I can't even remember the last time I baked bread although I know that last year I bought buttermilk once or twice and then ended up throwing it out months later so I'm fairly willing to bet it has been at least a couple of years. When I was in the supermarket last week, I noticed that they had buttermilk on special offer so I grabbed two containers. And somehow this morning remembered and, after having talked myself out of getting up, stripping the bedclothes off the bed for a much overdue wash, baking bread and instead deciding to stay where I was to finish my book, I ended up getting up, stripping the bedclothes of the bed for a much overdue wash and baking bread. Actually, the reason I got up properly was because the postman rang the doorbell and had a package for me. Having a very lazy pyjama Saturday morning in bed isn't necessarily the way you want your postman to find you and it's one of those situations where I am reminded that living on the fourth floor with no lift has its advantages. In this case, enough time to throw on some clothes (over my pyjamas but how's he to know that) before he arrives at the door. It was the box of books and magazines that I got in Australian (some purchased, mostly presents) but couldn't fit in my luggage and which my lovely sister forwarded to me. They've been on a boat somewhere for a couple of months and now it feels like christmas all over again.
That brief flurry of activity seems to have been enough to get me going because once I was moving I realised how hungry I was getting and it was the work of a couple of minutes to throw together the dough for the bread. I used wholemeal and plain flour in a ratio of about 4:1, two teaspoons of bread soda, a bit more than half a teaspoon of salt and nearly two teaspoons of raw cane sugar along with most of a 500g container of buttermilk (will never understand why yoghurt and buttermilk is listed as weight and not as volume). I sprinkled some porridge oats on top and baked for 35 minutes. When I took it out, the top was nicely browned but it didn't quite have the right hollow sound on the bottom so I put it back in, turned upside down, for five more minutes. I took it out of the oven a few minutes ago so by now it should be cooled down enough to eat without burning my mouth too badly. Here's hoping it tastes as nice as it looks. Bread and butter is a treat not to be missed!