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Here is Sunday morning, the kitchen still and empty but with the reassuring ghosts of the previous evenings socialising still lingering. The smell of fresh coffee suggests a breakfast just had and the running shower upstairs suggests a breakfast yet to come, but for now I’m alone. That is apart from the cat, in her favored position, motionless in front of her catflap gazing out at the drizzly garden, like some grandma by a window, looking out for birds. Here is Sunday. The table tidied, the tulips in place. I plug my i-pod into the hi-fi and measure out flour, water, salt, yeast. I’m new to breadmaking and spent january perfecting a malted rye, which I’ve gotten bored with before perfecting, so this morning I try out a simple wholemeal bread. The kneading is my favorite part, this recipe calls specifically for ‘firm folding and heel-of-hand pressure, not manic voodoo-dough-hatred’, I appreciate this reminder and firmly fold the dough for the duration of three Tunng songs when it comes together perfectly (for once!) into what looks like a promising loaf-to-be. I can see how bread making becomes addictive, it’s simple sensory pleasures, repetitive motions, attention to detail, the feeling that you’re doing something ancient, something wich has been done millions of times, by millions of hands before (O.K, also true of tying up your shoelaces but I am exercising my poetic license).  Here now is dough, firmly enfolded, sitting under a teatowl by the radiator, waiting to rise.


Rahima Fitzwilliam Hall

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