Kirsten is a 18-inch tall girl from Sweden who grew up on the American frontier. Back in Minnesota, she and her mother probably had to make bread from a "starter". That's how sourdough bread is made today!

"What's this on your counter?" Kirsten asked.

"Look at it and see," I said.

So Kirsten looked closer.

"Oh!" Kirsten said. "It's a starter for bread!"

"Yes!" I said, very excited to have finally found someone who cared. "It's not very hard to make. You just mix something like an equal part of flour and water together in a jar and cover it up, and keep mixing more flour and water in every day until it's bubbling and it smells like alcohol. Then you know the bacteria in the flour is alive and you can make bread out of it!"

Kirsten yawned. Of course her mama taught her all that years ago.

To make bread from a starter, you have to mix your starter with more flour, and maybe a little salt and sugar and butter. So I put some flour in a bowl with maybe a little salt and sugar and butter, and mixed the starter in. Then I got ready to knead it.

"Wait!" Kirsten said.

"This is even in my book--you have to flour your hands first!" she said. "Well, actually, you should probably clean off your counter first."

"I'm kneading it in the bowl," I said quickly.

"These people online aren't going to eat your bread," Kirsten said. "You don't have to lie. Well, unless your mom's reading."

"She is reading," I said. "And it's not a lie!"

Most American Girl dolls aren't good at giving shifty looks. It's not because they're dolls and have a limited range of motion, but, rather, because most of them are just naturally too kind and gentle to be suspicious.

But Kirsten, on the other hand, had no trouble giving me a shifty look.

"Let's get this train wreck back on track," I said.

(And Mom, I kneaded the dough in our big Corelle bowl. I PROMISE!)

Kirsten also kneaded her bread in a bowl.

Then she covered it to wait for it to rise.

"Other dolls have toys to play with when they're waiting for bread to rise, you know," Kirsten said.

"This adventure is already running long," I replied. "Here, take out your anger on the bread. You need to punch it down after you let it rise."

Then we put it on the pan and waited for it to rise some more, and then we baked it!

It came out pretty, and I put it on a plate for Kirsten.

The table is made for grown-up people, not 18-inch tall ten-year-olds. So I let Kirsten eat over her lap, as long as she promised to be careful.

And my big loaf only had one piece of Kirsten hair in it.

"I *told* you to put my braids around the top of my head," Kirsten said.


(If you don't have a weak stomach, you can click HERE for an outtake.)


On to 4.10.06

Back to Index