Archives for posts with tag: flour and water


Drum roll for the new film. I have to admit, the Dedes are much better cooks than singers :) . This time they made flatbread, the recipe from the Artist’s Survival Cookbook on page 22. You can fill the bread with grated vegetables and cheese. Yummmmyyy.

For this film Devil wanted to be the director because it is his recipe in the book. He finally let me know what his gripe is with the rest of the Dedes. He finds them far too unprofessional and in his mind they have to seriously up their game. For this reason Mouse didn’t show him the final version before she uploaded it to Youtube. She wanted to avoid the scathing remarks he will no doubt air as soon as he sees the film. That would have been too much for her yesterday.

yeast plait

Today is baking day. We are making a couple of items so we have something to offer before the first bread will come out of the oven tomorrow. Early this morning we started off with a yeast plait, and would you believe it, it got slightly burned around the edges. Cash Cow was very unhappy and her initial thought was, she will have to do it again, we can’t take that thing to our event. Alien, who has a very sunny disposition tries to talk her out of it. In his opinion nobody will notice once it is cut up. I don’t know. I leave them to sort it out :)

I use my oven all the time and it really should not have happend. This of course makes me wonder how the two ovens a the church will behave. I never used them before. We might head towards disaster.

And while I am writing this in a disgruntled mood, can anybody tell me where the spellcheck function in WordPress is hiding now? I can’t find the button, or am I the only one who needs a spell-checker?

Last Sunday I grabbed two of my puppets and together we made the best bun recipe from page 32. Just to prove that it is that simple. I hope you like it, it would be great if you could share. It is such a great Christmas present. Buy a bag of flour, a wooden spoon and the Artist’s Survival Cookbook and you can make someone a really happy kitchen god(ess).

thank you_ copy

I am getting very close now making my famous Artist’s Survival Cookbook available on CreateSpace. After puppeteer-friend Tony had a good read and made correction, the lovely Heather went over the whole thing again with a fine comb. I have entered the latest changes and uploaded the complete file again. That is it now! In the meantime I have created a preview on CreateSpace. Everyone can look at and review the book here:

There is an independend book festival on first weekend in October. My garden guru friend Dee has organised a stall and offered to share it with me.  I also have seen the first proof copies from CreateSpace and I am happy with the print result. You guys can not believe how excited I am right now!




mouse sniffling

Mouse and L’Artiste have been working hard over the last two weeks to get the crowdfunding campaign together. They made one film, which was far too long and they also realised it looked like they are promoting a cooking show. No, they really wanted to entice people to support their art and their cookbook – the book they’ve spent every free minute on and laboured over for the last six months. They decided to reshoot. They really wanted to get it right. Anyway, they finally got the campaign up. Last weekend Mouse was busy sending out emails telling every man and his dog that the campaign is finally up and running, and then…. nothing!

This morning I found Mouse sitting in a corner of the art cupboard, crying her little heart out. “Nobody wants the book” she said between sobs. “Absolutely nobody! It’s not that they have to give us money for nothing, they’ll get a full-colour book with over 100 pages for it!”

“Give it time” said L’Artiste with a brave face, though I thought I saw the glint of a tear in his eye as well.

pledge me

Hurrah, I have done it. The crowdfunding campaign for the Artist’s survival cookbook is finally up and running. If you pledge, you basically pre-order the book but you also can pledge for a Lil’Dede, or the real thing, a Dede! They are not often for sale. Have a look, have a heart, and pledge. :) And if you know someone who might be interested in the book, share! Get the word out! The Dedes and I are grateful for all your support.



corn chips

Wait, there is more! Last night Skeleton Edeltraut came into the kitchen. This is a very rare sight, as Edeltraut lives in the closet and doesn’t eat at all! Mouse wondered what brought her into the kitchen. It turns out Skeleton Edeltraut has a big problem. Bad Conscience has moved in with her. You may know that Bad Conscience latches on to other Dedes only to make them feel very, very uncomfortable. He will drag them down if they don’t manage to move him on quickly. Of course he never likes what the other Dedes do and currently he takes great pleasure in poking fun at the Artist’s Survival Cookbook. He informed Skeleton he was a celiac and couldn’t eat anything with gluten. This is why the book is total rubbish.

