Play Dough

We had a Heartwarming Party last weekend.

Heartwarming Party Invitation

Steve made his fantastic poached salmon, layered with cucumbers and glazed with homemade aspic.

I decided to make a loaf of bread shaped like something and settled on a bird.  I thought it would be a nice companion to Steve’s fish and both of these creatures figure in my marriage quilt that I made a year ago.

Le mariage du fleuve et du ciel, 2010

The quilt becomes transparent in a window

I’d finally tracked down and ordered an out of print copy of ‘Bread Sculpture- The Edible Art’ by Ann Wiseman.  But it hadn’t come by the day of our party, so I found a sculptural bread dough recipe and tutorial here.

The Dough

6 cups unbleached flour
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons yeast
1/4 cup sugar
2 cups lukewarm milk
1/4 – 1/2 cup water
1 egg, beaten

Mix together all of the dry ingredients. Mix in the milk and enough water to make everything form a doughy ball. I would have liked to have used my KitchenAid mixer fitted with a dough hook, but I could tell that the motor was straining, so I turned the dough out onto a flat surface and kneaded for approximately 10 minutes. Return it into a greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise for approximately 90 minutes until the dough has doubled in size.

Shape the dough into whatever you want. I made mine into a bird a la Marc Chagall with an almond eye.

Loosely cover with a towel and let rise for about an hour.  Just before baking, brush the creature with the beaten egg.

Ready to fly into the oven

Bake at 350° for about 45 minutes.  I covered my bird with baking parchment and foil about halfway through.  We have a fan oven and things brown pretty quickly in there!

I was very pleased with the result!  It tasted good too.  Fun to make and fun to eat.

I and my bird!!

And here’s the whole beautiful spread of party food.

"Have nothing in your mouth that you do not know to be tasty or believe to be beautiful" - Melinda Schwakhofer

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