small pleasures: baking bread

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This is soda bread. Made with my very own hands. The secret is using yoghurt (or buttermilk) not yeast.

It must be consumed soon after its emergence from the oven so that the pleasure of its creation holds on a continuous and rising plane until the eating.

The recipe came via River Cottage – particularly the Three Go Mad series where Ruby Wax created her very own version.

This is a poem by Maya Stein.

I first read it on Patti Digh’s blog a couple of years ago. And again, last night, in Patti’s book Creative is a Verb.  I hope that it might bring to you a memory of hands sticky with dough as other apparently more important things call for your attention.

irreverant baking

I should be upstairs with the others, drumming up ways

to heal the world, save the animals, pray for water

in a far-off continent, devote the remainders of my days

to a catalog of restorations. But this morning, it was the matter

of scones that drew my gaze, and my feet remained

planted in the kitchen. One must never ignore the instinct

to create, is what I told myself, and soon the counter was stained

with flour, my hands sticky with dough, the house inked

with the smell of blueberry possibility, and I knew I was not wrong.

This was my prayer, my act of healing, my offering, my song.

Maya Stein

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