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No-Knead Method for Artisan Bread Baking: The Salt and Fold Method – Part 1

nokneadbreadLEAVEN

Building a Leaven

A “leaven” is a combination of flour and water that has been inoculated with a portion of a sourdough starter. In our bakery, building a leaven to mix with was crucial to avoid putting stress on the starter by using and feeding it in mass quantities. A leaven essentially acts as a medium between the bacteria in your starter and your bread dough that allows you to use smaller amounts of starter to achieve the same result. The leaven will be built the night before you intend to mix, and two days or more before you intend to bake, so plan accordingly.

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Mason

Mason

Mason is a recent graduate of Augustana College and a die-hard foodie. He has a degree in philosophy, but also worked in a bakery using sourdough to produce bread with incredible flavor and texture. Apart from fermentation, he is fond of music, black coffee, nice wine, and thoughtful books.

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No-Knead Method for Artisan Bread Baking: Introduction

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This is a method a friend of mine and I developed at our bakery. It took a lot of trial and error, but over time we developed a process that both took the strain off of our bodies and yielded some professional-quality artisan bread. This method is an adaptation on the folding method that has been used by several professional bakeries, with our own unique twists…. 

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Mason

Mason

Mason is a recent graduate of Augustana College and a die-hard foodie. He has a degree in philosophy, but also worked in a bakery using sourdough to produce bread with incredible flavor and texture. Apart from fermentation, he is fond of music, black coffee, nice wine, and thoughtful books.

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The Nixtamalization of Corn: an Historic Practice

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I find it interesting that our society has taken what has been a nourishing food eaten at most meals for generations and turned it into one of the most toxic ingredients in our food chain. Now corn is in everything and in many strange forms. As a sweetener it is prevalent, as a filler it is everywhere, and as a GMO grain it fills our grocery stores. But it wasn’t always like this. Heirloom corn was eaten in South America for generations with good results, but this corn was nixtamalized.

The nixtamalization of corn isn’t exactly a culturing process. It is, however, a historic means by which a society improved the quality of their raw ingredients, making them more digestible and unlocking certain nutrients for better health.

In those terms, nixtamalization isn’t that far off from fermentation. The process isn’t all that different from souring grains, either, in that time and liquid are involved.

The other key ingredient is lime, and not the citrus fruit. Let’s take a closer look at this age-old practice and which common corn foods can be made from them…. 

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Shannon

Shannon is a mama to four small children, homesteader, freelance writer, and picture-taker. She lives with her husband on their off-grid homestead where they make and eat kefir, kombucha, sourdough, and fermented vegetables.

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Culturing Courage

culturingcourage

I hear all the time from people who are nervous about getting started culturing. We live in a very germ-phobic society where hand sanitizer is everywhere and the news regularly reports outbreaks of foodborne illness or tainted food recalls. For those who have worked in food service, the image of the thermometer proclaiming “Danger Zone” is permanently etched in memory.

So how can you make the leap from over caution about food to leaving a jar of cabbage on the counter for 3 weeks? Or perhaps even leaving milk out for 48 hours!… 

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Sarah

Sarah

I live in Oregon with my 4 kids. I hop between my kitchen and sewing room. As the daughter of a ranch-girl turned County Extension Agent, I really believe that with enough ingenuity and know-how, anything can be made. I try to keep some cultured vegetables and condiments on hand, as well as a robust supply of yogurt. What really excites me though is finding old ways of culturing foods from around the world and making it work in my life. “I wonder” is a phrase I utter a lot, and can make my kids nervous! I love to learn and share what I’ve discovered.

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