There are premature wrinkles around my knees. My mom always thought the tan kids were cuter than the pale ones, so sunscreen went to the extent of a quick swipe of Bullfrog across the lips and nose. People would throw stones at her with the research they have now. My sister and I were adorably bronzed through our childhood, at the cost of the aging knee caps I have now.
I studied my face in the mirror the other day, not out of vanity, but out of amazement that it has changed. This face has taken me through falling in love, loss of family, disappointment, living abroad, challenging jobs, late nights with girlfriends over bottles of wine, moving… you have a list of your own I’m sure. Somewhere in all of that, I’ve grown up. By no means do I feel I’ve suffered hardship, but lessons have been learned that changed me.
There is more life to look forward to, and for that I am grateful. Ambitions float around my head, unorganized, and mixed with the fear of failing. My face will continue to evolve; there will be more love and more loss. The wrinkles on my knees will get deeper; a reminder to me of long Sundays at the beach with my family, tuna sandwiches and boogie boards. I appreciate the momentum that life has, that things change beneath your feet and you don’t always realize it until the ground has since shifted.
So, in honor of wrinkles, we made bread. A hearty compact-english-muffin-type bread, full of texture. It takes time and some unique components, but completely worth it. Just like life.
BIG SUR BAKERY HIDE BREAD // Makes 16 //
The recipe is straight from the Big Sur Bakery Cookbook (of which I won from Dana! The astriks indicate what I used of the options).
5 Cups Unbleached All Purpose Flour
½ Cup Flax Seeds
½ Cup Sesame Seeds (I used toasted seeds)
2 Cups Oat Bran
¼ Cup Sunflower Seeds
½ Cup Millet*, Quinoa, Poppy seeds or Amaranth (or any combination)
1 tsp. Kosher Salt
1 tsp. Baking Soda
1/3 Cup Beer
2 ½ Cups Buttermilk*, Milk or Half and Half
Oven to 375, Middle Oven Rack
1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silpat.
2. Mix all of the dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Make a well in the center and add the beer and buttermilk (or alternative). Use a wooden spoon or your hand to mix the wet batter. Sprinkle some flour on top, and put it on a floured work surface. Gently roll is out to form a loose log, about 2-3 inches in diameter.
3. Cut the log into 1 ½ inch slices and give them a little pat into a patty form. Don't make them too small, they get dry. Lay on the baking sheet. Bake on the middle rack for 40 minutes until golden. Remove and cool.
4. For serving, slice open and toast. They have a raw bread flavor inside (like a bagel or English muffin) so toasting is crucial. Goes excellent with a schmear of Butter/Jam/ Soft Cheese!
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