I have this spot on our couch I repeatedly seem to find myself in. It’s just off the center, on the left cushion, and my favorite blanket is always within arms-reach. When I sit down, I typically have pillows propped to my left and a sturdy cookbook to my right (which serves as a mug holder, because having to lean over and pick-up my drink from the coffee table would require way too much work). My feet usually find themselves propped-up on our coffee table or curled under me. Our floor lamp, hovering just over the couch, is often the only light on, making this little corner of our home feel extra cozy. Our little bookshelf filled with cookbooks stares directly at me every time I look up.
While there are plenty of other places to sit in our apartment (including the other side of the couch), I always seem to find myself in this exact same spot. It’s where I go when I first wake-up on the weekends and following dinner nearly every night. I like to think it’s where I do my best thinking.
I know it sounds strange but when I first enter a new place, whether it be someone’s brand new house or our hotel for the weekend, it’s usually the first spot I notice. The place, to me, that whispers inspiration. Where I think I would find myself blogging on a Saturday morning and reading on a Thursday night. Usually, I locate it near the kitchen table or a large window. And if the two are near each other, bingo!
It’s not something I intentionally do, but seems to happen nearly every time I open that front door. We may be at a hotel where there is a giant bathroom to gasp at or a gorgeous view from the window, but instead, the first thing that will happen is I’ll spot the comfortable chair with the antique lamp inviting me to sit and daydream for a while.
The other thing that makes me feel inspired? Homemade bread. I don’t know if it’s because it brings back fond memories of my grandmothers or because every time I peek under that cloth and the dough has actually risen, I feel a little like a magician, but when the smell of baking bread fills the apartment and we take the first bite of warm, fluffy bread, I basically feel ready to conquer the world…or go back to that same spot on the couch and tell you all about it.
This bread is incredible. I always love a good ciabatta bread and this one gives you that perfect light, fluffy and airy texture. This is excellent for sandwiches as well as just dipped in a bit of olive oil.
Adapted from The Crepes of Wrath
Keywords: bake bread side vegetarian
Ingredients (1 loaf)
- 3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
- 1 1/2 tsp. active dry yeast
- 1 tsp. salt
- 3/4 tsp. granulated sugar
- 1 3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons warm water
- 2 tsp. olive oil, plus more for the bowl
1. Whisk together flour, yeast, salt, and sugar. Stir in the warm water, and mix for 5 minutes, using dough hook on a mixer or wooden spoon. Continue to knead using dough hook or wooden spoon until dough is well combined, about 3-4 minutes.
2. Generously flour your hands (the dough may be very sticky, this is okay!) and gently knead dough for 2-3 minutes.
3. Lightly coat the sides of a large bowl with oil, then place dough into the bowl. Move the dough around so that it is completely coated in a light coat of oil. Cover and rest in a warm place for 2 hours.
4. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. If using a pizza stone, coat with corn meal. If you don’t have a pizza stone, line a baking sheet with parchment paper, then sprinkle it with flour. Flour your hands and shape the dough into a long, wide loaf, about 12 inches long and 4 inches wide. Lightly sprinkle the top of the loaf with about 1-2 tbs. flour. Bake for 20-30 minutes, until golden brown. Place on a cooling rack and cool down for at least 10 minutes (20 if you have patience, which I don’t); serve and enjoy.
~Do you find yourself sitting in the same place(s) in your home?