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Review: Bread Revolution by Peter Reinhart

Bread Revolution by Peter Reinhart Book Review

Special thanks to Blogging for Books for providing a review copy of this book.

One of my favorite things about this book is the scientific approach to baking. It goes into techniques, baking theories, tools, and ingredients before diving into the art of working with a sour dough starter and sprouted grain flours. I love reading all the technical stuff when it comes to baking, so this aspect of the book was right up my alley.

Before I go much further, I have to point out that the font in this book is really small for a cookbook. When looking at a cookbook, I want to be able to easily read it at a glance, but that’s not the case with this cookbook. I’m not sure why the publishers went with this particular font/font size, but in my opinion, it was a poor choice. That being said the paper weight is wonderful, and the images are beautiful.

My family is gluten free, and I enjoy using ancient grains in my baking. I’m not a novice when it comes to baking, and I have a lot of ancient grain flours in my pantry. I was thinking that I would be sprouting my own grains for the gluten free recipes, but Reinhart expects you to purchase sprouted grain flours. Bummer. Given that we’re gluten free, I’m familiar with many different flours, but there were some flours in the gluten free recipes that were even unique for the gluten free crown – ie: grape flour.

There are 8 gluten-free recipes in this book:

  1. Gluten-Free Sprouted Flour Pizza Dough
  2. Gluten-Free “Do No Harm” Sprouted Grain Bread
  3. Gluten-Free Sprouted Grain Crackers
  4. Gluten-Free Sprouted Corn Bread with Teff
  5. Gluten-Free Many-Seed Toasting Bread
  6. Gluten-Free Holiday Cookies
  7. Gluten-Free Holiday Biscotti
  8. Gluten-Free Focaccia

The recipes in this book are fairly complex and involved, so I can’t say that I would recommend the book for the novice baker. I also wouldn’t recommend this book for someone who is strictly gluten free as it just doesn’t have enough to offer for the gluten-free crowd. The ingredients tend to be even more pricey that regular gluten-free flours.

If you’re looking to expand your break-making skills and want to try out new techniques and flours, this may be the book for you. Be prepared to spend some money and time finding the ingredients needed for many of the recipes.

Bread Revolution by Peter ReinhartBook Description:

Renowned baking author and instructor Peter Reinhart has always been on the forefront of the bread movement—from his seminal work, The Bread Baker’s Apprentice, to today. In Bread Revolution, he explores the cutting-edge developments in bread baking, with fifty recipes and formulas that use sprouted flours, whole and ancient grains, nut and seed flours, alternative flours (such as teff and grape skin), and allergy-friendly and gluten-free approaches.

A new generation of bakers and millers are developing innovative flours and baking techniques that are designed to extract the grain’s full flavor potential—what Reinhart calls “the baker’s mission.” In this lushly photographed primer, Reinhart draws inspiration from these groundbreaking methods to create master recipes and formulas any home baker can follow, including Sprouted Sandwich Rye Bread, Gluten-Free Many-Seed Toasting Bread, and Sprouted Wheat Croissants.

In many instances, such as with sprouted flours, preferments aren’t necessary because so much of the flavor development occurs during the sprouting phase. For grains that benefit from soakers, bigas, and sourdough starters, Reinhart provides the precise guidance that has made him such a trusted expert in the field.

Advanced bakers will relish Reinhart’s inventive techniques and exacting scientific explanations, while beginning bakers will rejoice in his demystification of ingredients and methods—and all will come away thrilled by bread’s new frontier.

Peter ReinhartAbout the Author:

PETER REINHART, the author of eight books on bread and baking, including three James Beard Award winners, is a baking instructor and faculty member at Johnson and Wales University.

Book Details:

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Ten Speed Press (October 21, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1607746514
  • ISBN-13: 978-1607746515
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 1 x 10.3 inches
  • Retail Price: $30.00
  • Electronic Versions also available

Disclosure: I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.

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Wordless Wednesday: Around the House

Digging for Ground Squirrels

Digging for Ground Squirrels

Dixie Enjoying the Warm Breeze

Dixie Enjoying the Warm Breeze

New Lehman's Catalog

New Lehman’s Catalog – Wish List Time!

Homemade Gluten Free Ancient Grain Sandwich Bread

Homemade Gluten Free Ancient Grain Sandwich Bread

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Review: You Have a Brain by Ben Carson, M.D.

You Have a Brain by Ben CarsonSpecial thanks to the publisher for providing a review copy of this book.

You Have a Brain: A Teen’s Guide to Think Big (affiliate link) begins with the story of Dr. Ben Carson’s life. He went from being the “dumbest kid in the class” to being a renowned neurosurgeon, author, and more. His journey to knowledge began at an early age when his mom required him to read a certain number of books each week. While she didn’t have an education beyond elementary school school, she was smart enough to understand what her boys needed to succeed in life. She would ask her boys “Do you have a brain?” when she wanted them to think about their decisions.

