I'll Just Do It Myself

I'll Just Do It Myself

div style="border-bottom: medium none; border-left: medium none; border-right: medium none; border-top: medium none;"How many times have you caught yourself saying those words? I know that me, being the Type A (read: somewhat strongA/strongnal) perfectionist that I am, it's usually one of the first things out of my mouth when I'm faced with a group or team project. Unfortunately, at least to me, it seems that it really emis /embest if I did the assignments myself - even working with close friends of mine I find more things to nit-pick on than praise. It's not a conscious thing I do, and I hate doing it really - it makes me feel like such a meanie! - but by letting things slide that I know could be emjust that much better/em it betrays my whole quest for that Holy Grail of the A grade. And then I wonder why I'm so stressed out! Ah well, I guess admitting the problem is the first step to overcoming it, right?br //divdiv style="border-bottom: medium none; border-left: medium none; border-right: medium none; border-top: medium none;"a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/75kUyaZrrYw/S2EMtUfhmoI/AAAAAAAAD7M/uuZmRliGL8c/s1600-h/030.JPG" style="clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;"img border="0" height="150" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/75kUyaZrrYw/S2EMtUfhmoI/AAAAAAAAD7M/uuZmRliGL8c/s200/030.JPG" width="200" //abr //divThe one thing that I can always remain confident that I do better than "the standard" is baking. I'm sure that everyone who's ever made their own bread - or at least eaten a slice of a rustic loaf made from scratch (that never spent a second on a grocery store shelf!) can attest to the fact that the lack of mass production, bleaches, softeners and preservatives really emdoes/em make bread better! br /br /It's not new, earth-shattering science, to be sure. But it's still a dying art - depressing, since a simple loaf of good bread right from your oven can be done start to finish in two hours tops with rapid-rise yeast. If you have a Sunday afternoon you can even use the regular old dry active kind and throw in extra things to jazz up your week. For me, a batch of something yeasted every week is my little sanity window. Though I use a machine to do the bulk of the kneading work em(let's face it... my stringy arms + stiff dough for 20 minutes or so would just not work!)/em I always make a point to finish the work off by hand. You can't emfeel/em if a dough is silky smooth and supple with a mixer, nor can you really lay claim to "making" your bread if all you did was hit "start" on a machine. With bagels in particular, you can always tell the work from the heart that goes into them - the little extra work they take always shines through!br /br /For the latest round of chewy, sweet bagels I made my mom for her work lunches, I not only used up not only the last of my a href="http://yummysmells.blogspot.com/2009/12/from-pallid-gold-to-russet-royalty.html"homemade apple butter/a but I added an extra (and may I say unique) layer of apple-cinnamon flavour with some of my a href="http://www.celestialseasonings.com/products/detail.html/herbal-teas/cinnamon-apple-spice"favourite apple tea/a in the dough. Then, when I was bringing the boiling liquid up to temperature, I was hit with a flash of ingenuity... why not add a teabag to the pot too? So I did. Did it make a difference? I don't know for sure, but it didn't hurt!br /br /These bagels are my contribution to a href="http://www.wildyeastblog.com/category/yeastspotting/"YeastSpotting/a at a href="http://www.wildyeastblog.com/"Wild Yeast/a. Thanks Susan!br /br /stronguApple-Cinnamon Tea Bagels/u/strongbr /emMakes 8/embr /3 cups whole wheat flourbr /4 tsp vital wheat glutenbr /1 tbsp cinnamonbr /div style="border-bottom: medium none; border-left: medium none; border-right: medium none; border-top: medium none;"a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/75kUyaZrrYw/S2EMopP-BbI/AAAAAAAAD7E/xaDjlL4pbVw/s1600-h/032.JPG" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"img border="0" height="150" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/75kUyaZrrYw/S2EMopP-BbI/AAAAAAAAD7E/xaDjlL4pbVw/s200/032.JPG" width="200" //a½ tsp saltbr //divdiv style="border-bottom: medium none; border-left: medium none; border-right: medium none; border-top: medium none;"1 pkg instant yeastbr //divdiv style="border-bottom: medium none; border-left: medium none; border-right: medium none; border-top: medium none;"2/3 cups warm, strong-brewed apple cinnamon herbal teabr //divdiv style="border-bottom: medium none; border-left: medium none; border-right: medium none; border-top: medium none;"1/4 cup brown sugarbr //divdiv style="border-bottom: medium none; border-left: medium none; border-right: medium none; border-top: medium none;"¾ cup apple butterbr //divdiv style="border-bottom: medium none; border-left: medium none; border-right: medium none; border-top: medium none;"1 apple-cinnamon herbal tea bagbr //divdiv style="border-bottom: medium none; border-left: medium none; border-right: medium none; border-top: medium none;"2 tbsp honeybr //divolliIn the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together the flour, gluten, cinnamon, salt and yeast./liliIn another bowl, stir together the tea, brown sugar and apple butter./liliAdd the tea mixture to the dry ingredients, mix with the dough hook for 12 minutes, until very elastic (it is a fairly stiff dough, though)./liliCover and let rest for 40 minutes./liliCut the dough into eight 4-oz portions, shape each into a ring and place on a lined baking sheet./liliCover and let rest 1 1/2 hours./liliPreheat oven to 400F and bring a large pot of water to a boil, adding the tea bag and honey./liliBoil bagels two at a time for two minutes per side. Drain well and place on a lined cookie sheet./liliWhen all the bagels have been boiled, place into the oven and bake 20 minutes./liliCool on wire racks and enjoy!/li/olstronguAmount Per Serving /u/strongbr /Calories: 233.4 br /Total Fat: 0.9 g br /Cholesterol: 0.0 mg br /Sodium: 9.6 mg br /Total Carbs: 51.0 g br /Dietary Fiber: 5.9 g br /Protein: 8.1 gdiv class="blogger-post-footer"Find all the goodies on the full site: yummysmells.blogspot.com/div

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