September 4, 2009
Baking & Pastry Project #21 - Crescia al Formaggio
I never used to mind going to the doctor. Just go when you need to, get a prescription and a couple of weeks later you're well. Then they found breast cancer and everything changed. Overnight I became a pin cushion and every doctor I saw wanted to do some sort of fluid extraction. Most of those requests have come from my internal medicine doctor who just so happens to be a hematologist as well.
A couple of years ago, she gave me a lab sheet that had almost every square checked. The lab visit had me donating 13 vials of blood to the cause. They were milking my veins like they'd hit pay dirt until the vein ran dry 7 vials into it and they switched to the other arm. Fixed up with gauze and band aids, I mumbled less than polite comments under my breath on my way back to the car. At my follow up visit, I told my doctor she had a brilliant future ahead as one of the undead. She laughed and said she knew all the ways to draw blood and every vampire or blood joke out there, so maybe a job as a stand-up comedian might be next.
She knows I like to draw and paint. Up until recently I've been able to hide my addiction to Caran d'Ache watercolor pencils. When she discovered my fine arts hobby, she sent me off to the lab again, this time for an environmental pollutants test. Yeah well, now I get to take more pills because of a few chemicals found in art supplies and solvents flitting around blood supply.
I saw her on Tuesday and we had a great time chatting about the proposed health insurance thingy. While she was filling out my lab sheet, she mentioned that she's concerned about her ability to practice medicine the way she wants to under the changes that are being thrown around. I told her that with her knowledge of alternative health options, how to poke needles into people and a fondness for learning the secrets a person's blood will tell about them, she had a great future in Louisiana. With a keen sense for a joke about to be told, her eyes met mine as she smile and said, "Doin' what?" I smiled back and said, "Voodoo priestess." She laughed and said, "Fancy that...I probably have all the equipment I'd need too!"
That night I fixed a soothe the savage breast type of meal, pasta marinara with a wild green salad and this rich Crescia al Formaggio. It is an Italian Easter cheese bread that can be made in a flower pot or a round shaped loaf with an X cut across the top. For a variation on this recipe, try using a mix of parmesan and pecorino cheeses.
Yield: 1 - 12.5 oz/360 g loaf
Original Version: 18.33 g
GF Version: 18.34 g
15 g brown rice flour (1.35 g)
15 g sweet rice flour (.9 g)
20 g arrowroot starch (.06 g)
20 g pine nut meal (2.8 g)
20 g millet (2.3 g)
45 g white bean flour (9.67 g)
6 g chia seed meal (1.26 g)
2 g agar agar powder
25 g instant dry yeast
75 g grated parmesan
3 g sugar
3 g sea salt
27 ml water
52 g eggs (approx. 1 egg)
39 g butter, softened
20 g egg yolks (approx. 1 yolk)
20 ml agave syrup
1. In a large bowl, combine all the dry ingredients including the parmesan and stir together. In another bowl or batter bowl, mix together the water, eggs, butter and egg yolks. Then add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir together.
2. Line a small washed flower pot with parchment paper and place the dough into the pot. Score the top of the bread with an X and then set it in a warm location for 1 to 1 1/2 hours to rise.
3. Place a heat proof bowl filled with water into the oven. Then preheat the oven to 385 degrees F/196 degrees C. Bake for 15 minutes and then prop the oven door open with a wooden spoon and then cook for another 10 minutes. Cool completely before serving.