Get Well Bread

One loaf of rosemary bread

Mixed: 9:45 am

Molded: 12:30 pm

Baked (in a pot): 1:30

It seems that the whole world around me is coughing, sneezing, spluttering, feverish and generally wishing they were in bed watching old movies… In the last couple of weeks the choir at church was reduced by half, the preschool too, and we received messages about whooping cough, chicken pox and bronchitis from various school nurses. How can this be? It’s 60 degrees outside and sunny. The door is wide open, the little one is barefoot. We even spent the morning at the beach…

Surely the rest of the States–the ones who are shoveling ten feet of snow from their front walks have every right to be sick. Sick and tired. But us–here in ever-blooming paradise?

Despite the lack of logic, one of my favorite friends is nursing a family of ailing ones, and she herself is down with something, so I figured I’d try to be a good Samaritan and bake her a loaf of bread.

So I did. And I’m off to be the delivery girl, and wish her a speedy recovery.

And to you!!! I wish the same. That good health surrounds you, and if not, that there are old movies galore and some friend from Samaria to bring you (chicken soup–I’m terrible at making chicken soup, which is why I didn’t volunteer that foodstuff) and maybe even some rosemary bread.

Cheers, everyone!

People who Inspire me–Jenny

One loaf sourdough; one loaf carrot, currant, walnut bread

Mixed: 9 pm Tuesday

Molded: 2:30 pm Wednesday

Baked: 4:35 pm

Gave the loaf of sourdough to Jenny and her hungry crew

This week and next are about two things. About giving bread to people who inspire me, and about researching bread baking in the fifth century. I’m preparing for Saint Brigid’s feast day on February 1st. Yay!

Jenny is an artist. I love being around her–the conversation always tips toward creative projects we may be working on, whether she’s sewing a pillow, or I’m crocheting a hat–or she’s decorating a home up on the Riviera. We’ve made succulent wreaths together, traveled to LA to the design center to look at fabric, and helped decorate the church with Carla’s crew each Pascha. Her creative ideas are endless and sometimes when I sit down to write, a shade of her whimsy comes over me and helps me find a better word or idea. She inspires me to be creative.

We all have these sorts of people in our lives–that God gives us–people who inspire us to reach out of our regular routine and try something new.  I’m wondering, who are the creative characters in your life?

(A note on the bread. Since I now have two small cooking pots that fit side by side in my oven, I can easily bake two loaves–one for our family and one to give away. Yippee! No more cutting jumbo loaves in half or simply giving the large loaf completely away–much to the dismay of my family. [I don’t really buy bread in the supermarket, so what I bake is what they get:)] From yesterday’s batch–Jenny got the safe loaf–the sourdough, which I know is just what it should be. Delicious. Our family tried the carrot, currant, walnut loaf from my new cookbook by Jim Lahey titled My Bread. Made with carrot juice instead of water, and with chopped walnuts plus chopped currants, pomegranate seeds, and dried cranberries, this bread was Wow!!! My husband and I loved it. It would be so wonderful paired with a gorgonzola cheese. But… the kids sort of stared at it, horrified. “Carrot juice? You’re kidding me, right? You baked with carrot juice?” Yeah, they weren’t too thrilled with the hunks I placed by their plates and ordered them to eat. They did munch down the bread, and loved grumbling about it, but I’m doubting any of it will end up in their lunches today unless I sneak in a piece, which I think is a wonderful idea! I’m off to do that right now. Just think of the fun they’ll have telling their friends about their very strange mother who bakes bread with carrot juice :))

Having fun with this cookbook

Bread made with carrot juice