A lot of people find the time after the holidays a letdown. I like the slower pace. Less stuff in the house. Less expectations all around. I'm usually recovering from my own Christmas overindulgence and tend to turn to a kind of self imposed austerity. I like using up things from the pantry & freezer (I usually don't let anyone near the frozen strawberries or blueberries until Jan, although this year I relented in November.) I also like to cook and bake from scratch at this time of year. Nothing says cosy like a windy storm outside and warm bread baking in the oven.
I have been making this no knead bread from Mother Earth News. It turns out beautifully. It's easy. I made it for stuffing for Thanksgiving and it's pretty impressive when you have people over. (my friend Kristin's is better than mine because she has a baking stone) It's made with completely white flour though and we normally eat whole wheat so it's not ideal for every day. (And it's so good that it's probably better if I don't have enough around to eat it every day.) I've tried making the loaf with whole wheat but it results in a pretty dense loaf that I could possibly use as a home protection device should the need arise. The nice thing about that loaf is that you can leave the dough in the fridge for up to 14 days and the longer it sits, the more it starts to taste like sourdough.
WHOLE WHEAT version. From the same people who came up with the first recipe! Each loaf contains only 1/2 cup white flour which is pretty awesome. I made my first batch yesterday. It turned out super. So super that I now completely want the book that it comes from, Healthy Breads In 5 Minutes A Day.
I didn't take a picture of it and now the darn loaf is half gone!