It all started with bread baking. This is easy enough, given I do it at least once a week – and I’ve been doing it for years and my results are uniformly excellent (if I do say so myself).
I dissolved the yeast then made the sponge. I did notice that the sponge had not bubbled quite as much as I’m used to but – no matter. Time to add flour and start kneading. The dough very quickly became a sticky, heavy, crumbly mess. Something wrong. But hey, maybe just more kneading – that will develop the gluten. I kneaded for a very long time. It was marginally better – but only very marginally.
Time to let the dough rise. It did not. Hmmmm. I shaped loaves anyway and put them in the pan. Sticky. Heavy. Weird.
In the oven. They came out weighing twice what a heavy pumpernickel might.
I sliced a loaf for lunch. It crumbled. It tasted bitter. In a word – awful. What?
I dove into the garbage to check the packaging of the new bag of flour I had opened. I couldn’t image that would be the problem. It was Amy’s organic all purpose. I always use it. And then, there it was written on the bag: all purpose flour, GLUTEN FREE.
Well then. I guess a lot of kneading wasn’t about to make a whole lot of difference. Darn bag was the same colour. What? You expect me to read the print?
Maybe the afternoon would prove more successful. So Abby and I headed to the Awesome Trail. I was pretty sure I wouldn’t need snowshoes or gaiters. Ummmm. Details? Nah. Let’s just say that I changed my socks when I got home and my boots are drying by the fireplace.
After that I had the clever idea of driving to Slocan market to buy the “right” kind of flour so that I could bake bread again in the morning. I knew that Rutabaga’s only had “gluten free” and New Market didn’t have organic. So off I went to Slocan. I stood outside waiting to get in (good physical distancing) for about 20 minutes, during which time my toes in their still wet socks got rather chilly. But I finally got in and headed toward the baking aisle. No flour. None. Zero.
I bought bread.
And a bottle of wine.
Abby had a huge chunk of gluten free bread for dinner. I am about to open the wine.
So you see? A bright spot in the day after all.