Sourdough, among other things…

Time has such a way of disappearing…way too fast to suit me. Five weeks from today we’ll be on the train heading to Portland, Oregon. March seemed so far away, now it’s close, just next month. Where is this year going? We’re already in the 2nd month.

About 3 or 4 weeks ago, I began a sourdough starter. The last time I had tried one, early summer, it just wouldn’t work right. I suspect it was just too warm allowing it to spoil. This one is wonderful…works great. Week before last I made 2 loaves of sourdough bread. The grandchildren helped eat the first one…while still warm, so butter melted on it.   They seemed IMG_9598 to really enjoy it. Of course, I had to help eat some. It turned out quite well. Sourdough is my bread of choice whenever I have the option…such as going out to eat.

The second loaf went to make garlic toast for Garry and me to go with our spaghetti. Here’s what it looked like before being cut.  We really didn’t eat the whole thing at one meal.    IMG_9616

 

I use almost all whole wheat flour in the breads I make. There might be a cup of unbleached kneaded in at the last. I’ve found it’s smoother to knead, although, I’ve used all whole wheat a lot of times. When our children were growing up I made nearly all of the bread we used. That was just one of the things I did every week. Rarely did we have store bought.

Then last week I tried something totally different, for me. I made English muffins. I had seen a lady’s blog where she was making them, and they just looked and sounded so good. She also cooks on a wood stove in the winter and said she felt they worked best on the wood stove. That was my inspiration for making the sourdough starter. First time I really realized English muffins were a sourdough.     IMG_9699Here they are being cooked. It takes approximately 5 minutes on each side. After doing the first 4 I felt that with the whole wheat they just needed another minute. Either that or my stove wasn’t quite hot enough. In hindsight, I believe the stove should have been a bit hotter. Next time it will be. Oh, yes, I plan on making these again. It has been so enjoyable having a toasted English muffin for breakfast. A few put away into the freezer wouldn’t be a bad idea either.     IMG_9706

Here’s the plate of finished English muffins. Definitely a good thing to make. Will have to share the next batch with the grandkids. They missed out on this one.

Now that doesn’t mean they were deprived…not at all. I also made cookies last week….4 batches of them. The 6 year old helped. He formed the molasses ones into balls, then rolled them in sugar. The kids love cookies and consider it part of my job to provide them. Or anything else they might consider yummy to eat.

It snowed here last week. About 6 inches worth. The kids really enjoyed that and went out every day with their sleds. I would see them headed to their house with their coveralls looking soaked. They would put the coveralls, gloves, etc. close to the stove to dry, although I’m not sure the kids really waited for them to dry. This is the most snow the youngest ones have ever seen at one time, so it wasn’t to be wasted.

The birds are still eating lots. The feeders go about a day and a half before needing filled. At times there must be 12 – 15 birds at a time on a feeder. It’s just amazing to see so many at once. At this point they’ve eaten about 140# of sunflower seeds since the end of December. Will need to buy more in the next couple days.

IMG_9580

Here’s a lovely female cardinal. I just think the subtle marking on them is so beautiful. This was taken from the back door.

I listed birds we see one time, but missed some. There are those who feed only on the ground, such as the Junco. There’s also a Chipping Sparrow …used to see them on the feeder more, now mostly on the ground. We have Mourning Doves, Carolina wrens. In Illinois we had the House wren which was a bit smaller. Also hear more than see, the Pileated woodpecker. And, of course, there’s crows, vultures, and hawks. So many birds, so much fun to see them. Even have flocks of Cedar Wax Wings around. We haven’t seen Robins for a while, so perhaps they found a better place for eating.

This is my first blog post made using my new computer. An Acer laptop with Window 7. The last few days have been spent transferring files. Garry now has my ‘old’ computer, which is 5 years newer than what he had been using. And I had the fun of transferring everything. I’m not complaining as I really enjoy the challenge. Transferred from Vista to Windows 7, then Windows XP to Vista. So far….4 days….I really like Windows 7. Garry is adjusting to Vista with 2GB memory after XP with 512MB memory. I do believe he notices a difference. We’ll share the laptop, it’ll especially come in handy when/if we make trips.

Have a good whatever time of day it is for you.  Bye for now.

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4 Responses

  1. The bread looks so delicious. I used to keep sour dough starter many years ago. I still have a friend that keeps it all of the time. She makes the most delicious sweet bread from it.I love bird watching. The lady cardinal picture is beautiful.

  2. I love the sour dough bread but I buy from the bakery.I\’m not good at make those bread because mylife is seems more to enjoyed in the garden that I don\’t mind doing that too lol! I regret now that I should done before for my family. You are very good with your hand too.When I was younger age I used to raise a Canary\’s from an eggs which is used other birds (Lover birds)They don\’t know when the replace for their eggs. Sorry to off side from your blogs.I enjoyed reading your blogs about the bread and beautiful bird picture.

  3. I have strawberry jam to go with those delicious english muffins. Your home must have such a wonderful aroma! Lots of snow here too. I use my bread machine, never used the starter…yet.

  4. I loved Lady Cardinal and like you, her beautiful subtle markings are a joy to see. Don\’t you love seeing the Carolina Wrens? That wee tail sticking up? They have a beautiful song too. I have all the birds you mentioned and some peculiar to this area. You have gone thru more seed than I but I have sure had to keep up with my hungry bird family too. I love it. I got them a new bird bath that is going to be so much easier to clean than that old concrete one. I will make that one into a "flower stand" (planter) come Spring.I am intrigued about the English muffins. I never thought to try to make those myself. They look wonderful in your good pictures. Yummy. Connie..have a great rest of the week.

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