Sunday, December 9, 2007

Baking with Julia - Fruit Focaccia

Be honest here, do you own a cookbook that tells you how to make a wedding cake? Not something you can use as a wedding cake if the bride and groom were homemade, home grown, “make me a wedding cake and that will be my wedding gift” kind of people, but an actual Glorious Wedding Cake? Well I don’t. Because I don’t actually own Baking with Julia yet. But I will. Oh yes, I will. From the moment I first paged through it, I was entranced. I mean, I had never seen a cookbook before that went on for 289 pages before casually throwing in a recipe for a Glorious Wedding Cake (and yes, it includes marzipan decorations). Seriously people, I have a best friend who was at one point, a professional baker. I’m fairly sure she can bake a Glorious Wedding Cake (her grandmother also knew Julia Child, so don’t go comparing yourself to her, you don’t need to give yourself a complex) . But this cookbook assumes that I need to know how to bake a wedding cake, that YOU need to know how to bake a wedding cake. I am giddy with power. I can bake anything. Sadly for all of you, I did not choose to bake a wedding cake. For one, no one I know is getting married. Also, I’m not a huge fan of marzipan. Not wanting to let you down too much, I picked Fruit Focaccia. Don’t worry. It’s just a bread that takes 2 days to make. Perfect for a novice baker like me. Right?

Day 1 Baking Advisory: Have a cocktail and some self-restraint.

No matter how bad it looks, do not throw out the dough (I considered it, believe me). Always trust Julia over a packet of yeast; and when you get to the part in the recipe where it actually says “Now comes the messy part,” you might want to take a moment, step away and enjoy a stiff drink before continuing. By the time Igot to the messy part (adding the fruit to the fruit focaccia for those who were wondering), my dough was shiny and hard, not soft and batter-like (as advertised) and my mixer was not extremely hot (as threatened). When I incorporated the fruits, I truly felt in my heart, Nothing good can come of this. But after much spatula wielding, poking, prodding and cursing, I gave up, threw the whole darn mess in a buttered bowl and hoped for the best. And you know what? By the end of the rise (incidentally that was three and half hours later), everything looked exactly as promised. How it tastes? Well for that, you'll just have to come back tomorrow.

1 comment:

JML said...

But how did it turn out? I'm waiting on pins and needles!!!!


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