Race season will officially kick off for me in less than two weeks with the first major marathon road race in Wisconsin. After all the ups and downs for the last two years, I am thankful to be able to race once more. In May 2012, after returning from 5th place at World Master Championship in Damp and stepping on the podium for a race in Nordsee, I began a string of crashes which ultimately culminated with my first concussion. It was a harsh test in my personal life and athletic career. Two years later, I am far from being back in my top racing form but things are slowly coming together. I am making small progress at every training session. I am sure there will be more setbacks in my future, that is just a fact of life. However, in order to give myself the best chance of succeeding a goal which I hold dear for years, I think the time has come to make some changes.
For years, I have been posting three times a week regularly at Dessert By Candy. I appreciate the opportunity to expand my horizon. Your support inspires me to keep cooking and writing. Unfortunately, the time demand is competing for my attention in training. I do not want to lose my passion in either by letting them become chores. Cooking will always be a big part of my life and the joy I get from sharing delicious meals with loved ones is incomparable to anything I do on skates. However, for the time being, the best course of action is to keep regular blog updates on a less frequent basis. I hope you understand.
Today I want to share with you a little something I bought at IKEA, emporium of some-assembly-required. I am always fascinated by the small grocery section just beyond the checkout lines with the exotic Scandinavian sundries. This is where you’ll likely find the best price in town for blocks of marzipan. For Swedish expats, the traditional multigrain bread hold special appeal. Of course keeping supply of fresh bread in a furniture store is unrealistic. Thankfully, IKEA has an elegant answer that comes neatly packaged in a carton.
Have you see these bread in a box? BRÖDMIX FLERKORN, multigrain bread baking mix is as easy as they come. You simply add warm water to make the batter, let it rise at room temperature for 45 minutes, and bake at 400F for an hour. What you get it a rustic and hearty loaf of Swedish rye bread with delicious chew of whole grains and seeds. As soon as I opened the box, I was pleasantly surprised by the nutty aroma which suggested freshness. I loved that the instruction included the precise temperature for the water…I don’t expect any less from IKEA. Although it sounded fun to shake the batter right in the box, I decided it made much more sense to mix it in a bowl. I poured it into a loaf pan lined with parchment paper. The content was just a centimeter short of reaching the top.
45 minutes later, the batter rose to just above the lip of the pan. It did not rise much more in the oven so there was no overflow, thank goodness. I rotated it a couple of times to ensure even baking. Exactly 60 minutes later and the internal temperature reached 198F. I knew the bread was fully baked.
I let it cool overnight before cutting into thin slices the next morning. The bread was sturdy and dense in that hearty way. I ate it plain for breakfast today but I’m looking forward to slather good butter or make open-faced sandwiches from them. For a boxed mix of so much convenience, I am absolutely surprised by the depth of flavour and homemade taste. I better stock up next time I go furniture shopping.