Every day I see for myself that they’ve robbed us of the recipe and the art of making bread, our bread… and I’m not saying this in the metaphorical sense of “making love,” as we say in Cuba, but rather in the plain and straightforward meaning of preparing the universal food, our daily bread… this thousand-year-old combination of flour, water, leavening and fire.
With each bend in the road during those years, the bread from my childhood stayed the same; from its mass I could shape small dolls and make marbles. Nobody can convince me that this new product – weightless, whitish, gum destroying, producer of grainy and dry crumbs that cover your clothes – is bread. Where is the solid bread, the type that would fill you up after eating a slice, which you could dip in black beans and smear with butter without worrying that it would break into pieces, like what happens with this “crumbling stone” that I just bought.
Evidently, this thing that I have on my table isn’t intended to please the palate because in a society like this one we must fight against pleasure, a petite-bourgeoisie weakness. A revolutionary that is a revolutionary eats bread like this without so much complaining.
This bread – that you can admire in the photo – seems to cry out what we already know: shutting down private bakeries – those in each neighborhood that we all knew with their “house specialties” and “secret touches” – led us to this dysfunctional, insipid and ineffective nationalization, and little by little has made us forget what real bread is.