WFP: Sourdough things and lots of garden goodness

So I was planning on doing one sourdough thing a day last week, but things rarely go as planned around here… What I did do was fun! Also, today I’ll be making sourdough crackers again (delicious things!) but that won’t make it into this post. 

I worked on really revitalizing my sourdough starter, but I don’t think it got that much more active than it always does. It’s never bubbling up like some people say theirs does, it just has some bubbles in it and smells healthy and yeasty. This stuff is tricky! So here’s what I did:

The sourdough pita, which was really just like flat bread/naan because it didn’t puff up well enough.

Sourdough cookies- I liked them a lot, but I’m definitely going to tweak the recipe some. I’ll be sure to post it here when I have what I want.


Another batch of bread. This is just so hit or miss. These were nice enough (I’ll make a really good bread pudding or something), but dense and flat like they always seem to be. I just don’t know how to get it right! I want fluffy loaves!

Sourdough pancakes. So good! We made a strawberry sauce and topped it all with homemade yogurt and maple syrup. Seriously yummy.

So those were my adventures in sourdough this past week. I’m learning a lot, and eating pretty well too.

Now for garden updates!

Last night we harvested some of the first zucchini. We grilled some up last night with our dinner- and guess who loves it? Vera had two helpings of just the grilled zucchini! It’s amazing what a fresh vegetable out of the garden can be like. I’ll be doing lots of stuff with zucchini over the next several weeks. It’s a prolific little bugger, and it doesn’t store very well. I’ll eat a bunch, bake with it, and probably dry some for soups in the winter, but I’m sure it will also fill up my veggie giveaway basket.

And three beautiful eggs from our hens. We’ve gotten one a day since we got the ladies, which is pretty good I think! I wasn’t expecting any until they got really used to their new home. We know that two are not laying right now, so we’re hoping it’s just because they are younger and need a little more time and love. I’m learning all about fresh eggs, too. I learned that you don’t need to refrigerate them as long as they haven’t been refrigerated before. So until we get more than we can comfortably store on the counter, or unless we aren’t using them fast enough (which is not likely to happen), I’m just keeping them in a bowl. I like looking at them anyway. 🙂

I decided to make an omelet for Vera and I for breakfast. The first taste of the eggs!

It was absolutely delicious, we both scarfed it. While I was making our breakfast I was thinking about how happy I was that I could make such a simple nourishing meal- mostly out of our own backyard. Except for the cheese. But then I started dreaming of having our own goats, and then that would change…

Then I went out to the garden to check on the ladies and see what I could harvest before it turns into a sauna out there.

A bunch of chard and spinach- and there’s way more where that came from… I just try to harvest some every couple of days.

And lots of basil. I learned last year to keep my fresh herbs in a vase of water on the counter. It keeps them fresh longer, and it encourages me to use them before they go bad! When they are stored like this I throw them in all sorts of things. If they are in the bottom of my fridge then I’m much more likely to forget they are there. Plus they smell awesome, and aren’t they pretty? 

And then here’s what was left in the basket. Two zucchini, an eggplant, two little blonde cucumbers, and an egg! I am completely addicted to this. Seriously, the fact that I can still smell basil on my hands as I type this… I think I’ve found my niche.

And here goes try #2 with the giveaway basket. No one took anything the last time, and so I just didn’t bother for a little while. I don’t know why, but I’m not going to give up! We’ve definitely got far too many greens to eat ourselves, and I know that whatever isn’t taken will be happily gobbled up by our chickens. So I’ll try to be better at stocking it all. Plus, it’s a great way to use our extra rubber bands and twist ties that I save in a little jar on the fridge. 

*Update on the freebie basket- Everything was gone by 1:45, when I looked out there. Yay! 

Gracie
Gracie

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Comments (26)

  1. decemberthirty

    All of your garden veggies look so good! I’m amazed that your greens are still doing well in the heat. Mine always bolt once we get to the really hot part of the summer. The zucchinis are nice too. I just got a bunch of zucchini is this week’s CSA shipment, and I’m going to stuff them with potatoes and peas and Indian spices–one of my favorite ways to use zucchini!

    Reply
    1. Gracie (Post author)

      Ah, thank you. With the greens, many of the lettuce plants are getting bitter and bolting, but the darker greens I’ve been able to cut them down and prolong the harvest so far. The flavor is still really good, so I’m hoping I can keep it up! I’ve thought about making some kind of a shade thing for these months, but I don’t know how… one of the many things to research!

