Tuesday, December 8, 2009
Basic Sourdough BBA#30
Just what the doctor ordered, a piece of toast. One I had to wait days to try...
In my refrigerator I have two starters, my trustworthy King Arthur Sourdough Starter. And my starter that I had made by following Paul's instructions on his blog, The Yumarama Artisan Bread Blog. I made Paul's starter after I failed at Peter Reinhart's BBA seed culture. I knew we were approaching sourdoughs so I decided to wake everybody up, see how they were performing and try the BBA starter one more time. About Day three my BBA seed culture was unimpressive. My King Arthur starter had spent a little too much time neglected and it needed a couple more feedings to get back that lovely aroma. But my pineapple starter, Eve, was ready to go.
I wanted to time this bread so I had some for my main stake holder who had to spend the week on travel. I don't know many people who actually enjoy traveling anymore. And a week away is a long time. He is a sourdough lover. It would be great to have fresh bread and cheese ready for when he got home.
Life had different plans. Wednesday I was a little under the weather, unusual for me because I think my years as a school nurse has exposed me to just about everything out there. Thursday I thought I was in The Alien, when the thing pops out of her abdomen. Friday I wasn't going to be doing any baking. It wasn't until Monday when I finally went to the doctors when I discovered that I had food poisoning. Probably something I ate during my let's see how many cheap places we can eat at while your dad is gone stage. It is amazing what antibiotics can do.
This is not a quick bread. But Saturday I thought I would get started. Once you have your barm ready, you need to make a firm starter. You add the barm to some flour and water and let it ferment for four hours, or maybe 8 it is all going to depend on how your starter and kitchen environment are on the day you make it. We were having record breaking cold temperatures. However in about four hours I had doubled the firm starter. Into the fridge for the night, which Peter says is very important for the flavor. Sometimes I wonder if we spend too much time in the fridge.
The next day, the starter is allowed to warm up and then added to flour, salt and water. It made a firm, tacky dough. I decided it was best to do it all in the mixer, but this really gave my mixer a work out.
It was allowed to ferment for four hours, actually five until it had double in size and then shaped and allowed to proof for three more hours. This is an all day bread. I wished that I had a banneton. I made boules. Which were baked in the hearth baking style we have come to expect.
This bread had the best color and crust of any of my breads thus far.
Two days later, I start to think that I could eat some toast. Is there any bread in the house? One loaf is completely gone, half a loaf remains. It was delicious.
The BBA seed culture actually seems to be taking off. Maybe it will be ready for the rye bread.