Posts Tagged Bread

Sourdough proving baskets.


I bought some proving baskets as I fancied some prettier and more uniform breads. Left one a bit too long in the oven at a high temperature. Still tasty!  I got the whirly pattern by removing the flour fabric.

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Its been a while, a couple of years really, since we used our starter.

I’d frozen some and it was hidden away in the freezer somewhere…

Anyway, I finally decided to ask Helen to do my dirty work and find it, after all she’d seen it and wanted it out of the freezer.

So she defrosted it and left it in the fridge. I gave it a sniff and identified it as houmous.

Another search later I found it in a vacuum pack bag.

So for the last week I’ve been faithfully feeding and stirring and its now bubbling occasionally. I hope.

Anyway, its now making a “sponge” so tomorrow I’m going to have a go at baking it over an open fire!

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Another Pizza Oven Build

Last year at the bushmoot I was intending to build an earth pizza oven.  As the area is built on sand dunes, sand was not going to be a problem.  Clay on the other hand was.  I ended up walking to the river, digging and finding… sand!  So this time I came prepared with some readily dug clay and some from a local potter.



We dug in a load of sand from literally next to the tarp.  Two young girls did most of the work, the rest of us mucked in only when the camera was showing!



For the base, we used wooden logs – these were chopped from a timber pile.  About 3ft long, they were notched so they wouldn’t roll.  We used a tarp to stop the sand running through the bottles onto the floor.  We laid bottles, then tucked the tarp over the bottles and layered sand over the tarp to both hold it in place and give us a firm bed for the fire bricks.  We then built the sand form over the top.



Sand form getting there.  All done with eye.



Layered a copy of the metro over the top and wetted ready for the oven clay mix.




Clay being built up around the form.  This was done quite quickly and inside you could see the cracks where it wasn’t bonded quite as well as it could be.



Smack the finished dome with a big stick.



Straw dipped in clay slip and layered on.  Door is cut.



Add another layer of clay with added straw for stability over the top – just a thin layer.



Add decoration and immediately light!



Used an arrow as a blow pipe




The front did dip a little, but still worked fine 🙂




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One of the things I used to really enjoy was baking bread and I rarely get round to it anymore. So I found a supplier of sourdough starters (this is a 15 year old one) and got it going at home

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Earth oven version 2

Three days of digging, sand shuffling and sculpting is done. Read more to see the results!

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Bread in the pizza oven

Admittedly I accidentally made the dough according to the wrong instructions – it was supposed to be pizza dough.

The pizza was as excellent as it usually is and I took the chance to try my laser thermometer from Maplins. Unfortunately it turns out it only goes to 370’C. My oven is substantially hotter!

Anyway, it was taking twice as long to cook a pizza, which generally means I’ve finished. But this time we tried throwing in the accidentally made dough.


In 25 minutes we had a lovely loaf!




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