The Great Bread-Making Adventure

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The Great Bread Making Adventure

This was the great bread-making adventure of the century. Would you believe decade? Well, would you believe year? October?

Yes, okay, so it was the great bread-making adventure of Thursday morning…

I was sent the “Perfect Bread” recipe some time ago by my friend M-R, but I had thus far failed to undertake the task because:

a. It required a 2.5 litre lidded casserole dish that I do not possess.

b. It required an ability to plan in advance that I do not possess.

This, of course, was viewed very dimly by the great Margaret-Rose and through the usual haranguing and audible (all the way from Sydney) frustrated sighing, I found myself on Wednesday afternoon with a bowl and the necessary ingredients, inexplicably mixing up the first ever batch. In double quantity because the only receptacle I had was significantly larger than the required measurement.

And thus began the process of “baking by email” as I sent off panicked emails.

“Is it supposed to be lumpy???”

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Does this look lumpy to you?

Apparently not. But then, just as I was launching into my first nervous breakdown, I received the news that M-R was undertaking the bread-making herself to try and understand what on earth I was talking about. It turned out that these were not ‘lumps’. I’m still mystified as to what they were but I was assured all was well. Just put the lid on and leave it. Yes, ma’am.

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Put the lid on and walk away for 12 hours. Like I said, Advanced Planning required.

And it did look better in the morning.

Not lumpy, just holey.

Not lumpy, just holey.

But then, in the process of baking, confusion ensued.

“Is it 250 degrees Celsius?” This was not stipulated in the instructions but my question was treated with scorn. Of course it was Celsius – that’s what we use, right?

“Would it be quicker to put the pot in the oven as it’s heating up, do you think?” As opposed to putting it in the heated oven for 25 minutes. I was instructed to get that pot in the oven toot sweet. (I already had, on a hunch.) Of course it should be put in there while the oven heated up. Why would I ask such a question?

It was not my fault. There was a wayward comma in the instructions.

Kids, proper punctuation is important.

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Baking Stage 1 completed.

Now, it is worth pointing out that while all this was going on, I was still required to complete the usual tasks related to getting three children to school.

Yeah, I don’t know why I chose to undertake this on a school night/morning either.

Plus, it was the Eldest Son’s last day at school so let’s throw in a costume requirement and a need to be at school early for breakfast, shall we? Well, because I am basically insane.

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Baking Stage 2 completed.

Then the phone rang. As a casual relief teacher this is a sound that strikes both joy and annoyance in the heart. I was required at work.

So my poor freshly baked loaf spent the day cooling its heels on the kitchen bench, all alone, while the rest of us were busy with, you know, life and stuff.

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The finished product.

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Darling, that is not your best angle…

It survived. And forgave us by still being a delicious accompaniment to a hurriedly prepared dish of pumpkin soup. Hurriedly because [points to self] parent of children with after-school activities.

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The lumps disappeared and left behind all these holes.

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Let me assure you that this will not last long in this house.

Through it all, there was dear M-R on the end of a virtual line, giving me tips, reassuring my nerves and dispelling my doubts. And carrying on her own baking extravaganza in her own tiny kitchen at the same time. Go check out her post about the adventure. It’s undoubtedly funnier and tastier than mine!

And one last thing. Because I am really probably completely insane, I figured since I was undertaking this delayed-gratification baking exercise with the bread, I might as well try out my friend Barbara Pyett’s ginger nuts recipe while I was at it.

Which just meant another bowl of something I couldn’t do anything with in the morning. They had to wait until after dinner. They also survived.

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Biscuits made for redheaded boys. Ginger nuts.

And I survived. Perhaps not with my sanity intact but then I’m not sure it wasn’t a bit shredded to begin with.

 

 

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35 thoughts on “The Great Bread-Making Adventure

  1. Our individual versions are hilariously similar, H me love ! [grin]
    And I’ve come up with what your “lumps” are, btw: they’re teeny pockets of air. Dunno why I didn’t realize this before … possibly because it was a scheduled period for my brain to be functioning.
    😀

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  2. I love that your posts showed up in my reader right on-top of each other. I didn’t know it was a coordinated bread experience, and so just saw two bread-making posts… and though “Oh, man.. I really need to make some bread!!” Of course, I make Gluten-Free bread… and utilize the bread-machine to help with a lot of it 🙂
    That bread looks YUMMY!

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        • This one doesn’t take long to mix and about an hour to cook. So if you had, say, 10 minutes in the evening and then an hour in the morning to spare you could have fresh bread for breakfast. 🙂 Hm. Assuming we could find a gluten free version, of course…

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          • That’s the trick… Of course, I suppose everyone I live with would love it if I made them bread for THEM….
            Would make it in the evening though… I just barely have an hour in the morning (leave at 6:20am to catch the bus and get to work on time… and I am, by nature, a night owl…so fight my instincts every day). But weekend bread making is perfectly lovely 🙂 And not that far away!

            Liked by 1 person

  3. Heavens! That looks very holey bread! Sort of sour dough texture (and no I haven’t been to look at the recipe yet). Nice crust though. I used to make all my own bread when my kids were young, one loaf used to disappear almost as soon as it came out of the oven, and I even went back to home baking a few years ago, there is nothing as wonderful as the smell of freshly baked bread, except maybe freshly brewed coffee, but bread doesn’t exactly like me much these days. It wasn’t half as complicated as this recipe though. A couple of hours at most including rising. I’m with you on the biscuits though, I ❤ ginger 🙂

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  4. Your reason “b” for not undertaking the task earlier made me laugh. I sooo relate. I told M-R I have been skeptical in the past about no-knead recipes….but these photographs are just mouthwatering. I will have to give a try. Also Barbara’s ginger cookies look to die for. They’ve been on my mental back burner as well. Did the boys love the bread or do they not care about such things?

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    • I live my life in a sort of “seize the moment” panic so planning a day ahead to make bread is…. challenging.
      Oh my goodness, Barbara, you HAVE to make those ginger nuts – they’re absolutely delicious. I’m going to need several 10km runs to offset how many I’ve eaten.
      I almost wish the boys didn’t care about it, then I’d get more of the bread. It’s well and truly all gone and I didn’t have much of a hand in it.

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  5. Wonderful! It even looks good enough to eat 🙂 I wouldn’t dare attempt to bake with Mrs. M scowling through the screen at me. (I know she has a heart of gold) I’d be dropping things on the floor- which I’m wont to do anyway 😦 Such a pretty lid on that dish!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mm. I know what you mean. It’s why I made it in the first place. She was giving me a hard time about my excuses. 🙂
      Oh, thank you. It’s actually a glass plate placed upside down on the bowl. It was the only one I had that was big enough!

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