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willowtreecreek
True Blue Farmgirl

4813 Posts

Julie
Russell AR
USA
4813 Posts

Posted - Mar 28 2009 :  5:34:31 PM  Show Profile
Guess what girls....I HATE to admit it but I had to send my 12 week old mother to the grave today. Last week was a very hectic week and i neglected my starter a bit and on Sunday I noticed a little "fuzz" on the edge of the bowl. It had also been a VERY warm and humid week The starter itself still looked fine so I used a ladel and scooped it all into a new bowl and continued feeding. Tuesday I noticed a slightly reddish tint to the surface of the starter but when stirred she looked perfect. By Friday the red tint turned into a red skin which I pulled off. Well today she was still very red and was forming fuzz on the edge again. In my research I have read that anytime it develops a red or blue tint it should be discarded. So I did. I told you all I'm no super hero!!!!!

Anyway I started anew with some dried starter I had prepareed several weeks ago. I am documenting with pictures and will be able to let you know how it all went in about a week or so. As I see it it is a learning experience I can share with all of you!

Farmgirl Sister #17
Blog
www.willowtreecreek.wordpress.com
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lupinelady99
True Blue Farmgirl

113 Posts

Lisa
Massena New York
USA
113 Posts

Posted - Mar 28 2009 :  6:07:36 PM  Show Profile  Send lupinelady99 an ICQ Message  Click to see lupinelady99's MSN Messenger address
Julie, so sorry that you had to dump! However, it just isn't worth getting sick over. Do keep us informed on the drying/restarting process as it would be good to know how to do that.

Peggy, congrats on your good day! It is always so nice to feel a success.

http://www.myspace.com/lupinelady99
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lupinelady99
True Blue Farmgirl

113 Posts

Lisa
Massena New York
USA
113 Posts

Posted - Mar 28 2009 :  6:15:26 PM  Show Profile  Send lupinelady99 an ICQ Message  Click to see lupinelady99's MSN Messenger address
[URL=http://s527.photobucket.com/albums/cc351/lupinelady99/?action=view¤t=100_1100.jpg][/URL]

Well, I think that this loaf of bread was my best by far. Earlier I posted about placing a bowl or lasagna pan over your loaf to trap the steam while baking for a softer crust. It works! My crust is still nice and crunchy but not so dangerous to my teeth. The inside is so moist too, but that might also be due to the sundried tomato paste.

http://www.myspace.com/lupinelady99

Edited by - lupinelady99 on Mar 28 2009 6:17:51 PM
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Teacher Mommy
Farmgirl at Heart

7 Posts

Linda
Santa Cruz CA
USA
7 Posts

Posted - Mar 28 2009 :  6:31:57 PM  Show Profile
Wow! I've been absent for a few weeks and I just read 20+ pages of this thread! All I can say is, Lupinelady, YOU ROCK! You're like a recipe genius!

This AM I made a half-recipe of pancakes with one egg and buttermilk, thinned to the consistency of thick crepes. I deem it the yummiest thing I've eaten for breakfast this year.

I also have taken to experimenting by pulling out small amounts of starter, like "puppies" that I keep in a second crock. I added whole wheat organic Arrowhead Mills flour and it turned blackish!

I made another puppy with lower-quality organic chain store brand flour (Safeway) which had barley flour in it and that also turned liquidy and blackish... what is that blackish stuff, anyway? I tossed 'em because they seemed "wrong."

My mother is pure Arrowhead Mills Organic unbleached flour. It is creamy and fine, but young because I lost my first mother 25 pages ago when I neglected it while sick.

One other success. I made chicken in a crock pot last week and cooked it for 8 hours. I placed the bread pot next to the crock pot and covered both with a large kitchen towel. This was like a little proofing oven giving the bread moisture and heat all day. Then we had chicken with fresh bread that rose better than before.

