It is official, I am finally settled into California! My boyfriend and I have been unpacking for what feels like forever! We have been here for one month and we have been having a lot of fun settling in (which is probably why we still aren’t totally unpacked.) I started working at my new job in San Francisco right away so it has taken me awhile to get back into a routine. I do apologize for not posting for so long, but I have many great recipes and stories to share with you. M has done such a great job of posting while I have been moving in to my new home. Thanks M!
My boyfriend and I have moved to Sunnyvale, CA which is still in the San Francisco Bay Area but also part of Silicon Valley. I commute into San Francisco everyday which is not as bad as it sounds thanks to the express train. Our favorite part of California so far has been the amazing weather and the fresh produce. We go to the Sunnyvale Farmers Market on the historical Murphy Street every Saturday. Our first trip we went a little crazy at the market because there was fruit and vegetables that I have never seen at a farmers market back east.
Farmers Market Finds- fresh bell peppers, jalapenos, Fuji apples, Granny Smith Apples, strawberries, cilantro, red and green grapes, oranges, green beans, artichoke hummus, cilantro pesto, Italian bread, Kettle Corn, and Spinach Bolani
See what I mean about a little out of control! It was so cool to have fresh strawberries and fresh oranges! I used the bell peppers to make chicken fajitas later in the week. I steamed the green beans and served them with pepper crusted steak. I ate the fruit with my lunch and as a snack all week. With the jalapenos, I made my jalapeno popper stuffed chicken and used them in M’s favorite chicken chili recipe.
While we are loving all the fresh produce and sunshine around here, we are also missing some of the classic foods from back east. We have yet to find good deli meats and bagels. My boyfriend has been out every Sunday determined to find a decent bagel, but he returns disappointed each time. I suggested a simple solution to him of just trying to make his own. So this morning I taught him how to make bagels. We chose a quick and simple recipe to start with. The results? They were actually pretty good! They had the chewiness and consistency of the bagels we miss. So if you are a transplant out here in the west and are missing some good bagels, try this recipe!
- 2 tsp. active dry yeast
- 1½ tbsp. of sugar
- 1 cup of warm water
- ¼ cup of warm water
- 3½ cups of bread flour (500g) plus extra for kneading
- 1½ tsp. salt
- In a small bowl or liquid 1-cup measuring cup add yeast and sugar to ½ cup of warm water. Do not stir. Let sit for 5 minutes and then stir until all the yeast and sugar are dissolved.
- In the bowl of a mixer add in flour and salt. Mix on low until just combined. Put a well in the middle of the flour mixture. Pour yeast mixture into the hole and then an additional ½ cup of warm water. Stir with the mixing blade on the mixer at medium until combined. You may need to add an additional amount of warm water into the mixture so that all the flour is mixed in.
- Put the dough in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with a damp towel. Let the dough rest for 1 hour.
- After 1 hour push the dough down and let rest for another ten minutes
- Break the dough into 8 even balls and roll them out. You may need to moisten hands a little get the dough balls to roll into a perfect ball.
- Lightly oil a baking sheet.
- Press thumb through the center of each dough ball and stretch out to a bagel shape.
- Place on oiled baking sheet.
- Boil a large pot of water and preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
- Once the water is boiled turn down the heat, and drop 2-3 bagels into the water. Let cook on each side for two minutes. Pull out bagels with a slotted spoons and place back on oiled baking sheet.
- Repeat for all bagels.
- Bake in the oven for 20 minutes until golden brown.
- Serve with whipped cream cheese
Source- Slightly adapted from The Sophisticated Gourmet