I am not a gadget person. And my rule of thumb is always to use physical rather than electrical means. But I am a lover of bread.
Where others have a weakness for chocolate or cake, bread is my thing. I usually have some sort of fancy loaf on the go as well as a loaf of supermarket bread for the kids' sandwiches. It's expensive, not very sustainable and an ongoing commitment to regular shopping. I made a decision to try and home bake bread partly to save some money but also to cut down the plastic bread bags. We reuse these several times over but it's still waste and something I wanted to cut down.
But we're a loaf a day (sometimes more) family, with busy evenings and I just couldn't keep up. Kneading at 11pm, staying up whilst dough is proving when your body's crying out for sleep - not good!
I've treated myself to a breadmaker. I have only one other kitchen gadget which is a stick blender that gets used on a daily basis. I've eyed it suspiciously since its arrival, mentally calculated the number of component parts and how far these have travelled, squinting at its plastic casing and imagining the oil that made it... It really does not sit comfortably at all.
So when I made my decision, it had to be right. I factored in the absence of bread bags, not having to turn the oven on for a single loaf, being able to use organic flour at a reasonable cost, not contributing to the palm oil issue by buying bread (read the labels - staggering!), minimising ingredients and cutting food miles AND having beautifully fresh bread, cheaper. I bought the best I could afford with the largest capacity. I think it makes sense.
One week in and it's my new friend. We are warming to each other. It's been used every day at least once, the kids like it, it's quick, I like it. Cheaper? Probably not. But my goodness, it's worth it for the smell!
Treading Lightly is simple living, within your means and the means of the planet, and making a minimal impact on the Earth. Find out more here about Catherine, of Barefoot Solutions, does this from day to day.