Thursday, April 2, 2009
Bowling, Buttered Treats,
You know, I completely forgot to tell you at the beginning of the week, that I had a 200 game. 211 to be precise. I haven't done that in a while, but it does seem the infamous injection in my hip may have helped considerably. It is to be hoped I bowl as well today. I bought some yeast yesterday to make regular Hot Cross Buns, not the Chocolate Cranberry type which I think might be a tad too moreish. I haven't made HCBs for a year or two, keep saying I will and then not buying the yeast to do so. You can buy them in the stores here, but they don't taste the same as the one's I am used to, hence making my own. I love them on Good Friday morning nice and hot with lots of melted butter oozing through them. That brings to mind a memory of when I was a young woman going to secretarial college. Beforehand I used to go for a coffee and scone at a local café where they made their scones fresh every morning. They too would still be warm and oozing with butter. Really set me up for the day. Another thing which should ooze with butter is crumpets. My father once had a crumpet factory and the criteria for a decent crumpet was the ability to fold one in four without it splitting or breaking up. You couldn't do that with the crumpets one buys these days. We used to put them on a toasting fork and hold them in front of an open fire. Much better than in a toaster. Now that reminds me of French toast. That was our name for a slice of bread buttered on one side and then also put on a toasting fork and toasted on the other side. It was gorgeous. These days, not too many people have open fires and the toasting fork has virtually disappeared. I also managed to pick up some beef kidneys (for some reason always known as ox kidney when I lived in the UK) yesterday which I know will delight some of my readers. However, we both love steak and kidney, be it pie or pudding, so that is now on the books. Hot Cross Buns 12 oz. plain (all purpose) flour good pinch salt 1 oz butter 4 oz dried fruit 2 oz candied peel 1 tsp mixed spice 1/2 oz yeast * approx 7 fl. oz tepid water, milk and water or milk 1-2 oz sugar 1 oz sugar for glaze 1 Tbs water * If using dried yeast mix with the sugar and a little tepid liquid. Allow to stand in warm place until soft - approximately 20 minutes, then cream. Continue after this as for fresh yeast. The spice should be sieved with the flour. Cream the yeast with 1 tsp of sugar. Add tepid liquid and a sprinkling of flour. Put into a warm place until the 'sponge' breaks through. Meanwhile sieve flour and salt into a warm bowl, rub in butter and add sugar, fruit and peel. When ready, work in yeast liquid and knead thoroughly. Put into a warm place for approximately 1 hour or until the dough is double its original size. Form into round buns, 'prove' for 15 minutes on warm tray. Before doing this the buns should be marked. Do this with the back of a knife or by cutting thin strips of pastry and arranging on the top. Bake for 10 minutes near the middle of a very hot oven 425°F. If buns are to be eaten straightaway, mix 1 oz sugar and 1 tbs water and glaze with this. If, as so often happens, they are to be warmed again on Good Friday, make up glaze and brush after re-heating. Have a great day.