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The Staff of Life

It was my fourth or should that be the fifth time of trying that I finally got to grips with this breadmaking malarkey.

Having eventually bought a #panasonic #breadmaker after years of dithering I eagerly ripped open the box, got my specialist #allinsons bread flour from the cupboard and set to eager to produce the #bestbreadontheblock.

Always keen to crack on, I never bother with instruction manuals; how difficult can it be? A bit of flour and yeast, a smidge of sugar and salt and a dash of water.

I timed it to be ready for 9am; what better than homemade bread for breakfast? Just as well I had that @warburtons loaf in the freezer then.

Keen to graduate to brioche, pizza and sourdough bread, I waited with anticipation for my first attempt to emerge. The world of baking was my oyster.

However, my homemade offering was as flat as a pancake. Cue laughter from daughter who has always scoffed at my breadmaking efforts.

"Don't throw that bread to the ducks mum, if you hit one it will kill it. It's like a brick....."

I have never forgotten this comment which was made more than 20 years ago. It rather put me off breadmaking but I was determined not to be defeated.

So to find my foray into the world of hi-tech breadmaking such a failure, I did what any sensible person would do from the start when using a new piece of kit - I resorted to the manual.

"Don't throw that bread to the ducks mum, if you hit one it will kill it. It's like a brick....."

The reason for my disastrous debut was easy and simply rectified; I had forgotten to fit the kneading paddle.

A pattern began to emerge. My second attempt saw me forgetting to add the yeast; third attempt the sugar and fourth I used the wrong programme. Memory seemed to be the issue.

My next go worked. I produced a perfectly seeded specimen. The reason being that I followed the instruction manual to a T. A lesson to be learnt there, I think. Use your loaf!

Still on the subjects of food and forgetfulness don’t you just love a pancake. Shrove Tuesday can’t come round quick enough in our house. However this year my passion for pancakes – and an eagerness to get that frying pan - got the better of me.

I bought the ingredients, told my friends not to forget this special day in the culinary calendar and planned the evening meal around the beautiful batter. There was only one problem – I had got the wrong date and was a week too early

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