Sunday, March 9, 2014

Autumn seeds and no-knead

Every year, at around this time School of the Air hosts a conference relating to all things distance education and home schooling.  This year, as well as socialising and strengthening friendships we learnt about thinking styles and patterns, Kinesiology, Brain Gym and other skills to help us educate our children.  The experience was valuable and a good break away from the farm and our routine. 


However, by the end of the third day I started to miss home.  I missed dinner conversation with my husband, our coffee machine, the vegetable garden and mostly my ability to make bread.  As I drove home from our conference I thought about my chooks, no-knead bread, sowing my autumn vegetable seeds and generally doing all those homely things that keep me grounded. 



Recently I had a conversation with Rohan about making no-knead sourdough bread and he was kind enough to share his recipe with me. I have always gone through a lot of steps with my break making.  I knead, or if I am making a big batch I use an electric dough mixer.  Kneading is followed by resting, a bulk prove, knock back, shaping, final prove and scoring.  To simply mix, prove and bake felt very different.

My loaf was distinctly sour, but not overly so. It was certainly tasty but it was a little gummy in texture.  I feel my no-kneading could do with more practice but in reality I like kneading.  For me, the physical process is therapeutic.  It was an interesting trial and something I will continue to experiment with.  Rohan, thanks for sharing.  It is always fun to chat with fellow bread enthusiasts. 


Are you kneading or no-kneading or chatting about bread? 

Are you planning or planting?

Friends, have a lovely Sunday.  

27 comments:

  1. I hope your veggie garden enjoyed a few drops of rain and that you feel prepared for the year as teacher ahead of you. K xx

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    1. No rain unfortunately Kate, but our time will come. I feel prepared..sort of!? x

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  2. in the past i tried no knead bread making but i didn't find it as satisfying..like you i enjoy kneading and i love the different stages of traditional bread making..but it would be great to perfect the technique for life's busy days or for when a loaf is needed at the last minute..happy sunday to you too dear jane..x

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  3. I've got some silver beet seedlings up and going all ready for winter picking.
    I've tried the no-knead method of bread making using this recipe- http://thecornerkitchenblog.com/no-knead-bread/
    It's always come out lovely. x

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    1. Thanks for the link Zara, happy gardening to you! x

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  4. We are kneading with the help of a KitchenAid Mixer. I was just discussing with my husband about no-kneading bread. Where did it come from? You didn't hear about it last year, and no everyone is making no-knead bread! It seems a little like cheating to me. :) Though some would say that about me using the dough hook. Guess as long as you can put warm homemade bread on your table, it doesn't matter if you knead or not. Tastes great with butter any way!

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    1. So true Katie...our techniques are constantly evolving. I love my dough hook too! Thanks for calling in.

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  5. I knead very little, but I do a bit of squishing and folding, if that makes sense. I don't have huge success with very wet no-knead doughs that are stirred together and left though. Glad you're home, I understand completely what you mean about missing it after a couple of days away.

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    1. Thanks Celia, bread is a fairly forgiving and adaptable substance isn't it?

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  6. as much as we love being on holidays, trying new things and having a break from our routines, it is these very routines that we soon miss because, as you say, they ground us. even just a weekend at my parents - i come home and i'm glad to be makign my own cup of tea.
    good luck with your bread experiments, jane!.

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    1. Thanks e, I hope you are having a lovely week.

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  7. What wonderful thoughts and images you bring to mind about your homemaking. And imaginary smells of bread baking! It's a good place to love getting away but also love coming home too. I love your photos too. Thank you so very much for your comment on today's post - it meant so much to have common thoughts and to hear your awesome roles. I think it's safe to say you're a lot of awesome! I think we can't possibly be defined by just a title or two can we? Perhaps I should come up with some fancy, fun long-winded one! I hope you saw the first of the Icelandic horses - gave you a shout out in that post to say there are more coming, I know you'll love them. x

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    1. Thanks Lucent, your posts are gorgeous. Not only are they so very thoughtful but your photos have a touch of magic too! x

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  8. Sometimes it's good to go away, if only to make us appreciate what we have at home and learning new ways of thinking and tackling problems seems an excellent idea.
    I rarely knead my bread properly but mix it, leave it 15 minutes and then knead it briefly - just enough to make sure everything is incorporated. It then sits covered in the bowl until the evening when I shape it and leave it in the fridge overnight. Next morning I let it sit on the counter for an hour and then bake it. If I want bread the same day, then I knead it. Always an evolving system though.

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    1. An evolving system...I like that description Anne...very true in my kitchen too!

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  9. You seem to live such an idyllic life on your farm, Jane. I love the idea of baking my own bread but my kids only like the Wondersoft wholemeal... i know, i know - such a parent fail!

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    1. Thanks Christina, parts of farm life certainly are idyllic. Although, just like all of us life is not always idyllic! There is nothing wrong with Wondersoft wholemeal, we eat store bought bread with some of my homemade bread creations too x

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  10. I know how you feel we're travelling for 6 months and I miss gardening so much. Not even just my garden but any gardening, it's still winter here an nothing is growing but firs and pines.

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    1. Gardening truly keeps us grounded and connected to the earth doesn't it? Thanks for calling in.

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  12. I don't knead, but I don't not knead either. I fold, and wait, fold and wait...
    I enjoy kneading but only if I have bench space, trying to wrangle a wet dough in a tiny corner of my kitchen bench with the washing machine directly underneath...ugh. And back to folding it is :-)

    I definitely know what you mean about those simple every day routines grounding you though.
    Hope your week is good one Jane. xx

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    1. Thanks Brydie, I totally understand. As I said to Celia we are fortunate that bread is fairly forgiving and adaptable!

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  13. I love using the no-knead recipes from Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day, but I love kneaded bread too!!
    Lovely photos Jane & I hope you have a good week,
    Sarah x

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    1. Thank you Sarah, I hope you are having a good week too x

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  14. Hi, I miss home when I'm away too. Makes it sweeter coming home. I did sourdough for a while before I went gluten free, I'm missing it a lot actually. I did a stack of research on sourdough before I started my starter and these are the 2 things I swear by...no kneading but using this technique. http://sourdoughhome.com/index.php?content=stretchandfold
    and this recipe is yum and I got great results. http://sourdough.com/recipes/vermont Yum!!!!!

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  15. I am baking bread at least once a week. I do make sourdough and yeasted bread. The sourdough bread tastes quite sour (must be my lack of experience) and it gives me bad heartburns. I am definitely doing something wrong.
    I bake bread following the basics of Zoe Francois' book Artisan Bread In Five Minutes. Zoe really makes it easy to understand that if left to rest, the protein will do its own magic and it is true - my dough turns always elastic and shiny. It is similar but not the same as no-knead bread. During the years I tried many recipes and adopted the princip of preparing the dough. The recipe I use is the French baguette recipe with 65% hydration and I pretty much mix, rest 2 hours, fold, rest 2 hours, fold and refrigerate. My biggest headache is scoring with the lame. I somehow feel more comfortable doing it with the fish filleting knife :D

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Hello and welcome. I will try to reply to all comments eventually because I love the conversation! Jane