I truly enjoy reading stories about people who beat the odds and make something of their lives no matter what hardships they need to overcome to be successful, and Dr. Carson’s life story did not disappoint. I had previously watched Gifted Hands, but to truly appreciate his story, you need to read it in his own words.

After sharing his life story, which is a large chunk of the book, Dr. Carson talks about how teens need to T.H.I.N.K. B.I.G. He wants teens to be able to set goals for themselves and then succeed at achieving those goals. He lays out a plan, and of course, that plan involves utilizing the brain that the Lord gave them. As a mother of a teen, I found this section to be really motivational for me as it gives me tools to help my teen succeed at her dreams.

Whether you’re a parent of a teen or you’re a teen, this book can help you lay down a solid strategy for success in life. His foundation is based upon using the brain that the Lord gave you. Honestly, it’s not a bad book for anyone to read no matter what stage of life they are in as we can all use a little help in realizing our goals/dreams in life.

Book Description:

Throughout his life, renowned neurosurgeon Dr. Benjamin Carson has needed to overcome many obstacles: His father leaving the family; being considered stupid by his classmates in grade school; growing up in inner-city Detroit; and having a violent temper. But Dr. Carson didn’t let his circumstances control him, and instead discovered eight principles that helped shape his future.

In You Have a Brain: A Teen’s Guide to Think Big, Dr. Carson unpacks the eight important parts of Thinking Big—Talent, Honesty, Integrity, Niceness, Knowledge, Books, In-Depth learning, and God—and presents the stories of people who demonstrated those things in his life. By applying the idea of T.H.I.N.K. B.I.G. to your life, and by looking at those around you as well, you too can overcome obstacles and work toward achieving your dreams.

About the Author:

Dr. Carson is an emeritus professor of neurosurgery, oncology, plastic surgery, and pediatrics at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. In 1984, he was named director of pediatric neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Children’s Center, a position he retired from in 2013. In 2008, he was named the inaugural recipient of a professorship in his name, the Benjamin S. Carson, Sr., M.D., and Dr. Evelyn Spiro, R.N., Professor of Pediatric Neurosurgery. Also in 2008, he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian honor in the land. He was the keynote speaker for the President’s National Prayer Breakfasts in 1997 and 2013. Through his philanthropic foundation, the Carson Scholars Fund, he strives to maximize the intellectual potential of every child. An internationally renowned physician, Dr. Carson has authored over a hundred neurosurgical publications and has been awarded more than sixty honorary doctorate degrees and dozens of national merit citations. Dr. Carson has written six best-selling books, and his fifth book, America the Beautiful: Rediscovering What Made This Nation Great, released in early 2012, made the New York Times Bestseller List. His sixth book, One Nation: What We Can All Do to Save America’s Future, was released in 2014, and became a number one New York Times bestseller. He is a syndicated columnist and a highly sought-after, world-renowned inspirational and motivational speaker.

Gregg Lewis is an award-winning author and coauthor of more than fifty books, including Gifted Hands, The Ben Carson Story, Take the Risk and The Big Picture.

Deborah Shaw Lewis has authored or coauthored more than a dozen books, including Gifted Hands, The Ben Carson Story, has taught school, does professional storytelling, speaks on motherhood and family issues, and holds a master’s degree in early childhood development. She and Gregg are the parents of five children.

Book Details:

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Zondervan (February 3, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0310745993
  • ISBN-13: 978-0310745990
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 8.7 inches
  • Retail Price: $18.99
  • Electronic Version also available

I review for BookLook Bloggers

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Review: Dauntless by Dina Sleiman

Dauntless by Dina SleimanDauntless was not exactly what I was expecting when I agreed to review the book through NetGalley (ARC digital copy), but it did turn out to be a pleasant surprise. It was a fun play on the traditional Robin Hood. This tale is set during the same time period, and Robin Hood is even mentioned in the book.

Young “Lady” Merry finds herself in the unfortunate position of needing to care for a group of children and young adults when they flee for their lives after the murder of her father and their parents. Over time, they do just what is necessary to survive, and the become known as the ghosts of the forest.

Through a series of events Merry runs into an old friend Thomas which sets in motion events that can not be stopped nor controlled.

While the teenage romance angst was a little over-the-top as they were tortured by their emotions vs their duties, the book was a clean read that I’d have no issue allowing my daughter to read. The characters were well developed, and the story, while predictable at times, was quite good with enough twists to keep the reader engaged to the very end.

I look forward to seeing what happens in book 2 of the Valiant Hearts series.

Book Description:

Where Legend and History Collide,
One Young Woman Will Fight for the Innocent

Born a baron’s daughter, Lady Merry Ellison is now an enemy of the throne after her father’s failed assassination attempt upon the king. Bold and uniquely skilled, she is willing to go to any lengths to protect the orphaned children of her former village–a group that becomes known as “The Ghosts of Farthingale Forest.” Merry finds her charge more difficult as their growing notoriety brings increasing trouble their way.

