So Far, So Good…

by sjbgilmour

You know those New Year’s Resolutions I made?  Well, I’ve kinda made some progress towards actually, you know, keeping them.

Yesterday, Superwife and I, joined occasionally by The Wonderkids, did a lot of garden work.  We filled our green waste bin.  We mulched, weeded and planted.  And, we harvested.  Nothing like freshly picked basil tossed in at the last minute to a big pot of spaghetti and black mussels with tomato and garlic.  Mmm.  Yummy.

Before we did all that, I also popped into our local bakery, (which has been running since the 1800’s,) and bought some live yeast. Today, I used that yeast to kickstart a sourdough starter.  Let me say right from the off, I had NO idea what I was doing.  Sure, I knew to mix flour and water with a bit of olive oil and salt.  I knew to mix, knead, and let rise.  That was about it.  Every recipe I looked up either online or in actual paper books all seemed to contradict each other, so I decided to wing it.

I wound up with two loaves that looked like this:


Then I baked ’em.



The bread actually tasted pretty good, even though it looked more like damper than actual bread.  Both of The Wonderkids tried some.  Superwife had a few slices – she even went back for seconds.  The flavour was nice and sourdough-ish, but the texture could have been better.  I reckon I need to tweak the recipe and lengthen the proving times.  Now, I see this as a long-term, teach myself sort of thing.  I know there are all manner of recipes out there.  I know there are pre-mixed packets of flour to which you just add water.

Another thing I know is that I’m a pretty hopeless student.  If someone tries to actually teach me how to bake bread, I’ll probably want to give up.  But, I can also be a stubborn bugger.  Left to my own devices, I can, on occasion, keep trying till I get something right.  It tends to make me a bit of a pain in the arse at times for those poor sods around me who have to out up with my crazy little missions, but sometimes…  just sometimes, I manage to come up with something worthwhile.

I’ll let you all know how I go.