There’s nothing more simply satisfying, more homey and wholesome, or more basically beautiful than a loaf of freshly-baked bread.
Unless you bake two loaves – and share one.
When I bake bread, my heart fills in direct proportion to the rise of the dough. I love all the steps: the measuring, the mixing, the kneading, the baking. I love the aroma as the crust browns. I love to cradle the warmth of each loaf as I wrap it in a cotton cloth just out from the oven. I especially love feeding my family.
I’ve written before about the joy and grounding I find when baking. (See Warmth.) I’m not much for cakes, although this is a good one, and I’m family-famous for my chocolate chip cookies, but my new fascination is with baking bread. It’s been a long-standing someday thought, only recently realized come an unexpected snow day off from school.
And it wasn’t nearly as difficult as I thought it would be.
Time-consuming? Yes. But easy. And so worth the time.
This latest good thing in my life rose even higher, so to speak, this week after an in-school presentation by King Arthur Flour. Based in Norwich, Vermont, King Arthur Flour’s been a baking name to know since 1790 and employee-owned since 2004. With a company focus on connections in the community, the flour company not only maintains a baking school, but several outreach programs designed to “Bake for Good.”
Last week, the students in our school enjoyed King Arthur Flour’s Learn. Bake. Share. program where they learned all the basics of bread baking and the science behind it too. Each student was sent home with a flour-filled canvas tote, a dough scraper, a packet of yeast, a booklet of delicious recipes to try with their families at home … and an invitation: To share what they bake by donating a loaf to a local food bank.
Kids can participate in two ways:
King Arthur representatives visit over 200 schools all over the country every year. In-school presentations can be arranged by visiting here. Self-directed group baking can be arranged by visiting here.
Youth groups of all kinds can participate in Learn. Bake. Share. Anyone can participate and pledge to King Arthur’s Bake for Good. One pledge = one meal donated to Feeding America. So far, King Arthur’s donated over 41,000 meals to date!
Bake. Enjoy. Give. And rise.