The Staff of Life as it Unfolds in the High Desert of the Southwest of America

March 13, 2013

Finally ensconced in our New Home in New Mexico, where we have just nested after our arrival via New Delhi and New Jersey!

Just baked my first loaf of bread, or, more accurately put, three loaves of ripping good bread!

From: Left over flour and left over cream of wheat from my previous visit, spouse’s currently favorite oatmeal.

All in equal parts, more or less.

OK, fine, maybe not, maybe 3 cups flour, 2 cups oatmeal, 1 cup cream of wheat, more or less, is  what it was.

And: Generous half a cup melted butter, two packets of dry yeast (also left over and a couple of months off their prime date), blended gently with very warm water. Sugar/honey would have come in handy but this is a nascent dwelling so went without. Set it aside for half an hour fully reconciled to no signs of life in the petri dish.

But! It worked, the mixture rose in a positively frothy way, and so the other ingredients went in, all parts were mixed well, and the resultant dough happily absorbed being punched and poked, kneaded and folded, all for under five minutes. It returned the favor by looking just right for a greased rising bowl. There it was placed, and then covered with a towel rinsed in steaming hot water and wrung out, still steaming.

An hour later, a big punch in the middle of the beautifully risen orb of bread dough settled it down. Then came division into three parts, each punched and kneaded and folded and made into a loaf and all three were laid in a row on the baking tray and covered again with the steaming hot towel.

Half an hour later, oven was pre-heated to 400 degrees. The loaves were placed in the middle of the oven, and 40 minutes later, voila! Three gorgeous nutritious loaves of bread emerged, at your command.

Proof of the pudding? In my taste buds and in the photographs below.

Enjoy!

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