I once had ambitious ideas of writing regularly about what my family eats despite our unreasonable intolerance of milk (well, 3 out of 4 of us – 18saughtonmains eats cheese sandwiches when he’s at work or otherwise escaping for the day). Then the baby stopped sleeping, Edinburgh had a tough winter and, basically it never really happened. So, now that the baby is a toddler and sleeps in the evening (not so much with night times) I am going to try this again.
I haven’t completely frittered away the year (any parent of two can attest to the impossibility of frittering away time when you’ve got two time sucks living with you) and one thing I have been doing is baking bread. Until this year, I would have considered myself a mediocre home cake baker, an acceptable cookie maker and tolerable at bread making. Then I realised the library I was frog marching the children to had recipe books and took out Dough by Richard Bertinet and a bread making obsession was born.
Bread is a staple which has hidden hazards for people avoiding milk. Milk powder is often used to feed the yeast and milk or butter can be used to make bread richer. I had got used to knowing which breads I could or couldn’t eat, but being able to make bread I know is safe has been lovely. Especially my occasional forays into enriched breads (croissants, chelsea buns, the yummy stuff), which pretty much always have milk and or butter in them.
So I intend to use this bread obsession to find my way back to talking about food in our house and how we feed our children. In fairness, I should point out that I’m not the primary practical cook in the household – Mr saughtonmains is the get-everyone-fed-every-day person. I do lunches on the days he is working and try to do the occasional dinner even sometimes on days he is in the house. But even without the 3 meals a day structure I still actually do a lot of cooking, especially baking, as part of my effort to ensure the milk free food the kids eat is made from actual ingredients at least some of the time.
So over the next few weeks I’ll write about the bread I’ve been making and I might even put up a photo or two of some mediocre cakes – we’ve just had a family birthday and the elder daughter is about to turn 5, which will probably lead to at least 2 cakes (one for the party and one for the actual day.)