutters, roll out some dough, cut out shapes and attach to loaf with a little water before baking.
I've never had California sourdough but have heard it excellent. I think I read that some California bakers have very old starters. Mine's only 5 years old. It's made from wild yeast in the air, flour and milk. I read an old book or article a while ago about how to do it, called "Trapping the Wild Yeast". Kept thinking that I was just going to end up with a cup of sour milk/flour mix or moldy mess. It's so active I have to keep an eye on it. I fed it one time and left on kitchen counter. It bubbled up and out of the container and looked like the movie "The Blob". This sourdough starter makes a nice bread.
Can you tell I like talking/making bread!!
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Old 12-08-2014, 10:31 PM   #15762
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Love the bread pics! Learning to make bread is on my to do list. The last few years I have been collecting cook books and learned how to make my own soup stock, cook up dried beans, make my own salad dressing and a few other things. I keep trying to buy less processed food as I learn how to make more things from scratch.
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Old 12-09-2014, 06:49 AM   #15763
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Spent the day recovering from our weekend trip to Nashville. Finished a flag box. One more to go.

Looks great, assuming it's a gift and will be highly appreciated!
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Old 12-09-2014, 07:55 AM   #15764
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Thanks - my uncle passed away a few weeks ago, and I'm making one for my aunt. I built this one as a test run first using my dad's flag to get sizing, etc. It's better than the plastic one that the funeral home gave me 20 some years ago. So I'm keeping my dad's flag in this one and building another for my aunt. The local glass guy donates the glass for veterans flag cases.
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Old 12-09-2014, 05:22 PM   #15765
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I slept a lot today. I felt tired and the day was gloomy. It was fun to just lay in bed, sleep a little, wake up, do some leg stretches and exercises, and zonk out again. I love my 3 inch pillowtop mattress.

I bought a SAD light therapy fixture to see if it will help elevate my mood. The Mayo Clinic site had some great articles about SAD. I saw some of my symptoms there...feeling undirected, tired, a little impatient, etc etc.

Menopause and the lack of sunlight seem to be conspiring to affect my normally happy mood. So I am looking forward to using the light to offset some of that. I believe light therapy will help me, so that is half the battle.

I will assemble it tonite while Mr B makes homemade sausage and pepperoni pizza. He is napping after studying for most of the day.

I lit a fire to cheer up the living room. Time to go wake him.

PS Jim Cantore is on location in Syracuse, so you know what that means....
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Old 12-09-2014, 05:47 PM   #15766
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...........I bought a SAD light therapy fixture to see if it will help elevate my mood. The Mayo Clinic site had some great articles about SAD. I saw some of my symptoms there...feeling undirected, tired, a little impatient, etc etc. ............
I've put in a request for more sunlight. Should kick in around the 21st.
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Old 12-09-2014, 06:01 PM   #15767
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A real long walk on the beach this morning... probably 5 miles or so.
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Old 12-09-2014, 06:26 PM   #15768
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I put up my Christmas decorations.
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Old 12-09-2014, 06:28 PM   #15769
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I've put in a request for more sunlight. Should kick in around the 21st.
Well thank you.

We've had a few sunny days, so it hasn't been completely gloomy here.

I get outside every time the sun shines, even if it is just for 15 minutes.
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Old 12-09-2014, 07:01 PM   #15770
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Love the bread pics! Learning to make bread is on my to do list. The last few years I have been collecting cook books and learned how to make my own soup stock, cook up dried beans, make my own salad dressing and a few other things. I keep trying to buy less processed food as I learn how to make more things from scratch.
Bread is not hard--just need a little patience in the beginning because it is very formulaic. IE if you vary anything in the recipe, you'll get something different that you expected. But, not always something unpleasant.

I bake twice a week (1 sweet and 1 savory) and hope to eventually get my wife to stop buying any store bought baked goods.
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Old 12-10-2014, 08:43 AM   #15771
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I bought a SAD light therapy fixture to see if it will help elevate my mood.
Lighting one up elevates my mood as well...
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Old 12-10-2014, 09:46 AM   #15772
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I slept a lot today. I felt tired and the day was gloomy. It was fun to just lay in bed, sleep a little, wake up, do some leg stretches and exercises, and zonk out again. I love my 3 inch pillowtop mattress.

I bought a SAD light therapy fixture to see if it will help elevate my mood. The Mayo Clinic site had some great articles about SAD. I saw some of my symptoms there...feeling undirected, tired, a little impatient, etc etc.

Menopause and the lack of sunlight seem to be conspiring to affect my normally happy mood. So I am looking forward to using the light to offset some of that. I believe light therapy will help me, so that is half the battle.
....

I bought a blue box 2-3 years ago and found it helped a lot.

In extended gloomy weather in the Bay Area, I'd sit with the light nearby each morning and bask in the blue for half an hour or so while catching up on this forum.

I don't think I'll need it where I live now, though. 🌴😎🌻
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Old 12-10-2014, 10:52 AM   #15773
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Originally Posted by freebird5825 View Post
I slept a lot today. I felt tired and the day was gloomy. It was fun to just lay in bed, sleep a little, wake up, do some leg stretches and exercises, and zonk out again. I love my 3 inch pillowtop mattress.

I bought a SAD light therapy fixture to see if it will help elevate my mood. The Mayo Clinic site had some great articles about SAD. I saw some of my symptoms there...feeling undirected, tired, a little impatient, etc etc.

Menopause and the lack of sunlight seem to be conspiring to affect my normally happy mood. So I am looking forward to using the light to offset some of that. I believe light therapy will help me, so that is half the battle.

