Day Forty-Nine: Baking

Today I feel like I’m getting in touch with my pioneer roots–Saturday as baking day. And I really liked it.

The tally wasn’t anything show stopping: two loaves of bread (one recipe), two batches of scones, two pizza crusts (one for dinner). It will set us up for a while, though. One of everything to eat, one of everything to freeze. A nice, simple dinner at the end to keep it from being overwhelming.

The really nice thing about doing the baking all in one day is that the mess is confined. I’m a floury disaster. I knead flour out of my bread board and onto every surface in the kitchen. When I bake three of four things in a row, I still only have to clean up once. I might feel differently about it if I were doing all of the dishes, but K does those. It was also a good way to chase away a total mess of a gloomy, rainy, colder-than-expected day.

It’s been a while since I made bread. I used to do it all the time. Even in my graduate school apartment, where my counter space was, literally, a 2×2 square of formica I made Molly Katzen’s Rich Baguette from Still Life With Menu almost every week. Then we moved here, and it was so hot that I would do anything to avoid running the oven. (Between those times was, sigh, the wonderful kitchen with the granite counters–which I hated unless I was baking–and all the drawers a girl could want.) It didn’t help that the local grocery store bread here is really good, possibly better than mine. Of course, it’s $4.00 a loaf or more, so it ought to be. I’m glad to get back to it. My regular recipe is from the Tassajara Bread Book, but I think my next project may be to gussy the bread up a bit. My Tassajara loaves are a bit heavier than I like, now that I’ve been eating fancy commercial bread for a while.

Scones I make all the time. I’ve fooled around with Kim Boyce’s recipe from Good to the Grainwhich is excellent. My go-to, though, is Molly Wizenberg’s Scottish Scones from her blog Orangette. Today’s were grapefruit zest and chopped candied ginger. I love these because they aren’t very sweet, and they aren’t as messy as Kim Boyce’s layered-with-jam version.

And now it’s time to run the over one last time to get that pizza done…

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