The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Only the people here would understand

Janknitz's picture

Only the people here would understand

Today was my birthday, and what I wanted to do was make bread and butter.  

I made an AWESOME Levy's Rye Bread from RLB's Bread Bible, and homemade cultured butter (my first time for that).  I would have been happy with those alone, but my family got me a birthday cake as well.  

It was so nice to spend my day with no obligations but tending my dough and clabbered cream.  

A lovely day!

Knead2quilt's picture

Yes, I do understand.  Nice of your family to get the birthday cake, and I'm glad for you that your bread and butter worked well.  RLB's bread bible is one of my main "go to" books for bread.  Never made butter.  I just finished making the dough for cinnamon bread like the one Dwayne talked about in his thread.  It'll get an overnight retard in the fridge and then I'll see if I can end up with a loaf full of cinnamon spirals.  Happy birthday -- late, but the good wishes are genuine.

dmsnyder's picture

It sounds to me like you had a perfect day.


AnnaInMD's picture

Sounds like the perfect day celebrating with your family and hands deep into dough !


Candango's picture

There are many of us here on TFL who understand your sentiments very well.  My birthday was two days ago (Friday).  Two days prior, my son called and invited me to dinner on Saturday night.  I chose a "hole-in-the-wall" Italian restaurant located in a nearby suburb - a small place with a five-star level chef. Wanting to surprise my son as well, I started expanding my sourdough starter on Thursday night.  By Friday afternoon I had one kg of starter ready to go - enough for two two-pound loaves and some left over for the next bake.  I used my own variation of several different "basic" sourdough recipes, increasing the starter, reducing the water, and adding about 10 oz of grated Monterey Jack cheese with jalapeño chilis for the two loaves (actually it was 8 oz of Monterey Jack plus a few tbs of grated  parmegiana cheese and a small handful of crumbled feta cheese, an interesting mix).  Even with the hydration at 62%, it still required wet fingers to work the dough to keep it from sticking and to avoid adding excess flour.  After a bulk ferment, I was able to shape the dough into two batards and it was firm enough that I was able to use tented parchment paper to help it hold its shape on the peel.  (Thank you, David S.)

Into the oven with steam and out some 35 min later. 

Sourdough cheese - crust

And the crumb.


They were out of the oven with enough time to cool and slice and bring one to the restaurant for my son and his wife.  A fun way to celebrate a birthday.


BakerBen's picture

Sounds like you both - Jan and Bod - had a great day with the things you love - family and bread.  Let me wish you both a very happy birthday and also many more days in this year celebrating life in such a significant and similar manner.


turosdolci's picture

Its the simple things that count!


Happy Birthday,


Daisy_A's picture

Hi Jan,

Happy birthday! I fully understand. Not only about the baking but also about the butter. Earlier this year I made my own butter for the first time and it was such fun!

Glad you had a good day.

Kind regards, Daisy_A

ruth hurst's picture
ruth hurst

Sounds like a perfect day! Enjoy.


Janknitz's picture

Rye bread keeps so well.  I had some with my lunch today.  Yum!

BettyR's picture

I can so understand. As the mother of 4, the most fun I have had in years was the 3 weeks that I spent recovering from leg surgery. The hubby and 4 kids were taking care of the of the cooking, cleaning, laundry, grocery shopping, feeding and caring for our few farm animals and running errands. I baked the bread because no one else in the family knows how to do that. I read some steamy romance novels and just enjoyed the down time.


When the cast finally came off and I was able to return to "active duty" my family had a whole new appreciation for mom. Funny how it takes 5 people to do the work of one mom. :)

EvaB's picture

mine was on the 8th, and that was a great day for me, spent the 7th working on my room (YES MY ROOM, combination sewing and library) and then went to a Kenny Rogers concert, only the second I have ever been to. (concert the other was Charlie Pride) and the only one I have actually wanted to go to!

Bad weather, icy roads and all, the concert was worth the trip. Came home, and the next day DH went out and bought me a lovely cake (Kids came over later and had cake and coffee) and after eating a nice chunk of cake, spent the rest of the day doing nothing but reading, and admiring the half finished ceiling in the room.

Finally managed to finish the ceiling up (do not do what I did, and think V-groove cottage board (thin tongue and groove wall board) would make a nice ceiling, yes it does, but its a darn pain to put up! Literaly a pain in my shoulders!!!

Washed the walls on Thurs, and spent Friday getting bills paid, DH ready to go off for 2 weeks of work (I hate it when he goes, its always a production, he's snarly, I'm snarly and by the time he leaves I think Thank God!) so now I get to prime, paint and wait until he's home to help with the laminate flooring in two weeks, then I may get to actually put stuff back into the room! And USE it!

In the meantime, I have two weeks to kill, so baking my Xmas cakes, and painting are fillers, but I also have books, have books ordered (just ordered Tartine) and kitties to cuddle! Not too bad.

Oh yeah, might even manage some bread in there, and possibly some Xmas goodies other than cakes!

CoveredInFlour's picture

Sounds like you had fantastic days!

ValerieSara's picture

...sounds like the perfect birthday to me! My hubby and I had our 4 kids in 5 years plus we have a dog and a cat and, with all the commotion in my house, alone time on my birthday making bread and butter would be a breath of fresh air!!! So happy you had a wonderful birthday and oh yeah...I made butter this weekend. Of course, I didn't mean to. One of the kids distracted me while I was whipping the cream for the scones I had just popped out of the oven :)

Happy Birthday to one and all!

mike owens's picture
mike owens

what a great post!  just 'imagining' a day like that through your words brought a smile to my face (thanks for that).  it really is the little things that count. sounded like heaven!

mike owens's picture
mike owens

since everyone here is almost 'related' through bread, has anyone ever put forward the idea of a 'family reunion' of sorts.  just a thought

JoeV's picture

I relate quite well. My b'day was 10/14 and our daughter had me and the wife over for dinner. I made the Italian bread to compliment her lasagna, but her and my wife bought a bakery cake (bleh) because my WIFE likes bakery cakes with that grease they call frosting ( I hate bakery cakes...sorry). I wanted to make my carrot cake recipe or a red velvet cake, but they thought they were "doing me a favor" by buying a bakery cake. They might as well have bought Wonder Bread to go with the lasagna too.