Saturday, January 28, 2006

in pursuit of the perfect sourdough

This morning's mission is to refine our techniques for baking sourdough bread in our earth oven. We're learning that this is an art in its own way!

We began digging the foundation for this oven on a horrendously hot and humid weekend last summer, suffered a collapse of our first oven attempt (totally common occurrence for newby earth oven builders), and have pulled the charred remains of a loaf of bread from it on more than one occasion. But we've also used it to cook some good meals and desserts. Some loaves of bread were not overcooked and they were incredibly delicious -- complete with the crispy crust that's characteristic of bread baked in a wood-fired oven.

Each time we bake something in the oven, we figure out a little more about how to do it better next time. The pizzas we made for dinner with Grandma around xmastime were pretty darn good and our sourdough starter has had a couple of months to develop more flavor, so today we're hoping to have some yummy bread to give to the woman with the loom, and some to bring for the fondue dinner gathering tonight. This summer we're aiming to replace this earth oven dome with a masonry one and set up some benches from our granite slabs, which were old hitching posts, steps, and foundation blocks from the older house that used to be on our little property.

mmmm....fresh baked bread from a wood-fired oven....mmmm Posted by Picasa

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