Christmas has involved sitting around, eating, reading and more bizarrely watching the serial killer drama, Dexter. I think we’ve watched over twenty hours in the space of four days. It’s warping my mind. So today, we only watched one episode, and I spent the rest of the day reading one of my christmas presents, William Alexander’s 52 Loaves, whilst listening to my present-to-self, an internet radio for the bedroom.
I also baked a loaf as well. I’d been prepped for days now that I was making a loaf for a New Years event we’re off too in the evening. I’d prepared my bread sponge the night before and also contracted some kind of head cold so this morning I just lay in bed, hoping the book would provide some inspiration. In 52 loaves, William Alexander sets out to bake a loaf a week for a year in the hope of mastering one particular type of bread, a peasant loaf. The peasant loaf is just flour, water, salt and yeast. If I can master a good solid sourdough then I’ll be happy, however, as it is NYE I thought I’d branch out and chuck olives and sun-dried tomatoes in it – what the hell, live dangerously.
I had a hell of a time kneading the dough when I added the other ingredients. As I was still feeling a bit ill I was winging it a little. The dough was insanely wet. I added more flour and still too wet. I tried it in the kitchen aid, still too wet. I had created a monster. After battling with it for ages it sort of took shape and I left it to rise.
I’m not sure I’ve got the stamina for perfection like William Alexander, I’ll be content with a great loaf rather than the perfect loaf. If every day of 2012 involves listening to the radio, reading and baking bread for a party, it’ll be a good year.