I started out the week with great intentions and a calm spirit. I kept the calm spirit, but the week has flown by and my great intentions…meh! So last night, tired and out of time, I (stupidly?) decided to bake bread, somewhere between laundry and packing for a road trip. Yes, a road trip despite the fact that we had snow and freezing rain all night (and this morning, everything is white and coated thickly with ice). Baking bread, does not involve a machine; I do it the good ol’ fashioned way – hard labour! With sticky fingers and the sweat of my brow.
It started out well.
First, I washed some dishes so I could carve out some counter space.
Next, I dug out my ingredients. At Christmas, I had measured out my dry ingredients for bread and packed it for the trip to my parents, just in case we needed some fresh bread over the holidays. I also packed extra flour. But I had put both in the same container (one in a baggie) and I had no idea which was the mix and which was the extra flour.
I tasted them – they both tasted like…flour. So I measured both packages to figure it out. Luckily, they were different measurements, by a 1/4 cup!
I mixed and mixed, until I thought my arms would fall off. Then I kneaded it vigorously for 5 minutes, and put it in the oven to prove by the light of the bulb.
Once proved, I punched that sucker (which is extremely satisfying) and started to work it into the shape I wanted – a simple braided loaf. I cut my dough and started to roll and stretch it into long, thin strands, but the dough kept bouncing back to its original shape. Yelling at it and calling it names did not make it behave any better. I worked quickly and carefully because I didn’t want to work it too much. It wasn’t until I went to braid it that I realized…I had cut and rolled it into 2 pieces. Braids require 3. Insert expletive here!
I knew the dough was getting cool and I needed to prove it again, so I started twisting the pieces together anyway. They were thicker in the centre and the ends were refusing to stick together. I rolled it into a circle, but it looked more like softserve. Or this guy’s hair…
I let it prove again, then baked it. On the plus side, it came out looking less like”softserve” hair, but on the downside, it resembles an updo for a Granny…
I suppose it’s still something worth celebrating! When a basket case like me decides to bake at the end of a long day, at the last minute, with the pressure on, it could have been SO much worse!
Wish me luck slicing this so I can get it into the toaster!
This basket case is still hopeful that she’ll be joining the mass exodus from the city this evening with Big Guy and Little Guy, traffic and weather permitting! The roads still look like skating rinks and thousands of customers are without power, so Big Guy may be working overtime outside.
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas around here!