Weekly wrap-Getting my pretty on and No Weddings here!

This week I thought I’d venture out of my comfort zone and try going pretty. Ann Gabur over at The Bread Journey  does the most amazing, detailed, well proportioned and meticulous scoring on her loaves that I thought I’d have a go. I’ll probably have another couple of attempts but it just isn’t my style. I much prefer the rustic, bold look of big oven springs, bursting out through minimal scoring. I do however appreciate her talent and can see a place for it in certain loaves and that it would suit many people. This pic was was my first attempt. For someone who gets bored going up and down in straight lines when mowing lawns and tries to write my name with the mower in the grass, I was pretty impressed I managed this much continuity.

 The loaf I tried this on was a very quickly thrown together loaf using the 1,2,3 method. This is – 1 part starter, 2 parts water and 3 parts flour, add a pinch of salt and in this case some chopped rosemary, mix, let sit for a couple of hours, toss into the fridge overnight, shape, throw into a banneton and bake. I wanted to test out how using a good old Aussie Bedourie Oven worked. These are basically a camp oven but made of spun steel and they not as heavy as the cast ones. The lid can also be used as a pan and the quality is beautiful. This is a 12″ one so you could fit either a round or an oval loaf in it. The big bonus is that the Dr Livingstone ones are Australian Made by Southern Metal Spinners and can be bought online either direct, or at really good prices from many camping/RV stores. I believe we need to support the little bit of local manufacturing we have left while we can. May not be as pretty as some ‘you beaut’ DO’s, but it certainly did the job well.

This lovely little loaf didn’t take long to be devoured by a couple of seagulls!I’ve been referring to Emilie Raffa’s wonderful Book ‘Artisan Sourdough Made Simple’ for inspiration with flavours and haven’t been disappointed. This dough is based on her olive, parmesan, thyme and lemon zest loaf, but I changed the flour, the hydration, salt and fermenting times to suit me. Handy tip on how to grate a 2kg bloke of parmesan into small bits when your hands don’t work- use your meat grinder. Works a treat! I would however next time leave the parmesan much chunkier, it does melt into the loaf.

I would also recommend leaving the loaf until the next day to eat. It was delicious freshly baked, but superb when left to mature over a day or 2. I had another wonderful Simply Sourdough Introduction to Sourdough Workshop today. Gee they are tiring, but I really enjoy getting together with like-minded people, having a few giggles and exchanging knowledge. Everyone keeps asking about the chick pea dip I make so I’ve recorded it. Into a food processor throw a can of rinsed chick peas, juice of 1 lemon (may need a bit more), couple of garlic cloves, bit of chilli if you like it, a huge hunk of parsley, a pinch of salt and in this case I had an end bit of parmesan from the olive bread so that went in too. Blitz the lot and drizzle olive oil in as its going until you get a nice smooth texture. Serve in a bowl with olive oil drizzled over. Nice on bread, toast, crackers etc. That’s it at rear right of the platter we had in class today. Other sourdough bits from L to R are baguette, roast capsicum focaccia, pizza with tomato & pepper paste (sulca biber), labneh marinated in oil, garlic, chill, pizza cheese and green capsicum. Then there is some of the olive/parmesan bread and my wonderful parmesan and rosemary sourdough crackers.

Nice to just be able to pick through the session. The kitchen space is working really well for classes, didn’t look like this at the end of the day though! Everyone is smiling except for the mad woman holding a mini baguette looking like she’s going to turn maniacal with it! She is smiling on the inside, trust me. Great group, great day! One place in this class was donated to One Planet Classrooms to use as a prize at their major fundraising event. I was thrilled to be able to offer this tiny bit of support to the cause.Finally, I have deliberately not watched, seen nor heard much about ‘The Wedding’,  but a friend of mine loves stirring so sent me a load of pics. The only thing I took notice of was that in this one I thought the poor boys shoelaces were undone. On closer inspection I realised it is probably a shadow from the end pin of his cello.  What do you think? I much prefer thinking it was his shoelaces undone theory. Am I evil?

16 Replies to “Weekly wrap-Getting my pretty on and No Weddings here!”

  1. Yes, yes, you are evil, Maree! The poor boy was only a teenager and played like an angel. I have no doubt he would love to be at your kitchen bench with or without his cello and eating your food, fit for thr gods 🙂


  2. Pre sourdough, I used a Bedourie on an open camp fire for all manner of cooking, it was amazing what we baked in it, but I sold it with all the gear. Bugger! You have so much energy Maree, I’m totally in awe. No fancy slashing for me or weddings. I have Raffa’s tear-apart rolls in the oven at the moment, first try and they’re looking good


  3. It looks lovely, but oh, how much patience you must have! Re the chickpea dip, have you tried doing your own chickpeas (soak overnight, then into the slow cooker). I make a similar dip and used to use the canned variety, but when I tried cooking the fresh ones, the flavour was so much better. If you want to try….6 cups water, 2 cups chickpeas, 1 tsp salt, soak overnight then cook on high till soft. This make the equivalent of a standard can.


    1. Hi Bev, I have done fresh chick peas but I tend to use them at last minute so keep a couple of cans on hand. Have you ever pressure cooked them? I’m using more and more beans and pulses but have vivid memories of mum having stuff stuck on the ceiling and burnt hands. 🙂


      1. Hi Maree, no I don’t own a pressure cooker. I don’t like things under pressure. Stuff on the ceiling doesn’t sound too good, neither do burns. I’m very careful with my Thermomix now after all the problems people had with burns.


  4. Bread is a great forum for playing around with comfort zones. I’m slowly, in your wake, gaining a feel for it, confidence to try new recipes, methods and mix it up. I’m not working on pretty, but get a buzz out of edible. If I lived closer I would come to your classes for the fun and the nibblies ♡


    1. Hopefully we can have a few giggles and nibbles if we manage to hook up when we come to Kempsey. My SIL wants me to do a workshop at their place at Dondingalong. Not sure how I’d manage that but always a way!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’ve never been to Dondingalong. Let me know if you decide to do a workshop. Otherwise we will catch up, and you’re welcome to visit/stay at Taylors Arm with us if your time allows.


  5. Just a tip for the chickpeas – I soak mine overnight then cook for umpteen hours in the slow cooker. I do a large quantity and then freeze them – easy and ready to use. Hummus also freezes really well.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I did this last night and it worked a treat. I initially had an issue with the amount of skins that came off the peas and wasn’t sure whether or not to remove them or just blitz them but I filled the pot with water and most of them came out when I drained them. Much nicer texture and flavour than the canned ones.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Those loves look so beautiful with the patterns but I’m with you on the rustic look being preferred – plus when it gets devoured as quickly as it does around here I don’t think it’d be worth it. I received the artisan sourdough book for christmas and I’m really enjoying the recipes – i haven’t found a bad one in the book yet.
    I do a similar chickpea dip in big batches and freeze it up. My girls eat it by the spoonful!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. How come I’m missing your blogs? I’ll sign up again. Yes, flash looking bread but I’m not sure I’d bother when the hungry seagulls visit. Maybe for a funeral o wedding present? Your kitchen organisation is amazing.

    Liked by 1 person

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