I've had a mixed relationship with sourdough. It started well, with a from-scratch starter and passable loaves. For a while it completely replaced yeasted bread around here.
Then I moved to the farm and neglected my starter and it all went pear shaped. The chooks ate a lot of heavy-as-lead sourdough. A lot. My friend Heidi gave me some of her starter which was legendarily from the same mother as the one used by Berry Sourdough. I made one good loaf. The next wasn't so good and by the time the starter had lived with me for a fortnight only the chickens were eating the bread.
Finally I chucked it in, much to the chooks relief, until last weekend I nicked some starter from my friends Greg and Jan. Thankfully I had given them some of my orginal starter when I first embarked on the adventure, and they did a much better job with it than me. The gift that keeps giving. Thanks you guys!
I made an average loaf yesterday. It's on the bench and someone made some toast with it.
But today I think I got it right. It's not perfect but it's not chook food. We can work on that open hole structure, as long as I can keep the damn starter alive.
Yesterday I used the River Cottage Bread cookbook recipe, the one I had persisted and persisted with unsuccessfully. I adjusted it a bit today. I won't be so bold as to blog it yet, let's get it right twice first.
I'd forgotten how much I like it. Chewy and tasty. Great with chicken soup and lashings of butter for dinner. Back on the horse. Hooray.
Happy Wednesday lovely folk.