It pains me to admit it, but I’m ethically obligated to share this with everyone I’ve been in contact with:
I’ve contracted Bakers Block.
Thankfully, this grave affliction is rarely contagious. You shouldn’t be in danger, but given what’s at risk it’s in your best interest to see a doctor. Symptoms include poorly leavened loaves, chronically low hydration, burnt crusts, and not enough salt. Treatment, should you need it, involves an intensive course of bread basics, focused on the fundamentals of leavening.
Joking aside, Bakers Block sucks. I’ve always had an intuitive grasp of baking, rarely needing to measure my ingredients or follow recipes. From pizza crusts to beer bread, it’s just worked for me. I could bake whatever I felt like without having to worry about double-checking my measurements or forgetting ingredients.
I’ve forgotten to add salt three time in the last two months.
On the Big List of Stupid Stressors, this is probably in the top one hundred. I’m sure anyone who bakes regularly can understand how weird it is to suddenly lose what used to be an intuitive talent. I could blame the yeast — but the yeast is fine. I could blame the flour — but the flour is fine. I could blame the tap water — but the water is fine. The dough just hates me right now.
Thankfully, Jana brings enough bread home from work to keep us loaded on carbs. After Christmas I'll be sitting down and grinding through that block, and hopefully getting a few recipes down as well. In the mean time, if you have any recommendations or recipes that are disaster proof, make sure to send them my way!
Have you ever experienced Baker’s Block? What did it take for you to overcome it? Let us know!