Saturday, April 12, 2014

K is for Knead and Kumquat

I’m disappointed none of you has asked for a food term yet. <pouty face>  I want the challenge! Please list a food term you are curious about in the Comments section below. And, as this is Saturday and the A-Z Challenge takes Sundays off, I won’t be posting again until Monday. Don’t you wonder what L will be? Ho ho ho!

K is for Knead
I included knead on my list not because people don’t know in general what kneading is but to explain why you knead and why not to take shortcuts. We are such an impatient lot that sometimes people don’t knead dough for as long as they should.

And just what does “should” mean? First a definition: Kneading is stretching, folding, and pushing dough so that gluten forms in the flour. Who cares? Well, you should if you want your bread to rise. Elastic strands form when you knead that keeps gases in the dough. Gases in the dough means it can rise.

Back in the day, all kneading was done with the hands (a great exercise, by the way!), but now many mixers and food processors come with attachments to do the kneading electrically.

Even my bread machine can knead! So if kneading by hand or machine, follow those recipe directions so you get the most rise out of your bread.

K is for Kumquat
Maybe you are really up on your tropical fruits, but I wasn’t always able to pick a kumquat out of a fruit line-up. You?

Kumquats are tiny citrus fruits resembling an oval or round orange. Kumquats have an interesting flavor contrast. The entire fruit is edible, often ending up sliced into salads or as a plate garnish. The rind is sweet and the flesh is really tart. Kumquats are a good source of essential nutrients like potassium and Vitamins A and C.

You may have seen kumquats in fruit preserves or maybe candied or even pickled. These have been cooked. Keep fresh kumquats refrigerated. And try them when you cook. People will wonder at your secret ingredient in that salad, salad dressing, or fruit salsa.


  1. I quit attempting to make bread a long time ago, because it would never rise for me. Now I know why. Thanks for the tip – I may try my hand at baking bread again.

    1. Debi, thanks for coming by. I hope this post helps you bread-making efforts, but there is a lot more that could be going on: humidity level, heat during proofing, age of the yeast, and more. But I hope this was the one factor that will do it for you. Please come by again. Left a comment at your challenge post, too!