Monday, April 16, 2007

Uncle George's Bread

I’m on holidays this week, and I hardly know what to do with myself. I took this week on a whim, because it would be the last time in a few months that I would be able to take any time. I am a big supporter of the no plan vacation time, but I don’t adjust very well. I was giddy yesterday just anticipating it. I’m terrified that my precious week will come and go and I’ll have little to show for it. Or that I won’t be relaxed. Or that I didn’t use it to get things done that I’m always wishing I could get done. In short, I’m uptight and am afraid of relaxing. There should be a support group for this sort of thing.

So today, my first official holiday day (Saturday and Sunday don’t count), I washed floors, cleaned cupboards, did my taxes and made bao and Uncle George’s Bread.

Uncle George is my father’s brother and occasional visitor. He works in the Antarctic now, and I haven’t seen him since I was a kid. He was a great horse, tickler, and storyteller. His magnum opus was Mother Pea Soup, which was supposed to put us to sleep one night, but got us laughing so bad we were up for hours more. This story is still a family classic. Essentially, Mother Pea Soup makes a delicious pea soup, and the animals come out of the forest to try some. But it makes them fart, enunciated, in a high pitched voice, “poop, poop, poop” which sent us into gales of laughter. I don’t think there was ever a conclusion to this story, we couldn’t get that far due to the laughter.

Uncle George also made this bread. He liked to put chunks of sausage into it also, but my mother left that out usually. I have also tried it with sun dried tomatoes- very good, especially if you’re using it with a spicy dip. Our favourite is just with the garlic and oregano, and if I don’t have garlic powder in the house, I’ll make it just with the oregano. George’s Bread is delicious any time, but especially good as toast.

Uncle George’s Bread
3 C all purpose flour
2 ¼ tsp years
1 Tbsp oregano
1tsp garlic powder
1 ¼ C warm water
2 Tbsp melted butter
1 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt

1. Combine 2 C flour and all of the dry ingredients together.
2. Add liquid ingredients and mix. Add 1 C flour (and more, if required) and mix into a dough.
3. Knead a few times on a lightly floured counter.
4. Turn into a greased loaf pan.
5. Allow to rise, until double in bulk.
6. Bake at 350F for 20 minutes or until lightly browned.

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