Bread is a staple for me, I LOVE bread. I love baking it too. But this seemingly simple task was a real learning experience. I mean come on, how hard can it be, I thought? People who thought the world was flat could do this! Yeast breads, yes, not so hard, sourdough was what I was after. (Yeast breads with wheat flour which don’t taste awful, those are different.)
I tried in vain for about a year with my own sourdough starter. Mix water, flour, wait, was what every recipe and website I found said. Yet I ended up with glue. My sister reminds me my husband called it rot bread, since it just sat on the counter and, um, did it’s thing (or rather didn’t). I gave up and bought a starter from Northwest Sourdough, which is one of the best resources I’ve found, by the way, and it also fell flat – initially (it was me, not the starter). After that, went through systematically again, and found the problem was my city water. My city water, while tasting great, is somehow unsuitable for sourdough. Sourdough is apparently a snob. It wants bottled water (I get the gallon jugs, any supermarket brand).
Tonight is bread night which is fitting, since it warms the house up nicely and smells great.