Making Bread

Yes, I know home-made bread has been all the rage over the last few years, thanks to those electric bread makers you can buy now, where you pile a whole bunch of stuff into a machine and it does all the hard work for you. Although I’ve toyed with the idea of purchasing one myself, I’ve never gone ahead with the purchase, concluding I’d probably use it only once or twice before my enthusiasm waned. But lately, I’ve become a little obsessed with the idea of making my own bread by hand.

It started when I was in South Africa a few weeks ago. I was staying at a guesthouse where the cook made fresh bread every day. Over breakfast one morning, he spoke passionately about how awful processed white bread can be is, and much better it is to make your own bread.

Then a few weeks ago I went to a friends place for dinner, and he also spoke with passion about how he had begun making his own bread. He spoke with passion, in particular, about creating the original sour-dough. He has more patience than I have. I want bread and I want it now.

So the other day I went online, found a simple recipe on Youtube, and picked up the necessary ingredients (flour and yeast) from the supermarket. And then tonight, I gave it a go.

My conclusion? It was surprisingly easy. It was also very satisfying. At the age of forty-seven, I’m still learning new tricks.

Here are the results.

With the ingredients, I ended up with two loaves of fresh bread. Of course, they’re not the most attractive loaves of bread (I’d lose points for presentation if I was on a cooking show), but they taste terrific, and they’ll taste fantastic over breakfast tomorrow (as well as a late night snack tonight). I’m inspired to do it again.