When I wrote the last post, more than three weeks ago, I was looking forward to getting my cast off and getting back to work in the kitchen. But those first days out of the cast were discouraging. My hand was so stiff and weak it was basically useless.
Fortunately, I soon met with an occupational therapist who showed me how I could slowly but surely train my hand to work again. One of the things he had me do was to knead and grasp and pull a wad of therapy putty.
I brought some putty home to work with, but I also thought that bread dough might be a nice alternative material. So I have been kneading dough ever since, and the results have been quite tasty. Here’s some of the baked goods I’ve been making the last few weeks.
Last weekend I made a kind of pizza with a cornmeal-y crust, topped with roasted apples, red onions and blue cheese. It was inspired by Melissa Clark’s apple tart in The New York Times (but I substituted red onion for the shallot and didn’t use all that oil in the dough). Very nice for dinner or hors d’oeuvres.
And today I made lavash crackers, with a recipe that came originally from Yvette van Boven’s Home Made cookbook. I kneaded the dough for a good 8 minutes (my right hand helped just a little) and rolled it out into sheets in my pasta maker. My goodness — what nice crisp crackers!
Usually, I love to knead bread dough and find it relaxing, almost meditative.
But it hasn’t been like that at all lately. I make my weak left hand do the work and it hurts. But it is therapeutic. And the results are doubly appreciated.