I usually stop following hockey once the Vancouver Canucks miss or exit the Stanley Cup playoffs. Not this year, though. I’m over the 10-year hockey malaise that overcame me after the Canucks lost the Stanley Cup to the Boston Bruins in 2011. I’ve had low moments in my life, but that loss and the grim riots that followed were a hard pill to swallow. I went into a hockey tailspin.
The Canucks have had mixed success since those days, and they just about made the playoffs this year. The new coach and the emergence of several promising players seemed to build exciting chemistry. They ended with a heroic run over the last half-season and barely missed the cut this time.
Next year, things are looking good for the Canucks, with new management and a desire to build on their success in the last half of this year. I’ve found my hockey mojo!
Hockey’s exciting again!
I’ve even paid close attention to the other teams in this year’s playoffs. This past weekend, the poor old Toronto Maple Leafs were eliminated in the playoffs’ first round. And there is excellent drama upcoming as the two Alberta teams, the Edmonton Oilers and the Calgary Flames, face each other in the second round.
I don’t follow the Eastern teams much, but the fun thing about the year-end playoffs is that all the teams face each other. You learn these strange names like Zibanejad, Stamkos and the like.
Being a bread baker, I’ve chosen my favourite team to win in the East: The New York Rangers.
Enter The Breadman!
Why? You might well ask. One of their stars, a Russian player named Artemi Panarin, scored the overtime goal last Sunday against the Pittsburgh Penguins. Yup! Panarin’s overtime tally eliminated Sidney Crosby and the Penguins!
His nickname: The Breadman!
Panarin was affectionately nicknamed The Breadman by his teammates and fans because his name resembles the popular U.S. restaurant chain, Panera Bread. He’s a reasonably prolific goal-scorer. The sport badly needed a representative from the baking world. Our man Artemi is a worthy owner of the title.
So I’m backing him and his team, the New York Rangers!
A Putin critic and a gentleman
I’ll overlook the fact that the Rangers beat the Canucks in the 1994 Stanley Cup final. And that loss by the Canucks precipitated the first Vancouver hockey riot. I’m backing The Bread Man!
Panarin has been playing in the NHL since 2015 when he was with the Chicago Blackhawks. His goal Sunday was his biggest yet.
A year ago, he landed in some trouble after posting on social media that he supported Alexei Navalny, the Russian opposition leader. A few days later, a former Russian coach accused Panarin of striking a woman when he was a 20-year-old junior player.
Panarin denied the charge. He took a short leave of absence from the Rangers to address the charge, which his agent said was a reprisal for his anti-Putin post.
Panera Bread vs. real bread
Panera Bread, it should be said, has little to do with real bread. It’s a fast-food operation with over 2,000 locations in the U.S. and Canada, mainly Eastern Canada. There are no locations in B.C.
It began in 1987 as the St. Louis Bread Company in St. Louis, Missouri. Through a series of corporate acquisitions and rebranding, it proliferated to become one of the most profitable restaurant chains in the states. It is now owned by the JAB Holding Company, which is in turn owned by a German conglomerate.
It offers a range of bakery products but is more widely known for its soups, pasta, pastries and coffee drinks.
What does “artisan” mean, really?
Panera uses “artisan baked goods” in its marketing materials and online promotions. The company says all products are baked onsite at each location. Still, doughs are mixed at a large central facility in enormous mixers, then distributed to store locations for the final bake “on-premises.”
My image of “artisan” baking has to do with baked goods made by an individual using traditional methods; in other words, handmade. I think of the “The Honest Baker,” the fellow at the shaping bench, loading dough into baskets or pulling beautiful burnished loaves from the oven with a baker’s peel.
Here’s the definition:
French artisan, Italian artigiano: -late Latin artitianus,
artitus, pa. pple. OF arti-re to instruct in arts.
1: a worker who practices a trade or handicraft: craftsperson a skilled artisan.
2: a person or company that produces something (such as cheese or wine) in limited quantities, often using traditional methods — often used before another noun artisan breads.
Artemi Panarin is the real deal. An artisan hockey player, if ever there was one. The Breadman is a catchy nickname, especially for the player who dispatched Sidney Crosby and the Penguins from the Stanley Cup playoffs.
