i ate lye. it was an accident. i was so excited with how yummy my pretzel challah turned out that i wanted to pretzelize other things. i thought about pretzel donuts and pretzel pie, but then i also thought about my pants and how i didn't want to get too big for them. so i made a compromise with myself to try out pretzel croutons, and i also thought that it would have been a great recipe for first time lye users, as it wouldn't have involved splashing a whole loaf of bread into a bath.  

the first batch failed because i just put way too much lye on my bread cubes, which were way not stale enough. for the second batch, i brushed the lye onto toasted bread cubes with a pastry brush. and the lye beheaded my pastry brush. when i tested one out of the oven, a teensy bit of liquid got up in my grills and it was way not hot enough for the dangerous stuff to have been deactivated. oops. and so began 10 minutes of chugging water interspersed with google searching "what to do if a teensy bit of lye gets in your mouth."

i'm fine. 

the slight tingling was probably all in my head. 

and i ate a lot of halvah to cure myself of the emotional stress.

and aside from being poisonous, the croutons also tasted like butt.  

so here is this salad that is made of backup dancers and the understudy to the crouton, the toasted hazelnut. oh, and a very swell dressing!

 arugula salad with toasted hazelnuts, a pickled egg, and ginger miso dressing

makes two servings 

salad ingredients

2 large handfuls of arugula

a pinch of salt and pepper

2 small handfuls of toasted hazelnuts* 

1 pickled egg (i like this recipe) , sliced

1 sweet apple, like honey crisp, chopped into wedges

*try toasting hazelnuts on a bed of cacao nibs and storing them in an airtight container with the nibs for a few days. you'll get a very subtle yet very tasty effect. 

dressing ingredients 

1 tsp minced fresh ginger

1 tb honey

1 tb miso paste

1 tb rice vinegar

juice from 1/2 a lemon


combine the salad ingredients, combine the dressing ingredients... and, girl, you toss that salad.