Monday, July 11, 2011

Life This Week: July 11, 1938

Shirley Temple is on the cover of this issue looking very cute in her overalls in a wheat field in Kansas.  I wanted to recreate this photo for the blog, but I actually don't know anyone with a wheat field.  Amazing, isn't it, considering most of the state is blanketed with industrial farms?  I'm totally considering buying a pair of overalls now, though.

I also love the article about Britons outdoors, especially the coverage of the Duchess of Kent's hats at ascot.

Find out how "Sweden has found the way to make capitalism serve the people" in an article about the country.

The photos accompanying "Mothers and Daughters Wear the Same Clothes" are great examples of casual '30s attire.

This article, "Life Goes to a Party to Celebrate the End of Trolly Transportation in Tacoma, Wash." makes me sad.  A lot of towns, including Wichita, lost a great form of public transportation when trolly lines were removed and trolly cars were replaced with buses.

Just in time for Bastille Day, the Movie of the Week is Marie Antoinette:
Poster from Doctor Macro

Portrait of Norma Shearer from Doctor Macro

English-speakers may claim Marie Antoinette said, "Let them eat cake," but the literal translation from the French is "brioche." To be fair, there's no evidence the queen ever made this suggestion! However, a viewing of Marie Antoinette seemed like the perfect time to try out a recipe for bread-machine brioche I've been aching to try for a while now.  There's also a wonderfully photo-heavy tutorial.  The only change I made was leaving out the sugar topping, because I thought I had sanding sugar but I couldn't find it.  The bread is more than delicious enough without it.  I also froze the second loaf before its final rise, so that I wouldn't have a lot of stale brioche on my hands.  In the handy tips department, return the second half of dough to the refrigerator while you braid the first half.  It was so warm in the kitchen that it started to get melty and oily from the butter and I had to stick it back in the fridge to firm up.  I also used my Silpat to form the dough, which made things easy-peasy.  Oh, and be sure to add the extra egg yolk.  My CSA eggs made the dough so yellow it looked (and felt) like Play-Dough, which was awesome.

Because you're wondering, I'll tell you that the brioche tastes at least as good as it looks, if I do say so myself.  I think it might be better than some of the brioche we ate while in Paris...

Edited 7/13/11:
On Laura's suggestion, I'm submitting this post to YeastSpotting.  Thanks, Laura! 


  1. Oh my god that looks so delicious. I'm literally craving for it now, and it's midnight on this side of the globe!

    <3 Belly B

  2. That brioche looks so good, I can almost smell and taste it! I'll have to search for a loaf here in Berkeley.

    Beautiful Norma Shearer b&w pic.

  3. mmmm, if your baking tastes as good as it looks... must be heavenly.

  4. I can't believe you did that in the bread machine! Astounding, my friend.

    Do you normally freeze dough before it's final rise? I never know how to freeze it...

  5. I don't yet know how the freezing will turn out with the brioche, but I typically do the shaping step and then freeze before the final rise. I just wrap it in plastic wrap and then place in a plastic bag. The rising from the freezer takes a long time, but I've had good results in the past with dinner rolls and stollen.

  6. Your brioche looks fabulous! I really enjoyed the "Mothers and Daughters Wear the Same Clothes." I'm sure you remember why and am surprised you didn't make some comment! Poor Marie - I just finished a book about her - I cried, of course! Speaking of watermelon cookies (which you did in your comment), I would love to have some, too!

  7. OMG - what a gorgeous brioche! I would love to read the magazine articles - especially the one on the Duchess's hats.

  8. I don't know if I have ever had brioche! Your post sure did intrigue me though, so I think I am going to have to add it to my list of things to make.

  9. Love Norma Shearer and your brioche looks fantastic.

  10. That looks delish

  11. That brioche is fabulous looking--you should send a link to YeastSpotting.

    I love that picture of Norma Shearer--stunning.

    Very interesting about the mother daughter clothes. I read an article about eight or ten years ago in which some pundit complained that adults today dress like overgrown toddlers in casual play clothes. I'm not sure if this is the beginning of the trend of adults dressing like children, or just proof how differently adults and children usually dressed at this time.

  12. that bread looks soo good :)

  13. I really struggled to make a nice brioche - a reminder to give it another go. Love the intense yellow of yours.

  14. your brioche looks absolutely perfect! I love the photo with the little shirley temple in the field. how cute she was! and I appreciated the article "mothers and daughters wear the same clothes" of course ;)

  15. It looks WONDERFUL Lauren. I haven't had a really good one in so long. Thank you for recommending KAF's recipe and your tips. :-)


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