It’s gotten to be a bit of a joke that all us middle-class types are learning how to make and use sourdough cultures. Alain did a post on it a while back.
I had a culture a long time ago, and I was never entirely happy with it. I thought I’d try again. I started about a week ago with dried apricots and ginger, just for the heck of it. The recipe I read recommended using dried fruit to get an initial batch of yeast, which appealed to me.
I’ve been feeding the starter gently for about a week and decided over the weekend that it was time to try it out. I used the surplus starter in pancakes, which were good but unspectacular.
The big project, though, was a loaf of bread. A couple of baguettes, actually, to suit the albondigas soup I wanted to make.
The initial response of the dough yesterday morning was sluggish – the problem I had had in the past, so I started being a little disappointed. But last night it got more enthusiastic. I formed it into loaves this morning and baked them.
Oh my! Great crust and good flavor! I’d like it a little more sour, but I am told that my starter will become more sour with time.
And here’s dinner:
ETA the recipe for Albondigas Soup
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1 egg
- 1/3 cup rice
- 1 clove garlic, chopped
- ½ tsp cumin
- ½ tsp oregano
Mix the ingredients and form into meatballs about an inch in diameter.
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 large onion
- 1 cup chopped carrots
- ¼ cup chopped celery
- 1-2 cloves garlic, chopped
- 2 cups tomatoes, peeled and chopped
- 2 cups stock
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1 bay leaf
- chopped parsley
- salt and pepper
- summer squash
- kernels from 1 ear corn
Saute onion, carrots, celery, and garlic in the olive oil. Add tomatoes, stock, and seasonings, with additional stock or water as necessary. Bring to a boil. Add meatballs a few at a time. Let mixture simmer 15 minutes. Add cubed summer squash and more water or stock if necessary and simmer 15 minutes more. Add corn and simmer 5 minutes. Serve.