Tuesday, February 22, 2011

On your mark. Get set. _______ .

Here's a little game I like to play.

When I put something in the oven, I set the timer.  In the time it takes to bake whatever is in there, I have to complete at least one chore around the house.  Obviously, some tasks are better suited for certain bake times.  Putting away laundry works great with a sheet of cookies whereas waxing the floor is better saved for a pound cake.

In the 35 minutes it took to bake a loaf of whole wheat bread, I managed to clean, organize and reminisce through the kitchen junk drawer.

To help me relax.
(I kid, I kid.  It's just catnip.  Easier on the throat.)

Berry White and I used to buy records from Strangeland until it went under a few years ago.  It was one of the last remaining brick and mortar record shops in the area.  RIP Strangeland.

We run a mature household. 

Alright, let's get this bread started so that you can set your timer and tackle the _____ .

No-Knead Whole Wheat Bread
Recipe from the back of the King Arthur flour bag

1 cup lukewarm water
1/4 cup orange juice
1/4 cup melted butter or vegetable oil
3 Tablespoons molasses or maple syrup
2 teaspoons instant yeast
1/4 cup nonfat dry milk*
3 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/4 teaspoons salt

*I didn't have any dry milk on hand so I substituted the dry milk and the water with 1 cup of milk.

Grease an 8 1/2" x 4 1/2" loaf pan.

In a large bowl, combine all (that's right, ALL) of the ingredients.  Beat on high for 3 minutes.

Scoop the dough into the loaf pan.

Cover the dough with lightly greased plastic wrap and let it rise for 90 minutes.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.  Slide the pan into the oven and let it bake for 15 minutes.  Place a piece of tented foil over the dough and let it bake for another 15-20 minutes until the internal temperature hits 195 degrees.

Let it cool in the pan for 5 minutes then turn it out onto a rack to cool completely.

The best thing since sliced this.

Mmm.  Nutty, moist and great toasted and topped with butter and honey.

Not a bad reward for ____ing the _____ in under __ minutes.


  1. Last night I baked a tart and took the timer downstairs with me as I worked out with the Wii. Timer stopped, workout over, tart out of the oven!

    This bread looks delightful. I haven't delved much into whole wheat - this looks like a good place to start.

  2. Generally my task is always the same: pick up the piles of clothes that have accumulated through running in and out the door to work and auditions. Not a ton of variety, though I have gotten pretty quick at hanging and folding.

  3. I usually do the dishes and/or fold laundry (our washer dryer is in our kitchen). Sometimes, however, I just dance around my kitchen.

  4. Breadandputter - that's exactly what I need to start doing. I'm now the proud owner of a Kinect and have no excuse not to put it to full, cardiovascular use while the diet wrecker is baking in the oven.

    Lauren - there's an art to hanging and folding, especially when you're working against the clock. Do you stack or hang your jeans? I'm big on folding in thirds. I can thank the Esprit store for that.

    Celia - the socked moonwalk on linoleum rules.

  5. i love this! sometimes i find myself racing against an imaginary timer to complete a task in as little time as possible. i also do this while at the gym. like "oh, i have to make it to __ calories before i get off the elliptical" or __ miles or __ steps. wow, i'm really crazier than i thought. glad to see we're in similar boats, though!

  6. Interesting approach Ali. I always feel like I'm jumping from one task to the next with no end in sight. Yes, I think I need to start using my timer more wisely.

  7. I do the same thing, I even try to bathe by daughter in between cooking. Someday the house may burn down! LOL

  8. That looks so easy! And tasty! I could totally make that! (I think)

  9. Taylor - we are totally in the same OCD canoe. We can share paddling duties.

    Wendi - that's the kicker: there's always another task waiting. I wish I had a solution for that.

    Jennifurla - now THAT is the epitome of multitasking.

    Stacy - trust me, you can totally make this. When your beer arrives, you would probably throw some of that in the dough and it would still turn out (don't quote me on that.)

  10. Awesome! I can't wait for my beer!

  11. Just cam across your site from The Kitchn.com and it's awesome. I love the catnip joke :)