      Will you post about your zucchini meal? That sounds awesome- I’d love to make it. 🙂

      Reply
  2. purerandomness

    Basil smell on the fingers: to die for.
    We made a caprese pasta the other night: linguine, tomatoes (not ours because they’re not ripe yet), ripped basil, and some mozz with a drizzle of olive oil. Delicious and we made it on a 90+ degree night without too much discomfort.

    I want to stop by your house and take some veggies! We didn’t do any zucchini or spinach this year and now I really want some!

    If you figure out how to get your bread loaves nice and fluffy, let me know! I keep trying whole wheat bread with active dry yeast and it turns out SO dense! 🙁

    Reply
    1. Gracie (Post author)

      That dinner sounds perfect! I think I know another thing going on the menu plan as soon as I see a ripe tomato. 🙂

      You are always welcome to come get veggies!

      Also, yes, bread is tricky! I am tempted to just take a class or something.

      Reply
      1. purerandomness

        Are you having a blessingway this time around or have you already had one? I was thinking I could send you some of our lavender (we have WAY more than we could possibly need!) for postpartum herbs or just to have dried lavender around the house. But then I thought you may have already planted some of your own so I wasn’t sure…

        I think I have your address from one of the many messages we sent back and forth this winter, so you might be getting a package from me in the coming week! 🙂

        Reply
        1. Gracie (Post author)

          That is so sweet! No, no blessingway this time. I was going to just maybe have a little breezy potluck with people once the weather gets better and baby is already here… but I’m not really one that likes being the center of attention. I would love to have some lavender to help calm this house in the coming weeks! What a sweet offer! 🙂

          Reply
  3. brigittefires

    Do you have a recipe for sourdough pancakes, and do you think it’s possible to use stevia or no sweetener at all in them?

    Reply
    1. Gracie (Post author)

      My recipe is pretty loose, it’s based off of my grandma’s basic pancake recipe, but this is what I do:

      1.5 cups flour + about 1/4 cup sourdough starter and enough water to make a very thick batter. I cover it and let it sit overnight.

      The next morning I mix together:

      1 tsp baking powder
      1 tsp sugar (although you could omit this with no trouble, I’m sure)
      1/2 tsp baking soda
      1/2 tsp salt

      To the sourdough mixture I try to wisk that in as evenly as I can so no lumps appear, and also add 1 egg, 2 Tbsp oil, and some milk/buttermilk if it seems too thick. I don’t have the amounts yet because I just haven’t measured it out, but they are always delicious! The big thing seems to be that I just keep an eye on the thickness of the batter- so that it’s good and pancakey. As long as I soak the flour in the starter/water overnight, I’m happy. 🙂

      Let me know how they turn out!

      Reply
      1. pagangoat

        I’ll have to try this. I googled sourdough pancakes, and all the recipes I found said to just use the starter, didn’t call for any flour, just a tiny bit of sugar, (oil?),egg, and baking soda(also maybe milk, I can’t recall). And they didn’t have to sit for more than a minute or two. I tried it a while ago, and they turned out quite nice, though I did end up adding a tiny bit of flour, because my starter was quite thin.
        Do you let it sit on the counter, or in the fridge?

        Reply
        1. Gracie (Post author)

          On the counter. I guess my logic was that I wanted to have soaked sourdough pancakes that broke down the phytic acid and were more nutritious/digestible. I saw some recipes that just used the starter plus flour- I’m guessing they are just looking for the flavor of the starter. My starter is really mild, so it never tastes really sourdoughy, but they do the trick. Jeff and I have both noticed that the sourdough pancakes don’t leave us feeling that “food coma” that normally happens with a heaping stack of pancakes and some syrup… It’s actually quite a difference. Plus I’ve been adding chia seeds to the batter, and that is supposed to slow the conversion of carbs to sugar, so it gives longer lasting energy. Anyway, I’m getting off track… So yes, on the counter overnight! 🙂

          Reply
          1. pagangoat

            I used my starter after it had been out for a day, so basically the same thing. I really only added a tbsp or two of flour. I’m thinking of making them again, either for dinner tonight, or breakfast tomorrow.

    2. Gracie (Post author)

      Also, you can do a soaked flour pancake that also helps to break down the phytic acid by just taking the flour and a little water and a splash of lemon juice or whey and letting it sit out overnight. I did that before I had a sourdough starter, so I just thought I’d throw it out there too. 🙂

      Reply
      1. pagangoat

        interesting. I have some whey in the fridge, but it’s been there for a couple of months…not sure if it’s still good.I just never got around to experimenting with it, I got distracted with my sourdough adventures.

        Reply
        1. Gracie (Post author)

          Ooh, you should try some pickling!

          Reply
          1. pagangoat

            would the whey still be ok after sitting in the fridge that long? I am curious to try pickling/fermenting, definitely.

