Just a couple snapshots from apple picking this fall.
Most are from the trip to Alyson’s Orchards in New Hampshire. The last one is from when I went just a couple of weeks ago to Russell Orchards in Ipswich, MA.
There’s lots of rogue (at least that’s how I think of them) apple trees in and around the neighborhood I live in, and I’m totally into them, but there’s a joy in the adventure and effort of going out apple picking that I will not pass up when given the opportunity. If I wrote this post a while ago I would have told you allll about Alyson’s and how much I loved it, and the pygmy goats and failed efforts to get cider doughnuts, but that was like.. over a month ago.
It’s been a good run with apples this fall. (I just finished an afternoon snack of sliced apples with honey roasted peanut butter.) I’ve made pies and done some canning and dried out a bunch, and last weekend I made a tart (post to come!)
I hope you’re enjoying fall and have someone to drink hot cider and wear sweaters and snuggle with. Even if it’s just your cat or best friend. Or best friend that also happens to be a cat.
Time to try and make some apple butter.
When I got my first job as a baker last December, and learned it was totally acceptable to wear stretchie pants all day every day, I decided that Friday, I would break out my stretchie florals, and thus my floral Fridays began. Since then, every Friday at work, I’ve been sporting a flower-patterned something. This was my way of celebrating Friday, even though it wasn’t “my Friday” because I had work on Saturday (see Wellness Wednesdays). Also, when I was a bread baker, the flour delivery was on Fridays, so it was a nod to that too (flower/flour Fridays.. Do you get it yet?). I mostly wore these same pants, that I got a Target yeaaars ago as a last purchase before I gave up shopping for a couple of months (this isn’t a thing anymore) but a few Fridays I sported a Hawaiian shirt and recently purchased a second pair of flower-power pants. Except last Friday. Last Friday I wore my black stretchie pants, and some sort of regular tshirt (and floral socks) because I had a stage and I wasn’t sure if that was the best introduction of myself (Google “stage,” not the theater kind. I don’t feel like explaining it.) It was my first time in the kitchen of a real restaurant (not bakery or cafe), a nice one too, and I’m glad I did it. I was nervous the whole time, but it wasn’t as scary as I thought it would be. The idea of a stage kind of feels like an audition, and I hate auditions, which is part of the reason I stopped performing. But I tried to treat it just as an eye-opening experience. I visited another bakery earlier this week and it was great to see how things run there. Production interests me. Today I’m going to step inside yet another kitchen, this time a more homey restaurant. At this point I’m not sure what it is I want to do right now. I kinda have goals, but am no longer certain I can accept the life that goes along with being a baker (waking up really early, missing out on social engagements, being tired when I’m not working so much that I have motivation to do very little). I left my job yesterday for reasons other than the “life of a baker” stuff and now I need to find the next thing, and I need to figure out if it will be a place for Floral Fridays.
Read more …
Apple almond cake.
I thought to myself… “I have apples, I have almonds, I want to make a cake” so I googled it, and of course apple almond cake is a thing, and there are tons of recipes and I’m not a super genius (obviously, I can’t even spell genius without autocorrect). I’ve never had a cake like this, but I loved it! The cake was dense and moist and not super sweet. And the texture of the topping matched really well. I want to work on the recipe to make a completely gluten free cake. From the original recipe, found here, I changed a few things already. I subbed in almond milk for the yogurt and replaced 1/2 cup AP flour with 1/2 cup almond flour.
I went apple picking for the second time this season this past weekend, so look forward to more apple things… if I remember to take pictures.
Result of last night’s flour-covered wine glass picture
Nobody ever tells you being a 20something can be so rough. Or do they?
There’s heartbreak. There’s losing friends to death and losing friends to marriage. There’s trying to figure out what in the world you’re supposed to be doing. Figuring out bills and loans and health insurance. Doctors appointments for the cat.
First world problems, but still things. I’m in a bit of a rough spot and I can’t pin point it. I’m struggling with work, if I want to continue to pursue this as a profession… I feel lost and stuck. But I have some means for coping, and some things that remind me why I am so excited about food. I’ve been knitting a lot, the above mess of yarn finally turned into a scarf (I started it the last time it was cold, pre-spring). I’ve been reading Lucky Peach, a food-related publication (get into it, for reals) and it’s really motivating and inspiring. I’ve been watching The Mind of a Chef Season 1 (it’s on Netflix) and I think David Chang may be kind of a dink, but the show is interesting, and entertaining, regardless.
This funk I’m in has been weighing me down, but I just have to accept that it’s all part of something, and to do the best I can to be the best me, and understand that this too, shall pass.
Did I get too “live-journaly” on you?
Today at work I made this.
It’s fall. Time for apple picking, sweaters and pumpkin things. Fall spices.
The other day I was in the mood for doughnuts. Tyler got me a book for my birthday and I hadn’t really opened it until recently. It’s from Top Pot, a place from the bay area that has hugely expanded to producing doughnuts wholesale, sold at Starbucks. This is the first thing I tried from the book and it wasn’t a huge success. Lindsay (who you will continue to hear more and more about as we share lots of time in the kitchen together) and I whipped together the batter and then decided to make dinner, so we saved the frying for the next morning. It was my first time working with a cake doughnut, which immediately sank to the bottom of the fry oil which was too hot. This lead to burnt on the outside, raw on the inside, doughnuts and doughnut holes. The doughnuts were chai spice based and we made a chai tea glaze loosely following the book. Good taste though. We did get to enjoy a couple once I got ahold on the oil temperature. The book has a lot of neat flavor combinations, and I look forward to playing with more recipes.
I’m a summer baby for sure, someday I will live without snow, but for now, I’m glad it will be more appropriate to heat up the kitchen with the oven. Or because I’m frying doughnuts.
I don’t reblog a lot on this thing, but Joy knows what’s up. This is worth the read. It’s short too, so don’t worry about it.
Last night I was going to practice frosting/decorating techniques but then I decided it was too hot. Joy doesn’t talk about cake decorating, but maybe she will another time. Anyway, it’s still too hot and I’m tired. I’m going to finish my beer and fall asleep while watching the first season of The New Girl. Being an adult is hard.