Thursday, April 28, 2011

Tassajara Bread

The The Tassajara Bread Book has totally changed the way I think about bread. I received it as a Christmas gift, and every second Friday I take it out to make a new two loaves of bread.

Tiffany introduced me to molasses, which led me to try molasses bread.  
Rather than just giving a recipe, the book helped me understand the role of each ingredient in the loaf. Whereas I used to hesitate when a loaf of bread turned out hard or grainy or gritty, I now just keep trying different loaves. The primary recipe is marked by fairly long rise times-- partially because it's 100% whole wheat. I also acknowledged that whole wheat bread is not supposed to taste like white flour bread-- they're just different.

After the first beating
There's something satisfying about making something as simple as bread. I beat the water, flour, yeast and salt, you knead it, I see the yeast working, and then we eat. I feel connected to the process in a way that I didn't before, and bread has become my gateway to thinking of all the other things that I can make from scratch. Primarily because I thought bread making was very difficult, and not worth the effort. Bread making made way for pie-crust making, which made way for eating a little more fish, which made way for...

After the first rise, at which time the camera battery died... I can give you the recipe if you'd like to try it out.
I think of each week's bread making as an investment in our family's future: I put in a few hours and try to take note of how each loaf turns out, because five years and 200 loaves later, I can only imagine how much I'll have learned.
Eug, Noah and I are leaving for Korea on Saturday. We'll be away for ten days, but (unlike while I was in South Africa) I've scheduled posts while I'm away. So you may not notice the absence this time. We will be there to celebrate Noah's Dol. It's my first visit to Korea, so if you're so inclined, please pray for us to have a good trip.

No comments: