Bread — Evolution and Devolution

The inquisitive mind, the inner vision for growth and development of human kind, the inspirational spirit in all — towards gods or towards nature, and the quest for optimal maintenance of the carnal and the soul, all these have led us to find ways to dissect and compose far beyond the fruits of nature which are freely at our disposal, season after season, year after year, after decades, after centuries, after millennia…

With these tendencies at heart, in the stomach and in the mind, humans and its predecessors began composing bread some eight thousand years ago, or more.

Dough

I am madly passionate about the concept, and for over a decade I have been playing and experimenting with bread baking. Yes, I started very late but my joy for breads — like it is for most humans on this planet — has been an intricate part of the love that is born in the kitchen, as I detailed some weeks ago in “Love Ingrained”.

Today, however, I had to think once more about our human condition, this wonder of evolution which, sadly, at some point turns into devolution. And after more than eight millennia making rich breads, filled with tasty and nutritional ingredients, perhaps Jesus of Nazareth was actually giving us a warning, when he said that man should not live from bread alone. The more we civilize, the more we reduce the nutritional value that we found in the baking of yesteryear. The more we civilize, the less we seem to understand that food is life, and not instant consumption for the subsiding of hunger. Our worst case scenario has been reached in the cookies that the poor Haitians bake, consisting of mud, salt and water.

It seems as though our inquisitiveness, vision, and inspiration of earlier times, helped us become noble animals but the nobility has been overtaken by the animal. 

The animal that becomes noble in the understanding that food is life, has witnessed that eating is not merely about subsiding hunger.

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