This Week’s Bakery Bulletin

Friday, October 30, 2009

Issue #28

Hello!!

Welcome to our bakery website! If you’ve ordered before, just log in (see the sidebar at the left) and then click on “order bread” or “bread menu” and select the breads you’d like.

If you’ve never ordered bread through the website, you’ll click on the “register now” link, pick a username and password, and enter your information (name, email, and phone numbers). Then you can place your order!

If you’d like a weekly email reminder to order bread, and to know about the bread flavors we’ll be baking, sign up for my weekly bakery bulletin (see the sidebar on the left). Below, you’ll find a list of breads available for order this week, for pickup next Wednesday.

You’ll also find a recipe at the end of the newsletter—for a fantastic Thanksgiving dish that’s good any time of the winter!

In case you can’t make the website work, you can always email me at: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), or call me at 677-3712.

the bread ordering deadline

You’ll need to order your bread by MIDNIGHT on Sunday, so we have time to plan our bake, feed our sourdough, and pre-ferment the dough!  When you order the bread, you can choose to “pay when you pick up your bread,” or you can pay via PayPal. By all means, use PayPal if you prefer—but I’m even happier to get your checks or cash when you come pick up your bread.

bread pickup locations
Pick-up locations for Wednesday, November 11th:
1.  Side Street Espresso, 412 G Street, downtown: 8-10am
2. Over the Rainbow Toys, 12201 Industry Way, D5, next to the Huffman Post Office: 4-6pm

Please note: Pickup times have changed a little bit from last year, so please note that you now have a two-hour window at each location. 

If you need to call me during a pick-up time, you can reach me on my cell phone at 748.3712. At other times,  please call me at home/the bakery: 677-3712.

Would you like to see a video of us baking your bread? Our bakery is a small commercial kitchen attached to our house on the lower Anchorage Hillside.

Alison’s blog
If you’d like more savory and healthful recipes, you can find lots more of them on my blog about cooking and eating local food: Alison’s Lunch. You can even sign up for my blog posts (about local food, cooking, and recipes) to be delivered to your email! .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) if you have trouble signing up, and I can help you.

GLACIER VALLEY FARM COMMUNITY SUPPORTED AGRICULTURE (CSA)
It’s the only year-round program featuring local Alaskan produce! Would you like to pick up a box of beautiful and economical local vegetables when you need produce? Subscribers to our CSA program aren’t limited to our short farmers’ market season to get Alaskan produce; we’re loading boxes year-round! During the winter, local produce includes cabbages, carrots, potatoes, onions, beets, and turnips. To add variety to these nourishing and savory staples, we add all sorts of vegetables and fruits from certified organic farms Outside. Each box also contains a newsletter loaded with my delicious, healthy recipes tailored to the week’s vegetables. [$35/box]

You can sign up for a box once a week, twice a month, or more sporadically—you choose the dates! You pre-pay for your box, then pick it up at one of several locations in Anchorage, Eagle River, or the Valley. Please visit our website for more information!

featured bread this week

recipe of the week

image

Whole Pumpkin Baked with Savory Apricot & Prune Stuffing

Are you looking for a Thanksgiving recipe that will knock people’s socks off? This is a great alternative to a stuffed turkey, if you’re not doing the conventional meal, but this recipe also makes a fantastic dish alongside a roasted (unstuffed) turkey. Or just serve it with a lovely big pile of braised collard greens.

But the beauty of this recipe (OK, there are several beauties to it), is that you can make this recipe all winter long—it doesn’t have to be for Thanksgiving! Another beauty: you can use stale bread. When I have crusts of bread hanging around that are getting a little old, I just pop them (in slices) in a plastic bag in the freezer (I don’t dry them out first), and after a while I have a bag full of frozen bread slices. When I want to make a recipe like this, I just thaw the bread out on the counter and proceed. The bread isn’t rock-hard when I thaw it—moist enough to easily chop into cubes. Third beauty of this recipe: you can prepare the stuffing the day before you bake it and refrigerate it overnight. And last beauty: it’s VERY yummy! This recipe is based on one in Crescent Dragonwagon’s Passionate Vegetarian.

the stuffing

1 cup dried apricots
1 cup dried pitted prunes
1 cup apple juice
1 loaf (or the equivalent in stale slices) whole wheat bread (I generally use our 100% whole wheat sourdough, but you could use whatever savory flavor you like best—any of the nut or seed breads, rosemary, etc. would be delicious.)
1 large onion, diced
3 stalks celery, diced (including leaves)
2-3 teaspoons dried leaf sage
pinches of dried oregano and dried basil (optional)
¼ cup butter, melted, or olive oil
vegetable stock as needed
soy sauce to taste
sea salt or kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

1. Put the dried fruit in a heatproof bowl. Bring the apple juice to a boil and pour over the dried fruit. Let the fruit stand for 2 hours or overnight, whichever is more convenient. Drain the fruit, reserving the liquid, and chop the fruit coarsely.
2. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees, then turn it down to 200 degrees. Cut the bread into ½” cubes. Put the bread on baking sheets and toast the bread until dry and crunchy. This might take 45 to 60 minutes. Check every 20 minutes or so. Remove from the oven and let cool.
3. Put the bread into a large bowl, and add the onion and celery. Add the sage, rubbing it in your palms to release the oils. Pour the melted butter or oil over the mixture and toss well to combine. Add the soaked dried fruit and toss again. Begin adding the liquid—the apple juice and the vegetable stock—until the dressing is quite damp but not soggy. Add soy sauce, starting with about 1 tablespoon. Taste for salt and add it and plenty of pepper to taste. Maybe more sage? Add dried oregano and dried basil here, if you like. You can prepare the dressing to this stage and refrigerate it, covered, overnight. Warm it up in the microwave, or let it come to room temperature before stuffing it into the pumpkin.
4. When you’re ready to stuff the pumpkin (or bake the dressing on its own), preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Steam the pumpkin (as directed below) fairly soon before stuffing it to keep it warm and lessen the baking time. Oil a baking pan large enough to hold the pumpkin, or the dressing on its own.
5. Stuff the dressing into the pumpkin, topping with the cap (or, if you’re not using a pumpkin, just put it in the pan and cover the pan with foil). Place the pumpkin in the baking dish, put it in the oven and bake until the pumpkin is slightly brown and looks a bit collapsed in on itself, about 40 minutes (it may take longer). Serve whole, at the table, scooping out pumpkin to eat with the stuffing.

the pumpkin

1 medium-large pumpkin prepared for stuffing as follows. (The cream-colored pumpkins are very tasty; try and find one of them. Don’t use the big orange ones that are grown for Jack-o-lanterns—they are stringy and flavorless. If you can’t find a cream-colored one, get sweet pie pumpkins.)

1. Cut off and reserve a lid, like for a Jack-o-lantern. Scoop out all the seeds and fibers.
2. Put one or two inches of water in a large pot. Place the pumpkin, cut side down, in the water, cap wedged near it. Bring to a boil over high heat. Cover tightly and steam in simmering water for 10-15 minutes to precook slightly. Remove the pot from the heat and let pumpkin cool slightly.
3. When the pumpkin is cool enough to handle, season the inside with salt, pepper, a little soy sauce and brown sugar, rubbing it in.

 

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