2009-04-03sliced

A couple of weeks ago I made a bread for our Friday-Night-Soup-and-Bread Tradition (cold months only) called “Onion Lover’s Twist.”

Since mid-March our church has been having a Revelation Seminar which meets on Friday nights (among other times). Since we always have extra bread, we have been taking the extra loaf or extra whatever to church and giving it away. That week we gave half of the giant loaf (as big as a regular loaf) to the organist and music director (who are married).

They were elated.  My cooking is somewhat famous in circles I frequent, so they could not have been happier; what had made them worthy of such a blessing? (This is honestly how people treat me about my food.)

The next morning they both sought out me as well as Prince  Charming and anyone else they could find to tell their story…

They were driving home, and the smell of the bread was making them hungry. They got home and heated up a couple of slices (the slices are huge), and ate. They were in heaven it was so good. (I am learning that a lot of the population does not have homemade bread often… more than I realized.) Now let it be understood that I am not saying I did anything to make this bread so wonderful. I followed a recipe.  When people compliment my cooking, I always tell them my talent is to pick good recipes and follow them well. I am a cook, not a chef. (More on that in some other post.)

Anyway, they went to bed soon after that, and apparently all. night. long. they woke up time after time after having “the strangest dreams.” They could not emphasize enough how “strange” these dreams were. They did not seem to be nightmares, but dreams. I have no idea the content. Maybe they did not share because dreams always seem strange and unimportant when we wake up and think about them, or maybe they were just too exciting to repeat to others. I do not know, but it made me smile.

This bread has never given me extra dreams, strange or otherwise. It was more likely that they are in their 60’s and are not used to eating so late.  But whether or not it affects you with the dreams, it is great bread. Here is the recipe which I got from a cookbook called Colorado Cache. It was put together by the Junior League of Denver in 1978. We got our copy as a wedding gift 20 years later, so it must have been updated/reprinted. It is an excellent cookbook.  I think it must be a trend for this type of cookbook because the one from my hometown is  also excellent. So without further ado, here is the recipe and maybe a comment or two (or too many) of my own.

Onion Lover’s Twist

1 pkg dry yeast

1/4 c warm water (I always use 115 degrees F because it works better at my altitude which is 5000 feet AND my cold house.)

4 c  flour

1/4 c sugar

1-1/2 tsp salt

1/2 c hot water (120-130 degrees F)

1/2 c milk

1/4 c softened butter

1 egg

Filling:

1/4 c butter

1 c finely chopped onion

1 T grated Parmesan cheese (I always use fresh)

1 T sesame or poppy seeds (I use sesame seeds. I can only imagine what their dreams might have been had I used poppy!)

1/4 tsp garlic powder

3/4 tsp salt

1 tsp paprika

Grease cookie sheet (I always use a baking stone that is well seasoned and does not need to be greased). In a large bowl dissolve yeast in water. Add 2 c. flour, sugar, salt, hot water, milk, butter and egg. With electric mixer, blend at low speed until moistened. (If using a heavy duty mixer, do whatever you usually do for bread. I would not even bother with bread if I did not have a heavy duty mixer.) Beat 2 minutes at medium speed. By hand, stir in remaining flour to form a soft dough. (Again, I leave it in the mixer and let it do the work.) Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size–45-60 minutes.

2009-04-03fillingonstripsTo prepare filling, melt butter in saucepan and add remaining ingredients. (I think this is important to do right away so the ingredients can have a little time to saute, and then it can cool and solidify a little. If you do this at the last minute and the butter is liquid, it is much harder to fill the bread.)

2009-04-03rollingstrips

When dough has doubled in size, punch down and place on floured surface. Knead until no longer sticky. Roll into and 18″ x 12″ rectangle. Cut three strips lengthwise (18″ x 4″ –I sometimes forget and do it the wrong way–like this time–and it turns out fine.) Place 1/3 of the filling in the middle of each strip. Roll up each strip and seal the edges and ends. On the prepared cookie sheet (or stone which is always so much better in my opinion), braid the three rolls together. Cover and allow to rise until doubled–45-60 minutes. Bake at 350 degrees F for 30-35 minutes, or until golden brown. Serve warm (best) or cool.

