Monthly Archives: June 2012

Adventures in Sourdough

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So…I have been trying to make my own sourdough bread. We eat it fairly often and I thought-“why buy it when surely I can make it myself?”

For those of you who don’t know me-I wanted to be a pastry chef once upon a time and I love cooking-LOVE. IT.

So, how hard could it be??? Um-so hard. I was not prepared for it. Who knew you had to feed a started everyday, or be super, excruciatingly patient while you wait for the bread to rise? I had no idea what I was in for. After a few very failed attempts…my starter is working, it grows, bubbles, ferments. It’s good. But the bread part is where I am running into trouble…the bread doesn’t want to rise much. Not enough for a decent loaf anyways. So, today I thought I finally had it-it was double the size!

And then I realized I didn’t oil the bowl it was rising in and probably wouldn’t be able to get it out after it baked. So I removed it to a pan. And then it fell flat. Ugh. So, I will try again-after I buy more flour….not exactly economical at this point. But…on the plus side-I found a fabulous recipe for sourdough pancakes. These are seriously, hands-down the best ever, fluffy pancakes! It’s from Gnowfglins and the recipe if for these crazy good cast-iron pancakes. I modified by making them in a regular pan. But they were still fluffy and really yummy. I added chocolate chips instead of fruit! *Gasp* it was so good.

I will attempt the bread again tomorrow….I’m willing to take suggestions on this and am contemplating trying a new starter too.

It’s a JUNGLE!

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My tower garden is an official jungle now 🙂 and it’s amazing! This thing grows like nobody’s business once it gets going! My tomato plants are 4 feet tall and branching off all over the place (thank goodness for a tomato cage!). We just harvested our first cucumber. There are people who have wondered if it would taste the same, especially since I’ve used grow lights. Well, I have to say…that was THE BEST, most delicious, perfect cucumber I have tasted in a long time. There are 8 more growing. And my tiny little watermelon that was the size of a marble is now bigger than a plum. Note: remember to always check the water levels! Mine got way too low and the plants got pretty wilted. They sprang back to life within 30 minutes of getting water again. Whew!

This has been the most fun growing experience I’ve ever had. And involves the least amount of back-breaking work. None. I’m going to start more seedlings and fill in a few of the empty holes in my tower and take some to my daughter’s school tower. I want them to be surprised when they get back in the fall 🙂

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