Finally after all these years blogging with my partner here, Jonitin Field, yielding to his endless harping on my over-nuanced bread geekiness ("I kinda thought when I came to you with this idea, the idea was a food blog, not a bread blog – am I missing something, bubba?" is an echoing refrain of his) he finally had to humble himself and ask a request. It was his mom's 85th birthday and she – unlike his unsophisticated self – understood the total preciousness of a great bread – especially sourdough. And so he begged me to make her something for her birthday dinner.
So I fed my levain, made the dough, retarded it, and woke up at "bakers' hours" (namely when he was happily asleep) and made Mama Rochelle's lovely bread. It was nary four in the morning – even the roosters snoring – when I shaped, cut and baked this special bread. Here's what I got. Later he came to pick it up, and we got to visit each other for some mutual reminiscing about those long-gone-days when we still got to hang out, tell bad jokes, and argue over things other than blog post choices. Then he headed to his mom's birthday party and served the bread. According to him, "the crowd went wild." His words, not mine! Anyway, I asked for a crumb shot and got one. Next I'll get him to learn to make some dough.