Sprinkling Rain

dinner Rolls 02I woke up to sprinkling rain this Spring morning, so I decided to cancel putting the rest of the seed in the garden. Bake for Rachel’s party dinner for 20-40 hardworking people, totally simple right? Here is the start of the rye dinner rolls on my kitchen counter. Begin with rolling up a golf ball of dough, then dip the top of the roll into a bowl of beaten egg and milk, and dab it on the plate with the caraway seed layer. The egg and milk is like Elmer’s glue for the caraway seeds to stick. You can’t beat the taste of fresh herbs, grown in our garden last year. Yum.

dinner Rolls 03The rolls are then covered with a damp cloth and set aside to rise before baking.

Did you know I used to do cooking like this on a beautiful 45 ft yacht named the “Second Wind”? I cleaned the bottom of the boats moored at the pier, for $20 cash. That is how I met the Andrews family. They invited me for a ride with them to Maui. I happened to cook the fish they caught for our dinner. The father hired me to work in their galley on weekend inter-island trips because he liked that meal. It was a dream come true weekend job at the end of high school for me.  I got to see amazing places and the owner gave me a generous expense account to stock the kitchen whenever we pulled into port. I was able to learn to cook fancy stuff.

I’m glad I didn’t pass this opportunity up. Sailboats cross the ocean quietly. There is a special beauty on the ocean at sunrise and sunset painted neon skies to admire. At night the sky is so very dark out on the ocean, and the stars so bright. During one 2 hour watch at the helm, in the middle of the night I counted 14 shooting stars going across the sky.

dinner Rolls 04The rye dinner rolls come out of the oven and cool on wax paper. Next, are white dinner rolls coming out of the oven. I like to paint them with melted butter right when I take them out.

dinner Rolls 05The main course for the gathering will be simple soups, cream of corn and an alternate of ham with bean. Sorry, no pictures of the soups, cause they just aren’t all that interesting to look at.

I like to cook. 🙂

Bread Baking Day

bread 03Today (02/22/22) was bread baking day at the Woelks in Elk kitchen. I cook fresh bread and have done this for years about every two weeks. Sometimes, it is every week if we have people over for meals or there is something that we take food to. I found multiple pictures of bread baking days in the Do It Yourself folder on my Blog, so I thought I’d share them with you too.
bread 01Here are four loaves of bread baked on 10/16/21.
bread 02This bread was baked on 09/10/20. Wow, I have a real routine here don’t I? Same four loaves in the same pans on the same stove. Hmmm.


bread Rolls 01That same bread recipe can be cut in half to make a giant pan of cinnamon rolls and two loaves of bread instead. bread Rolls 02

Neener, neener, neener. You can send me an email and request the recipe if you’d like to try this yourself.

Bread Baking Day

4 loaves of bread
4 loaves of bread

Today is bread baking day at the Woelks in Elk. Part of learning to live more simply for me is to cook almost all of our food ourselves. This includes basics like homemade bread. Just about every other week I make a batch of bread up.

After these loaves cool, I wrap them in plastic wrap and then aluminum foil and place them in the freezer. When we thaw out a loaf, I set it on the counter and make sure we eat it before the week is out

No Preservatives

There are some things that I did not know about fresh bread. Store-bought bread lasts 2 or more weeks sitting in its bag on the counter. But, there are no preservatives in homemade bread so it does not last even a whole week on the counter. When it decides to mold it is a really fast transformation. Really, quite amazing to see, like a science experiment in the kitchen.

You can not store freshly baked bread in a refrigerator unless you like bread that really resembles croutons. Hard as a rock. The fridge and fresh bread are not friends as far as I am concerned.

This favorite recipe is a 4 loaf mix that starts with 14 cups of flour. It is simple bread that I have never had anyone complain about. This same recipe can instead make either a large pan or two 9×12 cake pans of cinnamon rolls and 2 loaves of bread.

If we are wanting dinner rolls this recipe makes four 9×12 pans of dinner rolls that can be frozen too. Or, sometimes I just roll them into golfball size balls of dough and place them on a cookie sheet in the freezer till they are frozen. Then they are easy to bag and keep in the freezer. This is really handy because we can use as many as we feel like. Taken straight from the freezer, we let them thaw out and raise in a greased baking pan. Then bake in the oven right before dinner. People think you slaved all day over dinner.