This is the first official day of Spring, 2012. Although it’s raining today in the Great American Midwest, Julia and Lulu have already begun their favorite outdoor game, ball-fetching, on the weekend just after the magnolia blossoms came out.
On Sunday I baked my second loaf of sourdough bread, this one an all-white loaf. It had an appropriately chewy crust with a soft, creamy interior that was delightful with Appenzeller* cheese. The next morning it made a great piece of toast with Swiss Black Cherry jam**.
The most valuable lesson learned thus far in this adventure into the world of flour and yeast is that real bread–the quintessential staff of life–is totally worth the effort, in the time it takes to make, the moderation it requires when eating and the amount of exercise needed to keep from becoming larger than, well, my pre-bread days.
What’s Whitman doing lurking behind that loaf of sourdough bread? I think he’s just waiting for an opportunity to grab it and run when nobody is looking! You can’t trust poodles around food, that’s a lesson I’ve learned the hard way.
*Appenzeller Cheese is my favorite cheese. It comes from the canton of Appenzell in Switzerland, where both of my mother’s parents were born. We used to have to bring it home from Switzerland, but now you can find it in some cheese stores. If you can’t find Appenzeller, a cave-aged gruyere is a pretty close substitute.
**Swiss Black Cherry jam–the brand is Hero; it’s made in Switzerland but it’s sold here in many supermarkets. Another favorite.