Ok a bit of an unscheduled break there, sorry loyal readers I was incapacitated for a while. It all started on Wednesday morning after I had called into work sick (I never take time off sick) Kris asked me how I felt. My answer was, "Let's add sharp shooting pains in my side to the list of symptoms." Yes folks it was appendicitis and since I don't do things half way it had already burst so I was really out of it for a while. After five days in the hospital and several more at home I am feeling, not well, but better and bored to death.
So what is a bored foodie to do while off work for another several days? Well bake... for two reasons 1. baking yeast bread is something that I am able to do, you know mix stuff together, let it sit for an hour press it down let it sit for an hour, works well for me this week. 2. Baking bread has always been relaxing for me kind of like yoga only I don't wake up sore the next day.
My first baking venture was actually something that I started almost a month ago Sourdough, from a starter. I won't go into the rules of making a starter, I did find a website that was very simple and helpful. The author makes a comment along the line of "does this all sound brain-dead simple, that's because it is people who thought the earth was flat did this for a thousand years."
I found it to be as easy as he said, the morning that I made my first loaf of sourdough I put all of my starter (growing since June 5th) into a glass bowl covered it and let it sit on the counter for about 5 hours until it was all foamy and started to smell like old beer. I know it sounds like a great way to start food but work with me here once that was all ready I made the bread dough:
2 Cups of sponge (fancy-pants word for proofed starter)
1 1/2 cup bread flour
1 1/2 cup wheat flour
2 TBS belted butter
4 tsp sugar
2 tsp salt
Mixed those ingredients together and put them into a clean glass bowl for about 3 more hours until it proofed after it had about doubled in size I kneaded that down, formed it into a ball and put it on a baking pan to rise again for about 3 more hours. Altogether is was a bit of a commitment I am happy that I did my first one on a day that I was home alone.
After this rise I put it into a cold oven then turned it on to 350 for about 45 minutes, until it made a hollow sound when I knocked on the crust. Over all this was a good experiment the bread was good, next time I think I will trust my instincts and add a little more flour to stiffen it up. The bread is light but like sourdough has a nice weight to it. I am happy with this one
here it is with a little olive tapenade ready for lunch