Snowy Sourdough Saturday

How I spent the first winter storm weekend of January 2020.

Until Friday, this January has had the weirdest warm weather I’ve ever experienced in northeastern Kansas. Usually, I’m bundling up because the temperatures outside are nudging into single digits or a raging snowstorm with a wicked north wind blows through to remind us of what our Canadian neighbors endure daily. I actually looked forward to a three-day cold snap with a soft blanketing of snow. My pantry was stocked and I could wait to shovel the driveway until Sunday afternoon (which I did). I avoided the ice forgotten under the snow from Friday’s all-day rain. I stayed snug in my home with my sourdough, my movies, my books, my dog and my hubby.

Thursday the 9th it was 64 degrees, but by Friday evening, we were down in the 20s (finally).

Just like last weekend, I set out my sourdough starter to feed, but this time I did it Friday morning, not Saturday morning, because my plan was to try the much longer process necessary for the Extra Tangy Sourdough bread recipe. I thought I’d take advantage of the low pressure system to boost my wild yeast production. And I wanted to try out my new covered ceramic baker I received on Friday, thanks to a free shipping promotion last week at King Arthur Flour.

Click image to see full album Friday through Sunday
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Blizzard Baking Bonaza

Telecommuting lets me multitask to the aroma of baking breads all day.  I’ve already baked a Vermont Maple Oat scone mix from King Arthur Flour, which is cooling on the rack as I type this blog.

Next up, I’ve started my own version of the Harvest Wheat Bread recipe (also courtesy King Arthur), which I call Harvest Cracked Wheat Bread.  I’ve boiled the water and have the cracked wheat and water cooling down in the bread machine bread pan.

Later today, after feeding the sourdough starter, I’ll make a couple of loaves of some sourdough variety, probably of the Italian persuasion.

I’ll update this blog with photos later as the results come out of the oven.  I just pray the power remains on long enough for me to finish all this baking.

Mid Afternoon Update:  The scones mix turned out well.  The Harvest Cracked Wheat bread looks scrumptious:

Harvest Cracked Wheat Bread
Harvest Cracked Wheat Bread

And I’ve got Rustic Sourdough Kaiser Rolls rising for the next hour or so:

Rustic Sourdough Kaiser Rolls Rising
Rustic Sourdough Kaiser Rolls Rising

Sadly, my bread machine has reached the end of its useful life.  As I was proofing the yeast in the bread pan for the Rustic Sourdough, I noticed a puddle forming on the counter under the bread pan.  Once a bread pan starts leaking, it’s time to trade up or trade in or whatever you do with old bread machines.  This will be my fifth bread machine.

And, of course, I’d like to move way, way up on the fashion scale, from my Chevy model that I bought at Wal-Mart a couple of years ago, to this Cadillac model offered and highly recommended by King Arthur Flour:

Zojirushi BB-CEC20 Home Bakery Supreme Bread Machine - Stainless Steel