The Milkweed Diaries

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Inaugural bread-baking in the woodstove

Here's the first bread baked in the wood cookstove yesterday on President Obama's first day in office:

Nantahala Herb & Onion Bread

This bread is a nostalgic favorite of mine.  It used to be made fresh daily at the Nantahala Outdoor Center resturant.  Maybe it still is, for all I know!  
  • 4 c water (I substituted whey leftover from raw milk cheese-making)
  • 1/4 c active dry yeast
  • 4 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp dried dill weed
  • 1 tsp dried rosemary leaf
  • 6 T sugar (I substituted honey for half of the sugar)
  • 1/4 c butter, melted
  • 1/2 c powedered milk (I omitted this. It's not necessary, especially if you're using whey instead of water)
  • 1 c onions, chopped
  • 10-11 c flour (i used 1/2 spelt and 1/2 whole wheat pastry flour)
  1. Combine water/whey, yeast, salt, dill, rosemary, sugar/honey, melted butter, powdered milk if you're using it, and onions.  
  2. Allow yeast to activate until mixture is bubbly, approximately 10-15 minutes
  3. Add flour.
  4. Mix by hand until uniform.   Turn dough onto floured surface and knead for 10 minutes.
  5. Put the dough someplace warm and allow it to rise until doubled, approximately 45 mintues.
  6. After dough rises, knead well.
  7. Shape into at least 3 loaves (you can also make more smaller loaves, but don't do fewer than 3 or you'll have a doughy center) and place in greased bread pans.
  8. Bake at 350 degrees for 45-55 minutes.  
  9. Brush tops of bread with butter after removing, and allow to cool or eat warm!
The smell of herb and onion bread baking in the oven is orgasmic. And breathing in that aroma as it fills the house to the soundtrack of newscasts about Obama's plans to close Guantanemo and reverse the global gag order qualifies as peak experience in my world.

Below: The Obamas greet visitors at the White House open house on President Obama's first day in office.



1.  occurring at or characteristic of a formal investiture or induction; "the President's inaugural address"; "an inaugural ball" 

2. marking the beginning of a new venture, serving to set in motion; "the magazine's inaugural issue";"the initiative phase in the negotiations"; "an initiatory step toward a treaty"; "his first speech in Congress"; "the liner's maiden voyage" 


Dana said...

I can really picture you in your cozy establishment baking hella bread with to the soundtrack of Obama closing Guantanamo. That's killer! I love the imagery.

Jordana said...

Hey BT-I've just been reading through your blog posts from last spring for inspiration. I'm finally buckling down and making beds in what was obviously the garden of the former owners of the house. I think I'm going to use Jeff Ashton's formula for raised beds that he talked about at the 2007 Organic Growers School. Maybe I could come over some time in the next few weeks and take a look at y'all's garden again. I need inspiration!