I received a gift of a new Neven Maguire book at Christmas, “Neven Maguire’s Home Economics for Life: The 50 Recipes You Need to Learn” and took it as a hint that I was to finally get my act together in the kitchen.
And so with prodigious enthusiasm, not to mention a tremendous and violent casting about of ingredients such as strong white flour, coarse wholemeal flour, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, golden syrup, some type of black sugar whose name escapes me, buttermilk, sunflower seeds and a teaspoon of salt, I baked my first loaf of brown bread.
And, even if I say so myself, it is most agreeable. It has received a solid thumbs up from she who must be obeyed and all the successors to my overdraft.
I now look forward, at least once a week, to making the bread in the kitchen on a Saturday morning.
It is such a change from the activities I am normally engaged in-things like law business, marketing, making videos, writing blog posts, reading, watching sport-that it has become a form of therapy.
The odour of freshly baked brown bread that wafts from the oven when I open the oven door after 40 minutes or thereabouts causes an explosion of the saliva ducts and gives a great sense of accomplishment and anticipation of what is to come when I let it cool just a little and then slice it and dress it with some real butter.
It may look like a regular loaf of bread to the casual observer, but it is a great deal more than that to me.
Now, onwards to making the dinner…