Over time, I have realized how important rhythm and habit are to me for a satisfying home life. I’ve created all kinds of schedules, hoping to one day finally stumble upon “the one” that finally gets my life in order. It feels like there are never enough daylight hours to do the things I want and need to do, and with chronic pain, it’s even more important to manage my time well.
One of my core personal values is home atmosphere, and I wanted to find something that would provide an anchoring point to my day. I decided that daily bread baking would help with both.
I picked up an almost-new bread machine from the thrift store for $5, and began to experiment with recipes to create a loaf that all my kids would like. I’ve tried spelt, whole wheat, and gluten-free loaves, and this one came out the winner. This is a bread machine recipe for a basic sandwich loaf of wheat bread.
Bread Machine Wheat Bread
Into the bread pan, add the following:
1 and 1/3 cups warm water
1/3 cup olive oil
2 and 1/2 teaspoons of salt
Then, add 3 cups of all-purpose flour and 1 cup of whole wheat flour
2 and 1/2 Tablespoons of honey
1 Tablespoon of yeast
Use basic setting and light crust, which usually takes 3 hours.
My mornings have always been hard for me, but I know that the bread must be started by 9am if we want to have a warm loaf for lunchtime. I am motivated by deadlines. Once I get the bread started, I’ve gotten into the habit of washing any dishes left from the night before, and wiping down all the counters. I throw whatever is in the hamper into the washer and start a load. With this routine in place, I know that no matter how derailed or distracted I might be the rest of the day, there will be a tidy kitchen, clean undies, and something homemade for the kids to eat.