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I am not really a Luddite. Having created or been a major investor in more than one IT company I certainly do promote and profit from technology.

But I also do appreciate simplicity. And I love old things. Just because something is old does not mean it is inferior.

Take, for example, fire.

Fire

Fire

Making fire, after all, is one of our oldest technologies. Fire has warmed us and cooked our food for many millennia. Without mastering the technology of fire we would not have many of the industries we have today. The industrial revolution was based on fire including the steam engines, making steel, and many other related and dependent technological advances.

And one of the oldest, yet most familiar, relationship we have with fire and with another technological advance, agriculture, is with making bread.

Bread is a stable. It is, for much of history, almost what defines us. A product of our other technological advances in agriculture that allowed us to grow grains. And this resulted in cities, societies and cultures. No wonder bread is mentioned throughout written history. And yet making bread is so simple. Ground grain, water, sugar/honey, and yeast (all with a pinch or two of salt). Yeast, of course is also used to create wine.

Then you let that rise and then bake in an oven. And there is nothing better than baking bread in a wood fired oven. We are lucky, since our heating source is wood, we also have a combined wood heating stove and wood heated oven. Thus doubling the practical use of the heat created by burning the wood. And our wood oven is very modern, very efficient and very high tech — like I said, I do appreciate technology. And so on many mornings in the winter, when the wood stove is alight, to be energy efficient and culturally and gastronomically minded, we make fresh home made bread.

Simplicity incarnate in its simplest form.

Bread stage 1. Flour, water, honey and yeast added and kneaded into a dough.

Bread stage 1. Flour, water, honey and yeast added and kneaded into a dough.

Bread stage 2. After second raising.

Bread stage 2. After second raising.

Bread in the oven.

Bread in the oven.

Warm bread fresh from the oven. Slice and enjoy. At this point in time it will melt the butter all by itself.

Warm bread fresh from the oven. Slice and enjoy. At this point in time it will melt the butter all by itself.

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