Burning Down the House

Half recipe, two French jacos using half yeast plus sour starter
Mixed 1:30pm
Molded 3:45pm
Baked 5pm
Gave to: see below…

So, I got a bit of a late start baking today. A not-so-typical Monday. My husband has just returned from India, so he was taking time in the middle of the day to do things that he’d missed while away. I was continually examining my list that had grown over the weekend to 19 items long. With my husband away I had lost some ground, and it being Monday, me being somewhat rested, I thought that 19 items, with a miracle here or there, might be possible. Ha! I’m such an optimist.

My husband’s a pretty handy fella, but electrical work isn’t high on his handyman resume. While I was doing some Monday morning tidying, I heard him on the phone with his dad, trying to figure out how to install an outdoor light fixture with a motion censor. It was a replacement for the old one that had been crushed to bits by a wayward basketball. The installation wasn’t going well, and the only reason I was tidying at all was because the power to my computer was repeatedly being turned off. Finally, after many failed attempts at getting it right, I suggested he visit Jack, our electrician neighbor across the street, who happened to be home.

So there it was, 1:30 in the afternoon, and I had “bake sourdough” as number 15 on the list. Not that I do things in order.

I’d wanted to bake sourdough to go with our evening meal of grilled veggies and chicken. Plus, I just like fiddling with sourdough. But where had the time gone? Being optimistic didn’t help; sourdough doesn’t respond to hope and optimism. It responds to warm kitchens and patience. So, I settled for a bread mutt: I mixed my typical recipe for French bread–unbleached flour, salt, and water, then used half the typical amount of commercial yeast and flopped in a full dose of sourdough starter.

Meanwhile, my handy husband was learning from our neighbor, Jack, that his wiring efforts were flawed. That he had connected the white and the red in exactly the wrong places and might have burned the house down. Oops.

So, now it’s 5pm, the bread is beautiful–it’s hot, but who to give the second loaf to? After all, that’s the whole point of this blog–to get me out of my cozy hole and get me giving. I glanced at my 19-item list to see if I needed to give anything to anyone… Nope, no help there. I opened the front door and peered up and down the street for haggard and hungry wanderers.  I thought about walking the loaf down to the neighborhood park, but it was awfully dark outside. Finally, I asked my husband, “who do you suggest?”

Sourdough Mutt for Jack


Of course, Jack. It must have been that list. I was side-lined by a list, not able to see past the list. Past the list to Jack, who deserved more than a loaf of bread as thanks for keeping us electrically safe. A sourdough mutt for Jack. I ran it across the street, propping it on a chair so he’d see it when he returned from wherever he’d zoomed off to. I hope he liked it. I checked a half hour later, and it was gone, found, hopefully eaten. Thank you, Jack…

bread for jack