Autumn 2012: Day Five

Gray and rainy today.  Of course, it always rains the day after they grade the roads.  That way we can create new ruts in the mud.

Baking bread today using a recipe from my friend, Donna Wellman.  Donna passed away from ovarian cancer a few years ago, but whenever I make this bread, I think of her.  She was very opinionated, and we didn’t always agree, but there was always something interesting going on around her.  I knew her through the local spinners and weavers guild, and she collected and repaired spinning and knitting machines.  She had an angora rabbit that she named Al Gore because he came from Tennessee, and she knew a lot about what is currently called Slow Food.  Her bread recipe is simple to make and always turns out for me.

Donna’s Bread

2 C, warm water

11/2 T. yeast

1/2 T. salt

1/4 C. sugar (I use turbinado or raw sugar)

2 T. olive oil

4 C. unbleached flour

1 C. whole wheat flour or multi-grain cereal

Mix water and yeast with a whisk.  Add sugar and whole wheat flour (if using cereal, add one cup of the white flour).  Mix together and let sit in a warm place for ten or fifteen minutes.  Then add oil and salt and stir.  Begin mixing in the rest of the flour, then knead for twenty minutes (I use my Kitchen Aide mixer for this part, so it is really easy).

Turn dough into greased bowl, cover and let rise for an hour or so until doubled in bulk.  Punch down and let rise again.  Divide dough in half, shape into loaves, and put into greased pans (you can also shape the dough into rounds and bake on sheets). Cover and let rise again.  Preheat oven to 350 F.  Bake 35-40 minutes.  When bread is done, it will make a hollow sound when you tap on the bottom of the loaf.  Remove from pans and let cool as long as you can stand it.

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The bright orange bush is a staghorn sumac and the things that look like gray footballs on legs are guinea fowl.

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