Summer is at the peak. Heat has sucked up all the energy leaving listless and restless. Trees wear a withered look, the ground is parched, grass dry and almost dead. Thirsty birds throng our bird pot. A pair of Koel drinks
By evening, clouds begin to gather in the sky. Soon they spread all around. Air is heavy and vaporous. It becomes humid. We pray that a good downpour happens. Many times before, the clouds gathered and got dissipated by the strong breeze leaving behind just dust. But as the evening progressed, there was lightening and thunder and it rained in torrents. The parched Earth drank up the water leaving a heavenly petrichor. It rained for hours and all the woes were forgotten and washed away.
There was a jar of buttermilk in the refrigerator. We were loving it tempered with roasted cumin and a pinch of asafoetida. As the weather changed, we decided to use it and bake a buttermilk bread.
Buttermilk bread has an incredibly soft crumb and a great taste. It toasts well.
We toasted it and enjoyed with a generous amount of butter and hot tea.
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup oatmeal
- 1 ½ teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons oil
- ¼ cup warm water
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 2 ¼ teaspoon instant dry yeast
- ¾ cup buttermilk
- Whisk together first three ingredients in a deep bowl. Add oil. Mix well
- In another bowl, take water. Add sugar and stir it till it dissolves. Add yeast. Cover and keep for 5-6 minutes. The yeast should turn frothy.
- Heat buttermilk till just warm (keep stirring while heating). Add to the yeast mixture.
- Mix dry and wet ingredients and knead for 6-7 minutes to get a smooth and supple dough. If the dough feels hard or dry, add more warm water and knead for another 3-4 minutes.
- Transfer dough to a greased bowl. Turn around so that it is evenly coated with oil. Cover and keep in a warm place for 1 hour or till double.
- Punch again and roll it into a rectangle. Starting with shorter side, roll up tightly, pressing dough into roll. Pinch edges and ends to seal. Place in greased 9 x 5-inch loaf pan. Cover with a kitchen towel.
- Keep in a warm place to rise for 1 hour or till dough crests slightly above the lip of the pan.
- Bake in a preheated oven at 190 degrees C for 25 to 30 minutes or till the top turns golden brown.
- Remove from the pan. Cool.