Wednesday, December 20, 2017

My Seasonal Decor 5

The kitchen is a very active part of my home, and not as easy to make show-worthy, so I am sharing only one section of it today. Above you see part of the porch scene, using holly cut from the trees around here. It is frozen in the container, as we had a sudden cold spell.

I have used this lunch box for many different things, including a serving dish to hold snacks. This year I have lined it with the rosemary and Sage which is growing prolifically in the cold months. Small apples and led-lite flameless candles complete the vignette and the whole thing smells very pleasant.

In a kitchen not designed for a kitchen table, I was determined to add one, even if just for looks, and I'm glad I did because people often sit there and talk to me while I am working in the kitchen.

I'm using two outdoor chairs with the table because I don't like leaving them in the harsh elements this time of year.

Some of the shops are selling chalk boards and plaques and paintings quoting the lines from the song "Winter Wonderland" which Is so delightful.  I tried to think of a phrase from that song that I had not seen in a shop, and came up with this one:

But then, I noticed on Pinterest how popular this phrase was already:

How do the Australians handle this song, when it is the hottest time of year?

This year, in consideration of our friends and rellies limited living spaces, we gave them these:

One reason I didn't get the other side of the kitchen ready to photograph is I've been attempting to make these again, and my kitchen isn't quite recovered:

I'm not going to tell you how many years I've tried to make croissants, or how many recipes I've used. This year I almost got it. The flavor was perfect and they puffed into nice layers.  I think I know what mistakes I've been making over the years ---rolling the dough too thinly and blending it too well makes it turn out like bread.  Thick layers rolled loosely puts more space inside the croissant. 

 But of course I've watched videos and read tutorials and still not quite where I want to be in making these. One mistake I've made is trying to make them with the same texture and appearance of the commercial ones found in the grocery stores.  These taste so much better and the texture is still light, and not rubbery like the bakery made ones. Also they toast really nicely when split and are still tender melt in your mouth.  The recipe is  the book called "Bread" which is a historical and educational cookbook, but I do not think the recipe matters as much as how the dough is rolled.

I can't use the store bought croissants as a guideline to what they should be like.  The homemade ones are very different. The commercial ones are the replicas!

Ingredients: butter, eggs, milk, flour, yeast, salt.

Shelf life: if you are alert you can save some and make them last more than an hour.


Mrs.O said...

An hour is being generous in our home! We made buckeyes( peanut butter/chocolate balls) this afternoon and I had "swarmers" until I finally told them they were ready to eat!!


P.S I love the lunch box. I just got my husband one from 1971 on eBay. It is red, white, and blue. I got it for a song as I noticed some were selling for 99.00- 130.00!!!! I got mine for just a fraction of that. I just love those old ones.

Unknown said...

I also love the lunchbox - it looks so festive! Gold stars to you for continuing to perfect croissants - you have a lot of patience. I'm still "playing" with no-knead bread. Yesterday I made a batch with walnuts, sunflower seeds, parmesan cheese and Italian seasoning. Can't wait to bake some today and try it out. Thanks for sharing your lovely holiday decorating.


Lynn said...

you can make me a box full of croissants and mail them to me for Christmas...ahahaaaa

Sally said...

Good luck with your croissants Mrs Sherman. I have never made any that remotely match the light buttery layers that I can buy from a French boulangerie! They are something I look forward too when I visit for annual holidays.
Wishing you merry Christmas from Worcestershire England

anonymous said...

Oh those croissants look so good! It reminds me of how good bread tasted and how good it smelled coming out of the oven.
I think you make the best vignettes, love the holly and apple scenes. So refreshing and welcoming.
Thank you for sharing.