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Good morning GUShogs!!!  I didn't even check to see what the poor groundhog had to "say" about winter.  I just know that it may get to be a balmy low 40s here today -- chance of rain and then back to the thoughts of a snow storm Tuesday night into Wednesday.  Oh, well, we aren't out of winter until about June 17th.

Yesterday I was zipping along with my work addressing all of the edits my friend painstakingly performed.  He is really, really, really good.  I cut, added, altered and saw how many times I used one particular word to the point of complete irritation.  126 pages and I came to a screeching halt.  "Pace problems with this chapter -- tighten up."  Damn.  It was already 11 p.m. and I had worked on the manuscript for five hours -- not long -- but long enough to have a bit of a muddy head.

So, this morning, once I finish typing my diary -- which will be absolutely perfect -- and put on a second pot of coffee, I'll tackle Chapter VIII.  He did point out -- that unlike -- my writing --- here on D----Kos --- I don't use em or en dashes which he found pretty amazing.  I think that is supposed to be a good thing.  

Also, related to working on a project such as this one, I didn't once feel the need for a ciggie and had no alcohol yesterday.  Made for a clearer head.  Since my quit anniversary is coming up in five days, I thought I'd really make an attempt to stop drinking for awhile.  I need to take off 15 pounds so those wasted calories around my waist that just get me wasted are a good place to start.

I've been on a no meat diet -- I did have swordfish last week.  I'm looking for recipes to utilize lots of different grains so I'm including a few related to bread here.  I haven't made any yet but will let you know.  

Oh, and happy Superbowl Sunday!!!  I don't follow sports but I will look forward to a good old groundhog's day BOOOOOOOO!!! if Christie shows up.  Sorry for the teensy bit of politics.  End of transmission.

GUS (Gave Up Smoking) is a community support diary for Kossacks in the midst of quitting smoking. Any supportive comments, suggestions or positive distractions are appreciated. If you are quitting or thinking of quitting, please -- join us!  We kindly ask that politics be left out.  

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   Quit Smoking Counter    h/tGDbot.  For those of you who have had a problem with Quit Keeper or want a different counter!

 

Amaranth and quinoa are gluten free but the following recipes are not since they include gluten flours.  I'm not skilled enough yet to make the gluten free substitutes that don't taste like cardboard.  Aramranth is, like quinoa, a super grain -- very healthy.  I've had a bag of it for quite a long time -- hope it is still ok since I'm trying this recipe today.

In the first recipe I'm not using a sour dough starter since my kitchen won't be the right temperature until July.  Afterwards, since it will be in the fridge and fed, it should be ok.

Whole Wheat Amaranth Bread -- Pan de Kiwicha

Ingredients:

1/2 cup raw amaranth
1 cup water
1 tablespoon molasses
1 tablespoon instant yeast
1/4 cup sourdough starter (optional)  
2 tablespoons butter
2/3 cup buttermilk  (I use the dry buttermilk powder and follow instructions for amounts)
2 tablespoons honey
3 cups whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup popped amaranth (optional)  see below for instructions.

Preparation:

Place the amaranth in a small saucepan. Add a pinch of salt and the molasses, and cover with 1 cup of water. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, cover, and turn heat to low. Simmer amaranth until the water is absorbed, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool.

Gently heat buttermilk in the microwave until it's just warm to the touch (not hot). Add to the bowl of a standing mixer and sprinkle yeast on top. Stir in the honey and let rest for 5 minutes.

Stir in the sourdough starter (if using), the cooled amaranth, the butter, 1 cup of the whole wheat flour, and the salt. Using dough hook attachment (or by hand) knead mixture until well blended.

Add the remaining flour one half cup at a time, then knead vigorously until the dough is no longer sticky (about 5 minutes). Add a little more flour if dough seems too wet. When the dough is well kneaded, you should be able to take a piece of dough and stretch it gently until it's thin enough to see through, without tearing the dough. This is called the "windowpane" test, and it means the gluten is sufficiently developed to make the dough very stretchy.

Remove dough from mixer, shape into a ball, and place dough in an oiled bowl. Cover dough with plastic wrap and let it rise in a warm place until it's double in size.

