Monday, 25 January 2016

My Best Bread

Firstly, thank you to every-one for your lovely comments and well wishes for Mum. She's having another scan this morning to accurately measure the size of the main tumour before she starts chemo on Friday. Instead of IV chemo she's going to take one tablet once a week for about 6 weeks and if that doesn't reduce/halt the tumour's growth then there are immunotherapy drugs that can be given to her. This more gentle treatment is because of her age, I have never, ever thought of her as 'old' but apparently she is(sorry Ma). Let's hope it's a gentle ride for her.

With all this sorrow going on I am finding great comfort in just being at home, cleaning and crafting and cooking our daily meals. I've been using a little ice-cream maker to make Joe's ice-cream, been making yoghurt again, baking biscuits and cakes but the most satisfying thing has been to make some very, very good bread and bread rolls.

Inspired again by Rhonda's Blog and this post where Rhonda describes her own bread-making I have finally tweaked the recipes to make a tasty loaf of great texture. I have to use the bread maker to knead the dough and then I give it a quick knead, shape it and place it in the tin to rise again for 30 minutes.

This makes a rather sticky dough so put flour on your counter and knead briefly. I line the bread tin with baking paper and use 2 clothes pegs to hold the paper still while I put the dough in.
 Bake in the oven at 220C for 5 minutes and then reduced to 190C for another 30 minutes or so. If it's quite brown but still 'sounds' a little under cooked remove it from the tin and bake for another 5 minutes until the bottom sounds hollow when you knock on it.

I'm lucky to have a bulk dry foods shop nearby with loose flours of all sorts to choose from so I made my own blend of stone-ground wholemeal, spelt and rye.

My recipe

1 and 1/3 cups each of wholemeal(brown) flour, rye flour and spelt flour.
2 level teaspoons of instant yeast
2 teaspoons of butter
1 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of sugar(optional)
325mls tepid water, you may need a little more or less so check the dough once it's been mixed.

It slices and freezes beautifully too...

I was delighted last week when Paul turned up with 2 jars of home made pickles that he and his mate had made...Jason and Jacinta have a huge vegie garden at their new house and share Paul's love of spicy food, cooking and making preserves as well as camping and fishing...

Knitting has also been a soothing activity and with a new baby boy due in May I've been loving this turquoise yarn from Spotlight and how sweet are the buttons, also from Spotlight...

These monster longies(pants) are on my needles now and looking very cute and I have some fabric to make a bedcover/play-mat for 'him' too.

So that's it for now, one day at a time but make it count as they slip by very quickly.
Lots of Love,


  1. Hello there, glad to hear that they will be gentle with your mother's treatment, hope things go well, will continue to pray for her. Always fun to try a new bread recipe and I have been thinking of buying and trying 'spelt' flour for some time - this may be my best excuse!! Love the color of the yarn! So cheerful!! I am glad you are finding comfort in the everyday things and routines, isn't it funny how the mundane things can be so comforting in times of stress or sorrow?!

  2. Thank you dear Kathy, and yes the routines of the home are a great comfort...we're really focussing on them at the DTE forum too and how to start off building a workable routine for you.

  3. Hello Sue, just catching up with you after a few months absence. Sorry to hear about your mother, I'll add her to my prayers. But good to hear Priscilla is doing well, I often think of her and her fami!my. I'll try your bread recipe this week, as we are due some wet, cold weather here in Indiana. Take care, Hedy King

  4. Hope all goes well with your mum's medical treatment Sue! I like the photo banner, lovely flowers!
    My husband is the bread maker in the house and he makes bread in the machine. I have just made one of those no-knead bread. It turned out delicious. Your bread looks wonderful!!! Yummy!Love the baby sweaters!

  5. keeping you and yours in my prayers.Your bread looks so tasty

  6. hello sue,
    your bread look delicious.....thanks for giving the recipe.i like homemade bread.
    and your knitting is so beautiful, i love knitting ,too.

  7. I join everyone in holding the best thoughts and support for your sweet mother. For you, too. It truly is amazing how important all of the simple things of our lives take prominence and help us to feel calmer and better able to handle everything else.

    I have not anyone for whom I can knit or cook or anything like that, so I have been drawing and coloring with pencils, pastels and pen. Silly, but it works.