By Michele Payn
Baking bread is a common activity in my kitchen. There is a
certain solace in mixing the simple ingredients of flour, water,
sugar, salt and yeast. Kneading the dough provides relaxation and
rare time to reflect. The aromas that fill the kitchen, from the
beginning of yeast growing all the way through baking, smell like
home. And the taste? There are few things that will make me drool
more than a freshly baked slice of bread formed by my own
My daughter and I bake French Bread year-round; I've found our
friends treasure our homemade bread as a heartfelt gift. We make
cinnamon rolls, tea rings and kuchen at Christmas from a recipe
that includes mashed potatoes. We use the same recipe, leftover
from my 4-H days, to make dinner rolls at Easter and
When we bake bread, we don't worry about the complexities of
chemistry or talk about the science, we just take it for granted.
Yeast grows in warm water, activated by sugar. This releases carbon
dioxide and alcohol, creating bubbles to make the bread rise, which
is in turn supported by gluten. It's just the way it works.
Making bread isn't hard, nor is the science involved with yeast
growing. But that's because we understand the process. Do people
trust what they don't know?
Reaching across the plate will help you understand helps grow
that trust. In my first book, No More Food
Fights!, I interviewed Olympic athlete Garrett Weber-Gale (who
swam with Michael Phelps). He's now the owner of food information
hub Athletic Foodie, and pointed to the ultimate value in reaching
across the plate when we talked: "Find multiple sources when you're
seeking out information about food. Look for people on the opposite
side of the fence, where you'll have a better chance of learning
about different sides of the food plate.
The reality is that we share common values, but there's a great
deal of misinformation driving us apart. Science must prevail, or
we all lose. Food prices will rise, food imports will increase,
regulations will drive the system, long-term farm & ranch
viability will suffer and misinformation will continue to flourish.
I think our food deserves better, don't you? I know our families
Turn to science, not away. Find experts who use science, not
sensationalize a study. The
International Food Information created this useful piece on
evaluating evidence. "Not all research is created equal. Many
times, scientific studies conclude results that contradict each
other, and scientists express opposing viewpoints on subject
matter. This can lead to confusion for consumers and increased
perceptions of risk of hazard…"
Once you know the science, how can you translate it through
story? My baking bread story is one that bakers everywhere can
relate to, not just farm and ranch women. What stories happened
today that you can use to translate the science of food
Michele Payn lives on a small farm in west central Indiana,
where she and her daughter enjoy all things pink while working with
their Holsteins. Michele speaks from the intersection of farm and
food, helping thousands of people around the world through her
keynotes, books and training programs. Visit www.causematters.com
or connect with @mpaynspeaker
on social media channels. Her second book, Food Truths from Farm to
Table , is expected late 2016.
Copyright© 2016 Cause Matters Corp. All Rights Reserved.
Reproduction granted for PinkTractor.com.