Sanna's Bag

“I never seem to have what I need when I need it. I’m going to make a belt-bag that’s bigger on the inside than on the outside, and just carry everything with me.”

Friday, February 18, 2011

time slips

 I pass this abandoned house every day on the way to work.  The blackberries have grown right over the top of it,  And against their tough old leaves, the hazlenut (aka filberts) catkins show up so bright and hopeful!  (The swath of pale green to the left of the door is the hazlenut tree struggling against the blackberries and ivy.)  This whole area used to be hazlenut orchards.  The old house has a couple of plum trees, an apricot tree, a cherry tree and a lovely apple tree slowly  going feral around it.  It's a great destination for a leisurely walk for me, and I can feast on windfalls all summer long.

We are getting a bit of a sunrise squeezed between the clouds.  And the sun is moving further north!  Woohoo!

I left the bread to rise slowly overnight, but forgot to dampen the dishtowel, so it will have tough bits in it where the dough sort of dried on top.  It is bench-proofing right now.  Alton wants me to brush cornstarch and water across the top before I bake it.  Wonder why? 

I took just a tiny pinch of the dough. Pleasantly sour, but not too much.  Nice yeasties!  Good yeasties!

Why doesn't commercial yeast taste tart, but wild yeast does?  Am I domesticating yeasts if I feed them and put them to work for me?

Must remember that tap water has chlorine and my little friends don't like it.  Feed them bottled water.  Keep them warm.  My grandma, the camp cook, used to take her sourdough to bed with her in the winter to keep it from freezing.  Did she cuddle it under her arm like a child, or tuck it down by her feet like a pet, or stick it under her pillow like a pistol?  And how did her husband feel about it all?  Maybe good bread is worth sharing your bed with a crock of sourdough.  Wonder if ladies passed around patterns for crock cozies?  Too commonplace for the ladies' magazines, but oh so useful!  Like the wool "soakers" babies wore before the invention of rubber pants.  Oh my, life has gotten easier!


  • At 8:53 AM , Anonymous Lisa Nowak said...

    I didn't have much luck with sourdough starters myself. I always forgot to feed them.

  • At 9:39 AM , Anonymous tlbw said...

    The cornstarch and water will bake into a nice shiny, slightly crackly glaze. It is difficult to get a really good sourdough crust in a domestic oven - to a great extent the crust is the result of steam-injected firebrick-lined ovens.
    I never bother with bottled water. Portland area water is much better than what most of the country has - though I do remember Ardenwald water wasn't as soft as Bullrun.
    When my mom and aunt were living with a relative to go to college,in the 1930s, they made bread and kept the dough in the bed they shared - it can get cold in Nebraska! And certainly no insulation or central eating.
    Enjoy the bread!
    Aren't abandoned homesites evocative? And I love to scavenge fruit that's gone feral, as you put it -the inner frugal hunter-gatherer rejoices.

  • At 10:41 AM , Blogger Wannietta said...

    Are you allowed to pick the nuts & berries? That would be so awesome!! I know that the yard where I used to park the bus had abandoned greenhouses and there were masses of raspberries growing everywhere. I asked & they were happy to give me permission to come in with Amanda and pick them. Free is totally my price point!! LOL

  • At 11:32 AM , Blogger LA said...

    I've got my fingers crossed (as well as my toes!) that your sourdough turns out just the way you want it to!

  • At 7:52 AM , Blogger KnitTech said...

    Lambic yeasts are very tart, not sure how they'd translate into bread.

  • At 12:38 AM , Blogger Amy Lane said...

    Wow-- so much to know about bread and starters... I would imagine they cuddled them, like a favorite toy:-)


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home