Thursday, March 26, 2009

yellow vineyards

I was just looking through some photos and came across these two I took last weekend when I was driving back from Napa. I was there for the Martha Steward Everyday Food radio show with Sandy Gluck. I got up Friday morning while it was still dark and drove across the valley floor in dense fog for an early morning call. It was absolutely freezing and little did I know we'd be taping outside at Vellagio. Luckily I brought some J Vineyards Cuvee 20 Sparkling to warm us up along with almond and fennel breakfast breadsticks I'd made and preserved feta in McEvoy olive oil. The whole crew was there for the Mustard Festival. As I drove back to the City, the vineyards were glowing with yellow mustard and these woolie weeders eating their way across Cline Vineyards!


2 ¼ teaspoons active dry yeast
3 ¼ cups unbleached bread flour
1/2 cup coarsely ground toasted almonds
1 tablespoon sugar
1 1/2 cups lukewarm water, about 110°f
2 tablespoons coarsely ground fennel seeds
2 teaspoons salt
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
½ cup sliced almonds with skins
1/2 cup semolina

In a bowl, stir together the yeast, 1/2 cup of the flour, and 1/2 cup warm water. Let stand until the mixture bubbles and rises slightly, 30 minutes. Add the remaining 2 1/2 cups flour, half of the toasted ground almonds, sugar, 1 cup warm water, fennel seeds, the salt, and olive oil, and stir together to form a ball. Knead on a lightly floured surface, kneading in the Parmigiano gradually, until smooth, elastic and slightly tacky to the touch, 7 to 10 minutes. Alternately this can be made in an electric mixer on slow speed using the dough hook, kneading for 5 minutes.

Using floured hands, press and shape the dough into a 15 by 5-inch rectangle on an oiled baking sheet. Brush with oil, cover loosely with plastic wrap, and let rise in a warm place, about 75°f, until doubled in volume, 1 to 1 1/4 hours.

Place a pizza stone on the bottom shelf of the oven and preheat to 450°f.

Sprinkle both sides of the dough with the semolina and the sliced almonds. Cut the dough into 5 equal 1-inch strips in the long direction. Cut the dough crosswise into 5 sections. This will make 20 pieces. Pick up each piece of dough and roll and stretch to fit the width of a baking sheet, about 8 to 10 inches long. Place in a single layer, 1 inch apart, on an oiled baking sheet. Bake in the middle shelf of the oven until light golden, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove the breadsticks from the baking sheet and place directly onto the baking stone and bake until golden and crisp, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool on a cooling rack.

Makes 20 breadsticks


Amy Sherman said...

Isn't Napa gorgeous right now? I'm heading up there to have lunch at Ubuntu this weekend. Love the blues, yellows and greens! It may not feel like Spring, but it sure looks like it.

Table Talk said...

Hi Joanne,
I am going to be on Martha Stewart's Everyday Food on June 26th. I stumbled upon your blog while doing some research on the show. I have your From Tapas to Meze cookbook; love the Turkish Ravioli with Lamb, Garlic, Mint, and Yogurt!
Congrats on your new book! Perfect time of the year for it's release...