• Emily Neilson

Warm & Fuzzy? Try Warm & Flaky!

If you're reading this, I hope you've had a special last few days. If your last few days have been hard or felt hollow, I hope you had moments along the way of feeling dang good and dang alive. Hey, this morning's sunrise and my first sip of coffee usually go a long way for helping me feel warm and fuzzy.

We've had a special last few days in the By the Vedge kitchen. Tons of activity going into the holiday – with Christmas morning sticky buns (my best, ever!) and Boxing Day Brunch vegan strata (super yum!) and chocolate scones today (also, super yum!). Presently, I'm enjoying wearing my wool L.L. Bean long-johns waiting for my vegan croissant dough to proof. I am going for warm & fuzzy and warm & flaky all at once!

The thing is, my first attempt at my vegan croissant dough went awry. I added 1 cup too many of flour. All it takes to derail accurate measuring is a day-dream to float in the way of the meticulous mind. As I dumped in the last cup, I had a lurking feeling I had gone too far... Indeed, I was right. Some hours later, I lifted back the towel, and my dough looked more like a brain – with lobes and fissures and nodules – than a smooth baby's bottom. I threw it away and started again, the second time hopefully with more success... so far, so good...

I challenge you to make a cooking play-list for yourself this week – of all recipes you have ever wanted to try – and finally try them. Celebrate 2020 with them. Savor them. After the croissants will come soft pretzels or stromboli, for me. I'll just be here in my long johns, enjoying low-stakes contemplations while my dough rises and the sun sets on 2020!


Low-Stakes Contemplations on Croissants

– The French must be so skinny because it is hard, calorie burning work to roll dough.

– The French must be great arm-wrestlers.

– I need to strengthen my forearms for this project...

– For croissants to be ready by 9:00 a.m., one must shoot out of bed by 5:10 a.m. No later.

– It's a good idea to wear a sleeveless shirt. Not a loose-sleeved pajama shirt.

– Also, it's a good idea to wear a sports bra.

– Is there a better rolling technique that I am missing? Please advise. Si vous plait.

– Of the 9 croissants I rolled out, I think the 9th **could** be my most legitimate.

– Croissants 2-5: not strong enough croissant-aesthetic

– Pour quoi must croissants rest and rest and rest and rest and rest? Merde! I have a day to get on with!

– Merde! The smoke alarm is going off! Merde!

– Worth it. Worth it. Oh so worth it.

Finally: It's important to undertake projects in the kitchen. Otherwise, you will just keep gobbling down the luxuries of life like they are fast food, without even knowing what the blood, sweat, tears, and lactic acid (metaphorically) really, really means.

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