With the dog curled up by the fire, the wind shaking the windows and the snow falling hard and thick, it seemed time for a little comfort food. Slow comfort food cooked over the hot coals in the wood stove.
Despite the weather and storm warnings, it’s still quite warm (for winter) so don’t have to keep the fire roaring and we can build a great set of coals to cook with. It takes a unique combination of skills to keep things which are cooked IN a wood stove. The trick is to keep the food from burning on one side while the other comes out slightly (or totally) under done. I won’t say I’ve got those skills down, but I’m constantly trying to hone them. So any opportunity I find to open the fire and wedge in a pot filled with beef ready to braise or clear a spot for an extra piece of oven stone to cook a pizza or a loaf of bread, I’m doing it!
I decided to start some beans soaking so that tomorrow I can play with the fire… err… I mean cook in the stove and we can have baked beans. They are always better the second day, so I’m making a big batch.
I’ve chopped some cabbage and got Ilona’s kim chi working for dad, since I forgot to pack the “extra” to bring down with me. (Gerry didn’t think it was “extra” so perhaps that’s why it got overlooked in my packing.)
And I’m now covered in flour since I’ve started a batch of that truly maritime treat – molasses bread – the dark hemisphere loaves that were served with baked beans so often in my childhood that I called it “Baked Bean Bread”. I actually don’t know the proper name for it, since most of my research ends me up looking at a steamed bread. But I do know how to make a loaf of the stuff I love.
I use the island sourdough (which has been working for well over 25 years now… maybe over 30), oatmeal and lots of molasses. And of course flour… which I am now covered with.Because just as I did when I was a kid and baking, I have a lot of fun in the kitchen. And I really get into what I’m doing… figuratively and literally. And as I did then, I usually end up with flour everywhere. The difference is, now I usually clean it up.