Saturday, September 21, 2013

Adventures in Sourdough

I've begun a sourdough starter.  What a learning opportunity (have I mentioned I'm the kid who liked school?)!  I've enjoyed researching the topic and I've enjoyed working with the sourdough.  I have pictures of two of the items I made.  The most beautiful, I forgot to photograph. :(

After much consideration about whether or not to start my own, obtain one from a local source or purchase from a company, I decided to purchase from King Arthur Flour.  It arrived 11 days ago and I've been playing with it ever since.  I really had no idea how much attention a starter is "supposed" to receive.  That being said, I've been able to give it attention and make some delicious items while working full time.

The first thing on the agenda, classic sourdough boules.  The recipe makes two, but I"m only showing one because it looks so good.  As we all know, I'm not an experienced food blogger and my pictures reflect that.  I think they turned out pretty well for my first attempt.  They were (cause they're gone) crispy and firm on the outside, with a satisfying thump.  The inside was moist and it had a good chewiness.  The only down side, was it lacked the sourdough tang.  It was really tasty, but did not have the tangy-ness you might expect when eating sourdough.  So, more research.

When feeding the sourdough, you discard half of the starter with every feed.  That's a lot of waste, which is disturbing to me, so recipes to use the discard became a priority. Luckily, there are lots of them. Obviously  I'm not the only person who thinks it's crazy to pitch half the starter. These waffles are one of the discard creations.  I hope the picture does it justice.  They were a caramel color, with the crispness and loft that makes waffles so appealing. In addition, these had that sourdough tang! Awesome. The waffle mix is a two step process, where you begin the night before and leave the 'sponge' on the counter till morning. Sounds intimidating, right. Starting them the night before was no big deal and finishing them this morning for breakfast was super easy. The best part is the dough bubbles and rises, when all the ingredients are added in the morning and it's fun to watch. It's also much lighter than my previous recipe, creating a light, crispy waffle.

I'm pretty excited about this sourdough adventure and this morning I'm going to make new boules with the starter testing some adjustments I've made to bring on the tang. The waffles give me hope.

Happy Saturday!

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