I will assemble it tonite while Mr B makes homemade sausage and pepperoni pizza. He is napping after studying for most of the day.

I lit a fire to cheer up the living room. Time to go wake him.

PS Jim Cantore is on location in Syracuse, so you know what that means....
I am on of the 25% of Canadians who has symptoms of SAD (though I did experience it before moving here). When I was living on the Prairies, there was plenty of sunshine in the winter, but I missed it because I was working all day! I have had a light box since 1994 and regularly use it in wintertime. I just sit in front of it while drinking coffee, answering emails or surfing the web for 20 minutes in the morning.

I also find that a trip to a sunny destination works wonders, which is why I am off to Mexico next week!
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Old 12-10-2014, 01:09 PM   #15774
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Today's to-do list:

1. Re-check emergency caches
2. Check flashlights. Repair or replace batteries as needed.
3. Check broadcast receivers, replace batteries as needed.
3. Fully charge the handheld radio transceivers.
4. Check and test the 12 VDC big battery for the shortwave radio transceiver.
5. Inspect antenna masts and guy lines. Forecast peak winds will be strong enough to hit the burst strength of an unguyed 30' pine or hemlock mast built from 2x4 and 2x3 pieces.

Incoming weather. And people wondered what I'd do with my time in retirement...
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Old 12-10-2014, 02:48 PM   #15775
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Went for about a 45 minute motorcycle ride. Brrrrr! The fuel that is in it has been there since about late spring and because of a bend or something in the fuel filler neck on the tank I can't siphon it out to replace it with fresh (treated) fuel.

So I'm taking in out on non-rainy and more or less warm days (+30) for 30 to 45 minutes at a time to slowly burn that off so I can replace the fuel and doing it at the time of day when traffic is at the lightest and still in daylight. Then when I can replace the fuel it goes back to sleep for the rest of the winter.
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Old 12-10-2014, 03:50 PM   #15776
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Today's to-do list:

1. Re-check emergency caches
2. Check flashlights. Repair or replace batteries as needed.
3. Check broadcast receivers, replace batteries as needed.
3. Fully charge the handheld radio transceivers.
4. Check and test the 12 VDC big battery for the shortwave radio transceiver.
5. Inspect antenna masts and guy lines. Forecast peak winds will be strong enough to hit the burst strength of an unguyed 30' pine or hemlock mast built from 2x4 and 2x3 pieces.

Incoming weather. And people wondered what I'd do with my time in retirement...
Wow! Sounds like quite a storm on its way to your region. I am sure you will be well prepared. If winds are going to be that bad, I would imagine you are also bringing in any patio furniture, grills, or other outdoor items, so that they do not become missiles and break your windows. But then I am used to hurricanes so maybe that is overkill. Frank just has a wire antenna for his ham radio set up with some sort of hinged mount, so that he can tilt it down by himself and lay it flat on the ground. I used to have to help him with it, until he devised this one person operation.

Getting ready for heavy weather can be a lot of physical work, so I usually regard it as a free gym workout too.
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Old 12-10-2014, 05:23 PM   #15777
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Went for about a 45 minute motorcycle ride. Brrrrr! The fuel that is in it has been there since about late spring and because of a bend or something in the fuel filler neck on the tank I can't siphon it out to replace it with fresh (treated) fuel.

So I'm taking in out on non-rainy and more or less warm days (+30) for 30 to 45 minutes at a time to slowly burn that off so I can replace the fuel and doing it at the time of day when traffic is at the lightest and still in daylight. Then when I can replace the fuel it goes back to sleep for the rest of the winter.
I thought you were going to sell the motorbike, Walt. What changed?
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Old 12-10-2014, 05:39 PM   #15778
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I thought you were going to sell the motorbike, Walt. What changed?
Winter. Around here (West Virginia) nobody wants to buy a motorcycle in winter. I did put an ad on Craigslist a few weeks ago but I don't expect any offers. I'll list again in the spring unless....

Another issue is if I can get off the anticoagulant drugs, I'll talk to the doc about that in a couple of weeks. My sentence of one year on them will be up in July and if I can get off them then I may keep the bike. But for right now I just ride it enough to keep it in shape, 30-45 minutes once a week or so. It is very bad to let a machine just sit, especially one with old fuel in it. And I pick a low-traffic time of day, late morning or mid afternoon. And this is just until I run out the old fuel that has been in it since last spring. Then I'll refill with fresh treated fuel and it'll be good to sit for another six months or so. By then it will be easier to sell if need be or I'll just enjoy it.
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Old 12-10-2014, 06:11 PM   #15779
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Woke up at 2:00 AM just because (I'll be glad when *this* phase is over), so I went ahead and planned out the menu and shopping list for a cookie exchange dinner party I'm having here tomorrow. Also did my book club reading (Mark Twain's Roughing It), all before 6:00 AM. Headed to Target at 7:45 AM to get in and out quickly, then over to gym for an hour on the bike, followed by some ab work.

Home to shower and dress fancy for our Lifelong Learning program's holiday luncheon show. Shopping at two supermarkets once that was over, still in our fancy clothes, then home to change and start cooking. So far I've made two batches of Sangria, one white and one red, and baked homemade tortilla strips to top the chicken tortilla soup I'll be starting in about an hour.

Still have my own cookies and cornbread to make/bake, plus turkey pot pie for tonight's dinner, before the night is over.

I'm tired!
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Old 12-10-2014, 09:48 PM   #15780
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Turned a bowl on my lathe for the first time today.

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