We’re Made of Star Stuff

One of my secret pleasures is listening to trance/electronic music.  Of all the stations I’ve created on Pandora, the one based on Popol Vuh’s Mantra 1 is one of my favorites.  Maybe that’s why I like the Symphony of Science videos—they have great music and compelling messages.  This is my favorite of the three made:

This is a concept that could’ve fallen flat:  some dude with a computer, keyboard, and autotune.  But I just like listening to these tracks over and over.  I should add that the creative side of me wishes I could do that.  And the kid side of me just spilled his Hawaiian Punch and is demanding more Skittles.

But what about Bread Week, you ask?  Well.  Last night I made four batches of cranberry walnut brioche, two loaves of Scottish oat bread, one sourdough olive, and one sourdough starter.  It’s all shoehorned into the fridge and will be baked tonight.  I’ve also still to make two loaves of potato rosemary, 2 cinnamon swirls, and a double batch of sourdough.  And though I was really tired by 11 when I finished up the last of the dishes, I was quite relaxed.  I think my favorite dough to work is the sourdough.  By the third or fourth minute of kneading it begins to smooth out, like oil tossed on stormy seas.  By the seventh minute it’s become warm satin in your hands, seductively elastic and pliable.

I did accomplish one other thing last night:  I learned the importance of docking pizza dough.  This means you perform kitchen acupuncture on it, poking holes in the crust so it doesn’t do this:

 

That was taken halfway through the bake, and the bubbles only got bigger, like it had been stung by hornets.  I’ve now learned the incredible elasticity of my high-gluten flour.  I think the next batch will have to incorporate a little more all-purpose, since it’s taking me 15 minutes to stretch out, toss, roll, and cajole this dough into a thin round crust.  I am getting pretty good tossing the dough up into the air like a real paisan, and only sprayed flour in my eyes twice while doing it!

Tonight my oven will be full steam ahead, damn the torpedoes.  I cut some new clay tiles for the shelves and inaugurated them last night by spilling toppings from the aforementioned pizza all over them, where they instantly burned and stuck.  Hooray for Uncle F%$#-Up!

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Writer, architect, father, husband.

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3 comments on “We’re Made of Star Stuff
  1. Babs says:

    It's definitely time for the video camera! Maybe you can sing Italian opera or even better—one of those cool medication/trance songs whilst you toss your pizza into the air.

  2. Samanthropos says:

    Apizza pizza! Good god, I hope you're getting paid well for all the bread baking. Watch out it doesn't stress you out- when you feel like you HAVE to do something vs. WANT to, it ceases to be fun. Ie: overcommitting on knitting projects. Sounds like you're still having fun though!!
    PS: Should we get you some tiny euro shorts and glo sticks to use whilst listening to your trance muzak?

  3. psoutowood says:

    I am TOTALLY on board with the Euro shorts. Actually I beat you to the punch: already got 'em on. Just lemme spray on some more Axe and self-tanner, hope on the first flight to Mallorca, and get people to call me Serge and I'll be ready for the trance scene. PS. Whilst? Whilst? My God you're pretentious…

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