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January 31, 2005

Classic sourdough

Just returned from Toronto. My 6 lb rye sourdough was a big hit with Mayer, though we needed a chain saw to slice it! It is a meal in itself. Ed Wood's Classic Sourdoughs arrived from Overstock while I was gone. Great bedtime reading! Will now make a proofing box and try flax, bulgar, cornmeal, mixed grains (Red River Cereal for starters--brought home 3 boxes from Toronto), and spelt, following his recipes, and will see if my Romertopf might sub as a clay cloche (domed baking dish). Will get an insta-read thermometer (Wood recommends a Taylor Model 9840 digital thermometer) and an oven thermometer. Also, sharp single edged razor blades for slashing the top of the loaf before baking. If I can find an inexpensive basket for rising the dough, I'll give it a shot. Also, various techniques for simulating a hearth oven. Above all, I think I will stick with cast iron: I have a covered enamelled cast iron terrine and various covered cast iron pots, with and without enamel and in various shapes and sizes. What are the differences in the quality of heat between clay and cast iron? I suspect that there will be differences in how high the heat, heat retention, humidity, and the like.

Posted by BKG at January 31, 2005 09:13 AM