A Conversation With Actor Oliver Muirhead - Page 5
gJg: Do you still write?
From time to time I still write but I think the Internet has changed the whole dynamic. We’ll have to see where it goes but it was fun.
gJg: What else do you like to do when you’re not acting or writing?
OM: I love baking bread. It’s became an obsessive hobby. Unlike my golf game, which I could tell you about and hear you’re snoring in the background. But if we’re sitting down together and I had just baked a loaf of bread you’re more inclined to say something like, “Ooh, can I have some?” <laughs>
People are much more prepared to hear me discuss the technique of baking bread. It’s a magical process. Taking a plant product and basically just adding water to it.
And thanks to a bunch of really smart people you can make brilliant bread at home. At least comparable to what’s marketed in stores. You can rival the best bread out there with just your home oven. It’s not rocket science.
What’s fascinating is that people are willing to talk about bread in a way that they wouldn’t talk about wine. Most people are intimidated by wine but they’ll talk to you freely about bread and tell you exactly what they like about it.
A friend of mine, who had just come back from Ireland once asked me if I could make him some Irish soda bread. I said, “Sure.”
I made it and afterwards he told me that it wasn’t quite right. So I asked him what wasn’t right about it and after he had told me a week or so later I made it for him again and this time he said, “THAT’S IT! That’s exactly it!” <laughs>
I also know a French baker who has been working in the bakery since he was 14. He would make croissant and it tasted as if he had flown them in from Paris. It wasn’t something like, “Oh these are very good and here we are in America” but rather, “This.. is a French croissant.” He had manipulated the flour in such a way that it was absolutely perfect. I’ve been able to get very close to that and I can make it here in America.
So, it’s a fun hobby. It’s not very expensive and the best part of all, even your mistakes are pretty delicious. <laughs>Continued on the next page