I’ve spent a lot of time at home over the last four months and had the pleasure of spending extra time with Mon Mari and Le Chien. We are adjusting to our new home in Vermont and working from home in our home office spaces.
Despite the uncertainty and stress of the pandemic, we are trying to stay positive and also trying new things. This post shares some pictures of our baking adventures while in quarantine. Stay tuned for more quarantine scenes: baby bunnies, online yoga, flowers, and outdoor art.
Learning to Bake
“I wish I was full of chocolate cake instead of feelings.” – Jim Bugg
One such new thing: Mon Mari is learning how to bake. (I hesitate to say I am teaching him how to bake, because while I help him decode and implement recipes, he sources the recipes himself and works through them while I hover and boss him around.) Like good Vermonters, we typically work off of recipes from King Arthur Flour’s amazing recipe archive.
I was surprised George did not know how to bake. He grew up in a Greek restaurant family in Chicago, after all; surely one of his yiayias bestowed upon him the recipes for tsoureki, the traditional Easter bread garnishes with sesame seeds and orange, or melomakarona, his favorite spicy, nutty, gooey cookie?
Mais non. So George started with baking koulourakia, a traditional Easter cookie typically enjoyed with coffee by Greek theias the world over.
Koulouria starts with a simple dough flavored with butter, vanilla, and orange. Traditional shapes include twists and rounds (to resemble Jesus’ crown). We ended up working off of two recipes to achieve optimal Greek cookie authenticity and recreate what George remembers eating as a child at home, church, Greek school, Greek picnics, etc.
Continuing the Greek theme, we also baked a five-flavor Bundt cake in honor my favorite scene in My Big Fat Greek Wedding when the Greek parents meet their new xenoi in-laws (Einai keki, mori!“). Alas, the recipe cake betrayed us and the cake did not cook in the middle. So we did what any self-respecting bakers would do: we stuck a flower in the middle (“There’s a hole in this cake”) and ate around the raw parts.
What new activities have you tried during quarantine?
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À votre santé,