Another thing I tried is putting one drop of fish "de-chlor in my bottle of water when I open it...just to make sure the chlorine is gone. So far, this doesn't seem to negatively affect the mother. Though, it may be an unnecessary.
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Ronna
True Blue Farmgirl

1891 Posts

Ronna
Fernley NV
USA
1891 Posts

Posted - Mar 28 2009 :  6:52:05 PM  Show Profile
Pink, red and black are signs of bad bacteria in starter. Not sure what the blue might be-maybe the start of mold. Not anything to take chances with though.
Aren't you glad you dried some starter so you don't have to start from the beginning Julie? I only add a tsp or so of water to dried to make a paste and then gradually add warm water and flour, a little at a time to build up the amount but not overwhelm it. I'm sure you'll do as you feel best.
I hate to read of starter failures after so many of you have had bread baking success. Very discouraging. I'll let MaryJane or Julie offer their suggestions.
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urban farm girl
True Blue Farmgirl

80 Posts

Melissa
Posen IL
USA
80 Posts

Posted - Mar 28 2009 :  8:23:48 PM  Show Profile
wow Julie sorry to hear about your mother eewww as my grandkids would say ...your good...so I have no doubt you will come on top of it... it's funny I have been scraping off my starter off my spoon and have been drying it and saving it .... so I'm quite anxious to see how it turns out for you. I'm enjoying and really learning from myself and all of you with our experiences with this. So Educational!! Lisa your bread looks so darn good...right on!!!!
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sjs
True Blue Farmgirl

247 Posts

Stephanie
Oakland CA
USA
247 Posts

Posted - Mar 29 2009 :  12:39:28 AM  Show Profile  Send sjs an AOL message  Send sjs a Yahoo! Message
I've tried to go through this thread a few times, but I just can't seem to get through the entire thing. Sorry if this question has been asked before!

I started one mother a few weeks ago and had a slight mishap and had to start over. I started another mother a week ago - today would be day seven. Every day I've been feeding her 1/3c flour and 1/4 cup purified water, and then tonight when I took the towel off she was different! She had literally almost doubled in size, and was much more bubbly/light textured than she'd been for the past week. She also smells a little alcohol-y instead of the nice sourdough smell she's had going on for the past week.

I added her nightly allowance of flour and water, and she went down a little bit, but what happened?? Can I keep her going? Do I need to start over again??

--------------------
Learning to live is learning to let go.

Visit my food blog! http://www.wasabimon.com - natural cooking to live for.
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lupinelady99
True Blue Farmgirl

113 Posts

Lisa
Massena New York
USA
113 Posts

Posted - Mar 29 2009 :  04:14:09 AM  Show Profile  Send lupinelady99 an ICQ Message  Click to see lupinelady99's MSN Messenger address
sjs, the texture of my starter changed too over time. Mine does that same thing each day too. I'm not an expert but if I understand the process correctly the bubble pockets form when the yeast is feeding on the flour we give it and in turn they give off carbon dioxide making the bubbles. The alcohol smell is normal and part of the fermentation that takes place. Essentially I took the change in texture to mean that my starter was maturing since at that point bread also started turning out better. As long as there is no mold, don't dump your starter!

The combination of yeasts, lactobacilius bacteria, and alcohol is what gives the sourdough the great flavor and also protects it from going moldy.

Thanks for the compliments on my last bread. I'm not a genius by any stretch, but enjoy reading and trying new things.

http://www.myspace.com/lupinelady99
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MaryJane
Queen Bee

12876 Posts

MaryJane
Moscow Idaho
USA
12876 Posts

Posted - Mar 29 2009 :  07:43:59 AM  Show Profile
What great bread successes many of you have had so far! I love reading your stories and all the sharing of recipes that's happening. Remember, it only gets easier as you turn yourself into a sourdough pro. We played around with plum panbread last week but ate it before we could take any photos. We'll make it again in a couple of weeks and share it with you. It was delicious!

