I was working with my friends Mark and Shirley Brock last night. Mark had mentioned to me that he and Shirley have been making bread from the recipe that I posted ("The Calling" in the blog archives). He really likes the loaf that it makes and mentioned something that I had noticed a long time ago. This loaf stays very fresh for a long period of time.
I can go buy a loaf from any local reputable bakery or grocery store that makes artisan loaves. No matter the place of purchase the result is largely the same. Within a 2 or 3 days I have a loaf that has begun to dry out and stale. The bread recipe that I have posted will produce loaves that are soft and pliable for a good 5 or 6 days, and mold is out of the question.
Now, to be fair, I have to say that I have made loaves from other recipes and gotten the same result; fresher bread for a longer period of time. I'm not sure what is at play here but the moral to this story seems to be, "Whenever you can make your own bread, do so. You won't regret it."
On an unrelated note, hunting season has opened so be on the lookout for a series of posts entitled "Field to Table". I already have one pig in the freezer so I'll have a post on that coming up soon.