Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Whose woods these are I think I know.

It's poetry. So rich in metaphor that I have to stop after each paragraph to reflect.
A single nightjar wing, and the imprint it left upon a muddy track in Ethiopia.

At Babylonstoren, in one of the walled gardens, there is a weeping mulberry and thickets of Leonotus Leonurus. Lion's Tails - minty and furry. Wilde Dagga.

Amongst the hanging trails of mulberry leaves are two man-made weaver's nests. To get inside, you climb a little iron ladder. I could stay there for hours, with a blanket and a book. The weavers are in the tree around you, busy with their particular hullabaloo.

Tiny red leaves fiddled their way to the floor, floating slowly, pellucid and pretty, while gravity seemed to push them back up to the sky.

Afterwards, the consolation of fresh pressed juice without having to wash the many parts of the juicer.

And a beetroot cupcake, made with the pulp.

The fowl are shiny and fat and the donkeys are fed sweet chopped herbs.

Back at home, a robin hovers over the mirror of the old Land Rover on the grass. He pecks and flutters, scaring intruders away day after day. For this garden belongs to him and his mate
and that is good to know.

Tomorrow there will be fresh bread,
with the promise of a crumb or two.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Ode to Bread.

I've always wanted to bake real sourdough bread. The San Francisco stuff with the starter and the heaps of trouble and bedevilment. Baking - especially bread baking, has always made me feel so virtuous. All that kneading - like a farmer's wife!

I pored over those recipes. Page one would have me enthralled, but by the time I reached page four I always seemed to have lost my enthusiasm. Enter No Knead Bread...
Labelled Sourdough in the last Platteland, I made it the very day the magazine arrived.

Loaf after loaf after loaf.

There are thousands of variations on the internet. Click here for the basic recipe. Lately I've been making it with rye flour and sometimes have left the dough for almost an entire day before baking it.

So let the dough forgive you and get over the guilt.
For it is true: some things in life are easy.