How long does it take before something becomes a habit? Research seems to indicate that it depends on how difficult that task is. Drinking more water on a daily basis - relatively easy, getting into running - very difficult (for me anyway), making sourdough......? I think, after 6 weeks, I'm just about there. But it does take commitment, an organised mind and, for best results, some new additions to your baking kit.
The Real Bread Campaign has been championing Sourdough September for a few years now and it is well supported by a range of businesses and promoted in local and national press. I've recently been helping out in a small artisan bakery in Shrewsbury called Bread and Loaf on a casual basis. They specialise in sourdough and interesting yeasted and rye breads and seem to have a loyal and growing customer base.
|Telegraph - 12/09/2015|
|The Shrewsbury Chronicle - 03/09/2015|
A few weeks ago, to promote Sourdough September, Bread and Loaf gave away a small tub of sourdough starter to anyone interested in 'having a go' along with a recipe and information sheet. Over 160 starter packs were given away and 13 plucky customers returned with their loaves on Saturday to be entered into a competition judged by Kate and Martin who own and run the business. Interestingly all looked and tasted quite different despite starting with the same recipe and starter.
I wonder how the other 150 recipients are getting on. Is their starter languishing in the fridge waiting to be refreshed? Has it grown and grown as people feed it and can't bring themselves to throw half away? Or have people given up as they cannot fit making soudough bread into their busy lives? I'm probably making a loaf every two or three days and alternate between using the Bristol sourdough starter we acquired and my own 'home grown' starter. Below is a pictorial story of my sourdough 'journey'...
|In the beginning....... sourdough starter|
|Equipment list - bread stone, lame (scoring blade) & banneton basket|
|Sourdough rising slowly in the basket (12 hours plus)|
|Sourdough turned out and ready to be scored and cooked|
|My 6 weeks worth of sourdough loaves - all different!|
So although Sourdough September has come to an end I hope making soudough bread is one habit I'll try and keep up.