Sourdough Ciabatta

Sourdough Ciabatta

Aside from regular sourdough bread, I had been kind of wondering what else to do with my starter.  Luckily one of my FB groups are full of cooks and someone shared a sourdough ciabatta recipe they liked.  I figured I’d give it go.  The original recipe is here:  https://breadtopia.com/sourdough-ciabatta/

I didn’t have the requisite 550g of starter ready but had 300g of starter so adjusted the recipe accordingly.  When I was transcribing from the internet to a piece of paper (yes I’m still old school and typically don’t just look at a screen for my recipes but actually write them down on paper), I accidentally wrote my 2 so it kinda looked like a 7.  So when I was weighing out the water, I accidentally did about 50% more than I had anticipated using.  I then had to do a bunch of math to try to even things out.  I’m not even going to try putting the actual recipe values on here (just go look at the original recipe).  I’ll just go through my process and how it came out.

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Sourdough on top of rest of mixture
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After initial mix before adding in the extra water (after about 20 minutes of kneading)
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Added the extra water and tried to incorporate

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Banana Bread

Banana Bread

This is something I started making (really this is only the 2nd time I’ve made it) out of necessity.  Typically we buy bananas every week so I can take to work.  Occasionally I’m just too busy at work and don’t end up eating all the bananas.  When they start to get very ripe or over ripe, they’re not great to eat (the dog would beg to differ).  The first time I did it I didn’t even think about documenting it.  And then today when I wanted to make it again I had to google recipes.  I had started documenting my baking/cooking here so I had one place to go back to for recipes so I figured I should document today’s endeavor.  Banana bread is a lot easier to put together than making regular bread.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups All Purpose flour
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup softened butter
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 ripened bananas
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 large eggs
  1.  Combine dry ingrediets (flour, baking soda, salt) in one bowl.
  2.  Cream butter and brown sugar together.  Then add in mashed bananas, vanilla, and eggs.  Combine
  3. Most recipes say to add the wet ingredients slowly to the dry.  (I used a larger bowl for the wet ingredients so I did the opposite and slowly added the dry to the wet).
  4. Pre-heat oven to 350 F, butter a loaf pan (or can use parchment paper as well – we ran out so I didn’t use it and it has been hard to come by due to COVID-19).
  5. Pour mixture into loaf pan and put in oven for 60-75 minutes (until toothpick inserted comes out clean).
  6. (Optional)  Add in 1/4-1/2 chocolate chips +/- walnuts (we didn’t have any and I don’t really care for it).  Add to mixture after combining above.

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Sourdough bread (fresh starter!)

Sourdough bread (fresh starter!)

D found this recipe from the King Arthur flour web site about a no-knead sourdough.  Since I just made a starter again (see this post), I figured this would be a good first try.  I followed this site’s directions relatively closely and will put my slight alteration.

Ingredients

  • 225 g fresh sourdough starter (it wasn’t exactly fresh as I had fed it around 7 am and didn’t make the dough until about 7 pm…most things I read said you should start your recipe about 4 hours after feeding your starter)
  • 395 g luke warm water
  • 598 g bread flour
  • 15 g salt
  1.  I took all the ingredients and mixed them in a large metal bowl (I typically use a metal bowl for my baking…I know a lot of places say you should use wooden or plastic but I haven’t had any issues with rising).  I made it into a cohesive moist dough, covered it with my plate (that fits almost perfectly as a lid) and let it sit for 1 hour.
  2. Next I lifted the dough and then folded it over on itself (I just grab a piece from the edge and fold it to the center and then go around the edge of it to fold on itself).  I covered it again and let it rest another 1 hour.
  3. I repeated step 2 another 2 times (total of 3 hours) and folded it one more time after the last hour wait.  I then covered it and put it in the fridge.
  4. The King Arthur site says you can let it sit in the fridge for as little as 8 hours and up to 48 hours.  Since I started it on one of my work days, I was going to wait until my day off to bake.  I ended up letting it sit in the fridge for about 36 hours.
  5. On a well floured counter, I poured out the dough, formed a rough ball and let it sit for 15-20 minutes.
  6. I then shaped it into a boule and with seam side up put it in a well greased bowl.  The dough ball didn’t really rise much (which is what it said from the original recipe) but did spread out and relax.  I let it come up to temperature for about 3 hours (again it depends on warmth of your house…2.5 to 3 hours)
  7. About 1 hour before baking I preheated the oven to 500 F.  I put in my dutch over with the lid partially ajar to preheat as well (as this is my baking container).
  8. After 3 hours, I dumped the dough into the dutch oven, floured the top and made 4  cuts on top with a sharp knife.
  9. I replaced the dutch oven cover, put it in the oven and reduced the temperature to 450 F.  I baked it for 45 minutes covered.
  10. After 45 minutes, I removed the cover and allowed it to bake another 10 min (~10-15 min until internal temp is at least 205 F).

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Flour Tortillas

Flour Tortillas

This is an oldie but a goodie.  I can’t believe I haven’t made a post about this before.  Quite a many years ago I decided to try my hand at making flour tortillas.  I had heard they were more difficult than corn.  It took me a couple of tries before I became more comfortable with it.  I then took a few years off where I didn’t make them so had to re-teach myself.  I figured I should actually document it so I have something to reference.  I made some easy fajita/tacos tonight using these tortillas.  I generally will re-heat the tortilla on an open flame of my oven for ~15 seconds on each side.

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Ingredients

  • 3 cups AP flour (you can also incorporate a % of wheat flour to make it “healthier”)
  • 1 cup hot water (almost boiling)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4-1/3 c oil (instead of lard)

Most original recipes call for the use of lard.  I have never had lard in the house and read about using oil as a substitute so that’s what I’ve been using (either canola or vegetable oil).  For the pictures below I actually made a smaller batch (2 cups flour, 2/3 c water, etc).

  1.  Mix up the flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl.  Add in the oil and incorporate it with the dry mixture.  Heat water til near boiling.  Add water and mix/knead for about 3 minutes.  Exact water may depend on environmental conditions – dough should come together into smooth ball without being too dry.
  2. Cover in a damp towel/cloth for about 20 minutes.
  3. Separate dough ball into individual smaller balls and roll into slightly than larger golf ball size balls
  4. Cover again with damp towel/cloth and let sit for 30-50 minutes.
  5. Take each ball and flatten into disk/hockey puck shape.  Place small amount of flour on each side of puck.  On a well floured counter using a rolling pin to roll out doughball into tortilla shape.  Can roll out into 1/8″-1/16″ thickness depending on preference.  Rolling can be tricky.  I’ve found that I’ll roll it out North to South, then pick it up and turn it 45 degrees and continue to attempt to make it round.  It’s okay if it isn’t fully round.  Still tastes great!
  6. In a hot cast iron pan (or comal if you have one), place tortilla down and let sit for 40-50 seconds (depending on temperature of pan).  Using flat spatula, flip and cook another 30-45 seconds.  Can look for small brown spots to give an indication of doneness.

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NOLA baby!

NOLA baby!

Back in December my wife had a work conference in New Orleans.  She had previously visited for work and had a great time.  I had never been so figured this would be a fun little trip for us.  I flew down a few days after she did and arrived in the late afternoon after making a connecting flight through Salt Lake City.

I caught a cab into the French Quarter to our hotel, Hyatt Centric French Quarter.  After getting squared away in the hotel room, we met up with my wife’s coworker for some drinks and grub

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