This caramel sauce is ENTICING!

The holidays are here!

Happy month of THANKSGIVING! There’s SO MUCH to be grateful for. The holidays are back once again and I’m excited! It’s one of my most favorite times of the year.

2021 Thankful Challenge

The entire month of November, I participate in a #thankfulchallenge on my social media platforms. Each day, I list something I’m grateful for. It could be anything. There are no stringent rules. It’s something I started in 2018 and it’s been an annual tradition ever since. I always get excited about my thankful challenge postings.

Something that really touched my heart this year was that a high school classmate was inspired to join the challenge. They shared that they’re tired of the negativity and wanted to give this challenge a go. Awesome! I’ve enjoyed reading and being inspired by their daily posts. I love to inadvertently motivate and inspire others. We could use more of that in this world.

Quick recap of the last seven days of the #2021thankfulchallenge

Here are the things I’ve been grateful for this first week in November:

  1. Peaceful and tranquil lake.
  2. “You Are My Glory,” Chinese drama series.
  3. Hugs.
  4. Love.
  5. Hawai’i’s KIKU TV (was a channel that aired multi-cultural shows).
  6. “Untamed” by Glennon Doyle
  7. The end of daylight savings time.

Visit my social media pages listed at the end of this post to view my detailed posts.

Highlighting homemade caramel sauce

This week, I’m highlighting caramel sauce. I was ecstatic to make this. I love caramel. I didn’t know how easy it was to make this glorious sauce. I was gleaming for joy after the outcome. I couldn’t believe how simple it was. Was I dreaming? I know what I’ll be making more often for desserts. Hehe…

The recipe and cooking equipment needed:

  • 8 oz. sugar
  • 2 fl.oz. water
  • ¾ tsp lemon juice (or corn syrup)- I chose lemon juice
  • 6 fl.oz. heavy cream (or water for clearer sauce)- I chose heavy cream
  • 1 tsp. Kosher salt (for salted caramel)- I decided to use the salt in my recipe
  • 4 fl.oz. milk (optional- to thin)- I opted not to add additional milk to thin out the sauce
  • Food scale
  • Measuring bowls/spoons for mise en place ingredients
  • Pastry brush
  • Whisk
  • Saucepan
  • Mason jar (for storing)

Production steps:

  1. Mise en place ingredients.
  2. Combine sugar, water, and lemon juice in a saucepan. Do not stir.
  3. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. 
  4. Wash sides with a pastry brush as needed to avoid crystallization.
  5. Cook the syrup to the caramel stage, where it will turn a honey amber color.
  6. Towards the end of the cooking stage, turn heat to low to avoid burning the sugar or letting it get too dark.
  7. Remove from heat.
  8. Slowly whisk in the cool cream. If some sugar solidifies, then return to a low heat and stir until all the caramel is dissolved.
  9. Add 1 tsp of salt or more to taste for salted caramel.
  10. Cool completely.
  11. Store in the fridge for up to two weeks.

Da pixs!

Before I close, I want to give a BIG shout-out and say THANK YOU, MAHALO, to all my supporters here as well as on my social media platforms. It means a lot to me to have lovely support who views, reads, likes, and comments on my blog and social media. Thank YOU VERY MUCH! Wishing all of you a fabulous new week! Until next time!

In thanksgiving,

FS x

, ,

FooDNisTaSouL

Bon appétit French baguettes

Halloween greetings!

Happy Halloween! I hope you and your loved ones had a spooktacular and bootiful holiday.

Updates on life

It’s been a couple weeks since my last post. I was away visiting my dear friends on the mainland. I went to North Carolina, North Dakota, and Minnesota. It was a wonderful trip. I love traveling and experiencing life away from home. I’m so grateful for the time I had with my friends and that I was safe from COVID. Thank you, God, and to my guardian angels. I’ve selected some favorite pictures from my trip.

  • L top: Sunset near my hotel in Durham, NC.
  • L bottom: Beautiful day in downtown Durham.
  • R: Sidewalk in downtown Durham.
  • L: Cool chess board/pieces at Babb’s Coffee House in Fargo, ND.
  • R: Downtown Fargo.