“The poor thing.” Mouse said empathetically. “I can understand why he thinks the book is no good. True, it is not for him. But it is very helpful for the 99 percent of the population that hasn’t got a problem with gluten.”

“What do you mean?” asked Skeleton. “I thought far more than just 1 in 100 people are affected.”

“Some have non-celiac gluten sensitivity” said Mouse, “and some just avoid gluten because it is fashionable at the moment.”

“But what shall I do? I have to feed Bad Conscience. I have some guests coming on the weekend and I don’t want him to be a party pooper. You know how he can be.”

“You’re right,” said Mouse. “No matter what the reason for his gluten-abstinence, he has to eat.” She didn’t have to think long and suggested that Skeleton Edeltraut try corn chips. They are easy to make, truly delicious and go well with any dip.  Mouse explained they are made from finely ground corn meal (the one you can use to make polenta) and water, then baked in the oven with no fat. She poured some of the corn meal on a plate for Edeltraut to show to Bad Conscience. He wasn’t too interested in what it was as long as it is gluten free.

“As there is no gluten in corn meal the dough doesn’t stick together well. It is more like making a dough from fine sand.” Mouse explained. “To make life easier, use baking paper. The dough falls apart when moved.”


1 cup of corn meal, 1/2 cup of water, 1 teaspoon of salt (chilli pepper and other spices to flavour)

Baking paper


Preheat the oven to 2000C

Pour corn meal in a bowl and add the spices you want to use. Mix well. Then add the water and knead for a few minutes. The dough should be wet and not too crumbly (it’s similar to the mixture you use to build sand castles at the beach). When formed into a ball, it should hold its shape. If it crumbles add more water.

Use two sheets of baking paper the size of the baking tray. Put the dough on one, cover with the other piece of paper and roll out with a rolling pin until it’s 1 millimeter thick. Remove the top baking paper. Cut the dough into triangles and place in the oven for 8 minutes. The thinner the dough, the easier they brown, so watch!

Remove the tray from the oven, flip the baking paper over (so that all the shapes are turned over) and remove the paper. At this stage the chips are quite soft, a little like leather, as they have only dried on one side. Put them back in the oven for another 8 minutes or until crisp. They are better overdone, than under.

corn chips done

bagels and boy

Boy is one of the Dedes who was in the Wallace Art Awards a few years back. For this event he had to spend two months in a gallery linked to Liar, Alien, Ms SM and Little Smug Devil. It seems that the experience made a deep impression on him, as he has worn his cap pulled down low over his face ever since and he hardly speaks. Mouse was very surprised to hear Boy had revealed to young Lou that he would like to make bagels. She was even more surprised to learn he didn’t need any help in the kitchen. He knew exactly what he was doing and he was obviously in love with the finished product. The others didn’t dare tell him that they are now so over things baked from flour and water. Mouse said it will definitely be the last recipe. It is another yeast dough recipe, but bagels are not just baked in the oven. They are boiled in a slight sugary solution first. They are soft and spongy and of course everybody was curious how he got the hole in the middle.


3 cups of flour, 1.5 teaspoons of dry yeast, 1 heaped teaspoon of sugar, 1 cup lukewarm water. Sesame or poppy seeds to sprinkle on top.

Water and 4 tablespoons of sugar for the boiling solution.


Pour flour in a bowl, make a well in the middle, add sugar and yeast and water. Let rest for 15 minutes until the yeast is sloshy. Then mix in everything and knead on a flat surface until it becomes a soft and elastic dough. Knead very well for 5 minutes. If the dough is still too sticky, add a little more flour and knead again. Put dough back into the bowl. Cover with a clean tea towel and let rest in a warm place for an hour.

Preheat oven to 2200C

Knead the dough again and divide it into eight equal balls. Flatten the balls into a disk shape. With the handle of a wooden spoon poke a hole in the middle of each disk. Stick your index finger through the hole and swing the dough around your finger, like you are exercising with a hoola hoop, until the hole has markedly increased. It should have a diameter of approximately 4 centimetres. Place on a floured baking tray.