          2. Gracie (Post author)

            The whey should keep for months. I had whey go bad once, and you could definitely see bluish mold in it. If it’s just cloudy and doesn’t smell bad, I’d say it’s fine!

          3. pagangoat

            thanks, I might get my courage up to attempt something with it:)

  4. pagangoat

    I don’t know how much freezer space you have, but grated zucchini is awesome to have on hand to throw in cakes, bread, soups, etc.
    I have one tiny zucchini started, I’m so excited! It’s one of my favourite veggies.
    I wish I lived near enough to stop by your roadside basket! i can’t believe people could walk by and not take something, it all looks so beautiful and fresh.
    Those cookies look SO GOOD! I can’t wait to see the tweaked recipe:)
    I can’t wait ’til we can have chickens, fresh eggs are the best.
    Are you allowed to have goats where you live?
    Mmmm I want fresh basil! Pesto and homemade pasta sounds so good…

    Reply
    1. Gracie (Post author)

      I did shred some last year to use in breads, and it was definitely the most useful of the zucchini I stored. I tried to freeze some ‘zucchini noodles’, and they didn’t turn out great- you’ve gotta do that with fresh zucchini I think.

      All this fresh food! Wouldn’t homemade pasta with tomatoes, pesto, and homemade goat cheese be awesome? Mmmm…

      There is a guy in town who has goats and is doing a lot of the legal work for this city. He’s the one that made it possible for us to have four chickens! So we’re kinda just watching and waiting. Although maybe I should get more involved!

      Reply
      1. pagangoat

        Sounds delicious, though it depends on the goat cheese;P…I don’t like most of the ones I’ve tried from the store, other than the sweet brown one made from goat whey. But I loved the goat feta my sister made when I visited her a few years ago, and her goat cream cheese. Maybe it’s because it was really fresh and unpasteurized? Or just that the goat’s were free-ranging and eating lots of fresh greens? Not sure, but it didn’t have that strong goat flavour that I’m not fond of.

        So he is working on getting goat’s approved, or he’s already done it? I can’t see why having a goat or two is much different than having dogs.

        Reply
        1. Gracie (Post author)

          I love goat cheese, but I know what you mean about the distinct taste. I’ve recently had local goat cheese that was really mild, that I could see throwing in everything. The other kinds of goat cheese took some dedication to their flavor… I wonder if it has to do with aging or something? Anyway.

          Well, I know that he’s got goats. He’s fighting the city on a number of things using what’s called the “Right to Farm Act” or something. So basically he had like 50 chickens, 4 goats, and a bunch of bunnies all on his little city lot, and then when the city told him to get rid of them all, he cited this act and took it to court. I know that the chickens has been a success (for this year at least, but we won’t have to worry if they renege it because we’ll be grandfathered in!), but I don’t know what we’ll be able to keep otherwise. But I think I’d have goats in a heart beat if we could… I’ll have to message him and see what the deal is. 🙂

          Reply
          1. pagangoat

            good luck, looking forward to hearing about your goats (and goat cheese experiments) in the future:D

  5. prophetsong

    Your veggies look awesome and I think the freebie basket is a lovely idea. Zucchini makes wonderful soup 🙂

    Reply
    1. Gracie (Post author)

      Oooh, zucchini soup! That’s something I could make now and freeze… thanks for the great idea. 🙂

      Reply
  6. haurelia

    Grace, the food looks fabulous! I’m getting really inspired for making our veggie plot next year. We just didn’t get into our house in time this year, so thank goodness for our CSA share!

    Another good, freezable zucchini idea (great for postpartum meals!) is making a zucchini “pistou.” Saute chopped zucchini, summer squash, onion, garlic, and tomatoes in some olive oil until they’re soft and smushy (in a big skillet). Season with salt, pepper and fresh herbs that sound good (basil is an obvious choice). Make little wells in it and crack an egg in each well. Cover and cook until the eggs are done as you’d like. To freeze this, just cook through the soft and smushy step, cool and freeze. Then when you want some, defrost and put in a big skillet for the egg part. I used a TON of zucchini this way last year, and it was such a satisfying, quick and summery supper. It’s also good with pasta, or topping for scrambled eggs or any roasted/grilled meat.

    Isn’t it funny that just about everyone has ideas for that prolific zucchini? I have to admit, I was actually bummed, because we were expecting it in our CSA box this week and it wasn’t quite ready yet.

    Reply
    1. Gracie (Post author)

      That meal sounds delicious! I’ll definitely have to throw some of that together as soon as our tomatoes ripen… sounds like a perfect easy postpartum meal, and super versatile! I love it. Thanks for the idea. 🙂

      Reply

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