Baking on 17 August 2019

Oh what a lovely day we had baking!

Most people arrived around 2pm (with some early birds too kindly offering to help set up and make teas – thanks Dave and Nick) and we got started with weighing flour and making our dough.

This time we were doing a part wholemeal, part white loaf – in hindsight we should have made a 50/50 ratio but I was working with the flour I had and there was way more wholemeal than white this time!

We had quite a few new faces this time which was great.  Andy Mason came from Whistlewood Common with some leaflets about his FERMENT gathering in October and he made some soda bread in rather an interesting way on the hob too (trial run for his gathering where there will be no ovens!)

We had John Medd too with his amazing beer bread which was still warm!  We had some lovely homemade jams, cake and cottage cheese and I was also very lucky to receive a couple of wonderful gifts on the day (how did they know it had just been my birthday?!) and went home with a new coat and a shawl :) Thank you so much

While we kneaded the dough there was the usual chatter and getting to know each other, copious amounts of tea and then eventually bread with some cake along the way too!  There were 9 children, if I remember rightly, plus a cute little baby dropped in to collect his mum at the end! 30 of us in all over the course of the afternoon – baking, playing music or just chatting

It always makes me laugh how the tables are set up so neatly at the beginning of the afternoon but with all those people kneading their dough they soon end up travelling across the room!

A few bakers had the right idea of going in the kitchen where the work surfaces are ideal for kneading and do not move!  Olivia also did a grand job churning us some butter!

I have a small hand butter churner and all you need is a pot of double cream.  If you want to try it yourself and don’t have a churner you can also do so with a jam jar and a marble –

  • put the cream into the jar
  • add the marble
  • lid on
  • keep shaking until the cream separates into buttermilk and butter (not curds and whey – that is cheese!)

Music-wise we had guitar, fiddle, harp, piano, and everyone kindly put up with my usual wailing too!

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