Baking my own bread

This week, I baked French bread. I can smell the fresh aroma as I sit here typing this post. Mmm, it smells lovely! Baking this bread was a weekend’s work. I had to re-do my assignment twice. The first time, the loaves almost looked burnt. I describe it as badly suntanned, haha. Thankfully, the inside of the bread was fine. It was actually good. It was just very difficult to cut and bite into because it was so hard. Eesh! Thank goodness I didn’t break my teeth. Ha!

Yikes to the picture on the left, right? Gosh! I learned that we can’t always follow the recipe’s baking time. The recipe said 30 minutes but look at the outcome after 30 minutes. It was not good and unacceptable in my eyes to submit to my chef instructor.

The second time, I watched my oven like a hawk, setting timers every 10 minutes, as I peeked through the oven window. The color I was looking for was golden brown. After 25 minutes, I took the loaves out. It looked golden brown from the oven window. The loaves were so beautiful, soft, and chewy, with a bit of crispiness from the crust. I was so pleased and happy. Yay to baking bread from scratch!

Recipe and culinary equipment for the French bread:

Here is the very simple recipe for this time-consuming process. Make sure you set a lot of time aside to make this.

  • 375g bread flour
  • 262.5g water (may need to use less to prevent the dough from getting really sticky)
  • 9g active dry yeast
  • 7.5g Kosher salt
  • Food scale
  • Measuring bowls for ingredients
  • Mixing bowl
  • Plastic scraper
  • Baking sheet
  • Parchment paper
  • Rubber spatula
  • Timer
  • Plastic wrap
  • Big cutting board (for kneading) or counterspace

Production steps:

The production steps to making this fresh and comforting bread:

  1. Sanitize kitchen (sink, countertops, stovetop/oven, cupboard handles, phone, computer).
  2. Scale ingredients.
  3. Mise en place ingredients.
  4. Combine all ingredients into a bowl and mix with a rubber spatula until the dough forms and it is fully mixed.
  5. Cover with plastic wrap and rest for one hour.
  6. Release dough from the bowl with a scraper.
  7. Stretch the dough into a rectangle and fold into thirds (add flour onto the bench (counterspace) if dough is sticky).
  8. Round dough into a ball and put it back into the bowl.
  9. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
  10. Weigh dough and divide into 250g.
  11. Shape the weighted dough into a ball and bench for 5-7 minutes. Cover with plastic wrap.
  12. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  13. Shape dough into a baguette by shaping dough into a rectangle, folding it into thirds, and pressing the seams with the heel of your palm.
  14. Roll the dough with your hands (spreaded fingers) into 12-17” baguette with tapered (narrowed) ends.
  15. Transfer to a lined baking sheet.
  16. Proof (rest) shaped dough, covered in plastic wrap until it doubles in size.
  17. Preheat the oven to 450ºF.
  18. Slash proofed dough through outer skin in an angled cut, covering the length of the loaf.
  19. Bake until the crust is golden brown.
  20. Cool on a rack for at least one hour.
  21. Cut the baguette and serve.

Annual #thankfulchallenge

In 2018, I started a #thankfulchallenge, where I list 30 things I’m grateful for during the month of November. Please visit my Facebook and Instagram each day to see what I’m thankful for. I’ll be listing the recap in my blog posts each Sunday in November. I’m excited! Thanksgiving is coming sooner than we know it! Let the holidays begin!

Cheers!

FS x

Hello, I’m baaaack!

Howdy All! I’m back. I apologize for being MIA for so long. I hope y’all had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday. I also hope that everyone has been hanging in there and taking good care of themselves, physically, mentally, and emotionally. We’ve all endured a wild and challenging year. We’ve made it to the final month of 2020. The year is almost over. Everyone is eager for this year to end and for 2021 to begin. Let’s finish this last month with a bang!

During the week of Thanksgiving, I created my first ever talk-through video on how to make fresh cranberry-blueberry sauce with red wine sauce. It was quite exciting to make.

You can view the entire video on my Foodnista Soul’s Facebook and Instagram: http://www.facebook.com/foodnista.soul and http://www.instagram.com/foodnista.soul.

I’ll be back to post more soon.

Have a blessed holiday season. Remember to take it one day at a time. Breathe!

FS x