“It was a beautiful day…”

I’ve been busy all afternoon. Jay did a TON of work outdoors, and I did a lot of indoor stuff. 3 loads of laundry, bread baking, and cake making. I made the Chocolate Chip Oatmeal cake I mentioned in my last post.

I could barely wait for it to cool once I pulled it out of the oven. I tasted the batter and was in heaven from that alone. I waited a good 20 minutes or so, and then got myself a piece.

Oh. My. God. Moist. Cinnamon-y. Chocolatey. Bliss. I haven’t made a cake or bar or cookie in a LONG time that has in essence, knocked the wind out of me. I purposely sat in the dining room and savored this piece to avoid having to share with the bambino (although as soon as I was done, I did get another piece, and that I did share with him). I am having a hard time not eating the rest of the cake, even now.

Rather late in the day, I started some French bread. My first attempt didn’t work–I killed my yeast. I tried again, and that worked. It’s time-consuming, but the end result seems worth it. However, until I get my hands on a stand mixer, either winning it from The Pioneer Woman or saving up to get one on my own, I don’t know that I’m going to be making this again any time soon.

It doesn’t look so awful, but after 4 cups of flour, my right arm hurt from trying to incorporate it all into the dough! Could be/would be SO much easier/nicer just letting a dough hook do all the work. But I guess there is something to be said for doing it the old-fashioned way, right?

And it’s not like I didn’t have decent loaves when all was said & done:

I should probably work on my shaping technique, but after the second rise, and my slashing, they looked more or less like bakery loaves:

I should maybe work on my slashing technique as well! Still, I’m thinking that because I ordered George’s instead of cooking dinner, I might just have to make myself a peanut butter sandwich to take for lunch tomorrow, since I don’t have any leftovers. And I think I’ll go ahead and get that done, get the coffee maker set up (my Archer Farms coffee is better than I was expecting…Smooth, but full-flavored. Yum! Although, I wouldn’t suggest getting it from Amazon–No bag of coffee is worth $25!), and then maybe get myself to bed BEFORE 9:30!

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