“There is not a thing that is more positive than bread.”
– Fyodor Dostoevsky
Baking is more than just a pastime, it’s an art. The great culinary artists of the world will tell you so! Patisseries and Boulangeries are taken very seriously in France for the French simply will not tolerate bad bread! Of course, bakeries are beloved all over. A croissant and cappuccino are the bright spots in the days of many, and there’s nothing more comforting than warm, freshly baked bread straight from the oven.
Baking has become increasingly popular as a form of meditative, therapeutic activity. For baking with children, it turns something of the everyday into something magical and fun. Not only are fresh-baked snacks better than processed foods, but they’re also good learning experiences for little ones.
It teaches children real-life skills. Baking from scratch is ideal because you know exactly what goes into your food, and measuring out ingredients, following a recipe closely, and being patient provides kids with very important lessons such as to cause and effect, patience is a virtue, and organization is always helpful in everyday life.
Baking with children is not only fun, but it gives them responsibility and, therefore, confidence. Have them crack the eggs, measure each ingredient and stir the batter. They love to get their little hands in the dough, place the novelty cookie cutter in just the right place and, believe me, when there’s flour nearby, it’ll end up clouding your kitchen! So, roll up your sleeves, get an apron and, most importantly, have fun.
Inspiration from Children’s Rhymes
Nursery rhymes like “Pat A Cake,” “The Muffin Man,” and the African American folksong dating all the way back to the late 19th century, “Mama’s Little Baby Loves Short’nin’ Bread” have been quintessential for small children. These little songs were really an enormous part of the culture and a simpler way of life, long before the age of technology where we all have smartphones in our pockets.
The Rise of Sour Dough
“Peace goes into the making of a poem as flour goes into the making of bread.” – Pablo Neruda
Even Obama bakes! With the pandemic, people were at home more, they weren’t going out to restaurants, and they decided to pick up new hobbies with all their spare time, especially while out of work or working from home. Sourdough bread became a whole new trend! Have you tried it yet?
“If thou tastest a crust of bread, thou tastest all the stars and all the heavens.” – Robert Browning
- Bread: fresh bread (sourdough, challah, marble rye, a baguette, soda, banana, and focaccia) is always essential. Since baking bread reached an all-time high during the pandemic, we have to wonder: why? The “existential comforts of coaxing yeast out of air, kneading, baking and sharing” have been examined a lot lately. An age-old tradition of baking together and feeding each other (literally breaking bread together) actually nourishes our bodies in real and figurative ways. We need food to live, but we also need community; we have to sit down with one another and connect in the most basic ways in order to remain grounded and sane. It really is a spiritual practice if you think about it. Connection, now more than ever, is so important.
- Of course, baking cookies is a favorite pastime of most and, through the years, has never lost its charm.
- Don’t forget about pies, cakes, cupcakes, gingerbread, scones, muffins, quiches, and tarts…! Oh, and macaroons. If you’re really into premier desserts, Ladurée is one of the best patisseries in the entire world!