If you search Artemi Panarin’s name online, you’ll find pictures of the youthful-looking fellow standing in front of the bakery display cases of loaves and pastries. Many of the locations are specifically Panera Bread stores.
Yes, he’s shilling for Panera Breads. But he’s proven himself on the ice, and that’s where I embrace the guy and wish him all the luck in his quest to have his name inscribed on the Stanley Cup: The Breadman!
Cinnamon-Raisin bread, an enduring Happy Monk favourite. And here’s proof of Mildrith’s (the wood-fired oven) recent health check, as she just baked 41 loaves of this (and another 40 of Seed Feast) with lots of heat left to spare. Long live Mildrith and long live Cinnamon-Raisin bread!
Happy Monk Tidings - November 2, 2022 🍞 - BAKER'S CHOICE: Cinnamon-Raisin Bread; BLOG: A Vancouver Neighbourhood; BOOK OF THE WEEK: The Philosophy of Modern Song by Bob Dylan [ See LinkTree in Profile ]...
Happy Monk Tidings - September 28, 2022 🍞 - Baker's Choice: The Approachable Loaf; Blog: This Island of Apples; South Pender Growers and Makers Market [ See LinkTree in Profile ]
#apples #applebread #applelove #approachable #approachableloaf #breadlabcollective #breadlab...
Introducing this bread, Raven Ring Bread (a take on Hapanleipä, a Finnish bread) a recipe borrowed from @ravenbreads. The stand is made by my neighbour, Ken, a gifted woodworker. See you at the South Pender Growers and Makers Market, if it don’t rain too hard!...
Happy Monk Tidings - September 2, 2022 🍞 - Baker's Choice : Volkornbrot (German Rye); Blog: The Golden Loaf of Gorsefield Rye; NOTE: We're closing two weeks for Mildrith Maintenance [ See LinkTree in Profile ]...
It was a dirty day, Wednesday. The sky hadn't been washed, the ocean was soiled, and the air was muggy and smelled oily. Then, moments before the rain started, the sun shone through and a glorious slash of colour opened up. And a rainbow! No unicorns, sadly....
Dog days. The beginning of summer mellowness. Baked in languor. But sometimes it's hard to let go. Shouldn't I be baking something? [See LinkTree in Profile ]
#penderisland #southpenderisland #happymonkbaking #happymonkbakery
#happymonkbakingcompany #dogdays #dogdaysofsummer #southerngulfislands
#southerngulfislandsbakers #southerngulfislandsbakeries #southerngulfislandsbc...
This is James Morton, my father, who would have been 100 years old today if we hadn't lost him 36 years ago. I've surpassed him in living age and spent more years without him than with him, yet he still whispers in my ear and is a great listener when I talk to him. Taken at 14th Ave. and Burgess St., Burnaby, 'round about 1955. Handsome devil, ain't he?...
Always time for a quick selfie at 4 a.m. while the bread puffs up and its aroma fills the darkness. This Friday morning the scent was deep and floral from the Cinnamon Raisin Loaf. Makes the juices flow, rumbles in the tummy, drives you crazy for a hot slice and schmear of butter.
#cinnamonraisinbread #cinnamonraisin #woodfired #woodfiredoven #woodfiredovenbread #bread #realbread #naturallyleavened #baker #bakery #bakerslife #bbga #artisanbread #breadhead #breadmaking #breadmaking🍞 #sourdough #sourdoughbread #coboven #earthoven #earthenoven #penderisland #southpenderisland #happymonkbaking #happymonkbakery #happymonkbakingcompany #southerngulfislands #southerngulfislandsbakers #southerngulfislandsbakeries #penderisland...
Alongside Panera Bread’s claims of artisan-made products is the suggestion that their food is a more nutritious alternative to other fast-food chains, like Mcdonald’s. Many studies show that this is not necessarily the case. A U.S. News report compared various fast-food locations’ caloric and nutrition claims. Panera’s “Sierra Turkey” on Asiago cheese focaccia had 920 calories, 49 grams of fat, and 1,900 mg of salt. A McDonald’s double cheeseburger, on the other hand, had 440 calories, 23 grams of fat, and 1,150 mg. of salt.↩