Company is coming for supper tonight.
When Mr. Century Farmhouse was teaching at a small village school quite a few years ago, he and two other teachers began meeting for breakfasts every three months or so. They gathered at each other's homes or occasionally treated themselves to breakfast out on the town. Those little gatherings evolved into inclusion of spouses and families and now are not just for breakfast anymore. It is our turn, and I am cooking dinner tonight. The menu:
We'll start with Apple Slices dipped into homemade caramel sauce a lá Pioneer Woman
and goat cheese with homemade Rosemary & Garlic Breadsticks. I was bored last night, so I made some before I went to bed. Ha. The Main menu:
Pork Roast cooked slowly with apples, onions, garlic, homemade sauerkraut, and garden thyme.
Baked Potatoes with sour cream & garden chives
Roasted Applesauce with Raisins and Ginger
Chunky Roasted Butternut Squash with our own maple syrup & garden sage
cherry tomatoes, pepperoncini, etc...... The Dessert:
Roasted (I love to roast, don't you?) Peaches with Whiskey Vanilla and whipped cream
Sugar Cookies edged with cinnamon-sugar
With all this yumminess we'll have local Wisconsin wines
It is going to feel like Thanksgiving and Christmas wrapped into one fabulous meal shared with fabulous friends.
Why don't I share that Breadstick recipe with you? Who knows? You might decide to make some too! Rosemary & Garlic Breadsticks with Sea Salt
I have had this recipe for years and have used it to make a crispy pizza crust once in a while too. Ingredients:
1 pkg dry yeast (or 2 1/2 tsp. yeast)
2 T. butter or oil of your choice - Olive oil is a good substitute
1 1/4 c. water
3-3 1/2 c. bread flour
1 1/2 t. salt
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 t. fresh rosemary, chopped finely - or 1/2 t. dried rosemary Egg wash:
1 egg white
1 T cold water Topping about 1T. total:
Sea Salt, crumbled fine-medium texture
Fresh Rosemary, chopped (dried rosemary is fine here, too).
Heat the water and butter until the butter is melted. Allow to cool enough that you don't burn your finger testing the temperature, but it is still pretty warm.
In a large bowl, combine 2c. of the bread flour, salt, yeast, garlic, rosemary bits and the warm water. Mix thoroughly. I use a heavy wire whisk to do this and I mix for about 2 minutes, stopping to rest and to watch the suspenseful parts of Antiques Roadshow
on PBS. You can use a dough hook on your mixer if you'd like. The dough should look like wrinkly skin or orange peels at this point. Sprinkle it with a little flour, cover the bowl with a towel and watch the rest of Antiques Roadshow
for 1/2 hour or so.
Knead in the flour sprinkles and add more flour, kneading it in to create a dough that is elastic and smooth, but not stiff. Place in a greased bowl, cover it, and allow it to rise to double in size - about an hour. Perhaps an episode or two of This Old House
or Inspector Lynley
will get you through this time.
Now comes the fun part! Preheat your oven to 450 degrees F (very hot!). Grease a large cookie sheet or two or cover with parchment. Punch down the dough and divide it into 4ths, and form a roll, cutting that into equal pieces about 1/2- 1 inch wide. With floured hands, roll each piece into a long breadstick that is no wider than 1/2 in diameter. Place them on the cookie sheet.
Mix the egg wash in a small bowl and the rosemary & sea salt in another small bowl. Use more rosemary than salt if salt is an issue and you love rosemary. If you are not a big rosemary fan, use a little more salt. Whatever, the breadsticks will be yummy!
Using a pastry brush, brush the egg wash on each breadstick and sprinkle on the sea salt and rosemary mixture. Pat it gently into the breadstick. Bake for 15 - 22 minutes until the breadsticks are golden brown and a little dry. Cool on a rack and store in an airtight container or freeze. Before serving, pop them back into a hot oven for a few minutes to crisp up.