.: Sifting the flour into a heavy vintage bowl in preparation to make the bread :.
When the rain is pouring and the skies are gray, when the woodstove is roaring we hear the call to make bread. In appreciation of this process we center the day around the time that gives rise to freshly crafted bread.
This is a simple process involving minimal ingredients. It involves not effort but calls instead for something much more important--our time..: A seat in front of the woodstove proves to be a perfect spot for keeping the dough warmed :.
I appreciate slow processes like these which nourish both our spirits and our bellies. I enjoy the introspection that attends my interaction with the dough. The children love to peek under the towel as it slowly rises and expands to crest the rim of the sturdy ceramic bowl. I guide the dough back down and tuck it back in, basking in a special moment of quietude before the demands of the day call us away once more.
.: Our rising dough on it's way to becoming baguettes :.
.: Once our dough is formed into eight baguettes, it will sit and rise just once more :.
.: Warm and fresh right from the oven, waiting to be hollowed out to form delicious soup bowls :.
the bread lightly browns, coaxing a cozy warm sweetness into the air.
In our hearts we realize there is nothing quite like home made
bread in the oven. It is as though it has already been thoroughly
enjoyed even before it is brought forth from the oven...
.: A few to be saved, (eaten later in the week with peanut butter) :.
This Baguette recipe was given to me years ago, authored by a dear friend and wonderful cook. We love to scoop out the center of our baguettes to be made into soup bowls. They are also lovely for a snack with peanut butter!
Stir in three cups of flour
Two packets of yeast (4.5 teaspoons)2.5 cups hot water together in a bowl for ten minutes
Add one teaspoon of salt dissolved in 1 teaspoon of water, stir for
thirty more seconds
Stir in three more cups of flour, 1/2 cup at a time until it is
kneadable, It should become elastic.
Place the dough in a bowl greased with olive oil. Cover, allow to rise for one hour.
Punch down, cover, and allow to rise again for one hour.
Shape the loaves into eight mini baguettes or four large loaves on a baking sheet.
Cover with a towel and allow to rise for forty-five minutes.
Place a pan with one inch of water on the bottom rack of a 400 degree oven.
Bake the loaves for twenty five to thirty minutes.
Check after twenty minutes. Using a wooden spoon, turn the loaves over
and tap the bottoms. When they sound hollow, they are ready!
A few of my favorite bread books you may also enjoy:
Don't forget to pair a lovely homemade soup with your bread bowl: