Today we are going to discuss fears. Well, actually just one of my fears, but first lets see what the dictionary says fear is. Fear [feer] n. (plural fears) frightening thought: an idea, thought, or other entity that causes feelings of fear, irrational fears.
Have you ever noticed that some people (me) “fear” the weirdest things? For example, I have spent most of my adult life avoiding recipes that contain yeast. I have no idea why? I cannot even remember trying to bake something with yeast that could have possibly led to this type of trauma. Yet, the very mention of yeast has me grasping for my asthma inhaler. Why am I so scared of yeast? It’s very irrational. Which leads me to one of my New Year's resolutions: to face and hopefully conquer my fears.
You see, I couple months ago I joined a little group known as the Daring Bakers. In the hopes of conquering my fear of yeast. I figured, I have made this commitment to the Daring Bakers and I must bake whatever the challenge is. And wouldn’t you know it; my second challenge was bread, with yeast. Dang.
Do you know what happened? I did it. I baked bread. It wasn’t easy and the bread was ugly, but I didn’t care. (Most fights end ugly anyway.) And I won the fight ugly bread and all. Now that I am fearless, I can go back to all the recipes I skipped over because they listed yeast as an ingredient. That’s the real prize, all the beautiful yeast based goodies that I can now make. I still have a couple of “irrational-fear” fights left, (...ahem) French macarons. Oh, how I love/hate you. Eventually I’m sure I’ll win this one too.
The recipe for the Kugelhopf is from Dorie Greenspan’s book “Baking”. It’s a long recipe with lots of waiting around for the yeast. Which means you can go about your day without too much worry. It’s definitely worth the wait and it makes great leftovers. It's a simple yeast cake/bread filled with raisins and then glazed with butter-sugar-cinnamon mixture. Just divine with a cup of coffee.