Sunday, March 16, 2008

Success in my quest

Recently, I've been in the mood to bake with sourdough. Once upon a time, I had a very vigorous, tasty sourdough starter, but I quit baking almost entirely for some time, so it died. I've tried several times to get another starter like that one, with minimal success. I've had starters that tasted good, but weren't what I would call vigorous, even when coddled with bottled water. A couple of weeks ago, I tried Carl Griffith's 1847 Oregon Trail Sourdough Starter, which is certainly vigorous, but only mildly sour; I wanted a tangy, sour sourdough! So, I decided to try the San Francisco sourdough starter from this site. I mainly chose this one because the seller wasn't charging exorbitant shipping rates; it really annoys me when someone wants to charge me $4 to ship a quarter-ounce of dried starter.

Anyway, the starter arrived Wednesday, so I followed directions and stirred it up with flour and water (just plain ol' tap water; if it couldn't handle that, I wasn't messin' with it!). I fed it twice a day for three days, then last night mixed up some No-Knead Sourdough Bread. Baked it this afternoon:

I almost left it in too long; next time I'll check it sooner. Even so, when I took my first bite I thought, "Oh yeah, that's what I've been looking for!" Tangy flavor, tender crumb, and a blissfully crisp crust. I'm in heaven. I think I'll just eat bread for dinner tonight.

Next weekend, we are definitely having sourdough pancakes!


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