Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Cool and Considerably Cloudy (yet again!)

Argh! I'm getting tired of this cool bordering on cold/cloudy weather. It was great to enjoy an hour or two of sunshine this morning, but that is long gone.

We had another wonderful meal last night with our Cooking Light group. It was great to see Kelly last night. She looks so chic and cute!

The guy who does her hair also did the Tony Awards. :-) She's getting to experience so much of the NY culture and has visited so many restaurants: Bobby Flay's restaurants, Mario Batali's Babo, ... What foodie fun that would be! Our meal was delicious. I honestly don't have a standout favorite--everything was a rave and a fave and something I'd make again. Kudos to the cooks and to Margo for the menu selection.

I always use unbleached flour. Here's something from Cook's Illustrated about the usage of bleached vs. unbleached flour when baking: "When flour is first milled, it has a yellowish cast that some consumers find unappealing. Within a few months of milling, however, these carotenoids, orpigments, in all-purpose flour naturally whiten. Because it is expensive to naturally "age" flour, some producers expedite the process chemically. In flours labeled "bleached," benzoyl peroxide has likely been used to fade the yellow color. In baking tests, bleached flour was criticized for tasting flat or having "off' flavors (texturaly, the flours behaved the same). These characteristics, however, were much harder to detect in recipes with a high proportion of ingredients other than flour, such as cornbread or oatmeal cookies.

To find out if bleached flour would compromise the flavor or texture of a savory sauce, we made batches of basic white sauce (bechamel) using 1 tablespoon of bleached or unbleached flour per cup of milk. We tasted the sauces plain as well as in lasagna Bolognese. In both instances, tasters pronounced the sauces identical in flavor and texture. Our conclusion: It's fine to use small amounts of bleached flour to thicken sauces, but avoid using it for baking."

TriRochester is having a potluck picnic after the Rochesterfest Triathlon. Should be fun! I wonder what stories I'll have to tell at that point ...

The boys and I went out for lunch at Chester's today.

I had the raspberry chicken salad, which was very good.

The restaurant is on the Peace Plaza, which will be hopping on Thursday with the wildly popular Thursdays on First which begin this week.

I'm off to All Comers' and then the open water swim. Matt is coming along to take pictures. :-)

Quote for the day: “Do not go where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail...” – Emerson


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