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Where’s Darwin when I need him?
How fast does yeast adapt to its environment? Is it possible that in a few short months my sourdough starter has evolved into something that doesn’t care so much for the warmer end of the temperature range? My starters are perking along happily without additional heating, great oven spring etc. At a (by most people’s standard) rather cool room temperature my final build easily doubles and bubbles in under 12 hours. The two starters bubble away on their own with only a modest input of food from time to time.
No complaints from me, mind you. I think they’ve grown into something that gives a nice tang to the bread without being overwhelming. And the notion of making two big loaves of bread from an ounce of starter (not dry yeast – but starter!) is amazing to me, even now that I am doing it often.
OK – bulk fermentation is underway, the dough is coalescing and growing. In an hour or so I’ll fold it which will give it a great leap in strength and then into the frig for a real cool temperature rising so it can be baked tomorrow night.
Thanks yeastie boyz!
After making some red stuff tonight and starting a new bread build, I decided I really really really needed to make some progress on the latest project (the one with the looming deadline. Oh wait – one of two with a looming deadline….) so I headed up to the sewing room.
There I managed to use up all my wonder under and even managed to make a few boo boos but nothing that couldn’t be re-done. My current plan is to work in layers. The dominant part of the design is the top most layer, so once that’s pretty much in order I’ll go in and add whatever shadowy things I need below and whatever highlights I need on top. Some coloration is possible with stitching too. But right now — choose and cut.
Let’s just say I have a lot more colors to choose from than I thought I did. That’s a quite OK thing!
This** is from a poster to the QuiltArt mailing list, where people are in the midst of the semi-annual – what’s wrong with you people, write something that entertains, delights (me), and is on-topic – discussion. This is also known as the – use your delete key idiot if you don’t like it – discussion.
Kinda renews your faith in the power of the ‘net, eh, to know that all lists are the same universally!
Just that time of year. Nothing to see – please move along.
** This is actually really funny (requires flash and moderately fast connection) – funny enough to make sitting through the semi-annual discussion while deleting almost worthwhile.
We’re in what could best be called the swinging of the seasons. One day – in the forties, an imaginable spring seeping up from the ground and making a nice early mud season squish. That night – a few snow flakes, a big drop in temperature, a lot of snow flakes, a lot more snow flakes, six inches of snow flakes.
In the north east, we can’t really bemoan this. This is really a normal part of our year. If the weather stays doing something for more than a few days, that fact alone becomes a topic of weather conversation. Whatever else is going on, the march towards spring continues, even as we are about to leave March and go boldly into April.
I had hoped to be in the sewing room, cutting and moving around fabric tonight but instead I opted for a quick trip to the market, an extremely nice dinner of chops and cauliflower and a big dish wash up. Not so exciting except that now the dishes are done. I also started the preferment for a new batch of bread so we can have fresh baked bread with dinner on Sunday. Wednesday night I stopped at Borders and looked at two other bread books that I often hear about from other bread bakers. They were both similar to the book I’m working from in that the recipes aren’t really recipes, but formula – geared towards getting the baker/reader to think in terms of relative proportions. Both had some information on things like ‘what IS autolyse” and why it’s a very good thing. I couldn’t really justify two more books when I’ve just begun to make a dent in what my book offers, but I did very much enjoy looking at the big difference between my book and the others: pictures! Ah HA! So that’s what you would consider a (medium dough consistency)(shaggy dough)(strong dough). Ah HA! Oh – before autolyse and after. (just like mine!) Before and after folding! (just like mine!) Oh!
So someday perhaps I’ll spring for these other books, but in the meantime, I am grateful that I was able to get some reassurance that I’m doing ok.
I have made a little progress on the new quilt, but I’m needing to work on how to get some lightness in the center and am thinking about how many colors I want to involve. Sometimes too many colors is just too many. Sometimes you need more to make it all happen. I may end up trying more and less and seeing which one makes it work.
Dept. of Odd News
Gotta admire this guy for his concept and execution.
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