I am soooooo bummed!

Today was a great Sunday – totally relaxing. I got up early, did a bit of grocery shopping, and then came home to play a bit in the kitchen. I had two things I wanted to do, today – bake some dinner rolls and come up with a recipe using farro for work.

I kinda knew what I wanted to do with both ideas, but, especially with the farro, I also wanted to chronicle it so I could actually replicate it.

Enter the camera.

I snapped pictures of the dough-making process for the rolls. I took pictures of the dough proofing, resting, rolling into little balls and placing them in the muffin tins. I took pictures of them all proofed and ready to go into the oven. I took pictures when they came out, on the cooking rack, and, finally, in a basket on the table, butter at the ready.

I did the same for the farro. Sauteing the onion and pancetta, adding the broth and pumpkin, how it looked coming out of the oven right before topping it with the cheese. The final product in the pan and then on the plate.

Everything looked great.

After an early Sunday dinner, I headed into the office, put the chip into the card reader, and… nothing. No pictures. No step-by-step recreations of all the things I did today. A little message stating the memory card contained no images. Did I mention I was bummed? Hell. I was pissed.

Who knew memory cards would lose their ability to memorize? Certainly not I. But, it appears, this one did. I tried another card – the one that came with the camera – and it worked. Alas, my computer wouldn’t read it. Victor said he had an extra card and went to get it. You know how someone is being helpful and you’re not being reciprocally nice? Yeah, I had my cranky pants on. While I was grumbling, he just ordered two more cards so we would both have a backup.

So… I ended up being able to take one picture of the finished rolls – only because we didn’t eat all 12 of them.

Back when we lived in San Francisco one of the PBS cooking shows we’d watch was the Bread Monk. I’ve baked more than a few loaves of bread in my day, but I liked his basic style – and he generally had a good tip or two about things. I remembered a recipe for a corn roll and set out to see about replicating them…

Honey Corn Rolls

adapted from The Bread Monk

  • 1 cup lukewarm milk
  • 1 package active dry yeast
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • ¼ cup honey
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup yellow cornmeal
  • 2 ½ cups unbleached bread flour (I used Italian “00”)
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil (I used olive oil)

In a medium size bowl, dissolve yeast in milk and allow to proof for about 5 minutes.

Stir in egg, honey, salt, and cornmeal and mis well. Add the flour and mix until smooth.

Add the oil and beat until it is fully incorporated. Continue kneading with the mixer for about 6 to 8 minutes, or as needed to make a smooth and elastic dough that is only slightly sticky.

Sightly oil the surface of the dough and place in a clean, dry bowl. Cover with a dry cloth and let rise about an hour or until doubled. Punch the dough down and briefly knead.

Divide the dough into 12 equal pieces and shape into balls. Place balls into the cups of a lightly greased muffin tin.

Cover and let rise for about an hour until nearly doubled.

Bake in a preheated 350 oven for 15-16 minutes or until browned.

Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly before serving warm.

What’s nice about these rolls is they’re light and flavorful, but they also have a nice little crunch because of the cornmeal. It’s a bit of the unexpected. I really do like them – and they’re really simple to make.

The farro? It was really good and will make a great demo at work.  It’s based on an idea from Ina Garten. Too bad I don’t have a picture…

 Farro with Pumpkin and Pancetta

  • 1 4oz carton Pancetta
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 2 tsp chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 pkg farro
  • 1 qt chicken broth
  • 1 bag diced pumpkin
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese

Preheat the oven to 375°.

In an oven-roof pan, heat the olive oil and butter over medium heat. Add the onion and pancetta and cook until onion is translucent and pancetta begins to brown.

Add the farro, thyme, and chicken stock and bring to a simmer. Stir in the cubed pumpkin, cover, and bake for about 20 minutes, until the squash and farro are tender.

Sprinkle the parmesan on top and bake uncovered for about 10 minutes – until the pumpkin is tender, and the cheese has melted.

I used a Le Creuset pan and it worked – and looked – great.