Punch down the dough, flatten it into a rectangle that is the length of your bread pan, and roll the dough up into a spiral. Place dough, seam side down, into the oiled bread pan. The dough should fill a standard loaf pan about 3/4 of the way full. Sprinkle the top of the loaf with the popped amaranth, if desired. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rise once more until doubled in size.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place dough in the oven and bake until top of bread is golden brown, and bread sounds hollow when tapped (about 30 minutes, depending on the oven).

Remove from the oven, and let cool for 10-15 minutes before removing bread from the pan. Cool before slicing.

Popped amaranth.  Seems you can do the same with quinoa!

Ingredients:

1/2 - 1 cup (pre-washed) quinoa or amaranth
1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
1 teaspoon vegetable oil (optional)

Preparation:

Quinoa is often pre-washed before packaging, which should be stated on the box. If not, rinse quinoa thoroughly and let dry).

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat.

Add 1/2 teaspoon of the vegetable oil if desired (this will help the salt adhere to the grains later, if you are going to eat them like popcorn, but it's not necessary for popping them). Add about 1/4 cup of grain, just enough to cover the bottom of the pan with a single layer. Stir grains with a wooden spoon as they pop - you will hear a sound and the grains may jump out of the pan. Amaranth grains pop very dramatically and change from dark yellow to white, while quinoa grains have a more subtle pop and turn a toasted brown color.

Once the grains have mostly popped, remove them from the heat and transfer to a plate to cool. Watch quinoa especially closely and remove it from the heat when it is golden brown and toasted, before it starts to burn.

Continue to pop the grains in batches. Toss popped grain with salt and serve

Honey Quinoa Bread - Pan de Quinoa y Mie

Ingredients:

1 cup raw quinoa
2 cups water (for cooking the quinoa)
1/4 cup oatmeal
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup milk
2 teaspoons yeast
3/4 cup warm water
1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup vegetable oil
3 tablespoons powdered milk
2 tablespoons sourdough starter (optional)
2 1/2 -3 cups bread flour
1-2 teaspoons salt (to taste)
1 cup whole wheat flour
2 tablespoons raw quinoa for sprinkling on top of loaf

Preparation:

Cook the quinoa in 2 cups of water for 10 to 15 minutes, until the water is absorbed. Cool to room temperature.

Cook the oatmeal in the water and milk until liquid is absorbed. Let cool.

Place 3/4 cup warm water in a large bowl (or bowl of a standing mixer) and sprinkle yeast over the water. Let rest 5 minutes.

Stir honey, oil, powdered milk, and sourdough starter (if using) into the yeast mixture with a wooden spoon (or with dough hook on low speed).

Add 1 cup of the bread flour and the salt and stir well.

Add the cooked quinoa and oatmeal and stir.

Add the whole wheat flour and 1 cup more of the bread flour and stir. When the dough starts to get stiff, turn out onto floured surface and begin to knead. (If using a standing mixer, continue to knead with dough hook). Keep adding flour and kneading until dough is smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes with a mixer, or 10 to 15 minutes by hand. Dough should feel slightly sticky but should not be wet and slack. You should be able to form it into a ball and it should hold its shape.

Lightly oil a large bowl with vegetable oil and place bread in the bowl, turning to coat lightly with the oil. Cover loosely with saran wrap.

Let bread dough rise in a warm spot until double in size, about 2 hours.

Oil a large loaf pan (11 inches by 6 inches). Punch down dough and shape into a ball. Pat/flatten into an oval shape about the length of the bread pan. Fold long sides in and tuck them underneath as you place the bread into the pan, so that the top surface of the bread is smooth and without seams.

Brush top of load very lightly with water and sprinkle with quinoa seeds.

Let rise in warm place until bread has almost doubled in size. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

When oven is hot, place bread in center of oven. Throw a handful of ice cubes into bottom of oven to create steam. Bake for 30 minutes. Cover bread loosely with foil if the top is getting too brown and bake 15 minutes more. Bread should sound hollow when tapped.

Let cool in pan for 15 minutes. Remove from pan and let cool completely.

And here are Super Bowl Noshes recipes when I sort of gave a damn about the teams who were playing!  

And yet another updated Buddy List by Mr. Amazing, anodnhajo!!!!  (1/19/14)

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Sun AM: gchaucer2
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