Resuming a good old habit

When my daughter was small, her dad and I baked all our own bread.

We were a bit on the sanctimonious, vegetarian, natural ingredients, unprocessed, home-cooked food bandwagon.  We probably irritated some of our friends.  I know we got on the nerves of some of our family! Our main cookbooks, for many years were Mollie Katzen’s Moosewood Cookbook and the Enchanted Broccoli Forest:


The second one has a whole section on baking bread, which has the most wonderful illustrations and comments:


Illustrated Guide to the baking of Yeasted Bread

and I really love the frame with all the stars, showing how the dough comes alive:

It's alive!

It’s alive!

and then…

The dough is receptive to Praise.

The dough is receptive to Praise.

I’ve been making challah on Thursday nights for Friday night shabbat dinner most weeks, and I can throw that together in my sleep (and have done, as a matter of fact). I noticed this morning that we had run out of sandwich bread, and I thought “I can fix that tonight, without even going to the store.”  We have all the needed ingredients.  Why not?

I have been thinking that I would really love to bake every day bread on Sundays, that we could have through the week.  We would know all the ingredients.  No preservatives, no additives.  We can modify it to our tastes.  But, of course, that’s going to take a little trial and error (as did the challah, in the beginning).  I’m not actually much of a consumer of bread, but it is such a basic food.  And it really is an amazing experience to feel that dough coming alive under ones kneading palms.

So, here’s the product of tonight’s efforts:

Whole wheat bread with molasses

Whole wheat bread with molasses

We’ll see what the boys think…

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