Author Archives: ejm

About ejm

I am a freelance musician in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. What I really love is good food, books, movies, gardening (even though I have a black thumb) and bicycle travel. My foodblog is at adventures in food and drink, recipes, disasters, triumphs....

Isn’t the 3rd Try supposed to be the Charm?

summary: Third try at making Wild Bread, based on a recipe in “All You Knead is Bread” by Jane Mason; training a new pet; search for not-sour Sourdough continues; hiding the evidence in the composter;

Did I say we were getting closer to making not-sour sourdough bread? Well. I was wrong.

Sourdough bread does not need to taste sour. […] If your loaf is ugly you won’t win a prize, but you can still toast it, and sourdough toast is particularly yummy.
-Jane Mason, All You Knead is Bread, p40; p90

Particularly yummy, eh? I bet you anything that nobody wants to try our sourdough toast!

Don’t let looks fool you. What appears to be an almost-success was horrible. The bread was heavy as a rock and the crumb was dense and somewhat gummy. And it stank. It stank like the insides of a stomach (not that I’ve smelled insides of a stomach but I’m guessing the acid level of a stomach’s contents smells like that)

Sour Sourdough Bread

(continue reading )

ISO not-sour Sourdough: We’re getting closer…

summary: First try at making Wild Bread, based on a recipe in “All You Knead is Bread” by Jane Mason; training a new pet; problems with over-rising and developing the gluten;

We’re going to need a bigger bowl….

I did it! I did it!!

I know. I swore I’d never get another pet and never put myself through the pain of making wild bread again. Ha. Never say never….

Sure, these first loaves may not be the prettiest. But they’re light-weight and there’s only the tiniest hint of sourness. Yay!

sourdough bread

Don’t be afraid to make a mistake. Bread is forgiving and the ingredients are cheap. If your loaf is ugly you won’t win a prize, but you can still toast it, and sourdough toast is particularly yummy.
-Jane Mason, All You Knead is Bread, p90

(continue reading )

And we have a new pet…

go directly to the recipe

:stomp: :stomp: :stomp:

summary: recipe for Natural Starter based on instruction in “All You Knead is Bread” by Jane Mason; I’m a glutton for punishment; we have a new pet; celebrating with blueberry scones

Are we really going to do this? Again….

black cat

A while back, we read Michael Pollan’s brilliant book Cooked and cannot stop thinking about the sections on fermentation.

As a means of processing a raw foodstuff, a sourdough fermentation is a wonder of nature and culture, an example of an ancient vernacular “technology” the ingenuity of which science is just now coming to appreciate. “You could not survive on wheat flour,” Bruce German, the food chemist at UC Davis, told me, “but you can survive on bread.” The reason you can is largely due to the work of these microbes going about their unseen lives. And though modern food science can simulate many of their effects in commercial bread production, by using commercial yeasts and other leavening agents, sweeteners, preservatives, and dough conditioners, it still can’t do everything a sourdough culture can do to render grass seeds nourishing to humans.
Sourdough fermentation also partially breaks down gluten, making it easier to digest and, according to some recent research from Italy (a nation of wheat eaters with high rates of celiac disease and gluten intolerance), destroying at least some of the peptides thought to be responsible for gluten intolerance. Some researchers attribute the increase in gluten intolerance and celiac disease to the fact that modern breads no longer receive a lengthy fermentation.
– Michael Pollan, Cooked, p202-203

But as excited as we were about it, I couldn’t quite bring myself to introduce another pet into the kitchen. Until I read Jane Mason’s cookbook, “All You Knead is Bread”…. (continue reading )

It’s summer and we’re full of beans! (BBB July 2017)

go directly to the recipe

Bread Baking Babes July 2017 summary: recipe for Velvety Bean Bread; reducing the yeast; summer and over-rising; hazards of scoring overproofed bread; a Bread Baking Babes project;

BBB Velvety Bean Bread Bread Baking Babes (BBB) July 2017: Velvety Bean Bread

I’ve heard of beans on toast before, but beans IN toast??

Cooked pureed white beans are the basis for this nifty bread. Unless you tell people, no one will guess, though they will puzzle over the velvety even texture and the depth of flavor
– Naomi Duguid and Jeffery Alford, HomeBaking, p160

Pureed Beans? In bread?? (continue reading )

Aish Baladi (bookmarked)

go directly to the recipe

feed the hungrysummary: recipe for Aish Baladi (100% whole wheat flatbread); using Michael Pollan’s method of sifting the wholewheat flour; toasting the bran; bookmarked; Toronto celebrates Canada Day with a duck; we’re not paying attention; hunger;

Bread is the Staff of Life

Bookmarked Recipes - last Sunday of the MonthBookmarked Recipe: Aish Baladi

Aish Baladi Not long ago, I saw the loveliest stack of round bread at Karen’s Kitchen Stories with the intriguing hashtag “Eat Like an Egyptian”. They looked not unsimilar to pita bread, but seemed to be covered with beads. They looked incredible.

So I did a little more reading about Aish Baladi. (continue reading )