Monday, June 02, 2014

Little things add up!

I've been reminded of this in different ways recently.

How little things add up.  

Metalsmithing is like this in so many ways.

Each piece we make is the product of so many small steps along the way. And not only do we build on those steps but how well we complete each step often impacts the final outcome.

Little things add up!

Most pieces we make are the product of smaller components that we've made. Make earwires, make connectors, make a focal, made small detail elements. . . .and............

these little things add up!

Into a fully finished functional piece of jewelry. 

Janice Fowler, Handcrafted earrings
Earring components by Doxallo Studio in progress

Earrings ready for final clean up and polish

 Part of what has me thinking about little things though is this.

That is my bread dough getting ready for it's first rise. 

If making sandwich bread from scracth doesn't teach me to slow down and see the little things, I don't know what will! 

Every little thing you do to that recipe, all along the way, impacts how it turns out. 

From mixing proportions, to kneading time, to rising temperature and duration.....I am learning this by trial and error (and 3 loaves of bread in less than 10 days)

Every little thing, every choice, they build on each other. 

This lovely little lump of dough  belongs to my grandson. He often joins me in the kitchen. 

He likes to help. and I like to let him. :)  

From pouring ingredients, to stirring, to kneading dough...I even let him crack eggs. 

He has his own technique he has developed - it goes like this:
tap tap tap, hold egg over secondary bowl, and fist it, smashing it to smithereens. It's quite effective. 

Yes, it's messy.  But it's really effective. :) 

I just scoop the shells out, wash his hand, and then he dumps the eggs into the main bowl. 

it works for us. 

and you know what? It's a little thing that we do together. One of many little things --- that will build on each other. and will contribute to something in him. Hopefully something positive. :) 

In addition to baking bread, I have made brownies twice in a ten day period. 

This is good -- YUM!

and this is bad...... Ummm, YUM! 

I have gotten in the habit of making my brownies in cupcake tins. Everyone gets a corner! 

A round corner, but let's not get technical. . . it's the same effect. 

Crunchy edges, chewy insides. Oh em gee. 
 hello calories! how'd you end up on my thighs? 

ohhhhh, yes..................

little things add up.

So, I suggest cutting them in half  BUT, here is another 'little thing' I started doing a few years ago. I add fresh ground flax seed to my brownies. . . and sometimes some ground oats. 

This stretches the batter a little and adds some healthful qualities to the brownies. 

It's a little thing, but if done in various foods we eat, these little dietary changes will add up! (you can also sub out some fat and other things but I haven't done any testing with that yet)

One last little thing. :)  

Try adding a tablespoon of instant coffee granules to your brownie batter. 

You'll thank me for it.