You Called?

I was waiting around and feeling slightly antsy. The sunshine was pouring through the windows as I looked out into the deserted yard. Dead leaves had collected on the newly seeded grass. There was a chill in the air, and though I knew the sunshine would eventually warm things up, I started a fire in the woodstove. I waited and waited all the while tapping into my reserve stash of patience. This was not how the day was supposed to go. I had a plan upon waking up…and that plan was quickly changing. So I took a deep breath and decided to make the best of this day. And not long after I had managed to calm down the repair guy showed up to fix a broken heater…two hours after the appointment time.

Flaxseed & Cracked Pepper Crackers

Homeownership has its rewards. But sometimes you get an unexpected call from ‘real life’ reminding you that you do not live in the Pleasantville zip code. The first repair of the week was the television. In my neck of the woods you cannot get cable…shocker, I know! Yes, go ahead and check the calendar I will wait. Yes, you are correct, we are in the year 2012. Yes, technology is still catching up here. DSL just became an option a few years ago. The nice satellite technician spent three hours tightening cables, pushing buttons on the remote, and resetting the receiver at least 8 times. In the end I learned: the average reset, reboot time is roughly 10 minutes (feels like 10 years), I kept feeding wood into the woodstove as we chatted about the familiar land and people of the North Country (we knew the same folks), and we both like the show Alaska: The New Frontier. ¬†And though he tried every method imaginable to fix what I had…in the end I received a new satellite box.

This was happening on the same day that I woke up to a very cold house. The heater was not working. There was plenty of propane in the tanks. This was a problem. Forgoing an emergency repair call…I waited to schedule during the week figuring it would be a quick fix. I was wrong. As I showed Mr. Repair Man my heater he exclaims: I have never seen this particular model before! I somehow knew this was going to be a long appointment. In the end he finally figured out how to take the heater apart, checked all the flames, lines, vents and everything else and put it back together again. And it worked…for now. If we get a cold day he assured me that all I had to do was pour hot water over the regulator valve outside. Really? And after I do this magical hot water trick I will be calling the shop again to, kindly, request another repair appointment.

But there was a silver lining above the ruts in the road that lead to my healthy home. I flipped through the Joy the Baker cookbook and there it was – a new cracker recipe to try out! I happened to have all of the ingredients in my pantry. So I set about grinding up golden flaxseed…

and then

Ground flaxseed: meet the other dry ingredients

Buttermilk gets added in and stirred together. I did not have any buttermilk but used a white wine vinegar/ milk combination and hoped for the best. The dough gets turned out, kneaded until it comes together, shaped into a disc, and wrapped it up in saran wrap. It then rests in the fridge for about ten minutes. When it was time to get to work, I halved the dough disc and started rolling…and rolling…and rolling. I cut out shapes like this…

and this

and baked these beauties up.

It pays off to tap into the last remaining bits of your patience. I was able to stop, enjoy these crackers with a slice of Harman’s cheddar cheese (the world’s best cheese by the way) and a dollop of Fig & Ginger Jam from Stonewall Kitchen. It was the perfect snack. More importantly, it was a perfect reminder to be patient, look around, and make the best of what you are given.

You can find this recipe in the Joy the Baker cookbook. If you would like to bake your way through the cookbook, find the Sundays with Joy group on Facebook!

Thanks for reading and have a great weekend!

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