My Blogger Friend Carl, (who won my Lucky Horseshoe Giveaway), was very kind and made a special trip out to an island near his home and played Beachcomber. He gathered enough shells for all of my third graders (and Ruth and me) to create a cool project. Stay tuned for the project!
(Carl also sent some other very cool items, and I am saving those for another post.)
Sauteed Scallops anyone?
Broody has done a remarkable job of keeping her brood alive and kicking. They will be four weeks old this week. The white chick started sprouting some head tassels. She must be half Polish Crested!
Italian Rustic Bread
I have never made a loaf of bread from scratch before, except when we used to have a breadmaker and I would toss in a mix. Well, yesterday I bought some yeast and some bread flour and scrounged around for an interesting recipe. This one used a "Biga" that I made the day before. This bread did taste so good, it made us want to make some every weekend! I am no bread expert, and maybe some of the bubbles are a bit too big, but I think I have just found a new hobby.
Fresh Bread and Fresh Eggs
These are the good old days!
Ruth and I were talking about bread today and we wondered how did we Americans get so far away from great bread. Growing up in the 1960's we would buy ten loaves of white bread for a dollar, and toss eight of them in the freezer. They would all be gone by the next shopping day. Yummy!, white bread with oleo. A side note on the oleo: We lived in Wisconsin back in the 60's and oleo was white and it came with the yellow food coloring if you wanted to make it look like butter.
In 1928 the automatic bread slicer was invented by Otto Frederick Rohwedder, in Iowa. This invention, coupled with the need for speed, allowed housewives extra time each morning as they juggled making toast and making sandwiches for growing families on the go. Believe it or not, in 1943 there was a short-lived ban on selling sliced bread! Apparently the need for heavier wrapping and the extra cost for labor made it a target for cost-cutting measures during World War 2.
White bread has been considered a sign of luxury since the Middle Ages. The color of your bread was directly related to your social standing. The lighter your bread, the richer you were! Today, it is the opposite. We are willing to pay premium prices for whole grain breads.
If you Google French bread, or Italian bread, you will undoubtedly find loads of great-looking breads. If you Google American bread, I think you'll see the difference.
We used to live in Istanbul, Turkey (1985-1988) and our door man delivered two loaves of piping hot bread, directly from the bakery one building away for a whopping ten cents per loaf. Each morning, we would have the butter and honey, as well as the Turkish Olives ready for a delicious breakfast.
I think the winds of change are a-blowing across America in more ways than one. I think we are discovering good bread, and perhaps we will start to expect that our bread is not just filling, but also that is delicious!