There are days I miss my city more than others. I miss my family, my cats, my friends, my house, my car. I miss the breeze that carries the ancient history, the sight of ruins and deteriorations, the walks among the old that still rule over the new. I miss the museums, the live theatres, the stores, the cafés. I miss the sound of my native tongue. I even miss things that I would have never thought I’d missed: my job, the crazy traffic, the noise, the chaos, the disorganization, the crowded subway. I know it is just a cloud in the sky. It will pass.
It is in one of those days that I bake Bread.
We love bread, especially rustic, crusty breads, italian style. Every meal in an italian household has bread on the table, home made or store bought (nowadays, store bought wins by far). I found this recipe for a gluten-free bread on “Honey & Oats” by Jennifer Katzinger and since I had some spelt flour left, no bread in the house and a melancholy day, I thought it a good idea. Baking bread is always a good idea for me, anyway. It relaxes me and soothes me.
In this No-Rise Rustic Spelt Bread the dough does not need to rise, it does not contain yeast but baking soda, thus it is a “quick” bread. After kneading it gently and shortly, I had to pat it down to a 6-inch diameter. If you were wondering why a ruler was on the wood board, close to the dough, well, I don’t know anything about inches, but fortunately in the house we had an inch/cm ruler and I used it to measure the diameter of the dough 😉 .
The bread cooking in the oven smells wonderful and my mood has already improved. When it is time to take it out of the oven, I let it cool on a rack and wait the strictly necessary time so not to burn my fingers and tongue before being able to slice it and taste it.
The crust of this no-rise rustic bread is crunchy, the inside soft and pillowy. The spelt flour and maple syrup give a delightful taste, nutty with just a hint of sweet. It is as good eaten like that as toasted. Perfect for breakfast, but also as a complement to lunches and suppers.
The morning after, my husband made a tuna sandwich for me as a packed lunch for work. He toasted two slices of the spelt bread before spreading his always amazing tuna concoction and I can tell you it was the best tuna sandwich I ever had.
My husband: my best friend, lover, partner, teacher, mentor, support. My perfect other half of the apple. He is the reason why I am here, the absolute reason. The reason that wipes out all my cloudy days.
From a recipe found on “Honey & Oats” by Jennifer Katzinger.
- 3 cups spelt flour
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 2 and 1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon water
- Pre heat the oven to 375° F and lightly flour a baking sheet.
- In a large bowl, combine the flour, salt,and baking soda.
- In a small bowl, combine the maple syrup, oil and water.
- MIx the wet ingredients into the dry just until a smooth dough forms.
- On a lightly floured work surface, gently knead the bread to shape, about 3 minutes, and then form it into a 6-inch diameter round loaf.
- Place it on the prepared baking sheet. Using a sharp knife, score it in a semicircle.
- Bake until Golden brown and firm to the touch, about 50 minutes.
- Let bread cool for 45 minutes before serving or cutting.
It is a lovely rustic "quick" bread that rises with baking soda and does not require a long process.
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