Wednesday, March 9, 2011

The observance of Lent

“The observance of Lent is the very badge of the Christian warfare. By it we prove ourselves not to be enemies of Christ. By it we avert the scourges of divine justice. By it we gain strength against the princes of darkness, for it shields us with heavenly help. Should mankind grow remiss in their observance of Lent, it would be a detriment to God's glory, a disgrace to the Catholic religion, and a danger to Christian souls. Neither can it be doubted that such negligence would become the source of misery to the world, of public calamity, and of private woe.”—Pope Benedict XIV

What's on the Ash Wednesday menu:

Lentil Soup
1 cup chopped onion
1 Tbsp minced garlic
1 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup chopped celery
1 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 quart chicken or vegetable broth
2 cups water
1-1 1/2 cup lentils, picked through
2 chicken bouillon cubes
salt and pepper to taste.

Saute the onion, garlic and celery in the olive oil until soft.  Add the canned tomatoes and the broth, the water and the bouillon cubes.  Stir in the lentils and bring to a boil.  Cover and reduce heat to a simmer.  Cook until lentils are soft.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

Our Daily Bread

6 cups unbleached all-purpose or bread flour
2/3 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup rye flour
1/4 cup milled flax seed
1 Tbsp fine sea salt
2 1/2 tsp granulated yeast
1 Tbsp honey
1 Tbsp blackstrap molasses
2 2/3 cups warm water

Measure the flour by spooning it into a measuring cup and leveling it with knife.  Place the flours, flax seed and salt  into a large bowl.  Mix the honey and molasses into the water and sprinkle on the yeast.  When the yeast is foamy, pour into the flour.  Mix by hand or with a mixer with a dough hook attachment for about 8-10 minutes.

Pull out onto a very lightly floured surface, knead a bit, shape into a ball and place in an oiled large bowl in a warm spot to double, about an hour to an hour and a half.  Punch down and shape into two oblong loaves; place on a cookie sheet sprinkled with cornmeal or on a bread peel with cornmeal or a sheet of baking parchment on it.

Heat a baking stone for 40 minutes at 425 degrees or preheat oven.  Slash the tops of the loaves and place on the stone, or put the cookie sheet in the oven.  Bake for 10 minutes, then lower the heat to 400 degrees and bake for another 25-30 minutes.  If the loaves seem to be browning too quickly, cover lightly with foil.


  1. wow . I admire you. Maybe one day I can learn how to bake my own bread. Your loaf looks amazing.

  2. Wow you really have got it all sossed... I had five and couldnt think how I would have managed to home school them, and you have 6!! Your life sounds hard but idylic, so I am encouraged that living like you do is not lost.. Having faith is an enormous bonus too.. Our faith has taken a huge battering recently with all the scandals, but I am sure that it will all calm down and good will win over the evil!! God Bless you all, look forward to seeing more of your blog best wishes from across the pond.. J


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