I received two new cookbooks for Christmas. The very best gifts are something you love that you could never buy for yourself.
My sister gave me Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day which made the rounds on blogs about a year and a half ago, I think. She had no idea that I wanted it and I never expected to have it. I tried out the first recipe yesterday and the result was amazing. The bread is the best I've made and I've been baking a long time. Furthermore, it's a great solution for a smaller family because it is possible to make a small amount. The biggest problem I have in baking is that if I bake an entire loaf of bread I will eat an entire loaf of bread - so I don't bake as frequently as I'd like.
Warning: When the book tells you to preheat a boiler tray for steam do not foolishly grab a pyrex casserole dish. These are not interchangeable as I found out when I poured cold water into the preheated pyrex dish and watched in horror the epic and deafeningly loud explosion of pyrex which sent glass shards flying all over my kitchen. My husband was standing beside me. Far from thinking I'm even more absentminded than he thought (because, of course, had I given it a second thought I could have predicted this explosion) he just thought it was really cool.
My mom and dad gave me Martha Stewart Cookies. It's wonderful and includes packaging ideas as well as recipes. I made the double chocolate brownies on Saturday for a party and melted peppermint bark on the top which may have been gilding the lily but was also super yummy.
We played Sorry! yesterday as the snow fell (again) and I knit by the fire. I'm still very happily wearing my pajamas and have switched the tune in my head from the pre-December 25th loop of Oscar the Grouch's "I hate Christmas" to the post December 25th loop of "It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year". I've finished three books since the 25th. I'm also slowly planning our spring studies. It's oddly comforting and I would like to thank Seton and Memoria Press for sending out new catalogs last week.