Monday, July 29, 2013

Pretzel Dogs

OK, sorry but no photos.  Honestly, my kitchen is too messy for it, not to mention I have 5 "helpers", along with an equal number of cats, to be able to do photos.

This is the recipe that I used Pretzel Dog 

I love that this recipe is set up to use the stand mixer to begin with.  It makes mixing any kind of dough so much easier.  It also is not nearly as time consuming, which is another good thing considering the afore mentioned "helpers" and the destruction they tend to pull down upon my house (why my kitchen is a mess after all).

2 things that I modified for this recipe.  I used bread flour instead of all purpose.  I use bread flour whenever I'm baking any kind of dough, it gets fluffier and bigger and is so much more rewarding in appearance and flavor, at least I think so.  I also only use unbleached flour.  I don't understand the reason for doing a chemical process on my flour, so I don't want it.  The 2nd thing I changed is that I used regular old Oscar Mayer hot dogs.  If I were to make this recipe for a friend of mine, I'd use all beef dogs (he has a severe pork allergy), but for my family, Oscar Mayer is just fine.  Not to mention it's what I had in the house.

Once I let the dough rise, while I was doing the rolls, it made a LOT more than just 16.  I did 24 hot dogs (12 hot dogs cut in 1/2).  The dogs were very well covered.  If I had used the hole hot dog, it still would have covered 16 hot dogs.  That's a LOT of dough!  I still had enough dough left over to make 4 medium sized pretzels for the weird picky kid who doesn't eat meat.  He's my kid so I can call him weird all I want.

For the egg wash, I used 2 egg yolks instead of one.  I figured that considering I had more dogs, I'd need more egg.  I did the wash and sprinkled, liberally with kosher salt. What I found is this - with the egg wash they turned out much darker than I would like.  I cut the cooking time down to 10 minutes and they were still cooked all the way through, but very dark on top.  I think a lighter color would have been nice.  Next time I'll most likely do a milk wash instead of using egg.

The kids loved them.  The first pan I pulled out - it had 9 dogs on it, was gone before I could get the 2nd pan into the oven.  They didn't last very long at all. 

I think these would be great made with cheese in them, use the pretzel recipe to make cheesey bites, or smaller scale and use the Lil' Smokies. 

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Back to Blogging

My intention has been to get back to blogging for quite some time.  I enjoy blogging.  I've come up with one reason or another as to why I don't.  I don't have the time or I don't want to put up a post without pictures or any number of reasons.  

I think that I need a place to put out what I want, to say what I need to, to share what is going on around here.  

We live a complicated and interesting life.  Homeschooling 4 of the 5 kids.  3 kids have special needs, all on the Autism spectrum in some varying degree.  3 year old twins that I'm pretty sure are already smarter than I am.  Trying to make an honest go of this whole small business thing.

I often wonder if I'm really made for doing all of this.  Whether I'm a good enough parent.  Whether I truly have the talent to be sewing for a living.  Whether I truly have anything to offer with the sword fighting rennie group we are in.  I wonder if I can actually teach these kids enough to go to college and succeed as adults.  

I admit that there are days when I look around me and wonder what the hell am I doing?  Why don't I just send the kids off to a regular school, pop the twins into daycare and go find a job.  Then I realize that I'd be working to pay for daycare.  I remember that my kids didn't excel in a regular school, that they were either singled out or just passed over.  

Motivation is lacking for me many days of the week, many hours of the day even.  I am trying a new mantra in this new year - get off your duff.  I figure if I can at least do that very first step the rest of it will come along, eventually.  Ever hear that phrase fake it til you make it?  That's what I'm going for here.  I may not want to do it, but I'll do it anyway.  It's a life skill I'm trying to teach the kids, I should be able to do it just like I expect them to.  Seems like the right thing to do after all.

Well I'm off to do something.  Everyone have a great Thursday.  Call it get off your duff Thursday if you need to.