Are the Gods of Sourdough Aganst Me?
Creating a sourdough loaf at home like the ones I enjoyed from my days in San Francisco in the late 60's has been an on-going quest for me. A couple of weeks ago, I searched the forum and found a great recipe for no-knead sourdough bread. I've tried it a couple of times with decent results, but not exactly what I was after.
This last weekend I made another stab at it. Like so many of us, I always seem to 'freelance' a bit with recipes . . . adding or modifying a few ingredients here and there. Maybe that's why I have not completed my quest for the perfect sourdough!
I added abit of malt syrup and some of my rye starter to the mix. When I weighed and added the flour, I had obviously screwed-up in measuring the water. My dough was like soup. So rather than throw the whole batch out, I added flour 'till it 'felt' right then baked the now rather large loaf.
It turned perfect! Great oven spring, thick, golden, crispy/chewy crust, the open crumb and sour flavor I remember from my mis-spent youth! Then I realized that I had no way of exactly duplicating what I had done . . . I just stumbled into the combination of ingredients while trying to correct my mistake with the liquid. I made it to the mountain top but can't find the trail I took.
Anyway, I have not given up. But I can't help but wonder if there is some power somewhere in the universe that is enjoying messing with my head!