Baking bread & sloths in the sun

Why hello there! Long time, no see! It’s been a busy couple of weeks and I’ve been in a bit of a slump. I think I got a slight case of post-race blues. After having a race to look forward to for so many weeks, now that it’s over I haven’t been feeling super motivated to run. I have been nursing a minor foot injury for the last week and even though it’s feeling much better now, I haven’t laced up my running shoes. And ya know what, I think that’s just fine. We don’t need to be full steam ahead all the time and just because we’re not stoked to get out there everyday doesn’t mean we’re not still passionate about our hobbies. A couple weeks off seems to have been good for me and I’ve definitely felt the benefit of the extra sleep not running affords. All that said, I think it’s time to get back out there. This week, I’ve put a couple scheduled easy runs on the calendar and am working on a new playlist to get more excited to do them. But while not much running has been going on, lots of zookeeping and regular life has happened. 

At work, things got exciting because we installed a new tree next to the building I work in. We had a tree that was connected to a rope so our sloth, Chalupa, could climb outside on sunny days to nap in her tree. Unfortunately, a big wind storm knocked it over and Chalupa hasn’t gotten outside for awhile. We finally felled a new tree and it was quite the project getting it installed. 

It’s finally in and Chalupa seems pleased to be back outside. 

She gets green beans for coming outside to say hello. The guests just love seeing her climbing overhead and she gets her favorite snacks and a warm branch to nap on. I’d say it’s a win-win for a everyone! I’ll be doing a Facebook live event with Chalupa the sloth this Wednesday at 10am. If you’d like to see some close up views of sweet Chalupa and learn a bit about sloths, check out Cheyenne Mountain Zoo’s Facebook page and watch live Wednesday, the 9th, at 10:00am MST. 

We’ve been hanging out (get it…”hanging” out…haha) at home too and getting up to some baking. I just love Irish soda bread and baked up a loaf during a thunderstorm this week. It’s a super easy bread to make and doesn’t involve any resting and only has 4 ingredients. 

I thought I’d share the recipe in case all this cloudy weather has put you in a baking mood too. The first step is to acquire a reliable baking helper.

Check. Now acquire the ingredients.

  • 3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. Salt
  • 1 tsp. Baking soda 
  • 1 1/2 cups + 2 Tbsp. Buttermilk

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  • Combine flour, salt, and baking soda in a large mixing bowl.
  • Make a well in the center of the mixture and pour in the 1 1/2 cups buttermilk.
  • Mix in until mixture is sticky. If it’s too dry, add the tablespoons of extra buttermilk in one at a time until it’s sticky.
  • Turn the mixture out onto a floured surface and knead and form into a ball. 
  • Set the dough onto a baking sheet/pizza stone/Dutch oven and slice an X on the top of the loaf.
  • Cover with the top of the Dutch oven or a foil cover and bake for 30 minutes.
  • Remove lid/cover and bake additional 15 minutes or until the top is dark, golden brown.
  • Cool on a wire rack then tuck in! Add butter or jam and enjoy. 

It goes great smeared with strawberry jelly and served with tea. This is a denser loaf that goes well with stew too.  

I hope your weekend is going well and you’re fitting some fun in! 

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What’s your favorite thing to bake?

Sloth lover? Don’t forget to check out the live event on Cheyenne Mountain Zoo’s Facebook page Wednesday, Aug. 9th, at 10am. 

3 thoughts on “Baking bread & sloths in the sun

  1. Chalupa is the best! (Besides Jimmy, he’s the bestest)
    I love baking mainly different types of cookies, brownies, and muffins. Tried cupcakes once, it was unsuccessful. Never tried bread but I bet fresh baked bread is soooooo delicious!

    Liked by 1 person

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