To live content with small means; to seek elegance rather than luxury, and refinement rather than fashion; to be worthy, not respectable, and wealthy, not, rich; to listen to stars and birds, babes and sages, with open heart; to study hard; to think quietly, act frankly, talk gently, await occasions, hurry never; in a word, to let the spiritual, unbidden and unconscious, grow up through the common--this is my symphony.
~William Henry Channing

Friday, March 2, 2012

Food For Thought And Something For Your Tummy

I know, I know. Again with the sporadic blogging. I've decided it's just a season of life right now and I just have to be good with it. This means of course that I have posts like this one that are just a bunch of unrelated random thoughts. But I will add a recipe to reward you for making your way through to the end. Or you can just skip your way down to the recipe if you'd like. Actually if you only have time for a quick read that's what I'd suggest because frankly it's a bread recipe and is soooo delicious and everything else is well, just random thoughts I've had over the past week or so.

Tube tops by definition are strapless. Have you ever seen a toilet paper tube with handles? Paper towel tubes with straps? No, you haven't because tubes are tubes and they don't have them. So why in the name of all that is fashion related do women wear a strapless tube top with a bra that has straps? This is not a good look people. Even if it is paired with your favorite oh so special pair of fuzzy fleece pajama pants.

I will fess up and admit that I enjoy reading the covers of the tabloids and rag mags while I wait at the check out counter for my turn. It's my little way of keeping my finger on the pulse of our culture.  Here are just a few points of interest that I saw the other day.

What the heck has happened to Rihanna's hair?? She has sort of a blond crazy Tina Turner thing happening right now.

I don't really care how much Christina Aguilera weighs but I think it's probably in her best interest to stop dressing like she's the same size she was as a mouseketeer.

The idea of Lady Gaga procreating strikes fear deep into my heart.

Katy Perry headline: "I am such a fool!" Uh, because of your choice in men or hair color? Because the Smurfette blue really isn't working for me. Or you.

I have two regular pillows in green pillowcases on my bed. I also have two feather pillows in white pillowcases on my bed. You cannot ever change which pillows belong in which pillowcases. Ever.

I do not have to sit in the same row or seat every week at church. However, I do have to sit on the left side. I'm also that way at the movie theater. I have issues if I sit on the right side and look to the left. Serious I can't stand this can't concentrate it feels unnatural I must move kind of issues.

I am married to a man who has never watched Ferris Bueller's Day Off. Did you know that the sound of ET walking was made by a woman who was squishing her hands in jelly? (I know those two are completely unrelated but they were both about movies from my childhood hence being lumped together into one random thought.)

Now something for your tummy. I am not a bread maker. I'd like to be. Okay, to be honest that's not true. I don't really care if I'm a bread maker...I find the idea of being a bread maker romantic and all heart warmy but the reality is that we don't eat sandwiches a lot and you can only eat so much toast so it really just isn't worth the work and effort. (Why do I feel like I just betrayed some reformed church classical school crunchy conservative in touch with how things should be club rule?) And please by all means do not misunderstand...I love homemade bread and if you have a loaf pipping hot out of the oven I will gladly slather some butter all over it and munch my way through it. So, you know. Call me :-)

Anyway...I came across this super simple recipe on pinterest for English muffin bread. And since it really was easy and I just happened to have everything on hand I pinned it and on Tuesday I tried it out.  A few ladies from my mom's group got to taste it right out of the oven and they all said it was pretty good.

In a large (and I do mean large because this make four loaves of bread) mixing bowl combine
5 1/2 cups warm water
3 packets of yeast (I have no idea why in the world I just happened to have 3 packs of yeast on hand but I did...go figure.)
2 TBS salt
3 TBS sugar
11 cups of flour (bread or all purpose)
Dough will be extremely sticky. Separate into four well greased bread pans and allow the dough to rise until it reaches the top of pan. If you're in a hurry you can turn your oven on it's warm setting (about 170 degrees) and it will speed up the rising process.
Bake at 350 degree for 35 minutes. Brush tops with melted butter and bake for another ten minutes.
Allow bread to cool (we didn't and it was a little messy to cut but who cares about that?)
We finished off the final loaf last night with a big ol pot of tortellini soup. So good and filling. It's a nice crusty bread too which I like.

And just in case anyone is curious I am all current and up to date over at 52 Weeks.