2009-04-03sealedrolls

If you would prefer two smaller loafs, just cut the filled rolls in half and braid separately. (I personally find it easier just to make one big one and give half of the loaf away.

2009-04-03braided

This bread is great for a couple of days when heated in the microwave.

Enjoy, and let me know if it gives you interesting dreams!

2009-04-03baked

2009-03-10breadsticksAt this very moment I am making breadsticks. I am working on the 9th batch this week. Counting this batch, I have three more to go. I must hurry because I only have a couple of hours to do a lot of things.

I am making breadsticks for the wedding in which I wear the wonderful dress. I had to get the dress altered. It would never zip up, and my winter of being sick three times (third time currently) has not allowed for lots of any exercise. The person who altered it (for an unbelievably good price) made loops and lacing in the back. It is actually very pretty. But although I love the color of the dress (which is not truly represented in this picture), as predicted my March skin does not look too terrific in it. I should have gone to get a spray tan, but no time or energy. There are chocolate shawls (which I have yet to model), so I am hoping that will be advantageous.

2009-03-12dresslacingHere is the funny part about the dress. The person who picked out the dresses and purchased them (in another state–not the bride) is a size “0.” Yes, it’s true. I will admit, here online (I cannot believe I am doing this) to being a size 10. (I have no idea what this corresponds to in non-American sizes.)  The dresses were small for everyone. The size 0 purchaser got herself a size 6 because that is what fit her. She got everyone else a dress at least two sizes bigger than their actual size. Everyone but me, that is. Mine was a size 12. It should have been at least a 14, or according to her own purchase, a 16. But mine was a 12 and did not fit. Thus the alterations.

But as I was earlier this week  picking up MY perfect dress, I learned from the Bride (who always went with me to the fittings because the seamstress was a lady who does not speak English, and I do not speak Spanish) that Size 0’s dress does not fit anymore. She gained weight, and it does not fit.  At this point, no one is sure what she is going to do about it. Me? Forgive my snicker!

For those of you that were concerned about my parenting skills a couple of posts ago, let me say this:  My children are well-behaved and happy. I recently went to a birthday party in which there were 7 children all between the ages of my 2 daughters. (Nearly 5 and 7.)  There were three well-behaved children of the seven. Mine were two of them. There were three happy children of the seven. Mine were two of them. (The other well-behaved and other happy child were not the same child.) This is not an isolated incident. I do not want to get into giant discussions about parenting. That post was written for humor. And there is a lot more I could say on this topic, the birthday party, and parenting in general, but I am not the type to judge other people’s styles of parenting. (And I am not saying my children and well-behaved and happy every single minute of every single day. They are not. But the general trend is happy and well-behaved.)

2009-03-08bubbleplayToday’s post is not a SkyWatch post because I will not be able to do my regular SkyWatch visiting. I am having a medical procedure this afternoon relating to this problem. It involves sedation which is known to make me feel rotten for a good week.  (And of course I would rather feel rotten for a week than feel REALLY rotten for an hour!) Our wireless network does not work with my computer. (Prince Charming needs to get on that.) I am assuming I will be in bed this afternoon and evening, so I will not be visiting you, either.  The wedding is this Sunday, and festivities for us begin tomorrow evening when the groom arrives as our guest. I am hoping the doctor will give me something to take if I feel really horrible.  Sunday not only am I in the wedding, but I am one of the photographers. I will not be taking pictures at the church, but a few hours before the wedding at a park. I really, really, REALLY hope I feel good!  But thank goodness once the breadsticks are in the freezer, I am off of food duty!

Not for SkyWatch, but I couldn't help myself.

Not for SkyWatch, but I couldn't help myself.

So that is my current life in a nutshell. Exciting, I know. But I hope to be around a bit more next week. Although I will be babysitting my niece and nephew (ages 7 and 12) while the bride and groom are on their honeymoon. Maybe I will just stay in bed next week, too!