SOURDOUGH: YOU WIN SOME, YOU LOOSE SOME

Monday, September 08, 2014

I love making bread.
It's such a soothing process in the kitchen.  There is a rhythm to it, an order and a simplicity to creating a freshly baked loaf.  I have baked many different recipes and for the longest time one of those classic recipes eluded me.

I attempted to make sourdough many times.  It's a classic of the bread making world.  A natural yeast, harvested from the very air we breath captured to create a loaf of bread- it's all very romantic!

Look at a sourdough recipe at first glance and it all seems easy.  Look closer and the part that stumped me for the longest time was the sourdough starter.  It's just flour and water, but it's the daily ritual of feeding it and caring for it that I always seemed to mess up.  I have seen methods that involve natural yogurt and grapes to help grab that natural yeast but I went for a simple flour and water recipe. (Recipe from the River Cottage found here)

Well this time I had a plan.  My sourdough starter had to live and I had to remember to feed it and care for it so I named it.  He was called Steve.  I would look after Steve like he was one of my children and everything would be good!

The good news is that Steve lived.  He blossomed into a bubbling bowl of yeasted goodness and Sourdough time was upon me.

I made a loaf.
It was risen (which takes ages by the way!), golden and a sour tang filled the house as the warm bread emerged from the oven.

I had done it.  Steve had done it.  We had won the battle.  I made sourdough!
Turns out, I don't really like sourdough bread- who knew!  I am not a fan of many cheeses either and I think its that sourness that I just don't like.
So Steve is no more.

It just goes to show that hard work and perseverance pays off in the kitchen but there is just no accounting for taste and regardless of whether it took a week to make it, if you don't like something it has no place in your kitchen.

Nice White County Loaf anyone?




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