Have you ever met someone that is almost famous? Not someone that the general public might be aware of, but someone that is famous in your world. Did you geek out a little bit? A lot? I have had this happen a couple of times. Just last week I saw a blogger that I follow at Target. He was with his family, so I wasn’t really planning on going up to him and going all “fan girl”. I stalked him from the racks of swimsuits that I was dreadingly going through for a class that I am taking. (The thought of wearing a swimsuit in public makes me nauseus.) Then, this wonderful self-help blogger- this man with nothing, but tips on success and how to achieve the best possible “you”- said something so unlike his online persona that I was left shocked. Shocked and awed as a matter of fact. I had just realized that this man who had all of the answers to life and business was, in fact, human. Mind- blown.
Yup, that’s right folks. Just like teachers and baristas and bar tenders, bloggers are just people. That is so freakin’ cool.
I bring this up because I was fortunate enough to meet a follower of my blog. Up until this point I thought that only my close friends and family followed my blog. I thought my bubble was small and that nobody really knew about me. Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t think that I am a world-wide phenom who will be offered a book, TV show or movie deal (although I wouldn’t turn it down, or maybe I would). I know that I am “small potatoes”, but it was awesome and flattering and rendered me somewhat speechless; although I did ramble to the poor gentleman some nonsense about other blogs and chicken coops and fodder. That being said, it is nice to know you are appreciated when you are sending these messages off into the unknown. Just as important, I feel that it is just as important to stay humble.
That being said, I have a recipe for you!!!
Have you ever cooked with sourdough? Tasted sourdough? Do you know what sourdough is? Even if you cannot answer “Yes” to any of these questions, this post will be beneficial to you.
I will start by saying that I have gone through stages of hating, loathing, tolerating, loving and obsessing over sourdough. As a child, I liked sourdough toast for about 2 weeks. Next, I wavered between hating and loathing it for about 15 years. For a brief period I was intrigued by the different techniques of using it. I spent about 2 months loving it. Now I am obsessed with it.
…Sorry I have to interupt this post with a little message: “If your phone is particularly loud and clear, it is probably on ‘speaker’. Please have the decency to deactivate this feature if you are in public; for your sake and mine. I am in a coffee shop writing this blog, sitting next to a lovely couple that keeps handing the phone back and forth. I currently know their ages, travel plans, mailing address, and I am sure that if I wait long enough their SSN and their credit card numbers. Situational awareness folks!!…
Back to the blog: The sourdough starter that I have is over 50 years old and from a place that I call home. The most important thing I have learned about sourdough starters is to never, ever buy one. You most likely know of someone that has one hoarded away in the back of their fridge or pantry; or you can start one yourself.
There are many resources for the handling and usage of sourdough. Maybe someday I will take the time to become one of those people, but for now I will just say (without any affiliation) that I saw a post from King Arthur Flour on Pinterest the other day that I am sure would be great. A couple of books that I would suggest are: “The Encyclopedia of Country Living” by Carla Emery, and “Idaho Backcountry Cookin'” by Judy Hull. I didn’t put links because I would prefer that you order them from an indie bookstore like Iconoclast Books (http://www.iconoclastbooks.com) than to order form b&n or amo-crazy-place. SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL BOOKSTORE!!! Both books are great resources. If you cannot find Judy’d book please let me know, I have order forms.
Let’s Get Cookin’!
Because of my love of sourdough, I am sharing my favorited sourdough recipe with you. Even the neighbor kids call these their favorite biscuits. I may have started a neighborly battle with a stay-at-home mom. Her child prefers my sourdough biscuits to hers. Not bad for a “part-time mentor” and full-time “work-a-holic”. A couple of tips for this recipe:
- Do not over mix- you want chunks of butter showing.
- Do not over knead, it will be a bit sticky.
- Allow it to rise- I usually allow 15-30 minutes depending on how long I have had the wood stove cranking’.
Because they are so good!
Sourdough Biscuits (from Idaho Backcountry Cookin’ by Judy Hull!!)
- 1 cup flour
- 2 TBSP baking powder
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1 cup sourdough starter
Oven to 400.
Mix dry ingredients.
Cut in butter.
Add sourdough starter.
Adding starter. Be sure to measure by pouring rather than dipping. Less likely to contaminate your starter.
Mix until dry ingredients are wet.
Mix until just moist.
On a lightly floured board, knead gently 2-4 minutes.
Fold and knead. Adding flour as needed to keep from sticking to board.
Cut out biscuits and place in cast iron pan (or on a cookie sheet if you don’t have one).
They don’t have to be perfect.
Rise for 15-30 minutes in warm area.
Cover with a towels or plastic wrap.
Bake 13-18 minutes. You are looking for the tops to become golden brown and for a hollow sound upon tapping the tops.
Apply butter and/or gravy and enjoy!!
Have fun with this one and please send me photos of yours.
PS Thank you to my 12 year old photographer. Than goodness he takes biscuits as payment!!
PPS Yes, I am wearing a pink, cashmere robe I found at a thriftstore. It is luxurious!!
One more huge shout-out: My friends and their parents are starting their own hard cider business. Please check them out. These folks are going to rock the cider world: