A Year on Bread Island

I’m hanging up my baker’s peel for a brief respite. Looking forward to some idle time to rest, reflect and rejuvenate.

It’s gratitude I feel when I think over the past year: gratitude for the friendships, kindnesses, support and laughter I’ve shared with members of the Happy Monk community. The customers, the partners, and generous with words of support and substantial assistance.… Continue reading

Get Back to Where You Once Baked Bread

Beatles at Twickenham Studios, London, 1969 (Linda McCartney / Apple Corps Ltd. / Disney+)

One of the most compelling moments in Get Back, the three-part documentary about the Beatles’ last days, is when Paul McCartney sits down and begins strumming his bass guitar like a man on a mission. He’s intense, hunched over. It’s restless, aggressive, edged with frustration.… Continue reading

Bittman Bread or Ancient Bread?

Mark Bittman, the former New York Times food writer and cookbook author, has just published a fantastic new bread book in the tradition of Jim Lahey’s No-Knead method. It’s a pared-down introduction to baking bread that is practical, accessible, easy … and fun!

I haven’t baked from it yet, but I can tell you it will rope lots of people into the bread baking realm.… Continue reading

Sunday Night, Bright Lights, Small Island

Check out Jazz Night and all the events at the Hub!

Sunday night, while all the animals were being loaded aboard the Ark, Jennifer and I headed up-island to a jazz show. As the deluge cascaded from the heavens, the Tim Johnson Quartet played an eclectic mix of jazz standards and original compositions at Pender’s Hub at Hope Bay.… Continue reading

Out Here the Mind Would Empty

By Helena Minton
                                     Shuyak Island, Alaska
 Wind blows from the mainland across the Straits
 over nettle-covered middens where I’ve dug
 for Aleut arrowheads, unearthing
 fish bones, clam shells, human teeth.
 Tribes slept near these hills
 and in daylight told of omens dreamed
 as elk of schools of spawning salmon.
 Trout broach, eagles circle overhead
 yet never enter my sleep.
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