French Women Don't Get Fat--Mireille Guiliano
"No yoga exercise, no meditation in a chapel filled with music rid you of your blues better than the humble task of making your own bread".
And these baguettes are very easy to make.
by Mireille Guiliano: French Women Don't Get Fat
1 tsp active dry yeast
400-500ml warm water (water quantities vary when baking)
550g unsifted strong white flour
2 tsps sea salt
1 egg, beaten and mixed with 1 Tbs cold water
In a small bowl dissolve yeast in 100ml warm water, using a fork. Set aside for 10 minutes.
Combine flour and salt. Add yeast mixture, stir in remaining 300ml water, a bit at a time. Mix until sticky enough to knead. You may need more water. Knead for 6 to 10 minutes; dough should be sticky and smooth. Put in a bowl, cover with a damp tea cloth, and let rise at room temperature until doubled in volume, about 1 hour.
Punch down dough and divide into 4 pieces. Roll each into a ball and then pull out shape into a baguette. Transfer to slightly greased baking sheet and let rise until nearly doubled. Brush with egg-mixture. Score diagonally across the top with a sharp knife.
Pour 500ml hot water in a pan and place in preheated gas mark 8/230C oven next to the baguettes for 15 minutes, then lower temperature to gas mark 6/200C and bake for 5 to 10 minutes until golden brown. Remove and cool on a rack before slicing.
Along with it, I made pumpkin soup as we had had a very good crop from the garden last Summer.
3 cups cooked pumpkin
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 1/2 cup chicken stock
salt and pepper to taste
a sprig of parsley, finely chopped, to sprinkle
1 Tbs cooking oil
Heat the oil in a frying pan, add the chopped onion and garlic. Sautee until the onion is clear and the mixture is fragrant. Set aside. Put the cooked pumpkin, onion and garlic, and a little bit of chicken stock into a food processor. Blend them until very smooth. Bring the mixture to the saucepan, and add more stock. If it's too thick, add more stock or water. Bring the soup to boil, then simmer for 5 minutes. Season well. Remove and pour the soup into each serving bowl. Drop a dash of cream and sprinkle with chopped parsley. Enjoy.