I thought that you might like to see what else I get up to, when I’m not slaving over a hot keyboard to bring you my latest masterpiece!
I used to have a blog, it’s how I got started on the internet, posting bits and pieces about my life in Devon and my job in Gravesend. It featured food that I’d cooked and days out, things that had happened at work, that sort of thing.
You can still find it HERE
When I retired and did more writing, it sort of fell into disuse, it was just too much to keep it all going, I would still post the occasional thing about baking, or where we had been but it got left behind as my writing took off. This website became my main focus.
So today, I’m sharing the kind of post that I used to put up there. It’s nothing to do with writing, this is all about cooking, my other passion.
I like a nice sourdough bread, I still make it regularly, I love the flavour and the texture, and the fact that it only really has four ingredients, flour, water, salt and time.
And one of my favourite things is Sourdough toast with Marmalade, especially home-made Seville Orange Marmalade.
I spotted Seville Oranges in Tiverton Market last Friday, I just couldn’t resist. This was a job for Saturday morning, not only do you get the Marmalade; you also fill the house with the smell of Oranges. And while it’s sitting there, waiting to be spread out over hot, buttered toast, it gives you an incentive to make the bread.
Anyone who knows me will tell you that I also love a good onion ring. Not the cheap ones, made with chopped onion and held together with all sorts of dubious substances but a full-on, beer battered onion ring, made with a whole slice of onion. I like to keep a stock in the freezer, ready to be re-heated when the urge grips me. They go with Steak, Sausages or just about anything, as far as I’m concerned. So once a month or so, I get the deep-fryer out and make a batch.
I like to use big onions, they’re sweeter and produce a better ring (in my opinion).
Now my version of the onion ring have a Sourdough connection, you see, to keep the sourdough starter (the live yeast mixture that provides the flavour and lift to the bread) happy, you need to ‘refresh’ it every week. You add fresh flour and water to a small amount of your starter to give the yeast more food.
That means you have what’s called ‘discard,’ the spare mixture that is removed to make room for the fresh flour and water. Although it might no longer be needed, discard is still useful stuff. You can add it to ordinary bread dough to give extra flavour, or you can use it as a base for pancakes, crumpets and even muffins. And you’ve guessed it; you can use it to make a batter, with more flour and beer, for your onion rings.
The choice of beer is up to you, they all work. Personally, I like a strong, dark beer. I also add some balsamic vinegar to the mixture for an extra kick of taste.
The rings reheat straight from the freezer in about 15 minutes while you’re finishing off whatever they accompany. That’s assuming that they make it, while they’re cooling the urge to sample a couple is strong.
I hope you enjoyed the departure from writing, if anyone wants recipes, please let me know via the comments and I’ll be happy to pass them on. Next week we’ll be back to writing.
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