This is from an old blog, http://dinnertimeallstars.tumblr.com/post/445708903/bread, started yonks ago by Owner/Guvnor Steve Cave, and this particular little piece of ‘gastro-philosophy’ dates right the way back to 2010, at about the time the Kings Arms was just about starting to turn into a reality, having been finally (only almost, at this date!!) wrestled from the clutches of the Receiver’s Office after an 18 month closure. It’s whimsical & prosaic, but still the principal stay relevant. If you don’t like this one (or if you DO, of course…there’s loads of other nonsense on this recently revived blog. Waste some time, have a browse…
I’m kinda tense right now.
I’ve been waiting, working, vacillating and hoping for a subtle combination of effort and fate to come together and determine the answer which I want to see, to a question which I have been asking for a long, long time.
Now don’t get me wrong. I haven’t been sitting idly by watching as if from a passing car while the factors that will determine my fate unfold. I have been involved, trying, perhaps sometimes too much, to manoeuvre and cajole all the pieces into place so that things will swing my way in the end.
All good, positive stuff. Push push push.
Tiring though, all this optimism.
But today I restored it, with the simple act of baking bread.
The simplicity and beauty of this process never fails to re-invigorate the enthusiasm, through physical evidence that something great can come out of a simple combination of humble ingredients.
Flour. Salt. Butter. A little sugar. Yeast. Water.
And effort. Effort and details.
If the butter is too cold it’s hard to rub in. If too little salt is added, then the bread will be good, but bland. If the yeast is too old it won’t provide enough lift. And if the water is too cold, it won’t activate the yeast, too warm and it will kill it.
But if the kneading, the effort required, isn’t sufficient, then the bread will be too tight, dense, tasteless, and the result will be poor and the exercise, regardless of the intent, will have been pointless. Interestingly, you can’t put in too much work. You can only put in too little.
And you have to care about it. Bread made with no heart is only good for the birds.”
– Mar 13, 2010