“Two years ago, a group of grandmothers occupied Cuadrilla’s fracking site in Lancashire. They gave out cake and talked to people passing by about the dangers of shale gas drilling. Inspired by what they did, we’re back at the same site. Follow our live blog and don’t forget to sign the petition!” Emma and Sophie Thompson
Thompson sisters, go, go, go! Thank you for putting yourselves out there, responding to the climate emergency!
(I love how the practice and popularity of baking has created great moments for activism and self-expression, hence the hashtag #politicakes (credit goes to my daughter). Please if you see cakes like this, let me know so we can add it to Pinterest here.)
And on the theme of fracking… this is my all time favourite creative response:
Photo courtesy of Salsabeel Zeineddin
“Mummy, I have a wish,” said my son with a contrived sweetness.
“Yes, Darling, tell me.”
“That you make crepes for breakfast tomorrow.” It was a school night, and mornings for us are stressfully chaotic. Crepes are labour intensive.
“Ummmmm…. What would you want with them?” I asked conflicted in desiring to give him what he wanted but feeling selfish and irritated.
This seemed an odd coincidence as I’d just been reading a piece about Nutella Crepes in Gaza, called “Dreaming of Chocolate,” written by a young Palestinian food writer Salsabeel Zeineddin, Read the rest of this entry »
Fortunate am I to receive occasional parcels of unsold bread from a friend who runs a really top quality bakery here in mid-Wales, Andy’s Bread. A few months back he gave me several loaves of pumpernickel, a dark, dense and sweet rye bread. His version includes whole rye grain, rye chops, rye, sourdough, molasses, and old pumpernickel. The loaf is coated in rye chops (and baked in a hot oven which is then turned off overnight); a “lid” is placed on top of the tins to “steam” the loaves and prevent their drying out. Andy’s pumpernickel is something special– and not so dissimilar from his Borodinski breads which contain coriander seeds and powder, malt extract and molasses. These are true artisan breads in that they come from long and varied traditions and are expertly crafted in particular, local conditions.
Andy’s pumpernickel makes great croutons for leek and potato, and split pea soup; I will be using some from another batch tomorrow for chocolate Christmas bark as per Claire Ptak’s wonderful recipe here.
Being gifted with food that is “surplus” or “waste” anyway is really freeing, and allowed me to feel I could experiment. I’d long been curious to try Bread Kvass, so in the absence of any planned trips to Russia or Russian communities elsewhere, I knew I’d have to try to make it. I also wanted to reproduce an effort from a while earlier in which I made a sourdough cake from recycled bread. And I sadly found out that the friend who taught me her resourceful and roughshod approach to bread had died– so I was of a rare mind to bake bread. Read the rest of this entry »