Timothy Grey, ninth child of the Baron of Greyham, longs to perform some feat so legendary that he will rise from obscurity and earn a title of his own. When the Ghosts of Farthingale Forest are spotted in Wyndeshire, where he serves as assistant to the local earl, he might have found his chance. But when he comes face-to-face with the leader of the thieves, he’s forced to reexamine everything he’s known.

Dina SleimanAbout the Author:

Dina L. Sleiman holds an MA in professional writing from Regent University and a BA in communications with a minor in English from Oral Roberts University. Over the past eighteen years, she has had opportunities to teach college writing and literature, as well as high school and elementary classes in English, humanities, and fine arts. She lives in Virginia with her husband and three children. She can be found online at www.dinasleiman.com.

Book Details:

  • Series: Valiant Hearts (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Bethany House Publishers (March 3, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0764213121
  • ISBN-13: 978-0764213120
  • Product Dimensions: 9.6 x 6.6 x 0.8 inches
  • Retail Price: $12.99
  • Digital version also available

Disclosure Statement

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Valentine’s Day Treat: Chocolate Covered Strawberries

Chocolate Covered Strawberries - 3 Ways

My mom was a huge fan of chocolate. While I didn’t inherit the chocolate craze, Munchkin did. Her Daddy’s sweet tooth comes and goes, so I never know when he’ll be craving something sweet to eat. Before you think I’m crazy, I will say that I do enjoy chocolate, but I’m not one who craves it all the time. A little chocolate now and again works for me. I know, I know… I’m weird. lol!

My idea of a really good chocolate treat involves fruit and chocolate. One of the best pairings, in my opinion, is strawberries and chocolate. They have to be firm, ripe strawberries. I prefer to use organic strawberries when possible. Last year, the strawberries available this time of year were absolutely horrible, so we didn’t get to enjoy a strawberry treat. This year? The organic strawberries were beautiful.

We’ve been seeing a lot of commercials for chocolate covered strawberries that can be delivered for Valentine’s Day, but when the cost comes on the screen, I go through a bit of sticker shock. (Note: I’m not against this type of service as there are times when you can’t make things yourself. Example: When D is deployed or TAD for a holiday, birthday, or anniversary, he’ll often use a service like this just so he can send a little something our way.)

Chocolate Covered Strawberries - 3 Ways

In many ways, those commercials did their job as it left us all craving chocolate covered strawberries. In other ways, they didn’t do their job as I set off to make my own strawberries rather than purchase through them. ;)

Around here, a 1 lb. container of organic strawberries cost around $5.99 when they are not on sale. (They aren’t on sale for us right now.) If you’re going for regular strawberries, you can them much cheaper – around $1.99 for a 1 lb. container. Because I prefer organic, I splurged and purchased the more expensive organic berries.

I used chocolate chips that I had on hand as well as unsweetened coconut and pecans. (While I prefer dark chocolate for chocolate covered strawberries, Munchkin likes milk chocolate. For this batch, we went with milk chocolate.) So for just over $6.00, I was able to make 18 organic, chocolate covered strawberries.

Chocolate Covered Strawberries - 3 Ways

Chocolate Covered Strawberries

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound organic strawberries
  • 1 cup chocolate chips (dark chocolate, milk chocolate, semi-sweet chocolate, white chocolate…)
  • 1/2 tsp. coconut oil
  • 1 Tbsp. unsweetened coconut (optional)
  • 1 Tbsp. chopped nuts (optional)

Directions:

  1. Clean and dry the strawberries.
  2. Melt chocolate with coconut oil in double boiler or microwave.*
  3. Line baking sheet with waxed paper.
  4. Dip strawberries in chocolate – turning to coat the entire strawberry.
  5. If desired, sprinkle on coconut or nuts.
  6. Place strawberries on line baking sheet.
  7. Put chocolate covered strawberries in refrigerator to set.

Storage:

  • If strawberries are really ripe, you’ll want to eat the strawberries within 24 hours.
  • If the strawberries are firm and  not really ripe, you can store them at room temperature for a couple of days.
  • If the strawberries are firm and not really ripe, you can store them in a container in the refrigerator up to a week. For the best results, place a paper towel or cloth at the bottom of the container to absorb the moisture the strawberries give off.

Notes:

*For melting chocolate in the microwave… Microwave for 30 seconds and then stir. From that point on, microwave at 15 second intervals, stirring after each interval, until the chocolate is completely melted.

Fresh, firm strawberries that are ripe but not overly ripe are best for chocolate covered strawberries. If you’re making these several days in advance, you may want to even use strawberries that are red, but slightly under ripe.

 

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