It was another dull, dreary January day, not suitable for doing anything outside. In that case, let’s stay in the kitchen and do something useful – like making more jam. Last year I made some jars of spiced blackberry and apple jam and it was so popular that it went so fast I couldn’t believe it.
I was sorting out the frozen fruit in one of my small freezers and found a bag of blackberries. It was obvious what to do – make more of than yummy jam.
That worked very well, so next on the list was some baking. I always make the sourdough loaf and that has to be started the night before. It is such a tasty loaf that the extra effort is well worth it. While that was going on I started the dough for my brioche.
Well, I call it brioche but in fact it is a traditional challah recipe (second one in this article). The overall result of my activities is very good. I don’t braid the dough but make two round loaves – just as good and easier to keep in the bread bin. Happiness is ……
and all this is done.
Of course, I had to pick the fruit first. Thanks to my fruit cage the birds don’t get a chance to steal my currants or gooseberries. The redcurrants are really plentiful this year – it must be something to do with all the horse manure that I put round them last autumn.
The raspberries are not covered but somehow the birds leave them alone – perhaps they don’t see the fruit so well, as it is hidden amongst the leaves.
Anyway, I had enough of the redcurrants to make some jam, did that the other day, but the highlight of today was making jelly. I boiled the fruit, stalks and all, last night, let it drip overnight and just measured it and added the suger today and finished it. When I was boiling the fruit I added a bunch of mint to it as the jelly is meant to be served with cheese or cold meat.
While all this was going on I had one bowl with my sourdough bread rising – having started last night; I’ve got to plan making my bread as it takes some time but it is worth it!
The other bowl had the dough for a brioche (challah) – that is much quicker so in the end I had one loaf and two round loaves of brioche in the kitchen, right next to the jam and jelly.
A perfect partnership!
I like the Guardian on Saturday – it’s the only day we actually buy the paper and that usually keeps me going for a number of days. The magazine is very often a source of new recipes and it was just like that this weekend. I must admit that when I look at the recipes in the magazine I first look at the list of ingredients because at times they’re so exotic that I just can’t be bothered. This time I was completely won over and had to try it. It shows how ‘normal’ it was – I had everything to hand so no sooner said than done…
Yotam Ottolengi is one of my favourites as his recipes are the ones I like best and they seem to be manageable by ordinary cooks.
This is the second batch – the first one I made yesterday and we managed to eat it – first part last night with a few glasses of wine and today for breakfast with coffee. Very continental, it also reminds me of my home where my Grandma was used to bake something very similar – vánočka.