The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Of cloverleafs and carrots

pmccool's picture

Of cloverleafs and carrots

While there has been some baking going on here, most of it has been very pedestrian; basic stuff like sandwich breads and pain au levain.  With our kids and their kids coming home for the Thanksgiving weekend, an opportunity arose to inject some variety.  On the day before Thanksgiving, I made 2 dozen oat-wheat pan rolls.  On the morning of Thanksgiving, I made cloverleaf rolls.  The treat there was that my just-turning-4-years-old granddaughter, who is very much interested in helping in the kitchen, asked to be involved in the process.  So, Grandpa got some help from Miss Carmen.  She helped with the early stages of mixing:

Later, she assisted with the "smushing" (aka: kneading) of the dough.

Then she helped with shaping the rolls:

It wasn't long before rolling simple balls of dough for the cloverleafs became boring.  So she switched to making carrots.  Although a bit blunt and rather crooked, they did indeed look like rather stumpy carrots.  She was quite pleased with the effect.  The photographer, sadly, did not record this variation; she was probably distracted by Younger Brother.  Grandmas tend to be easily distracted by grandchildren, especially by 2-year-olds with huge brown eyes.  Carmen was delighted with the outcome and made sure to ask for a carrot roll with her meal.

Grandpa is still bemused by the way that much help resulted in more work to be done.  Even so, it was lots of fun.



linder's picture

Yes, lots of fun to make bread with the grandkids.  My two youngest always wanted to help if they were anywhere near to Grandma when it was bread baking day.  They got their own pieces of dough to play with and make littles cookies.

Janetcook's picture

Hi Paul,

I can't help but think what great memories Carmen will have of this time spent together and I am sure you will soon forget about how much extra work was involved.  Sounds like your house was happily filled with family for the holiday and that they were well fed and went away not only with full stomachs but wonderful memories too.

 I don't have grandchildren - I still have teens and and one in his early 20's....but they spent many an hour in the kitchen with me making all sorts of things when they were young.  I have forgotten how much work it was and only wish they still wanted to do that sort of thing with their mom *- }.  Alas,  at this stage in their lives they prefer to do things on their own BUT prefer mom to do the dishes :-)  I DO NOT!  If they don't let me 'play' with them then I won't do the 'work'  :-)     Such are the many stages of life with kids :-)

Thanks for the post and the great photos!


FlourChild's picture

I agree, cooking with kids of just about any age means more work.  But then you have the company, memories and the satisfaction of knowing that home-baked, gourmet rolls will be her gold standard for life.  Thanks for the smiles :)

varda's picture

is doing an excellent job of smushing.    And so earnest too.   -Varda

dabrownman's picture

is way less furry than mine, prettier and more handy too from the looks of her smushing.  I also love the the invention of the carrot shape for rolls too!  My apprentice, who never comes up with anything new, said she is stealing that shape for sure.

Nice Grandpa and Grand Daughter baking Paul.