A new baby on the way, my wife is 24 weeks along, today, and we have begun the nesting. Yesterday, after deciding paint schemes, we moved E’s future toddler bed into his bedroom. A blue race car, originally purchased by my wife and me for my nephew, now sets in his bedroom opposite a new crib (the old one was a drop-side and not that great). My wife began painting while E and I hung out in the living room, watching High School Musical. I’m not going to list anything about the new room, but I think it will be pretty great when it’s done. E and the new little guy should have fun in it, anyway; E definitely likes the race car bed! We bought the paint from Sherwin Williams (my first time using their paint) but it’s more eco-friendly and the person working their was ten times more friendly than everyone at Wal-Mart, combined. It seems to be taking a while to dry on the walls, but looks like two coats should be enough to cover it (keeping my fingers crossed, since it only comes in one and 5 gallon buckets…no quarts).
So, I began baking bagels, recently, and the quality wasn’t consistent. The shape wouldn’t hold and the taste wasn’t always great. Deciding it was the recipe and not me, I tried a new recipe. The new recipe calls for a much smaller amount of yeast, bread flour, and steam-bakes the bagels at 500 degrees. I gave it a try, only baking six bagels (instead of a full dozen) and they turned out great! The didn’t stick, they didn’t lose their shape when boiled, and the steam baking gave the outside a great crunch. These are much more traditional and similar to the bagels I’m used to buying at bagel shops (as mentioned in a previous post, there are no shops where I currently live). The texture turns out perfectly, but they lack a little bit of flavor. In the future, I plan on topping them with a little kosher salt before baking them; poppy seeds and sesame seeds would work great too. If you want to try it out, here’s the recipe.
Anyone who knows me knows I’m a huge fan of baked goods. I love French bread, Italian bread, focaccia, croissants, challah, muffins, scones, strudel, and, of course, bagels. I loved bagels when I was young and I have many fond memories of riding in the car with my mother to the local bagel shop (before it closed). While living in Arizona, I was introduced to Bruegger’s bagels. I’ve never actually had a bagel from Bruegger’s outside of Tucson, AZ, so I don’t know if it’s the water, but I have never had any baked product taste as good (DisneyWorld has a baguette that comes close). I had arguments with co-workers who were native New Yorkers and actually tried one bagel that was express-shipped from Brooklyn to Tucson to tear down my alliance with Bruegger’s. It didn’t work. Three years ago, I moved back to South Dakota, to a town where there are no bagel shops or grocer’s who even make their own bagels. No offense, David’s Deli, but your bagels are only bagels by definition (round, boiled at some point, have a hole in the center)…I am not a fan. Last night, while conquering a mess hall’s worth of dishes, I decided to make my own for the first time. I’ve done a fair amount of baking in the past (cookies, French bread, challah, pies, etc) so I figured they couldn’t be too bad. At about 10:30pm I found a recipe on FoodNetwork.com, from Emeril Lagasse, and by about 1:00am, I had bagels. The dough hook on my wife’s stand mixer kneaded the dough perfectly and all I really had to adjust was the heat on my oven (it always bakes too high). They weren’t as good as my favorite everything bagels at Bruegger’s, but they were better than anything available in town. A little crisp on the outside, not too doughy on the inside, and perfect for a sandwhich (sorry, I don’t like cream cheese). Next time I’ll have to add a little sea salt or kosher salt on top! If you want the recipe, check it out, here. I cut it in half, as I’d rather bake them more often and always have a fresher bagel.
Today, at lunch, E finished eating the very last bites of the holiday Tofurky. Usually the Tofurky hangs around in the fridge for a full week as I (by myself) finish it off. This year, with a full set of teeth, E tried his first few bites on Saturday and managed to eat more than I did. I saved most of the leftovers and, by 12:30pm today, ate about 1/3 of the total Tofurky. I have another roast to prepare this weekend, so that should last E and me about two or three days. The next step is getting him to eat the veggies I roast with the Tofurky. Here’s to a new year!
Yesterday, we took my son to the doctor’s office after a rough night and a fever of 101 in the morning. He doesn’t have the flu, just a virus, but it’s really been hitting him hard. He hasn’t been eating well, rarely wants to drink, can’t sleep, and isn’t his usual happy self. Last night he slept for a couple hours before waking up around 10:30, thinking it was morning. We played in every room of the house and I was finally able to get him to rest again at 1:45am. He cried a little while resting and was up again at 5:40am. Hopefully the rest of his day goes better.
I added a few new pages with information regarding the Riga Ghetto in Riga, Latvia, as well as a list of the known Metzger family members who did not survive the Shoah. It’s more of a memorial page than anything else, but I have cited some of my information. The family info has been collected from other genealogists and from Yad Vashem’s online database. “We Must Never Forget”
Today is my three year anniversary with the company I work with. To celebrate, my co-workers surprised me with an egg and cheese croissant complete with a birthday candle in the center. I’m very lucky to have found a company, like this, so shortly after I had moved back to South Dakota three years ago.