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A Shocking Confession

May 8th, 2010 (10:51 pm)
thoughtful
Tags: ,

current mood: thoughtful

I bake my own bread.

If you don't know me well, you're probably now thinking I'm a Domestic Goddess. If you do know me well, you're probably now chuckling at the thought of me as a Domestic Goddess. After all, I haven't ironed since 1992. I'd rather make reservations than dinner. And my floors are usually covered with Cheerios. Domestic is not my forte. But I do bake my own bread.

I'm not crazy. I lack the time, patience, motivation, and counter tops for kneading dough. But I own a really good bread machine - a Zojirushi Home Bakery Supreme -- and have been experimenting with different recipes and different kinds of flour. I always use at least a cup of whole wheat or another whole grain flour. For the rest I may use bread flour (much better than all-purpose flour), flax meal, cracked wheat, seven-grain cereal, oatmeal, spelt, or whatever other grains I have on hand. Or some combination thereof. A few spoonfuls of wheat gluten improves the texture; none of us is allergic.

Sometimes I add potato flakes. If a sweetener is required, I usually go for honey rather than sugar. Some of my breads are fat-free; other times I use vegetable oil, butter, or margarine. As I gain experience, I stray from the recipes and create my own combinations. Lately I've been adding herbs: usually a little dried rosemary or basil.

Most recipes call for water or milk, but I often substitute different liquids for all or part of the water: carrot juice, apple juice, and vegetable stock add nutrition and flavor. It's another small step in the constant battle to get vegetables and fruits into my son. I like using buttermilk in place of milk. But often it has to be buttermilk powder, because I like to pour the ingredients into the machine at night and set the timer to have the bread ready when I wake up. When I'm using the timer, I can't follow a recipe that calls for perishable ingredients, because they'll be sitting out all night.

And then morning comes, and I wake to the fragrance of baking bread, which fills the house for hours and tempts me downstairs to sample a slice.

It's almost enough to make me feel, for a few minutes, like a Domestic Goddess.

Comments

Posted by: White Raven, with or without a 13 (whytraven)
Posted at: May 18th, 2010 05:23 am (UTC)

The smell of baking bread is one of life's great pleasures.

One of the most romantic scenes I ever found in a movie was in "Stranger Than Fiction." The tax guy fell in love with the baker he was auditing. He brought her a tray of flour samplers and said that he brought her flours. :)

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