Letting my mouth run off unfiltered as I usually do - the story of how I took years to find where I could buy spelt flour so I could bake a bread...
I have stated plenty of times that I don't like fads. I resist fads with all my might, shunning every aspect of them and staying away from stuff that is trending just because it is. But I am not averse to falling for a trend when I really like something, or I find that it's quite clever or healthy or tasty or my style. When slipper shoes were in I bought a pair. A velvet pair, with a golden metallic bow across the front. They were the most comfortable pair of shoes in the world, they were pretty and they matched my style. Plus, they were rather fashionable at the moment. When the skort was hitting every streetstyle photo and blog, I steered away from it, it wasn't me, it didn't fit my style and I did not look good in them.
The same thing goes for food fads, where I am concerned. I have fallen to the bulgur bandwagon because I really like the taste of it. I have also fallen for the pearl barley trend even though this one did not hit Portugal with the same force it ravished other countries, because I really, reaaaaaally love the taste and texture of pearl barley, so much more than rice! I couldn't go for the gin nor the hamburguer hype that seemed to be the norm these last couple of years - and you were no one if you were not mixing your gins on instagram, or photographing your gourmet burguers at each new gourmet burguer place that seemed to pop up around Lisbon area like wild mushrooms. I also keep away from the chia madness, quite simply, well, because I think it looks gross!
But I must confess that where it came to spelt, I could never stay away from wanting to dive into said fad! I became obsessed with it even before it was trending, I remember watching a show one day, after my son was born, where a miller was being interviewed and he was being asked about the types of flour he liked the best, and he then proceeded to show the spelt flour. I was hooked on the colour, the sight of the texture, the creamy off white of it, and as soon as my husband got home I told him about it. We tried to find it - on shops we could actually afford to shop in! - but did not come across any of it. It lay dormant inside our heads from that day on. Then I started reading food blogs at the same time I started a food blog, and suddenly, spelt flour was everywhere around portuguese blogs!
I remember having asked a couple of bloggers, through their comments form, where they managed to buy the spelt flour, and I got no reply - which in fact reinforces my personal opinion that the average portuguese person is very very afraid of what they deem as "competition" and very very averse to helping out fellow citizens, in case they might succeed better. See, portuguese people have been raised with the notion that information is power and it is dangerous to give power to others, much better to keep it for one's self! I'm being ironic here. Nah, not really. To cut a long story short, there was one blogger who was nice enough to direct me to a Facebook page where she aquired her spelt flour, but for my personal living budget, those prices were way out of my league.
And the spelt bread I had been dreaming of went back to the backburner again, and I resigned myself to it as we experimented with the addiction of more bran to our breads, with playing with rice flour, and corn flour, and rye flour - I so adore a good rye bread! Then one day, as we went to a certain specific - and not so cheap - store to buy a certain specific suplement for my mother in law, we came across many types and varieties of flours we hadn't even heard of! It was like hitting the jackpot, we were like kids let loose inside Santa's workshop, we were Han Solo reunited with the Millenium Falcon, we were so elated! And amidst all those lovely flours, there was the spelt we had wished for so long, and at an affordable price we could manage to spend, and so it came home with us. Suffice to say that that same weekend, my hubby dove into the makings of spelt breads that turned out to be so good, so tasty, so delicious, I have to share the recipe with you guys!
For this bread you'll need:
- 100 gr spelt flour
- 250 gr strong bread flour
- 200 ml lukewarm water
- 9 gr fresh yeast
- 1 tsp salt
- 1-2 tbsp oil