Sunday, June 3, 2012

The things that keep me busy

I don't have much to show for my knitting lately.  I think I have tendinitis in my elbow so I'm doing what I'm supposed to do: rest the joint, take anti-inflammatories and stop doing what makes it hurt.   Um...that would be knitting.  I tried ignoring the pain in an effort to finish my shawl, but that's not really working out for me, so I'll do the common sense thing and give it a rest.  Sort of.  Once a day I sit where I have no pressure on my elbow and knit a pattern repeat which is about 800 stitches long.  There are only 7 repeats left to do before I begin the lace.

Our dough stretched out until it's so thin, you could read a newspaper through the dough.
 On Friday, I cashed in my Mother's Day gift from my son and took yet another baking class at the Zingerman's Bake! classroom in Ann Arbor. The strudel class.  My friend Judi went with me, but I only got one photo.  This was one fast moving class.  We made a traditional apple strudel and a savory asparagus strudel that was delicious.

Cabbage strudel made with sliced cabbage, salt, pepper, Jewish rye bread crumbs and duck fat.
I came home with two strudels and two doughs again, and the knowledge of how to reproduce what I'd made in class.  Sort of.  To use up the two doughs before they spoiled, today I made another asparagus strudel since the first one was a big hit and forgot to put the bread crumbs down on the buttered dough.  It's good, but would have been better had I bothered to follow the instructions.  It's funny because Zingerman's teaches you to read, re-read and then read a recipe again.  They recommend 3 times.  Duh.  Then I made the cabbage strudel--remembering the bread crumbs this time--and it was outstanding.  Though the recipe calls for rendered goose fat, I had to settle for duck fat. I'm sure if I lived in England, goose fat would be readily available, but not here, and I wasn't willing to cook a goose to produce my own.  The recipe calls for three tablespoons of fat, but I had to buy a giant tub to get that.  I see something fried in duck fat in my near future.  Or more strudel!

Asparagus strudel made with asparagus, salt, pepper, butter and a generous amount of Parmesan Reggiano cheese.  Remembering the breadcrumbs would have given that fat on the tray somewhere to go.  Still, it's rather tasty.
This is one completely messy baking process.  Since it was nice outside today, I took a folding table out to the back yard to stretch the dough and sacrificed an old Christmas tablecloth.  They say to never wash this strudel cloth as it gets better with age and use.  We'll see.  There is flour and butter everywhere out there now, but friends, it's totally worth it to do outdoors if you can work fast, shoo the flies and never do it when the seeds and blossoms are falling off trees.  It was an adventure. I shared a good part of both with my neighbors.  I can totally see this new interest of mine becoming a bad proposition for the waistline.



15 comments:

Stephanie V said...

Those savory strudels sound absolutely delish! I'm intrigued by a cabbage strudel...must think how to make this without going outside to stretch the dough. With my luck I'd have chewy pine needles included!

Sorry about the elbow...hope you can rest quick.

Rose said...

Yummy! Yet again, I wish I were your neighbor!

Empress Bee (of the high sea) said...

wow that looks wonderful! so sorry about your pain though.

smiles, bee
xoxoxoxoox

Miss 376 said...

looks like the perfect home work! hope the elbow heals quickly

lovestitch said...

How yummy! Wish I could be good at cooking/baking like you are! Hope you get well soon with the pain.
Best wishes,
LS xx

Alice said...

First off . . .
Since it is still pouring rain here . . . this "Duck" would have offered you her fat for free!
Second off . . .
As I tell the dogs . . .
HEAL!!

Devon said...

That looks wonderful! It is so nice to see you enjoying your 'retirement'.

sapphireblue said...

Yum Yum! Savory strudel sounds so good.

The Bug said...

Yum! Although my elbow doesn't hurt, I should rest it. This second hat I'm working on seems big enough for Andre the Giant. I have a feeling that when you change the kind of yarn you use (this one is like homespun) it MIGHT change the size of the finished product. Oh well, maybe Mike will wear it :)

NCmountainwoman said...

Hope the elbow improves. I had what I assume was synovitis in my right index finger made so much worse by knitting. Too bad I couldn't go to cooking school...had to be content with books and movies.

Brenda said...

That looks really good! I used to have severe tendinitis in my ankle. After one cortisone shot and electronic therapy it never returned. (knock on wood) Magnetic hematite bracelet helped my elbow. If you don't have one...I can send you the one I used. It worked for someone else I know too.

Ruth said...

mmmm strudel.

SkippyMom said...

This is so what I want for my birthday or Christmas! Is 4th of July a gift giving holiday per chance? heehee

Looks wonderful Rudee and I know we would LOVE the asparagus and cabbage strudel. I didn't realize you could buy rendered duck fat. I will have to keep an eye out.

Gail said...

The gift that keeps on giving. Your son really knows your heart.

I'm salivating!

Jeannette StG said...

Interesting! I only know strudel in an oblong baking dish (with the bread on top. To have flour (bread) with a vegetable instead of potatoes or rice will probably cost you your waistline... and/or hip line!
Thanks for connecting with my blog again - right now I actually have too much on my plate to do the blogs, but it's so addicting!! Have a great weekend Rudee:)