In the next couple of weeks, we have many food recipes and food shots due for our next magazine. Meaning, we aren't going to be baking any bread for a couple of weeks so I popped my mother into the freezer. If you hit a rough patch (get sick, lose enthusiasm, etc.), you can easily pop your mother into the freezer. I have some ceramic bowls that have fitted plastic lids that I use, but plastic containers will work. I gave her a morning feeding, let her bubble for a bit, and then I tranferred her to my freezer. She can stay there a few months if need be but I'm sure we'll have her back out much sooner than that. After I remove her from the freezer, I just set her on the counter, covered in a cloth, and she thaws and starts to bubble in no time. As soon as she is completely thawed, I give her a feeding.

If you put her into your refrigerator for a shorter period of time, make sure you put her into a container that has an air-tight lid--there are just too many weird molds and food smells in a refrigerator that leave her exposed to who knows what.


MaryJane, Farmgirl #1 Plowin' Thru ~ giving aprons a good wrap for 45 years and counting ~


P.S. I want to reiterate something Rene (Prosserfarmgirl) brought up several pages ago. Chemicals used in your housekeeping can make it difficult for you to grow a healthy mother. Remember, she's pulling in air just like you do. (I had no idea you can buy "permanently" disinfected dishtowels, eewww!) If you're using disinfectant sprays, antibacterial soaps, fragrances, etc. it can affect her detrimentally and she will struggle to stay and look healthy, just like we do when we breath those things!

P.P.S. We received 5 inches of new snow in the night and it's still coming down, howling and blowing like it's January!!!! Oh Spring, where for art thou?
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Deni
Farmgirl in Training

19 Posts

Deni
Columbia MO
USA
19 Posts

Posted - Mar 29 2009 :  08:27:38 AM  Show Profile
Hi All. I've been on hiatus. I love reading the posts, but it seemed that was ALL I was doing. Anyway, I've been fortunate with my Mom so far. Last week i went with my daughter on Spring Break. My husband attended to Mom in my absence and did a fine! job. So -- today I have lots of starter. I haven't tried to bake a loaf without kneading for awhile, but after being reminded that is MJ's goal, I'll try again. I've lost track of how old she is -- probably six weeks or so.

I'm happy to know about the red/blue color thing, Julie, but sorry you lost your starter. I'm anxious to know how the powder thing works. I'll backtrack through posts to find out. I hate watching the faucet wash even a little bit of Mom go down the drain.

And I'm wondering if keeping Mom in a cool place during the time after heating but before air conditioning might help. I've pretty much given up cleansers. Use lemon juice and tomato juice on my stainless steel sink, and soapy water on counters. Clear water on the hardwood floors - with some elbow grease.

I'll stop rambling now. Get that bread fixed up so it can be ready for supper! Thanks for the great looking recipes, everybody. BTW - snowed here (central Missouri) about 2 inches, but is already melted off!



sunshinedreamkitchen.blogspot.com
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GailMN
True Blue Farmgirl

222 Posts

Gail
Hutchinson Minnesota
USA
222 Posts

Posted - Mar 29 2009 :  11:00:19 AM  Show Profile  Send GailMN a Yahoo! Message
Happy Sunday Farmgirls - I feel as if I am back to the land of the living. I am finally over a week long bout of the flu. Though I did little else, I did tend to my mother everyday - and yesterday I had to bake - fortunately I was on the mend - and had some energy. I have had a peanut butter cookie recipe I have been wanting to try - so I mixed up a double batch. Baked a few on Saturday, then ran out of energy, so finished today. I experimented a little - besides making a traditional peanut butter cookie with the fork crosshatching, I made a thumbprint with some homemade jam (my granddaughter and I call them PB&J cookies) and a few with chocolate chips on top. Following is a picture and the recipe. I think this dough would also work well (spread in a 9x9 pan, baked and topped with chocolate chips, coconut, etc. whatever your preferences).

