After one day of rest, it’s day 4 of the sourdough test now. It has a distinct sourly smell, rather fresh and not pungent or moldy and it bubbles. I’ll feed it one last time today and then try it out for baking bread. After all, I can sum up the process as follows:
500g small, round potatoes
2-3 tbsp. butter
2-3 tbsp. olive oil
2-3 big cloves of garlic, minced
Dried rosemary to taste
Salt & pepper to taste
The trick seems to be to “feed” it day by day, until it bubbles. The naturally occuring wild yeasts and lactobacilli in the flour need some time to wake up, reproduce and populate the mixture thoroughly. When this proliferation has reached a certain level, the developing carbon dioxide makes the dough bubble up and the ongoing fermentation produces a wide variety of aromatics – that finally also end up in your bread.
Looking forward to tomorrow evening and on how it is going on.
Let me present to you: Hauke (a somewhat unusual boy’s name in germany), my first homemade sourdough starter – at least my first try. Since I’ve read that they’re living organisms and thus you’re obliged to give them names, I’ll simply call him – well – Hauke. I started him off today with 50g wheat flour (Type 1050) and 50 ml water @ 27 °C (lukewarm). Recipe taken from here.
Part two and more information on how to make a sourdough starter tomorrow, when I’ll have to fill it up.
I made “Bangers and Mash” today, which is sausages and mashed potatoes with onion gravy. Veeery yummy! Here’s how:
Since I was an absolute beginner when it came to using a pressure cooker (and I somehow lost the manual…), I looked for instructions on the internet lately. Some were plain BS, some just dramatically told elementary stuff and left out the real instructions and, finally, some (especially the relevant forums!) were very informative. I threw everything together and tried it out (BTW – here’s a good article on what a pressure cooker actually does – I won’t describe the principles of pressure cooking here).
So, here’s my personal “Pressure Cooker How To for Dummies” (tested, illustrated and in full color!):
Super-easy and fast. Oh, I forgot: also yummy!
Salmon for 2 (~350g)
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp. ginger, minced
½ tsp. red pepper
1 tbsp. olive oil
1/3 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup honey
Dug out my slow cooker again yesterday after some time and made some pork neck. I don’t know where I got this recipe from anymore, but I really like it every once in a while since it’s very yummy and easy to make. The meat comes out fork tender and juicy and it has a nicely round and savoury taste.
Since I’ve been asked, this is my standard cooking equipment. Oddly, when digging through my kitchen cupboards I found that it is not so very much. Of course there’s some more, since kitchen utensils have a tendency to accumulate like old socks in your drawer, but I don’t use everything regularly. I do almost everything with a very manageable amount of rudimental, yet essential tools that I use everyday:
I like cooking asian and this often involves the use of dried mushrooms. They can easily be rehydrated with boiling water in a few minutes. While for wood-ear mushrooms boiling water is perfectly ok, some say that it is not for shiitakes and one should rather use lukewarm water (having to accept a longer rehydration time) in order to preserve flavour. I personally can’t find any difference, so I always use boiling water for both.
This video is about 20 minutes condensed to 1. The wood-ear mushrooms are perfectly good after about 12-15 minutes, whereas the thicker shiitake take at least 20 minutes to rehydrate. You can save the flavourful liquid from the shiitakes for later use (the wood ear don’t deliver any), for example as soup stock addition etc. And don’t forget to remove the stems.
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