Otterton Mill has been grinding grain into flour since 1068, probably even longer. This is just first recorded date of the mill. That fact staggers me and makes me feel linked to all the people who have come before us and baked bread from this very mill. Placed in this historic context, bread becomes more than an ingredient in a sandwich or a bit of toast. It takes on a more spiritual meaning, it gives you a sense of continuity and a link to the past. Well, at least that is how I feel.
We've all heard that old adage, 'you are what you eat'. I am starting to believe we are HOW we eat as well. We know we should all live more sustainable lives, eat local produce, save energy and recycle. I try to do all these things and it sometimes feels like a bit of a chore. But to bake bread from this flour is a privilege and a pleasure.
I think that is how we should feel about all food and dining, grateful and privileged. When so many people in the world are hungry we must be more mindful of what we eat and how we acquire our food. We must source our food ethically, and prepare it carefully without wasting precious resources. It's not just what we eat that matters, it's also HOW we eat.
I can't wait to have some warm bread with butter!