Tonight I made these rolls. It was the first real yeast roll recipe that I’ve ever done and they came out fantastic. Although they came out rather large, I somehow managed to eat about four of them (yes, four)–the final one was room temperature and had butter smeared across the top.
I’m so proud (and somewhat amazed) that I could actually do this–wasn’t sure if I could do all the yeast business with letting dough rise and kneading and punching it down and stuff. However, it wasn’t nearly as intimidating as I’d thought it would be.
So, now I’m ready for another recipe…rolls, breads…what shall I try next? Recipes anyone?
If you can find a copy get James Beard’s Beard on Bread. Best bread book ever, with all kinds of breads. I make his challah bread at work, also his pita bread. A lot of bread books look prettier, with lots of color pictures and such, but Beard’s includes all kind of interesting commentary, plus a lot of good general tips and instructions, also troubleshooting if things don’t come out right.
If you can’t find the book I can write out the challah recipe. It’s not difficult and it is so good.
Go for a two-fer and make beer bread for double the yeasty goodness.
Baker - I still haven’t gotten my copy of Beard yet but look every time I’m in a used bookstore. I might even breakdown and buy it new…It’s on my list and you remind me every time that I don’t have it yet. (And I’m not being snarky in case no one can tell.)
Clockwork, capturing your own is relatively easy. The question is will it be one that produces a flavorful product that you like. There are many ideas and more than a bit of controversy regarding how to capture and what you are capturing (hence my suggestion about the fun.) However, worst case scenario, you can find people willing to share various strains as well as find the same available for purchase on the 'Net. For my part, although more than a few will argue differently, I think there are pronounced differences between strains.
Clockwork, A free sourdough culture. More than a handful of cultures available for purchase.
As to collecting your own. Grapes on the vine have a yeast culture growing upon them. Though I haven’t tried it, I’ve heard more than a few having success with this method. Another way is just to mix flour and water then wait for the mixture to become “alive.” Bubbling is the main clue. This method will depend upon what “wild” yeast/bacteria strains are available in your locale. Research and experiment is my best suggestion. Fortunately, the materials are pretty cheap. Have fun!
Carl’s is awesome, and I think the concept is amazingly cool. I need to get a new batch. A friend of Carl sent me starter in China after I learned about it on the dope maybe 8 years ago. I had that puppy going for 5+ years until we moved to the US.