Saturday, January 12, 2013

Things That Work In The Middle of the Night

No, this is not a post about equipment that runs mainly during the hours normal people are asleep. Well, not exactly anyway.

But those of you who follow me know by now that I do tend to be a bit of a night person -a true "night owl" some might even say. I often say I really don't fully wake up for the new day until midnight or sometimes, not till well past midnight. But for whatever reason, I often do tend to function best, do my best work, at least near to or shortly after that "witching" hour of 12:00 a.m.

And last night was no exception to my standard rules.(Although, I had started on this project earlier in the evening -like about 7:30ish but it had taken a while to get the project to the point of completing it and that took me then into the wee hours of the morning.)

I baked a nice batch of Swedish Rye Bread!

And if I must say so myself, it turned out just beautiful too! I even have pictures to prove it looks great!

The last two pictures here are simply single shots of the two loaves -those in the traditional loaf shape -the kind of stuff most people are familiar with seeing.

The four round loaves in the first picture are what my homemade bread often looks like when I make it in the shape of the old-fashioned "Kaka" bread that many of those in these parts prefer for the Swedish rye or the Swedish White breads a few still make around here.

I'm sure I've mentioned the "kaka" breads from time to time before but just don't remember if I ever took any photos of it to show what it looks like to those who are unfamiliar with that particular item!

Normally, I only get 4 loaves of kaka or 4 loaves of the regular loaves when I make a batch of bread but last night, the bread raised so beautifully and shaped up so nicely too, that I was able to get 4 kakas as well as two loaves of the stuff baked.

Made me very happy, indeed it did!

Whenever I bake this bread, I usually save a loaf of kaka and take it out to an old friend of mine -she's 84 years young (in mind) but has a lot of issues now with arthritis so that prevents her from making any of the old favorite food items she, like me, loves so much. And she always appreciates my bread when I have a fresh loaf to drop off for her too!

That plus, a friend of mine contacted me prior to Christmas and asked me if I would consider making some bread for her and her family for the holidays. I was in a good -and semi-ambitious mood at the time, so I said "Sure!" She wanted two loaves of the rye bread in the :"kaka" shape along with two loaves of the Swedish white kaka bread too.

I had no fears about making the Rye bread for her as I've actually gotten fairly adept at making that product now -only took me what, about 9-10 years to get to that stage in my bread-baking. But the Swedish White kaka -that's still a bit of a scary entity for me to tackle. Probably because I just started trying to make it in the last 2-3 years and am not near as sure of myself with that product.

I don't understand why Kaka bread seems to be so fearful a task for those of us who are relatively newcomers on the home baked scene, but it is! The ingredients in it are just about like those in any other homemade white bread but something about it -maybe because to those of us who love it it seems more challenging or maybe it's the shaping of it, I really don't know. But the recipe I generally use when I do make the white kaka is one my best friend's daughter contributed to our church cookbook which we published last year and it is titled "Grandma Nelson's Homemade Kaka Bread" but I refer to it as "Krista's Prayer Bread" because the way Krista wrote up the recipe, she has inserts like every other sentence -or so it seems -to "Say a prayer" for this or that or some other thing throughout the recipe.

So when I made those four loaves of bread requested by this other friend before Christmas, you can bet your bottom dollar I did a whole lot of prayers for the success of that bread, of those white loaves, ya know. Thankfully, it turned out decently so I didn't embarrass myself with my product anyway.

After Christmas though, this same friend contacted me to ask if I would make some more bread for her -maybe sometime this month -so she could get some, freeze it and then, have it available whenever her tastebuds sent her a message to have some homemade Swedish bread!

The beginning of a little sideline business? Nah, highly doubtful. But a way to do something occasionally that actually brings me pleasure on several levels -as I do enjoy making these things, especially the rye bread -and also to keep my family well-stocked in the home made bread scene is pretty high now!

I'm thinking about mixing up a batch of bread today now to make sweet rolls. The recipe I use for that makes at least 4 dozen rolls and I make them filled with various goodies from cinnamon/sugar mixture to lemon curd or raspberry or apricot or walnut -so far, and then they are iced and to my tastebuds as well as to my family's too, looks and taste just like the sweet rolls you can get in the stores!

Love those rolls and the Rye bread too!

1 comment:

terri said...

The bread looks SO good! As far as homemade foods go, bread is one of the best treats. You just can't get anything store bought that comes close to homemade.