Sunday, March 6, 2016

Sourdough starter....a simple joy

I have the absolute best blog readers and commenter friends! Thank you all so much. I can't tell you how much it meant just to have you all understand what I was feeling.  We all have that spot deep inside that every now and then gets touched and triggers our deepest feelings of inadequacy to come to the surface. So we feel it and keep on walking in forward motion...and start shopping for a fancy dress for my role as momma of the groom.

A friend and I signed up for a sourdough bread making class. As the day got closer, I dreaded going. It was my limited emotional resource thing again, rearing its ugly head. I just wanted to go home after school drop-off and do my chores and be alone.....but I had committed with my friend and for the class, so I went, because God forbid I not follow through on something I said I would do! The earth might fall off of its axis and crash into space! 

It ended up being the most wonderful thing I could have done for myself. My friend and I got coffee on the way, and when we got to the teachers home, she was this lovely young English mum. Her house was fresh and homey and we all were immediately comfortable. I spent an hour and a half feeling like a normal person.

There were seven of us altogether...she showed us her big jar of starter that originated from 62 years ago in Sonoma. She told us that everything she makes comes from that starter....pancakes, French toast, bread, focaccia, crackers, pizza dough, English muffins, cakes, cookies etc. 

She started with teaching us how to care for our starter....she said, "this will be like your child and you have to feed it and tend to it every day in the beginning to keep it alive." I almost walked out right there....

She had a loaf of focaccia bread that she had already made, ready for us to taste. It was so yummy! I brought up the "C-word".....carbohydrates. She explained that anything made with sourdough starter has a low glycemic lower carbs! They are also lower in gluten and if we let it proof or ferment for a longer period of time, we can eliminate gluten altogether.

We each left with a small jar of starter. I faithfully fed mine a tablespoon of flour each day with a little filtered water. All seemed fine....until one day I got busy and forgot to feed it. When I checked it next it looked like thick flour and water paste with a layer of water over the top. I was so disappointed....but asked our teacher what to do. I was taught that the water is the "hooch" and its telling me that my starter is hungry. So I fed it some flour and drizzled some filtered water, stirred it all together, and then went about my business. When I got home, Molly had stuck the whole jar in a bowl because it was overflowing. Oh my gosh.....I was so happy! It was not only alive, it was thriving!! lol

A couple days ago I made my first loaf of focaccia bread.... a quarter cup of starter, 3.5 cups of flour, some Himalayan sea salt, some water.....and ta da! My dough ball that had to "proof" for 18 hours. Then I spread it out onto a well oiled 9x12 cookie sheet, poked some dents into it with my fingers, then I spread 2tbls of olive oil over the top, poked some kalmata olives into it, along with some feta and fresh rosemary. Baked it at 480 degrees for 18 minutes and we had a delicious loaf of low carb, low gluten, focaccia bread. It was so butter needed.

I just loved that day. I loved meeting everyone in the class....afterwards we had a good discussion about homeschooling and educating kids and I just loved it. It was something so simple, but it was in my comfort zone, it fit in with my soul. It was exactly what I needed. A day just being me, nothing related to addiction...sometimes recovery can be something totally unexpected that just fills us up. I felt so blessed.

Much much love to us all....



lori said...

I can practically smell it way over here in Michigan! Bread making sounds like my kind of class....carbs, gluten and all! :)

Mark said...

You expressed your gratitude Annette and I want to express mine. Thank you for connecting with me. It has made such a difference in this new phase of life I am starting. You are the best. And your bread story has made me hungry.

Tori said...

Your post is just beautiful. I would love to do a class like that and learn how to make bread. It looks so good!!!! You are so awesome.