Guilt and the Good Life

farmhouse loafSHOULD I BE spending more time at my desk? Well of course . . . but there are other things in life.

We fitted in a session weeding the onions when we got back this afternoon which I can’t say was urgent but it’s one of those jobs that, if left, leads to bigger problems later on. The onions get onion setsswamped by the competition and you run the risk of damaging their roots as you remove the by then established weeds.

I have to admit that I prefer weeding, at least when it is as easy as this, to the fiddly business of sowing and planting out crops. No decisions to be made, a fairly mindless activity. It’s the first time I’ve used my little hand-held onion hoe for the job that gives it its name; weeding the narrow spaces between the rows of onions.

A spoonful of honey

After that half hour in the garden I took time out to bake a farmhouse loaf, again not strictly necessary – we could easily have picked up a loaf on the way home – but it’s such a pleasure to do. Being pressed for time after everything else we’d fitted in today I went for a recipe which doesn’t require knocking back and a second rising, saving 30 or 40 minutes.

This recipe includes a couple of spoonfuls of honey which gives the yeast a bit of a boost, helping speed things up. The hint of honey works well with the country grain and rye, which I add to the basic mix of white and wholemeal flour.

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