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It was time for a day of rest.  The passed week was full of conversation, meeting, and eating.  Time with roommate, time with coworker, time with family away from home.  All these meetings were beautiful in their own way — to laugh, to listen, to learn.

Today had to be different.  The weather even had to decide it’s course of action — would it be sunny and blue-skied like Thursday, or cold and overcast like Friday?  After a clear beginning, a surge of blustery flurries, and sporatic gusts throughout, the sun finally set on a seasonally chill Saturday.Kitchen Window

Today had to be slower.  Things like making my own tomato sauce and bread for the week were all in order.  Issues like how to cut a pineapple or how do I know if a turnip should be peeled were in the forefront of my mind.

Bread was inspired by a few different sources this week.  On several occasions, I reached to my high, humble pantry shelf, and upon patting my hand on the sinthetic wood surfance, a bag of Hodgson Mill bulgur was discovered countless times.

I had a tabbouleh-making phase a few months ago.  With a fresh squeeze of lemon juice, extra-virgin olive oil, and plenty of curly parsley, the Lebanese salad makes a refreshing, whole grain dish.

Making another batch of tabbouleh in the midst of late February weather barely seemed appetizing.

Perhaps there could be a baking application for this whole grain.  After all, a winter diet needs to be nurished by bulgur as well.  Thoughts of a steamy, fresh from the oven loaf of bread could be a possibility.

This recipe from Eating Well seemed to fit my agenda.  I suppose I put my own personal touch to it by substituting 1/2 c. of whole wheat flour with rye flour that had been floating around in the kitchen.Baked Bulgur Bread

My grainy-wheat loaf is baking as I write; its warmth is fending off the February chill.  I am pleased with the preparation process thus far — I usually have a difficult time getting a loaf to rise to an attractive height and volume, but this recipe has given me favorable results (that is, before actually baking it).

(Confession: I will truly appreciate this recipe if the end result is satisfactory.  Having not read the directions carefully, I neglected to mix the wet and dry ingredients separately!)

—-

A training run and a few laundry loads later, this bread baking venture is a success.  Slicing into the cooled loaf, I hear the faint crackling of a well-developed crust.  Reader, you may know that a good crust can be difficult to develop while making homemade bread.  With a sturdy yet delightfully chewy crumb, a smooth, velvety flavor is an unexpected surprise.  The honey must have added this trait to the resulting loaf.

My palate needs to be reminded of the flavors in my bulgur bread.

-A

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