Tuesday, September 1, 2009

thumbs down to the garlic

Well I got here this morning and they were here, pumpkin donuts. I thought we would wait until next Tuesday, the day after Labor day, but Arturo said "It's September 1st". There will be celebrating in the streets, at the corner of Davis and Maple. So I went ahead and made a batch of florentines.

Florentines are legendary here in Evanston. Tag's bakery, here in town, up on Central street, makes 'em by the ton. Especially at Christmas, although last Christmas season, he was down big time from previous years. Used to be, we made florentines just for the customers that were in the wrong bakery. Folks from out of town would come to our bakery looking for florentines, thinking we had to be the florentine bakery. Not the case anymore. I gotta say, the florentines at Tag's are beautiful, just beautiful. Ours were never that nice. I mentioned before that I spoke with a few sugar guys I know and they fixed our problem. Now, ours are very nice. I'm looking forward to a busy winter season with them. We are working on some form of packaging, to create an upscale gift package.

We've already started on another sheet of plum kuchen slices. A number of people asked about them yesterday. We were busy yesterday, lots of traffic in the store. I guess we could really live on the edge and put together some pumpkin slices. Better yet, we make pumpkin cheese slices. We use a prebaked short dough bottom, we spread on a quarter inch of cheese filling, and then pour on pumpkin pie mix. They bake forever, but I'm tellin' you. Delicious, flat out delicious. We used to have a young man working in the store named John Willis. He went off to college. Every Thanksgiving he calls, from the airport looking for pumpkin cheese slices. Comes right here from the airport. We also make a pumpkin cheese gallete, same format only we use pie dough for that.

Tomorrow, for the Aville market we are making T.A.R.R.P. bread. We use sun dried tomatoes, asiago cheese, fresh rosemary, roasted garlic and shredded Parmesan. Hence the name. We use a little Whole wheat flour in the dough, we shape this afternoon, retard overnite and bake tomorrow. We use old baguette dough as the preferment. we don't add any yeast to the dough. There is enough residual yeast in the old dough. Really has outstanding flavour. I'm not a big fan of garlic, so I've only eaten very small pieces of this bread, but the aroma is incredible. It's one of those things that will call people in off the sidewalk. I know it's kinda weird not to eat garlic, my mother never cooked with it. Besides, if it isn't in a White Castle kitchen, why would anyone need it in theirs? I try to leave early the day they roast the garlic here. Marc roasts twenty pounds at at time. We buy whole peeled garlic, dump it into a deep roasting pan, add butter and olive oil, and roast it very slow.I explained before, you can't add raw garlic to a bread dough. The enzymes in it are to strong. Roasting it, denatures the enzymes. I saw a baking and pastry instructor add raw garlic to a dough. In thirty minutes it turned to soup, pancake batter. He blamed it on some other thing. After class, he asked me what happened.

Hey gotta run, lots goin' on here. Planning on huge markets tomorrow, weather will be perfect.


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