Archive for the Experiments Category

The Controversy Rages On….

There has been an ongoing controversy over whether a starter culture that you obtain elsewhere, is taken over by, or reverts to, the local microorganisms after you have had it for a while.

I asked Debra Wink that question and she said a stable starter would keep the original organisms intact if it was healthy.  I have heard many different opinions on the subject. However, there is one thing that keeps me from making up my mind about the subject and that is the tests I have done. Many years ago, I did time tests for different starters to see how long they took to proof.  See Starter Experiments. Continue reading The Controversy Rages On….

Flaxseed Ciabatta – for World Baking Day 2012

For World Bread Day today, I decided to bake up some Ciabatta. I had completely forgotten it was WBD until I saw postings on FaceBook and I thought I had better do something quick. Well, quick doesn’t work too well for sourdough… Continue reading Flaxseed Ciabatta – for World Baking Day 2012

Kneading Conference West 2012 Part II

The Business of Baking

Kneading Conference West is a three day event held in September at the Washington State University Extension and Research facility in Mt. Vernon. It brings  together bakers, plant breeders, millers, brewers and even oven builders, all with some connection to grain. Continue reading Kneading Conference West 2012 Part II

Kneading Conference West 2012 Part I

MC, Teresa (me) and Breadsong photo by Douglas McLaughlin

Kneading Conference West (Sept 13, 14 and 15) 2012 was a terrific success. I had the privilege of attending for the second year in a row and I am really glad I did. The Kneading Conference  is held in the beautiful Skagit Valley in Mt Vernon, Wa at Continue reading Kneading Conference West 2012 Part I

Salish Sea Sourdough and Passionate for Pies

Salish Sea Sourdough

I have been baking Salish Sea Sourdough  at Passionate for Pies for two weeks now. Passionate for Pies is owned by two of the nicest people in Eastsound, Wa.  Shasha Jean and Marie Bigbee opened Passionate for Pies three years ago. Their pies, tarts, and pot pies are reknown in the San Juan Islands and beyond for being the tastiest, most wholsome pastry treats available.

Continue reading Salish Sea Sourdough and Passionate for Pies

40/100 Sour Seed Bread

I have been experimenting with low hydration, extremely aged motherdough in the 40% and 60% hydration range. This post is about the 40% motherdough or seed dough as I often call it.

Continue reading 40/100 Sour Seed Bread

Sour Seed Dough 40/100 and 60/100

You’re thinking, “Sour Seed Dough?” what is she up to now? Debra Wink gave me the idea of playing with the Boudin original recipe, which she sent me. We have been experimenting back and forth with it to obtain a “sour” bread. It is obviously not the way they(Boudin) bake their sourdough now.  Home baked sourdough’s are still the best.

Continue reading Sour Seed Dough 40/100 and 60/100

Baking in the Basement Woodstove!

 

Earlier I mentioned I wanted to try to bake in the woodstove in the basement where I am living. It looks like this: (Wouldn’t it inspire you to try baking in it?)

It has been cold here as of late, so I fired it up and ran it all night long. There were some nice coals in the morning.

Continue reading Baking in the Basement Woodstove!

A New Year, a New Life

Over the New Year holidays, I moved to the San Juan Islands. It has been a two year journey for me from an abusive situation, a divorce and now starting over. Continue reading A New Year, a New Life

Experiments with Autolyse # 2

Those of you who like to bake without thinking about what’s behind it… might want to skip this post….

This is a follow up experiment to the post Experiments with Autolyse #1  (length of autolyse)

To autolyse means to give your dough a rest period after mixing and before adding the salt to the dough. Professor Raymond Calvel pioneered this dough development stage which helped produce superior bread. When the flour and water are combined, the gluten strands are hydrated and begin to bond. Enzymes are activated and they begin their work on the dough. One of the enzymes called Protease when activated, starts to break down or digest the gluten strands.  You might think this would ruin your gluten network that you are trying to build up, but used properly on the right kind of dough using the right flour, you can direct the outcome of the bread in different ways.

Continue reading Experiments with Autolyse # 2