Stay warm. Bake bread.
In case you were wondering what 2014's recipe of the year would be, King Arthur Flour says it's their Classic 100% Whole Wheat Bread. Touted as one of the flour company's "guaranteed" recipes, the bread is "simple, delicious, not complicated, and makes you feel good about what you're feeding your family," according to a press release. "We are proclaiming this as the recipe of the year because we believe it's what is needed right now." Makes sense to us. Here's the recipe:
Baby, it's cold outside
We usually think of stockpiling for blizzards, but January's subzero onslaught shows that cold can keep us housebound as much as snow. With that in mind, Taste of Home shares its lists of top 10 pantry staples to keep great meals on the table until the car starts. Details and recipes are at www.tasteofhome.com, but the quick list: canned soups; beans; chocolate, for psychological reasons as much as energy; grains such as rice, pasta, quinoa; pancake mix; peanut or other nut butter; salmon or tuna in a pouch or can; bread, crackers or tortillas; honey, and — wait for it — marshmallow crème. Really? The ToH folks say you'll want it on hand for peanut butter and marshmallow crème sandwiches. Only 48 days of cabin fever till spring.
Caves work their magic
Congratulations to Caves of Faribault, which took honors at the annual Good Food Awards in San Francisco for their Jeffs' Select Gouda and St. Pete's Select blue cheese. The Minnesota cheesemakers were among 130 food and drink producers chosen from among more than 1,400 nationwide. They were noted for their product's excellence, but also their responsible practices regarding sustainability. To learn more about them — they encourage visits — go to www.faribaultdairy.com.
Tune in for inspiration
If your taste in baked goods runs more toward pastry, consider tuning in to Season 3 of the Chicago Restaurant Pastry Competition, available online. The series has won a regional Emmy and is refreshingly free of screamers and angst. The flip side is that these short segments don't include much detail, but they are aspirational in seeing what the chefs come up with on demand. In the first episode, they're thrown for a loop with artisan milkshakes. To check it out, visit http://jmpurepastry.com/VIDEO.html.