Journeys in Bread making

When I was a teenager – growing up in the late “60’s and 70”s”  I had some ideas

of what I wanted my future life to look like.  I wanted to be a hermit- living somewhere

in the mountains with a cabin filled with books and I wanted to be self sufficient-

living off of my own small garden, keeping chickens and baking my own bread.

I decided to start right then and start making bread.

I was not an instant success.

But I was persistent and kept buying cookbooks and trying to make bread.

By the time I reached my 20’s I could bake a decent loaf of yeasted white bread.

And then I started using whole wheat, rye, graham, spelt, and oat flours.

Again- not great at first- but they kept getting better.

Until I reached my 30’s and I started selling my bread.   And then I started

teaching classes and I worked for a bakery.

I never reached the mountains- never became a hermit- my husband doesn’t want

chickens- and although I keep trying the garden is not verdant and prolific-

but I can bake bread.

And that is what I’ve been doing- ever since I got a new sourdough starter from

my friend, Celia – at fig jam and lime cordial , I’ve been baking and baking and baking!

I named my starter Thing Two- because I already had a Thing One- and once they get

into the mix things start popping!

Just this week, I’ve made-


sourdough waffles with maple syrup!




Sourdough rolls for bbq pulled pork!


This lovely loaf- don’t you just love this loaf pan?


The sides disengage from the bottom and leave you with a beautiful rounded loaf!


and a six  pointed star loaf for finger sandwiches!

There is for me a spiritual calling to the baking of bread.  I start praying and meditating

with the very start of putting the dough together- I put together flour, yeast, water and salt and I consider

it an act of creation.  There is a promise of growth and of fulfillment.

I have several philosophies of bread, one from an Irish prayer.

Since we are so close to St. Patrick’s Day, I’ll share it with you.

I’m still baking- the starter is fed- tomorrow may be bagels- or a fruit bread.

The journey continues- because  I have other sayings when it comes to bread-

I love to make it and I love to eat it.  And wherever I am there will be bread!


And more bread.




I made bagels today! Sesame and poppy seed with pretzel salt!

12 thoughts on “Journeys in Bread making

  1. I love your breads. I like Thing 2 better than Thing1. You have a lot of books filling your bookcases , heart and time.

    • You are right, Cynthia, I did follow up on the book theme- but then I always knew that where I am there WILL be books!
      I know you like Thing Two- your eyes lit up with your first bite!

  2. Heidi! You are SO clever with bread! I didn’t know our sourdough starter could make so many things – I’ve certainly never tried waffles nor had success with sourdough pizza. You are such a star, love (and speaking of which, how cute is that star bread!). Thanks for making such fabulous things – SO happy that Frank is enjoying it! xx

    • Oh Celia- the things you can do with a nice mild sourdough starter!
      I’ve never used my ultra sour sourdough to make pancakes and waffles – but Thing Two needs only a little extra flour, and a sprinkle of sugar and a pat of butter and you have waffle and pancake batter!
      And the pizza dough was marvelous- chewy and full of flavor- just the way we like it!
      I have molds for flowers, stars, diamonds, and hearts in those long tube breads- they are fun for children and great for finger sandwiches!

  3. I will take your words away with me this morning and meditate on them Heidi. Since the first hunter gatherers pounded seeds to make pastes and baked them on a hot fire, fermented fruits and grains and watched their food become better and more edible and last longer, our world changed and the way we think about our world changed and continues. Bread is a key part of what has happened here and references to its significance are found in every part of our lives, for me baking connects me to so many people and places on so many levels it is kind of hard to describe. I am grateful. Love the six pointed star tin ! Waves from Sydney Ben Priscilla!

    • Hello to you Joanna and to Sydney ben Priscilla.
      I would love to be a hunter gatherer- or at least a forager- but the suburban area in which I live makes is very difficult. Bread, now, I can achieve, and like you, I also enjoy all the connections that making bread brings into my life.

    • I agree about living on bread alone! I once went to a soup and bread bar and thought I had found heaven on earth!

  4. “Man can not live by bread alone….” so a wise man once said. Very true, but a life without bread is hardly worth living. What I really want to know is what is your philosophy of bread?

    • Ha ha ha! That is a very wise statement- and a wise man- but he wasn’t suggesting it as a dietary suggestion but as a life statement.
      And I think I’ve stated my philosophy of bread enough times by now, thank you very much!
      I STILL love to make it and love to eat it! 🙂

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