Bread and hummus making

Hello again my dear reader,

this weekend just gone, Jitka and I set out to address one of the problems we’ve found here in Bermuda, that the bread is always sweet and the hummus way too processed to the point where it is a paste and not really a dip. We’re missing the bread we used to buy in Prague where, pretty much any bakery makes decent wholemeal or rye bread and it’s completely unsweetened. Even before that, we used to buy bread from the BlackBird bakery in Crystal Palace which makes the tastiest sourdough bread I have ever tasted. Come to think of it, the only other bread I have tried which comes even close to the sourdough from BlackBird is the sourdough bread that Jitka brought back from her recent trip to the USA when she had to get out of the country in order to satisfy the morons at immigration. In terms of bread from my home town of Rethymno in Crete, there is one bakery somewhere out of town that bakes bread in huge circular break tins (we’re talking the size of tractor wheels) and does this in a wood-burning oven, that is also hard to beat in taste. Then, the hummus you can buy from the shop here is nothing like the hummus from Sainsbury’s in the UK. It’s heavily processed to the point where it’s a stodgy putty and not really a dip any more, it’s almost like a spread. And, it’s ridiculously expensive to top it all. The only bread we have found that is even remotely edible is a soy bread that comes in a plastic packet. But, I hate prepacked bread and it also retails for just under $10 (I’m not kidding, it’s a “specialty” item, you see) so that’s out of the question.

The upshot is simple: bake break and make hummus. I used to bake quite a bit in London but these days, with me working and Jitka not working (at least so far) she’s the one with more time. So, she took the lead in making break (mix of wholemeal and rye flour) and also made hummus. The bread came out absolutely wonderful. The pleasure of dipping hot fresh bread just out of the oven in hummus was awesome! Jitka’s cooking is really taking off here. With ingredients so expensive in Bermuda and restaurants only really affordable on a once-in-a-while basis, it’s almost every day that she has to find something to make. And, sometimes, with our finances being quite stressed, she has to be inventive in order to make food that will last us a few days and fit within the budget.

So, the weekend just gone was quite the culinary experience. It was also the weekend when I had the best cigar of the year! But, all this in a follow-on post.

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