Monday, December 1, 2014

Sometimes homemade bread is love, even if you use a bread machine...

I told you in October that my Mother in Law (MIL) was losing weight and confused.  She had been complaining about her ribs hurting and for a while; we figured it was because she had a fall.  The dr. agreed, but the MIL kept complaining.  So finally, we requested an x-ray to see what what going on.

We were not prepared for the results.

While we all expected that cancer would take it's toll on the MIL, (she is a breast cancer survivor for l0 years and 88 years old), we easily put away those fears to face another day.  That day arrived.  We found out she has a large mass in her right lung, moving into her ribs, a smaller mass in her left lung, and her lymph nodes are compromised...we really were hoping for pneumonia, that can be cured.  Her cancer cannot.

We have moved into the mode of "kind and comfortable."  We are working to be kind and keep her comfortable.  Hospice is working with us, my BIL spends the days and my husband, my oldest son, and I take turns spending the nights.  We are moving together as a family to help our loved one through this tough transition.

I know that one of the ways I show love for my family is through food.  I bake for them, I plan to make things I know they enjoy, I want a home that smells of delicious things to eat and a warm feeling of love.  So I am working on ways to help my MIL feel loved.

She loves bread and has an old bread machine sitting on her counter.  I know she hasn't used it in years, because it was covered with dust the first time I looked at it.  I have not really used a bread machine but I do have a book full of recipes made for a bread machine, so I am making bread  bags.  I put together the ingredients for a loaf of bread in a gallon bag and in the morning when I wake up at her house I put the contents of a bag in the bread machine, add the liquid ingredients and push start before I go home to shower for work.  By lunch time, my BIL takes the fresh bread out and it is ready to be a part of her lunch.  Her house smells delicious, she eats just a little more than she would have, and there is always fresh bread and some jelly to share with the hospice workers when they come during the day.

I looked for box mixes at the grocery store, I'm sure there used to be lots to choose from, but I could not find any.  So I am making my own mixes.  I am working my way through this old bread book that was really an large advertisement for a type of bread machine.  I've saved it since 1992!  If you have any recipes that are meant for a bread machine, or you have adapted for a bread machine, I would love it if you would share.

Potato Loaf Bread
adapted from an old Dak bread machine advertisement flyer
1 Tbsp. dry yeast
3 cups bread flour
1 Tbsp. sugar
1.5 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. butter, softened
2 Tbsp. instant mashed potato flakes
1/3 cup instant milk powder
1 1/4 cups warm water

To make bag:
Measure yeast, flour, sugar, salt, potato flakes and milk powder in large baggie.

For bread:
Pour bag of mixed flour ingredients into bread machine, add butter and water.  Push start!

1 year ago:   Tucker on the Sofa and Pumpkin Brownies
2 years ago:  Cranberry Shortbread and the Joys of December
3 years ago:  Chinook Winds - Drink of the Week

December 1, 2014   Sunrise 10:19 am  Sunset 3:00 pm  Temp. H 13/ L 10°F

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