i'm a big believer in getting back to the basics. my mom was a home economics teacher in the 50's, 60's & early seventies which meant as her only daughter, i had the blessing of being by her side and learning all the wonders of baking and cooking and sewing.
after my mom passed away 5 years ago, i took her wheat grinder and bosch bread mixer home to arizona with me. i hadn't made bread from scratch in years. i went and purchased some wheat from a local store and started on an adventure that has brought me much more than bread.
the aroma of that first batch of whole grain wheat that i ground, hit me like a tons of bricks. i was a little girl again. back in the kitchen of my childhood home. my little apron around me. pig tails. freckles. standing on a chair so i could see over the counter. carefully pouring the wheat into the top of the old wooden grain mill and listening to it churn and crack. i was always amazed when my mom would pull out the drawer at the bottom after the grinding slowed, that it was full of flour. warm flour. and it had such a peculiar smell. i didn't realize until 30 or so years later, that it was one of the most wonderful, sweet smells in the world. the tears flowed freely.
this was the smell of love. it was the smell of comfort. the smell of home. it was my mom.
i really needed this experience at that point in my grieving for her. it brought her to me in a way i never expected. i would.ve ground wheat everyday the rest of my life for that feeling and for awhile...i did. but my family couldn't keep up with all the loaves of bread i was putting forth and the neighbors all thought i was trying to poison them with as many loaves as i passed around the neighborhood each week. so i resorted to making bread on sundays. sunday is bread day at my home.
my newest obsession is to cul*ti*vate the art of "artisan" bread. i am late on this trend i know. but i wanted to learn how to make those beautiful free form loaves with whole grains, crusty on the outside with a dusting of flour and chewy and moist on the inside. i picked up a new book called...
in FIVE MINUTES A DAY!
i made my first several loaves this weekend. it was so much fun and if i do say so myself, i was quite impressed. i feel like a success when all 5 of my children will ALL eat something i make without complaining. then i know it's good. i know it's a work in progress, like painting or writing poetry or learning to ride a bike but anytime i can slather up a hot piece of bread with real butter and feel my mom's spirit around me is a good day!