It’s Sukkot, and the weather has kindly cooled down. We’ve even had some early rain, the signal for me to go into a fine frenzy of baking. Sourdough bread. Applesauce Oatmeal Muffins. And the easy yeasted herb bead I’m about to show you.
I speculate that the cool-weather hunger for carbs is a throwback to old times, when my ancestors, back in the frozen Ukraine, prepared to survive the winter. I imagine my great-great grandfather shaking snow off his big boots, humming in a bass voice and stacking the day’s supply of logs and kindling in a corner. His plump wife stands in the kitchen, hands on hips, surveying her rye and wheat flours in their big bags. A couple of braided onion ropes hang from the ceiling; jars of shmaltz and preserved fruit glimmer on the shelves. Her treasured sourdough froths comfortably in its jar. In the main room, the big ceramic stove is lit, and the comforting fragrance of baking bread wafts around the wooden house.