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Thursday, November 17, 2011

It's not November people, it's DOUGHVEMBER!

Sourdough, that is.

For the whole month of November Linda Nicholson of Salty Seattle and Nicole of Pinch My Salt challenged people to bake with sourdough. Sourdough has this tang to it that pulls you in and it's like a dance track for your taste buds. I really can't remember the first time I tasted sourdough, but I'm sure it was a commercially made piece of bread. Since I love baking bread and have made sourdough before, I jumped at the chance to join this challenge. I have been learning so much about sourdough, that it won't stop with just November. This is a life long LOVE!

These lovely pancakes below are courtesy of Joy the Baker's blog with the addition of a little pumpkin and cinnamon. Not realizing how many pancakes the recipe would make, I froze some for breakfasts of convenience. Gosh, how I love the freezer. Who needs frozen food from the grocery store when you can make and freeze your own? And, you know what's in it and when it was made.


Dough A: Pinch My Salt's Recipe
Starter: Overflowing like a volcano, very active
Starter dough: 8 hours to rise, no refrigeration
1st rise: 1 1/2 hours
2nd rise: 1 1/2 hours
Misted the oven 3x every 30 seconds in the beginning

Dough B:Peter Reinhart
Starter: Bubbling, but no over activity
Starter dough: 4hours, then refrigeration
1st rise: 3 hours
2nd rise: 2 hours
Misted the oven 4x every 30 seconds in the beginning

Dough C: Pinch My Salt
Starter: Bubbling, no over activity
Starter dough: 8 hour rise on counter, refrigeration overnight
Final dough: Left on counter 1 1/2 hours before making
1st rise: 3 hours
2nd rise: 2 hours
Misted the oven 3x every 30 seconds in the beginning

Learned lesson: Just bubbles isn't enough, over activity makes beautiful bread.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

My re-found love of yeast

My mother needed me to make her a challah for a Jewish get together with classmates since they were learning about Judaism in class. Normally, I made Martha Stewart's challah from her Baking Handbook because I always had yolks on hand. This time I wanted to try a different recipe. I was on the hunt for Peter Reinhart's book just for this purpose.

Online, I checked the library catalog and yes they carried it. Shucks, it had been checked out...what to do? I called Barnes and Noble, but they couldn't find it on the shelves. Since Borders had closed, I was at a loss of how to get one without waiting for it to be shipped. I googled bookstores in Virginia Beach and up comes Books A Million, a store I had completely forgotten about. Lucky for me, they had one in stock. I'm generally an Amazon type of girl, but I needed this book ASAP!

Since purchasing this book and a scale, I have been a yeast bread making fool. His recipes are so yummy.

The cinnamon rolls you see below were so soft you would have thought they came from a "chain" or a "tube".

And, the white bread....made twice already and I've only had the book for 2 weeks. Needless to say, I've re-found my love of yeast.