I had to take two of my children to the doctor this morning for their yearly physical and it was…horrendous. Hellish, you might say. One child threw epic fits over the least invasive/scary and most painless tests you could have at the doctor’s office – the eye chart and the hearing screening. Epic. We ended up leaving the clinic without completing the last one because the ragged gasping, nose running, hysterical crying she was doing wasn’t getting any better the more time went on.
Over the hearing test.
I have decided to divest myself of all responsibility for any medical related things for this particular child. I let the husband know that I’d take care of 2/3 of our children, but he’s on his own with the remaining 1/3. That seems fair, right?
I have also decided to take a day off of baking because it’s just now afternoon and I feel like I’ve been up and going for an entire day. I’m hoping the family can coast by on the remaining two loaves of bread (plus a lackluster loaf of sandwich bread) until I no longer feel like running down the street screaming. In the meantime? How about some pretty pictures?
Earlier this week I checked out Ken Forkish’s “Flour Water Salt Yeast: The Fundamentals of Artisan Bread and Pizza” because while I’m perfectly happy with Peter Reinhart, have you seen the pictures in Forkish’s book? I don’t own a dutch oven (cast iron or no) and I’m not planning on buying one anytime soon so I can’t speak to his bread recipes, but I can speak to the pizza.
Up until now I’ve been using a recipe from my vintage ” Joy of Cooking” that includes a bit of olive oil in the recipe and we like it well enough. It’s an easy mix and I don’t have to think any further than two hours ahead, but it’s just ok. It’s not spectacular by any stretch of the imagination. But Forkish’s recipe?
Reader, it’s out of this world fantastic and about as good as a home baker is going to get sans fancy pizzeria oven. He leverages a long ferment (and the tiniest bit of yeast) into a crisp and chewy end product. The only pizza crust I like better is Ian’s in Madison which is doubly appreciated because I don’t have to make it.
As I’m sure you’ve gathered, I’m the primary cook in our kitchen. I don’t know how this happened since the husband is a passable cook in his own right and more than capable at following a recipe. I, on the other hand, can be a bit…scattered and tend to cook like I write: frantic and absent-minded. Before we had children meal preparation was a side by side venture as we’d get lost in the process before enjoying the end result in the comfortable sort of companionship found in new relationships. Somewhere along the way, though, meal preparation became my thing and the husband took over watching the kids. Still, there are some meals that I save for his days off when I need an extra pair of hands.
I can (and do) make homemade pizza all by myself, but I’d rather be in charge of the dough while someone else takes over the toppings. Typically, if I leave the husband on his own, it’s more about how much cheese he can get on the pizza. This time I was able to restrain him just the slightest bit with a “less is more” kind of approach.
I even gave him a little tutorial on how to get the pizza off the wooden cutting board and onto the pizza stone in the oven which he easily got the hang of on the first shot. By the third pizza we were a well oiled machine. (Yes, we made three pizzas. You’ve met Groceries, right?)
In addition to the five pizza crusts I made a few days ago (two of which are waiting in my freezer for our next pizza night), I’ve also been keeping up with the family’s demand for bread. Since the last time I posted I’ve made ten additional loaves. You saw the first loaf. The husband the kids ate loaves two and three and my mom got loaf number four.
Pictured here are loaves five, six, seven, and eight which my family ate last night for dinner along with the most satisfying onion soup. Oh, and when I say family, I really do mean the husband and my children. I had a reasonable two pieces while some of my family probably ate their own loaf. Loaf number nine disappeared today with breakfast while numbers ten and eleven sit on my kitchen counter.
Rest assured, dear reader, they won’t make it past tonight for if my husband’s whistling and singing last night are any indication, I may have found my calling. As my mom pointed out today, it’s fast becoming a part-time job. I’m going to need a bigger mixer.