February 12, 2010

The Spirituality of Making Bread

I took the day off today and decided to bake some bread. I slept in. I set the dough out to rise before I went to bed. Unfortunately, the dough was ready, WAY ready, before I was to work it.

I’ve found that bread dough has it’s own schedule. Well, really the yeast does. I find it’s best when baking bread from scratch to just relax and be ready. Work on the yeast’s schedule. Just let it go. It’s almost like something Padre Pio would say: Knead, Bake and Don’t Worry!

I used to get very upset that bread would not cooperate with me. I would stress over it so much that I rarely made it. I was too impatient and it, frequently, did not turn out right. How many times did I bake it when it was not risen quite enough? How many times did I let it rise so high I had to scrape the dough off the OUTSIDE of the bowl?

Dough is remakarbly flexible and forgiving. You can beat it back down and, eventually, it will rise again. You can mold it and shape it. You can bake it and eat it. It is filling and sustaining.

It is no accident, because there are no accidents with the Lord, that Our Lord may join with us thru bread.

Creating bread, molding bread, baking bread, breaking bread can be a very spiritual exercise.


Blogger Angela M. said...

.."breaking bread can be a spiritual exercise."

I had to check whose blog I was reading LOL!

February 12, 2010 11:45 PM  
Blogger belinda said...

Cathy, my husband has been on a bread making binge too.
He was reading about bread from his bible and was inspired, Yeah!

He made this ciabatta bread twice but it didn't turn out. It took 6 tries before I could make the perfect chocolate cake! So I've been encouraging him to keep trying! I keep asking him to bake it in a dutch oven but he refuses.

Don't be afraid,toy with the dough. Don't let it know your easy. Your the boss make it want you. hahahaha


February 13, 2010 4:48 PM  
Blogger Melody K said...

As you said, "Our Lord may join with us thru bread."
I never met a loaf of homemade bread I didn't like!
Belinda, how did you get your husband interested in baking bread? Mine's just interested in eating it.

February 13, 2010 8:35 PM  
Blogger nazareth priest said...

I agree wholeheartedly.
Bread has a life of its own.
Something "eucharistic", no?

February 13, 2010 10:18 PM  
Blogger Jackie Parkes MJ said...

My husband makes bread too!

February 14, 2010 1:34 AM  
Blogger Angela M. said...

When I make bread I always draw a cross on the dough before it rises and bless it. I know it's not consecrated but there IS something spiritual about making bread - probably because in some way it's alive (the yeast.)

February 14, 2010 3:00 PM  
Blogger LarryD said...

I like the pounding and beating part. Very therapeutic! :-)

February 14, 2010 5:11 PM  
Blogger nazareth priest said...

Angela M: You know that's Irish, don't you?
You do it to let out all the "fairies" so that the bread will rise.
I'm not kidding!

February 19, 2010 2:49 PM  

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