Thursday, November 23, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving to Gaya

The day began today with a huge clap of thunder and a rainstorm that turned everything gray. It briefly felt like an autumn day, and it happened just as I was kneading the dough to make focaccia for today's meal. I was thrilled.

Most of the baking I do usually revolves around quick breads and cakes, and I steer clear of any yeasted breads because of the time it takes and my general reluctance to work with yeast. But today is a special day and I wanted to give this yeasted bread a try. I'm very glad that I did. Watching the dough rise and then pressing my hands to knead that foamy texture was very satisfying. This must be why the magic of bread making has endured through centuries. Although today there are fancy machines to do the job for us, nothing beats a piece of bread that has been nurtured patiently by a baker.

Baking that focaccia has become the gift that I received today, because it turned my thoughts to gratitude for Gaya, Mother Earth, nurturer of us all, creator of the magic around us, and sublimely generous and patient with us, her sometime-inconsiderate children.

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