Perspective and breadsticks

As we walked home from school yesterday with Imogen whining about the cold whilst clinging to my left hand and Rhys nursing in the sling on my right with Imogen’s back pack dangling off that same right arm, all bundled like snowmen, I thought about how I would look back on these days in 20 or 30 years time. Would I remember?

Now, it seems impossible that I could forget the sling digging into my back while Rhys nurses because I can’t let go of Imogen to sort it, or the way I had to assure Imogen with every single step that the turkey necklace she made at school was still on her and blowing in the wind behind her back. Every moment of the day demands my full attention and it is hard to see past that moment into a future where neither Imogen nor Rhys needs my hand.

It is not that I wish to speed ahead to those days but that I sometimes find if I can project imagines of the future for myself then it changes how I feel about today’s reality. It is as if by looking ahead I can already look back at today with a knowing smile and think, “Oh yes this time will pass. It was often hard but it will pass on to other times that are sometimes hard too but in different ways.” And this perspective is comforting before my head comes back down to the present moment.

Sometimes the present moment can be pretty good. Yesterday afternoon Imogen and I “ran the bakery” while Rhys slept. We made these delicious bread sticks, and while they proofed, graham crackers. Both recipes are from Alana of Eating from the Ground Up and can be found in her book Homemade Pantry. I have had this book out of the library for about 5 months now. I guess it is time to get my own copy.

As usual I’ve changed the recipe a bit – omitted the sugar, switched to whole wheat flour and used a wild yeast starter rather than dry yeast (though I have made them with dry yeast before). This version was excellent. Packed with favor – crunchy and chewy at the same time. My kids both loved them.

110g water
142g whole wheat flour
40g rye or wholewheat wild yeast starter
3/4 tsp salt
1 Tbs olive oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp basil

The night before, mix the flour and water until combined. Cover and let sit.
In the morning add the rest of the ingredients and kneed well. Cover and let rise in a warm place for at least 6 hours.
Kneed the dough into a ball then cut into 8 wedges. Roll each wedge into a long stick. Place on a baking tray and leave for 30 minutes to proof.
Preheat oven to 350F and bake for approximately 25 minutes. If you want them really crunchy go longer. Ours were crunchy outside and chewy inside.


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