Weekly Photo Challenge: Create

The photo challenge from WordPress: “Create.  The best part about creating something is being in the moment, relishing the creativity you’re experiencing, and letting your actions guide you to an end goal. Then you can step back and admire your work!

Have you snapped a picture of something you’ve created, or something someone else has created?  

Share a picture that means CREATE to you!”

Create each day anew. – Morihei Ueshiba

Creating and creativity are huge in my life. When I saw the challenge, I decided to create something beautiful so I could take a picture of it.

I started with an idea, I made up a recipe for a loaf of bread. I used a couple of kinds of flours, cinnamon apple oatmeal, cinnamon apple sauce, water, salt, and yeast. Here is the post for the actual recipe: http://lifeofcolors.com/2012/06/25/apple-cinnamon-oat-bread-machine/

Then I created edible natural dyes from water, blueberries, tumeric, coffee and vinegar.

Once the bread was baked and the dyes made, I painted the bread. I kept it simple and childlike: a house near some berry bushes, under the sun.

What do you think of my creation? Did you create anything today? I’d like to hear about it in the comments. 🙂

Here are a few other weekly challenges I did:

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Edible Art: The Grapevine Bread

This was the sunken in bread I made yesterday. It tastes great, but looks a little sad. Click here for the Cottage Cheese Hemp Bread recipe: http://lifeofcolors.com/2012/06/10/cottage-cheese-hemp-bread-machine/

Here is how it looks today.

“All sorrows are less with bread.”
Miguel de Cervantes, Spanish author. (1547-1616)

Doesn’t the sunken in area look better with a grapevine around it? 🙂

So, how does one “paint” bread? On this bread I used both store bought and natural edible paint. The green color is a Wilton product for cake decorating. The purple color comes from blueberries.

I’ve never made natural dye before. Normally it’s done using a stove, but I don’t have a stove. So, I decided to try it in the microwave. You start off with one part (frozen) blueberries to two parts water. Add a little bit of salt to help “set” the paint. The idea is to cook it down until it resembles the texture of a rather thick paint. Then let it cool down before you paint with it.

I kept crushing the berries with a fork to get as much color as possible. It’s probably best to remove the skins, but I left them in. Once it’s ready, take a new (never used with regular paint), clean brush and use it to paint the design.

What do you think? Have you had to “rescue” any of your breads? Have you ever used “natural” dyes? If so, how did you make them? I’d love to hear what you think in the comments.

Noon Rogani Bread

Yummy!!

Cinnamon and I are great friends! I use a lot of it between adding it to my smoothies, putting it into soups and making toast with it. So, when I saw this impressive looking but fairly easy bread recipe had cinnamon in it I was delighted!

It’s called Noon Rogani Bread, or “Azerbaijani Turban Bread”. Azerbaijan is in Southwestern Asia, bordered by the Caspian Sea, Russia, Georgia, Armenia and Iran. Although I have traveled a lot, I’ve never been to Azerbaijan. But, if this bread is any indication of what it is like there I might just have to visit sometime. 🙂

Noon Rogani is considered a sweet breakfast bread, but in my opinion it’s not overly sweet… despite it’s filling of sugar, cinnamon and butter. It’s much less sweet than cinnamon rolls for instance. Click here to get the recipe: http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/noon-rogani-recipe.

The ruler in the above picture is 18 inches long. Once the bread has risen for the first time, you roll it out to around 23 inches square by 1/8 inch thick. You brush it with butter then add the cinnamon and sugar. Then you roll it into a log. Once it’s in that shape, you squeeze it and roll it until it’s about five feet long! I don’t have much space, so I used my three foot card table to work on.

Then comes the fun part… making the coil or “turban” as some people call it. You gently twist the bread from one end to the other, then lay it on a greased cookie sheet in a loose coil. You use up the rest of the butter by brushing it on the top of the loaf. You let it rise a second time for about 30-40 minutes until it gets fluffy.

All coiled, buttered, and ready to rise the second time.

You bake it for 30-45 minutes. I have a very small oven so the 10 inch baking sheet just barely fits. The end result is a 10-12 inch spiral of yummy goodness!

The verdict? Excellent! Everyone who tried it loved it. Another win for cinnamon in my book. 🙂

Edible Art, Peace Dove

I was walking through the hall today when I came across a display for a soldier killed in Iraq. He had earned a Purple Heart medal among other things for his sacrifice. There were letters and pictures and a flag that had flown at half-mast in honor of him. This is a day I wish for peace… peace in countries involved in war, peace for families that have lost loved ones.

“If there is to be peace in the world,
There must be peace in the nations.
If there is to be peace in the nations,
There must be peace in the cities.
If there is to be peace in the cities,
There must be peace between neighbors.
If there is to be peace between neighbors,
There must be peace in the home.
If there is to be peace in the home,
There must be peace in the heart.”

I painted this bread yesterday. I will include the recipe for it later, probably tomorrow. In the meantime, I wish you peace from the inside out…

The Tree, Edible Art

I looked at the sourdough onion bread. (See recipe in my last post: http://lifeofcolors.com/2012/05/25/sourdough-onion-bread-machine-recipe). It looked back at me. It had fallen on it’s head when I was trying to take it out of the pan. It wasn’t badly damaged (and the flavor wasn’t affected)… just a little crinkly. What should I do?

It was time for the “food artist” to appear. Ta da! To the rescue! 🙂

“The creation of a thousand forests is in one acorn”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Two of my passions in life right now are baking home-made bread, and being an artist with different kinds of media. I first learned about “bread painting” a couple of months ago here: http://cheftessbakeresse.blogspot.com/p/decorative-and-painted-bread-craft.html

I took out the (edible) paints and started figuring out what to paint. I really looked at the bread and the shape of the crinkles and the folds. At first I was going to do some vines, leaves, and/or flowers… but then a tree started showing itself in the curves and crinkles! I began to paint and got more excited as I went along. I love texture and layers, and the bread texture brought out more of the trunk bark, branches and the leaves.

The crinkly bread.

The slight disaster turned into an edible work of art. I was able to give this bread to friends who had been away for several months as a welcome home gift. All of us were happy with the result! What do you think of it?

“Bread for myself is a material question. Bread for my neighbor is a spiritual one.”  – Nikolai Berdyaev

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