Frank (ljtourist) wrote,

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Local ingredients

On Saturday, I drove out to North Bend to go blueberry picking at the very base of Mt. Si. The prediction was that the season would last into September, but that will likely not be the case: the picking was not quite as slim as I feared, but not near as plentiful as the peak usually is. They did have a later-season varietal, but I decided to go for quality over quantity and stuck with the early-season bushes, finding that the middles of the rows were not completely bare. Every time I got annoyed with the machinations and visual acuity to procure those elusive morsels, all I had to do was pop a single berry into my mouth, and the barrage, the sheer torrent, of flavor and sweetness reminded me of my purpose. The weather was great, the people were friendly, and there was some 50's lounge lizard music playing just out of sight, so the time passed quickly, though I had enough time to enjoy the sunset and surroundings. In the end, I came home with just over 3 pounds of the blue treasure.

Some of these were quickly incorporated into muffins, and I definitely have enough for another batch. I used AB's website recipe, and it was good, but not great; will try the slightly different version in his 2nd cookbook later.

Other foodpr0n this weekend was cinnamon buns! Again, AB's recipe was at the fore. This was the first time I used instant-rise yeast, and it sure won't be the last. The dough was hassle-free, and far better than any quick-bread I've had. That said, the buns weren't as mind-blowing as I'd been hoping for. The dough was tender, but had a strange crunchy outer layer; maybe a longer proof, or baking with water in the oven (followed by a convection-powered browning phase) would work better. Also, there just wasn't enough filling; instead of rolling out to 18"x12", I think 18"x15" is called for: that should provide more room for filling, and more spiral, but it may make the rolls not doughy enough. Finally, AB's glaze recipe is nowhere near as thick as it should be; I'll dig out my recipe from my carrot cake and modify that. Further experimentation is definitely necessary...
Tags: ab, alton, food, foodpr0n, life, travel

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