August 25, 2012

Sally Lunn Bread and our new view

This is the view from our kitchen window.  Bleak, perhaps, but not nearly as bleak as you might think.  There is beauty for me in this view, in a kind of serene way, like looking into the face of a very, very old woman.
We have been up to our ears in boxes and box-cutters over here.  I have been putting things away for so long I can hardly remember doing anything else.  Last night Daniel stayed up (consequently so did I) until well past midnight assembling our new shoe guizi (thing by the front door to hold all of our shoes after they've been habitually kicked off ).  The movie "Tombstone" was on-and-off on our TV, and I was munching on popcorn, of course, and under the neon overhead lights of our concrete room it felt like setting up my first dorm room 14 years ago, like waging war against the space limitations and winning!

To celebrate the winding-down of our moving-in process, I baked a recipe I'd been wanting to try for Sally Lunn Bread out of the January 2003 Southern Living magazine.  Part bread, part cake, but mostly bread, it is a delightful thing to slice thick and eat warm out of the bundt pan.
1 (1/4 oz) envelopes yeast
1/2 cup warm water
1 1/2 cups milk
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cut butter
1 tsp. salt
2 large eggs
5 cups flour

Combine yeast and 1/2 cup warm water in a 1-cup measuring cup; let stand 5 minutes.  Heat milk and next 3 ingredients over medium heat, stirring until butter melts.  Let cool to 110 degrees.  Beat yeast mixture, milk mixture, and eggs at medium speed with an electric mixer until blended.  Gradually add flour, beating at lowest speed until blended.  Cover and let rise in a warm place free from drafts one hour.  Stir down, cover and let rise 30 minutes more.  Stir down and spoon into a greased bundt pan.  Cover and let rise 30 minutes more.  Bake at 350 for 35 to 40 minutes or until inserted knife comes out clean.  Remove from pan immediately.

We topped our Sally Lunn Bread with imported Swiss blueberry preserves, a 29-kuai splurge for the occasion.
The way I see it, when you've busted out your bundt pan, you're home.