Sourdough Peanut Butter Cookies

1 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup sourdough starter
1 cup peanut butter
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs
2 cups flour

Cream together butter and sugar, add starter, then peanut butter. Mix until smooth. Add baking powder, baking soda, vanilla, salt and eggs - mix until smooth. Slowly add flour - I used my stand mixer and dough hook. Form into small balls and press down with fork. Bake at 350 degrees for 12 to 15 minutes on ungreased cookie sheet.

Note: I found 15 minutes to be just right, and I used parchment paper when baking.



They are so yummy!

I was sorry to read about your mother Julie - I have dried some and also plan to freeze a small amount of the starter, just in case with the weather constantly changing, I have problems.

Gail

Farmgirl Sister #506
A Smile a Day . . .
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lupinelady99
True Blue Farmgirl

113 Posts

Lisa
Massena New York
USA
113 Posts

Posted - Mar 29 2009 :  1:14:08 PM  Show Profile  Send lupinelady99 an ICQ Message  Click to see lupinelady99's MSN Messenger address
ROCKY MOUNTAIN CORN BREAD
Mix together, one half cup sourdough starter, two tablespoons melted butter,one half cup commeal, one half teaspoon salt, one tablespoon sugar, one half cup sour cream, two eggs, one cup flour, one half teaspoon cream of tarter, and one half teaspoon baking powder. Pour into buttered pan. Bake at 375 for 15 minutes.

DAKOTA PRAIRE MUFFINS
Sift together one and a half cups flour,one half teaspoon soda, one half teaspoon salt, and one and a half teaspoons baking powder. Soften one cup whole bran in one cup buttermilk.
Cream one fourth cup butter, one third cup sugar, and one egg. Stir in bran, starter, and fold in dry ingredients until just moistened. Drop into greased muffin cups. Bake at 375 for 35 minutes. Makes 8 muffins.


DOCTOR'S SOURDOUGH BREAD
Mix one cup of starter with two and a half cups flour and two cups warm water, let stand overnight. The next day mix together two'cups warm milk, one tablespoon butter and one; package dry yeast until all the yeast is dissolved. Add one fourth cup honey, two cups flour
and one fourth cup wheat germ. Sprinkle in two tablespoons sugar, two teaspoons salt and two teaspoons baking soda. Gently press into dough and mix lightly. Let stand 30 to 50 minutes until bubbly. Add about two and a half cups flour so dough is stiff enough it can't be stirred. Place on floured board and knead. Form into four loaves. Place in loaf pans and
let rise until double, about 2 to 3 hours. Bake at 400 for 20 minutes. Lower temperature to 325 and bake 20 minutes more. Remove and cool.

SOURDOUGH APPLESAUCE DOUGHNUTS
-
Combine two and two thirds cups flour , one and a half teaspoons baking powder, one half teaspoon soda, one teaspoon salt, one half teaspoon nutmeg and one half teaspoon cinnamon. Stir together one half cup starter, one fourth cup buttermilk, two tablespoons shortening, one half cup sugar, two egg yolks, one half teaspoon vanilla, and one half cup applesauce. Add flour mixture. Roll out on floured board to one half inch thick, cut doughnuts. Fry in 390 degree oil. Drain on absorbent paper. Note: one whole egg may be used instead of egg yolks.

Massena, N.Y. Observer, Thursday, March 31, 1977 Page 13


http://www.myspace.com/lupinelady99
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willowtreecreek
True Blue Farmgirl

4813 Posts

Julie
Russell AR
USA
4813 Posts

Posted - Mar 29 2009 :  1:56:35 PM  Show Profile
Well clearly we have had some bad bacteria in our house this winter. My husband and I who both rarely get sick have been back and forth with this fever and upper respitory thing! The weather turned cold and rainy on us again but it looks like I may be able to open the windows on Tuesday and get some air into this place. I gave my kitchen a thurough cleaning using vingar and baking soda before restarting my starter. From what I understand, since I am using some of my old dried starter it will not be quite the same as starting from scratch. I will surely let you all know how it goes.

