Great balls of fire – errr, cinnamon sugar – it’s monkey bread!

Some know it as monkey bread.

I know it as pull-apart bread from my childhood, when my mother made it.

And not nearly enough, I might add!

There are a couple individuals who have been good to me during my long hardship and unemployment.

To express my gratitude, I don’t do it with things; there’s nothing they need. I prefer to gift others with consumables and prevent adding to the clutter and stuff already in abundance in so many homes.

I prefer to give of my self, my time and creativity.

And say thank you through the stomach.

So I bake.

Typically it’s cookies. On this occasion and in this season, the spirit of bread beckoned. And I know that these two love pull-apart bread.

So I set out online in search of a recipe. The surprise was the preponderance of recipes calling for either dough from the Pillsbury pop-it cans or frozen dough.
(I dare not think we've become a society that now hastens through its baking.)

I did eventually unearth a scratch recipe and devoted an entire rainy afternoon to the bread, starting with bowl and wooden spoon (no mixer), on to 15 minutes of kneading, into rising No. 1, the punch down, rising No. 2, then the baking.

It was all so satisfying, fulfilling, rewarding, a joyful labor of love.

I couldn't of course know how it tasted — talk about self-discipline! — but it looked beautiful.

The next day off it went with two batches of cookies, chocolate chip and oatmeal chip.

I don't have a digital so pics off the Net must suffice. Over this labor of love together we can look, drool and, uh, eat our hearts out …

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