Use a shallow pan in which you can place more than one bagel at the time. Add as much water as is needed to submerge about three quarters of the bagel. Add sugar and bring to a boil. When the water is boiling, place the bagels in the solution and boil for two minutes on each side. Use a slotted spoon to take them out of the solution. Shake off excess water and place on the baking tray. Sprinkle the seeds over them.

Bake for 20 minutes.


lou cream puff

Lou was so excited he could finally make the cream puffs. He went straight into the kitchen and started working on them. It’s a rather strange process, but the result is worth it and it doesn’t take too long. The product is an airy, soft pastry that you often find on the dessert menu under the name profiterole. It’s usually filled with whipped cream and drizzled with chocolate sauce. It goes equally well with icecream or custard, or even with cream cheese or a spicy dip. Lou really wanted to have the recipe in the book as it is so different from all the other recipes and it contains flour, water, butter and egg. To aid the puffing, a little baking soda doesn’t go amiss, but it’s not absolutely necessary. The pastry puffs up due to its high water content and the eggs. Don’t open the oven door during the first 15 minutes of baking as this will cause them to collapse.

Lou wasn’t keen on sharing the finished puffs with the others. If Mouse hadn’t caught him hiding in his kennel, quietly gulping down one pastry after another, the Dedes wouldn’t have found out what a skilled baker he is.


50 g butter, 1 scant cup of water, 1 cup of flour, 3 to 4 eggs, half a teaspoon of baking soda (optional).

If you have it, add 2 heaped teaspoons of cornflour to the flour.


Preheat the oven to 2100C

Put water and butter in a pot. Bring to the boil. Mix cornflour and flour and when the water boils, pour it all in at once. Move the pot off the element and stir vigourisly with a wooden spoon until it turns into a nice clump of dought that leaves the side of the pot and a white film forms at the base of the pot. Put back on the hot element for another minute while stirring continously. Remove from the heat and let cool for 2 minutes.

Stir in the eggs one after another. It doesn’t mix well to start with, but with continous stirring it turns once again into nice soft dough. Enough eggs have been added when the dough has a shiny surface. Be warned, it is a very gooey affair.

If you are using baking soda, stir it in last.

If you have one, use a piping bag to squirt the dough onto an oiled baking tray dusted with flour. Otherwise use two spoons to make little heaps. Allow enough space for them to triple their size.

Bake for 20 to 30 minutes until they are golden brown. Don’t open the door for the first 15 minutes while the balls are steaming up (hence puffs).

If you want to fill them, cut them immediately when you take them out of the oven. To cut the lid, use a sharp knife and cut through the middle three quarters of the way. So you won’t have to puzzle afterwards, which lid belong to which base. Then allow to cool.

They freeze very well and thaw quickly. So it is a good item to prepare for unexpected guests.

cream puff copy




mouse and lou

Lou, the young dog, went to Mouse with a complaint. He insisted the puffs should be included in the recipe book. If crumb cake and yorkshire pudding can be included, he argued, then puffs need to be in as well. The ingredient list is very similar and puffs really contain water, not milk, but their preparation is very different as it is a choux pastry. They can also be eaten with either a savoury or sweet filling, so they have everything going for them, he concluded. Mouse listened to him carefully and as she has the tendency to always agree with the last person she speaks with, the puffs are now back on the list. “But that’s it then” she said.

“There are still a few Dedes in the art cupboard who haven’t had a chance to hand in their recipes” Lou continued. “Boy for example is keen to do bagels. He is just too timid to come forward. You shouldn’t overlook the quiet ones.”

Mouse dropped her notepad and was close to tears. “Are we ever going to finish? You know we haven’t had any deep fried recipes or wafers yet either” she said, her voice quivering. “I deliberately excluded them because you need special equipment.”

Lou didn’t know how to handle the situation. “Puffs and bagels” he said in a concillatory voice. “And that’s it. Right!”

“Whatever,” Mouse said and picked up her notepad to write down the latest addition.