Bread baking demonstration.

Being from Europe, bread is “sacred” and treated with the utmost respect! A few months ago I decided to start baking my own bread and miraculously discovered (against all odds) that I can actually succeed in this! I developed my own whole wheat, multi grain, multi seed bread and it is delicious! See photo at the end of this blog.

But there is so much more to learn and I was therefore very happy when I came across an announcement of a baking demonstration by King Arthur Flour in my hometown (Gaithersburg, Md.) This was offered as part of a road trip by a King Arthur team, visiting schools to teach kids to learn, bake and share. The program is called “Bake for Good".

The demonstration was just wonderful! What a great ambiance! The King Arthur team was very welcoming and friendly. A large table was set up in the front of the room with ingredients, utensils, measuring cups, bread rollers, samples, etc. While the instructor was talking and showing how to knead, roll, let rise, knead some more, add ingredients and knead again, we could simultaneously watch a more close-up view on a large screen. We learned about making whole wheat yeast bread, quick bread and braided bread and much more. There was a raffle at the end with some really fun door prizes. And at the end everybody was given a bag with flour, recipes and other goodies.

Here are some photos, taken with my brand new Nikon Z6.

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And here’s my bread!


Black Ankle Vineyards

All too easily I let weekends slip by.  Not this weekend!  After photographing assignments Friday night and Saturday morning and an amazing Halloween party that evening, I asked my husband to plan a little outing for Sunday afternoon.  As it's his hobby to plan trips and culinary adventures (he's really a master planner!), he came through - much to his credit because he didn't particularly feel like leaving the house!

So mid-day he drove me through windy, narrow stretches of road in a beautiful countryside;  the sun smiling upon us and the sky as blue as blue can be.  It wasn't too far from where we live but I had never been there.  Our trip led us to Mt Airy, Md. at the beautiful Black Ankle Vineyards. This is supposedly one of the best wineries in Maryland.

For the European readers I have to explain that wine-tasting here can be a very different experience.  It's maybe a little less formal and strict, people often take a picnic and a blanket and once they have tasted some wines and decide on a bottle or two, they take it all outside to hang out.  Although there may not be the amazing caves as, say, in France,  the scenery is often beautiful, there's ample space for the children to run around and play and there may be some musicians.  It's a wonderful atmosphere.

As soon as we arrived at Black Ankle winery we loved it!  It was truly one of those times when one good thing was followed by the other and then the other, culminating in an incredible experience.  We tasted some lovely wines inside the cozy strawbale cottage and since our charming server felt bad for us because she was so busy we were even treated to some dessert wine tastings.  We then took some wine outside and enjoyed it on the patio, overlooking beautiful fields of grass and vineyards with some foliage in the background.  We admired groups of people enjoying themselves with their picnics and wines and chatted with some others on the patio.  It made us feel energized and  happy and we really didn't want to leave!