It's probably hard to tell in a photo this size but the shot was taken through a rain-splattered window and the branches of the trees are tossing in the wind as though they think they're at the disco. All those gorgeous blossoms just came on this last week and now, thanks to this silly April stormlet that came pouncing in this morning, it's beginning to look like pink snow down there. Dayum.
I'm happy to report this particular storm is not irrigating the innards of my humble dwelling, thanks to the heroic efforts of my landlord earlier this month. Billy spent several days slaving on the roof with assorted tools and supplies and, by golly, I think he managed to seal almost all the leaks. What a blessed relief!
There's been such a lot going on this month that I just haven't been keeping up with y'all. I will try to get all caught up now but I'll spread it out over the rest of the month, okay? Can't use up all the "stuff" in one swell foop. What fun is there in that?
One thing about which I need to alert you: the yeast content of the pan de agua recipe in the April 1st post. I said 3 Tablespoons yeast. The original recipe actually called for 2 1/2 packages of yeast. Okay, a package is 2 1/4 teaspoons and, since 3 teaspoons equals a tablespoon, I always just round it off and think of 1 tablespoon as being the same as a package. For all practical purposes, that works fine.
Where I messed up was in converting the "2 1/2 packs" to tablespoons. It really should only have read 2 tablespoons (rounded off on the generous side) but I was thinking of the 3 teaspoons and the proverbial doo-doo eventuated. Fortunately, that over-abundant measurement did not hurt the bread. On the other hand, that much yeast can put a hurt on your pocket book. I got to looking at that measurement and thought, whoa! Why so much?
Well, I did some experimenting. A loaf using 2 tablespoons came out, as far as I could see, identical to the previous loaves using 3. Okay. Fine. My last loaf, baked just yesterday, used only 1 tablespoon of yeast and, I swear, I think it was the prettiest, biggest loaf yet! So, for what it's worth, I made an editorial correction in the April 1st post and if any of you have already copied off that recipe, you might want to make the correction on your own copy.
To make up for my spendy blunder, let me give you a heads-up for what looks like a truly great baking site I just found. This link takes you to the Bread Baking Center of a place called The Prepared Pantry. I'm still wandering around the site, trying to take it all in. Not only can you order supplies and equipment there, should you choose, you can help yourself to several free and most excellent e-books on assorted baking subjects. Explanations, photos, recipes ... I've made the first download of their Free Baking Book (it comes in at a chapter a week) and I am IMPRESSED.
See? There are lots of neat things to do while it's raining!