Every so often you get a burst of energy, a huge wave that lifts you up and propels you forward.  When it happens, you gotta ride it all the way into the beach.  Saturday morning I decided to do some work.  After breakfast I washed the kitchen floor, then took Baby Harbat outside to ride her tricycle while I vacuumed the pool.  I suppose it’s been a long time coming, since I always shortcut by walking along the tiled edge of the hot tub, and Saturday my uppance came when I slipped on the wet tile and fell in.  Too bad my wife didn’t get to see me climbing out of the hot tub with soaked pantlegs and a nice bruise on my knee.  Uncle F$#k-Up available for pool cleaning!

After a change of pants and a self-administered admonition to “take it easy” I finished the mold remediation project by painting our bedroom wall, finally getting to pull up the paper and masking tape and move the furniture back after months of doing the do-see-do around a dresser beside the bed.  Then I tackled firewood, borrowing a chainsaw to cut up the last remnant of a tree we (actually my step-dad) cut down when we moved in.  Then I split wood and miraculously didn’t hurt myself or anyone else.  I caught sight of my neighbor cleaning his gutters in preparation for Rain Deluge 2010, predicted to start Sunday night.  So I found myself crawling along the edge of the roof scooping leaves and gravel out with my bare hands.

Later in the day we went to a friend’s daughter’s birthday party.  Physicists take note:  when three girls between the ages of 2 and 3 are combined, a shrieking sound can be created that is many factors more than three times the volume of a single girl.  Toy marketers take note:  if you can market a game that is just running and screaming, you will make millions.  For my part, I had seconds of cake and tried to wish up some cold beer in a sippy cup.

Sunday was the exact opposite of the previous day.  I set records in both endurance lethargy AND sloth decathalon.  By the time the sun set, I managed to make up a double batch of Scottish Oat Bread, shown below, with Baby Harbat’s help.

And by help I mean she smooshed the dough, poked holes in it with her fingers, and hooked large gobs of dough for eating.

In my continuing quest for better pizza dough, I made up a batch of partial whole wheat dough with higher gluten flour and no olive oil.  Baby Harbat also assisted with this, and I was reminded why aprons are a good idea after she vigorously stirred the flour.  For dinner we had chicken with leeks, copious amounts of shiraz, and sourdough toast slathered with butter and pumpkin butter.  Then I threw a Lotus Exige around the track in my rally game and passed out for the night.

And what of Storm Deluge 2010?  This morning it looked as if there had been a light dew.  I am trying not to be disappointed.

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  1. Babs said:

    Whew! I'm exhausted! Where is that apron? Just think about how much money you'll save by having your own personal assistant in the bread making bidness.

  2. Yayy! I was not productive this weekend, unlike you! Jesse and I tried to rally yesterday morning to go nordic skiing and it starting dumping snow so we had to abort the mission and go eat baklava and sip hot chocolate in the lodge.
    Hey, have you made pie crust? Do you have any tips? I made a "pangea" pot pie last night because the crust was in seven hundred pieces which I just placed on top of the vegetables. (it was still delicious).
    Glad to see BH is finally contributing!

  3. As I understand, the key to pie crust is cold butter you work into the flour with a pastry blender until it's crumbly, and ice cold water. Then you make a ball and refrigerate for a while before rolling it out and cutting. I make perfect pie crust in my head. I've never made a real one.

  4. Babs said:

    Well hey…My first and only pie crust, which you may recall, was a mess and ended up tossed onto a cabinet and fell to the floor in pieces–much like yours, perhaps. I, however, didn't go ahead and put it on the pie. It ended up in the same trash bin as the pasta I made that also crumbled into pieces. Hope you have MUCH better luck with it!

  5. Jesse and I talked about my autobiography : "Great Expectations" by Samantha Wood. The pie crust in my head was perfect, fluted at the edges and trimmed perfectly, maybe even decorated with small pastry leaves on the edges. This was a piesaster. It was also a vegan pie crust (no butter!) which also didn't help. I also substitued cake flour + whole wheat flour for whole wheat pastry flour, which also could have contributed. Next time I will use butter and the right flours…
    What do you think about that substitution though? Does that matter?

  6. Use the right flour, real butter, and keep it cold. Whole wheat pastry flour would have a very low protein content to make the dough soft and flaky, so depending on your mix, it might not've made too much of a difference. But I'd stick with plain unbleached white, and if you want more whole wheat taste and texture, mix in a little wheat germ and a little wheat bran. The toasted germ adds great flavor and omega-3s, the bran makes your poo poo go woo woo. There.

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