The painted sign says, “Driftwood Paintings & Bakery”, with a crude arrow that promises both adventure and deliciousness. Winding our way down an unmarked path, we come across a building with people in the yard, some holding loaves of bread, others cramming doughnuts in their mouths. We enter the building to that most intoxicating aroma of combined yeast and flour and water and salt. “I’ll take the sourdough,” I tell the lady, who smiles, missing a front tooth. “Nah”, she counters. “That was made yesterday. It’s only good for chickens.” She hands me a loaf of whole wheat, still warm from the oven. We walk back home, cradling the loaf like a baby. We toast thick slices, top them with grass-fed butter and a little sea salt. On the dock, feet dangling in the ocean, eating toast with a cold beer as the sun sinks into the ocean. The salt brings out the nuttiness of the crust and the sourness of the crumb, or the loaf’s insides. It remains one of the best meals of my life.
The flavor and aroma of bread depends on what was happening during fermentation. For example, letting bread rise longer or shorter will affect the taste, as will humidity levels in the atmosphere. It is said that rising bread also absorbs the energy of the baker. Bahamian lore holds that, if tears fall into bread dough while it’s being made, that melancholy will transfer to anyone who eats it. But if the baker is singing and dancing, her joy will be transferred in the bread. Since the Neolithic period, bread has represented the mystery of human birth and death. Osiris, the Egyptian God of the Underworld, is depicted handing out wheat spikes as a promise of rebirth. The ancient Greeks laid out the first loaf of bread made from the annual wheat harvest as an offering to the goddess Demeter to ensure a healthy crop the following year. Even the Gospel equates bread with God’s grace, as when Jesus feeds the multitudes and then uses grain during the Eucharist to represent the body of Christ. (Did you know that the Hebrew word Bethlehem means house of bread?) 🍞Read more about this awesome carbohydrate at http://www.theomplace.net/newsletter/pass-the-bread/ #theOMplace #passthebread #atkinsisdead #carblove