MaryJane is right - popping it in the freezer is a great idea if you know you are gonna be away from it for a time. Unfortunatly for me - it is usually only after I have neglected her for three days when I suddenly realize I SHOULD have put her in the freezer!

Farmgirl Sister #17
Blog
www.willowtreecreek.wordpress.com
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willowtreecreek
True Blue Farmgirl

4813 Posts

Julie
Russell AR
USA
4813 Posts

Posted - Mar 29 2009 :  2:00:17 PM  Show Profile
Stephanie - It sounds to me like you are doing everything right. In the first few weeks of your starters life you may develop some Hooch (alcohol smelling liquid). As you continue to feed her this will eventually go away. There is nothing wrong with it but if it bothers you the liquid can be poured off. The starter will also go through periods where it will bubble and rise like crazy and then some days it will look like she did nothing. There are a lot of factors but nothing to worry about. As long as you are mold and bacteria free you are good to go! Just give it time and keep feeding!

Farmgirl Sister #17
Blog
www.willowtreecreek.wordpress.com
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sjs
True Blue Farmgirl

247 Posts

Stephanie
Oakland CA
USA
247 Posts

Posted - Mar 29 2009 :  2:22:06 PM  Show Profile  Send sjs an AOL message  Send sjs a Yahoo! Message
Thanks Julie! I just set my first loaf to rise this mornng, so I'm super excited! :) :) :)

--------------------
Learning to live is learning to let go.

Visit my food blog! http://www.wasabimon.com - natural cooking to live for.
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Calicogirl
True Blue Farmgirl

5176 Posts

Sharon
Bruce Crossing Michigan
USA
5176 Posts

Posted - Mar 29 2009 :  3:19:50 PM  Show Profile
I have a question for you ladies :)

How do you convert a recipe to Sourdough? Is there a special formula you use?

~Sharon

By His Grace, For His Glory
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MaryJane
Queen Bee

12876 Posts

MaryJane
Moscow Idaho
USA
12876 Posts

Posted - Mar 29 2009 :  3:26:25 PM  Show Profile
Hi Sharon,
Here's what Willowtreecreek posted on page 67:

The actual measurement I have used in the recipes I have altered so far is:

1 cup starter = 1 Tbs. Yeast, 1/2 C. Water and 3/4 cup Flour


To REACTIVATE a dried starter:

Place 1 to 2 teaspoons of dried starter into a bowl.
Add 1/4 cup of water amd stir to help dissolve the chunks of starter.
Add 1/3 cup of flour and stir.
Cover bowl with a towel and let sit at room temperature about 12 hours.
Remove towel and stir well. Recover and let sit another 12 hours.
Begin feeding 1/3 cup of flour and 1/4 cup of water as recommended by MaryJane's Recipe.
The starter should be ready to use in any recipe in about 36 to 48 hours.


MaryJane, Farmgirl #1 Plowin' Thru ~ giving aprons a good wrap for 45 years and counting ~
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Calicogirl
True Blue Farmgirl

5176 Posts

Sharon
Bruce Crossing Michigan
USA
5176 Posts

Posted - Mar 29 2009 :  6:28:50 PM  Show Profile
Thanks Mary Jane!

I guess I should have clarified, I meant to say converting a recipe for cakes, cookies, etc. to a sourdough one.

I do appreciate the info. Very good to know :)

~Sharon

By His Grace, For His Glory

http://merryheartjournal.blogspot.com/
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willowtreecreek
True Blue Farmgirl

4813 Posts

Julie
Russell AR
USA
4813 Posts

Posted - Mar 29 2009 :  8:00:35 PM  Show Profile
Sharon since most cake and cookie recipes do not have yeast you can substitute the starter for 1/2 c liquid and 3/4 cup flour. However you do want tobe mindful of the consistancy of what you are making cake and cookie batters have distinct textural qualities and should be maintained inorder to maintainthe integrity of the dish. Mix carefully and adjust by adding more liquid or more flour accordingly. Also keep in mind that unlike some other starters that contain sugars, milk(which contains lactose, a form of sugar) or juices, our starter is not "sweet". You should maintain all sugar levels of the original recipe. Although the biproduct of feeding our starter is a form of sugar it is not enough to create a lot of sweetness on it's own.

