Hello Bread Eaters,
I've done a terrible job keeping up with Raven Breads these past weeks of wandering. For those who are curious, the following is a rambling and incomplete update of what I've been doing instead:
I had told many of you at the last markets that I'd be baking in January, maybe do a pop-up sale or two, but January came and I was helping my dad with remodeling projects, or deep in the Cascades backcountry skiing, or packing up the kitchen for the winter and moving it into storage. I didn't bake bread.
Well, I thought, at least when I'm on the road and away from all my projects, I'll have time to update social media, maybe add a blog to the website chronicling my West Coast bread tour. But then I was on the road and exploring new landscapes, watching the cedars and firs become oaks and pines, then redwoods. I was visiting bakeries, making new friends as crazy with food lust as me, baking through the dark hours of morning, sometimes straight through the night, and zombie walking the following days. I rarely remembered my camera, and when I did the idea of placing the lens between myself and the experience felt like cheating, like I might get caught up living for the story and forget to live for myself. Foolish, perhaps, but for the most part I left my camera in its case.
But I've been writing! Journal entries, letters, lists of ideas and inspirations (who wants to build a solar food dryer, backyard masonry oven, and/or multipurpose, stackable storage/transport/display boxes with me this spring?). I'd like to share some of these experiences—the grouchy, world class baker who didn't like novices (me) to speak unless spoken to, the manic feel of 10am when you arrived in the kitchen at 10pm the previous evening, the neon green hills of west Marin, a night of fire and conversation under the madronas of southern Oregon—if you're interested. Would anyone read a blog without (many) pictures in the age of clickbait and Twitter? Or would archaic email be a more appropriate medium?
I'm almost done with the first leg of this winter's bread journey. One more California bakery visit later this week and then I'm driving back up the coast. From Seattle I'll fly out to Toronto for three weeks with a wonderful baker I met at the Skagit grain conference who bakes with whole and heirloom grains. And after that, finally, back to Bellingham for the start of the next market season.
Adventures! Friends! Fermentation! Onward!
(unless I find a good story sharing medium)
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