Look, I’m not going to sugarcoat it, life has been a really hassle lately. From not feeling physically well, to feeling like absolute hell, to non-stop working, to just trying to get by, I’m being beaten by life relentlessly, with only some doctors appointments and maybe one or two sanctioned days off to prevent me from calling it quits and throwing a laptop into a ravine. I know I don’t have any PTO, but how am I supposed to function like this? Answers await.
Despite all this I’ve found some real comfort and control in weekly bread baking. Saturday or Sunday I’ll haul my trusty red Kitchen Aid mixer across my kitchen, level and dump the flour and salt into the bowl, and rummage around to think of a filling to include. The first week it was black olives, the next it was roasted garlic and rosemary, and last week it was pickled jalapeños and cheddar cheese. Once combined with water, yeast, and salt, the bread rises for house before I shape and bake it in a hot oven. Little to no work, lots of waiting, but a worthy payoff in the end.
I don’t care if bread makes me fat. I’m not denying myself joy for some fear of fatness. I’m not afraid of that. What I am afraid of is deprivation for the sake of false morality. Bread isn’t morally good or morally bad, it’s just delicious and makes me happy. And right now that’s consolation enough. It’s bread and the lifespan of this weekly delight impacts few besides those in my home, and I’m desperate and deprived enough that this treat is more necessity than indulgence.
If you want to make bread like this, follow this recipe I found on Pinterest and substitute the fillings that bring you most joy.