Farmgirl Sister #17
Blog
www.willowtreecreek.wordpress.com
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Alee
True Blue Farmgirl

22856 Posts

Alee
Worland Wy
USA
22856 Posts

Posted - Mar 29 2009 :  9:02:20 PM  Show Profile  Click to see Alee's MSN Messenger address  Send Alee a Yahoo! Message
What great recipes! First thing I am doing tomorrow when I get home is re-starting my starter! You have my mouth watering!!

Alee
Farmgirl Sister #8
www.awarmheart.com
Please come visit Nora and me on our blog: www.farmgirlalee.blogspot.com
Put your pin on the farmgirl map! www.farmgirlmap.blogspot.com
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GailMN
True Blue Farmgirl

222 Posts

Gail
Hutchinson Minnesota
USA
222 Posts

Posted - Mar 30 2009 :  08:36:55 AM  Show Profile  Send GailMN a Yahoo! Message
Good Morning All - this morning as I was feeding mother I was happy to see that she had not developed anything fuzzy or brightly colored - not sure how I would handle a setback like that. This got me to thinking - after reading Mary Jane's recent post about freezing mother, I decided to freeze some. I found 2 small freezer containers - put a 1/4 cup of mother in each, labeled with date and into the freezer. A week from today I will remove one of the containers. replacing it with another 1/4 cup of starter (relabeled). When the one I removed is thawed I will add to my existing starter, if no problems, yeah!, if so I have 1/2 cup in freezer to start fresh with. Anyone see any problems with this? I am in week 6, and have had such good luck, that I am a little nervous about something bad happening, and I sure don't want to have to start over. I know I may being a little too cautious - better safe than sorry!

Gail


Farmgirl Sister #506
A Smile a Day . . .
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lupinelady99
True Blue Farmgirl

113 Posts

Lisa
Massena New York
USA
113 Posts

Posted - Mar 30 2009 :  10:09:09 AM  Show Profile  Send lupinelady99 an ICQ Message  Click to see lupinelady99's MSN Messenger address
Gail, I was thinking of doing the same thing! With all the changes in the weather going on here it is definitely making me nervous. Can't imagine life without my starter now.

http://www.myspace.com/lupinelady99
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Calicogirl
True Blue Farmgirl

5176 Posts

Sharon
Bruce Crossing Michigan
USA
5176 Posts

Posted - Mar 30 2009 :  10:35:05 AM  Show Profile
Thanks for your help Julie :) Exactly what I was looking for :)

~Sharon

By His Grace, For His Glory

http://merryheartjournal.blogspot.com/
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ParisKnight
Farmgirl in Training

12 Posts

Kathy
Boston MA
12 Posts

Posted - Mar 30 2009 :  12:29:43 PM  Show Profile
Made MaryJanes Farmhouse white this weekend. It was delicious toasted with butter and blueberry jam. I am making Gail's peanut butter cookies next. They look awesome.
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sjs
True Blue Farmgirl

247 Posts

Stephanie
Oakland CA
USA
247 Posts

Posted - Mar 30 2009 :  4:31:03 PM  Show Profile  Send sjs an AOL message  Send sjs a Yahoo! Message
I made the farmhouse white this weekend, and it was great! It didn't rise as much as I'd hoped, but I had a slight mishap where my husband tried to preheat the oven for something in the middle of rising, and while I caught it after two minutes, the oven had still gotten to about 240F. Oops. Still, it rose though.

How light or dense is the farmhouse white bread supposed to be?

--------------------
Learning to live is learning to let go.

Visit my food blog! http://www.wasabimon.com - natural cooking to live for.
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