sourdough
food, health, home

To Sour A Dough

The uptake of families using their pandemic down time to create things at home, has led to shortages of essentials in stores in some places.

It is as if we have rewound the clock, to an earlier time, when takeaway was unknown and we prepared all of our own food. Which is such a better way to eat than packaged, pre-prepared foods that are preserved beyond comprehension and have a shelf life that Cro-Magnon man would envy?

Repressed Baker or Bakeaholic?

In my house, the baking frenzy – and the #onecakeaweek has been in full swing during the length of the Covid pandemic. Yet, I still bear the title of ‘Repressed baker.’

Or, perhaps it was likely that I was a baker in a former life?

I venture to say the joy of kneading bread dough borders on the therapeutic, for me at least. Kneading, folding, creating and then of course the joy of eating. It is almost blissful.

It is not the first time, this lapsed baker has made bread, but it has been a while.

When I turned 21 years old, I decided it was time to hang up my bread-making apron for other pursuits. Not only was the process of making bread time-consuming, but good yeast was hard to find and quite expensive. As a 20-something, the novelty of making my own varieties of bread quickly wore off.

Like others, the enforced leave from work, with adult kids who have (mostly), left the nest, means the urge to bake all kinds of things has returned with gusto.

Sourdough Mother

Now in the midst of lockdown, I returned to the kitchen to make sourdogh bread. I have already made loads of different kinds of cakes and sweet treats and was growing a sourdough mother under the expert tutelage of my blogger friends and bread-baking mentors, Sandy and Peggy.

Once I was able to secure some wholemeal flour, which was a feat in itself, given the shortages under Covid, I tended the sourdough starter lovingly for days and made a pancakes out of the discard.

The Final Result Sourdough Rolls

At the end of the week, I produced these wonderful Wholemeal Sourdough bread Rolls from Peggy‘s recipe.

bread rolls

I had enough to give some to my son and a friend. Surprisingly, the friend who happens to be Danish, so is used to beautifully cooked bread, raved about my sourdough rolls.

I was a little surprised she liked them, as I found them quite dense in texture and sliced them thinly to toast them. But then compared to Rugbrød, the Danish Rye bread, they are most likely light and airy given that the Danes like their bread really heavy and solid.

Danish Rugbrød or Ryebread

The Sourdough Mother has now gone, so I will have to start the process over again, which is a lot of fun.

Next time, it will be with Rye flour and linseed, just like the Danes, I think.

A Home by the Sea
pickled cucumber
food, health, home

DIY Pickled Cucumber Salad -Agurksalat Recipe

I love to try Nordic cooking and dishes. My connection with my Danish family feels a little stronger when I make something peculiarly Danish.


The bonus comes when the dish is healthy AND tasty.


Cucumbers are a humble yet versatile vegetable that hold an important place in salads and summer dishes.

Pickled cucumbers extend the life of salad vegetables, so we can enjoy them for longer. For those of us living in a warmer part of the world, cucumbers are an everyday part of life.

Nutritional Benefits of Cucumber



In just a single cup of cucumber slices, you’ll get 14% to 19% of the vitamin K you need for the day. In addition, you will find vitamins B and C along with minerals like copper, phosphorus, potassium, and magnesium.

Web.MD

Danish Cucumber Salad


This really quick and simple form of cucumber salad, (or in Danish, ‘Agurksalat’), that can extend the life of your salad vegetables and impart another flavour to your meals.


Tart and scrumptious with a tuna or smoked salmon sandwich, or with cold meats, this form of cucumber salad will keep in the fridge for days.

If you run out, you can reuse the liquid and top up with another cucumber or two before you dispose of it.

Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1- 2 thinly sliced cucumbers (I use Lebanese)
  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • ground pepper
  • Rosemary or Dill
  1. Thinly slice cucumbers. Peel them if you prefer or have an issue with digesting vegetable skins.
  2. Place in a bowl and sprinkle with a generous amount of salt. Set aside for an hour then drain off the liquid, or pat dry with a paper towel.
  3. Place the sliced and drained cucumbers in a glass jar. Use a glass jar due to the vinegar. (2 cups is a good starting amount, but you can use up to 2 full cucumbers for the amount of vinegar and sugar.) Add more if you are using large cucumbers but equal quantities of vinegar and sugar.
  4. Place the vinegar and sugar in a pan. Heat until sugar is dissolved. I throw mine in the microwave for a minute. (Feel free to add a couple of tablespoons of water if you feel that the vinegar is too strong.)
  5. Pour the vinegar and sugar over the cucumbers. Add pepper to taste. (Black pepper is fine, but white is less noticeable.)
  6. Place a sprig of dill or rosemary in the jar (optional) and chill in the refrigerator for at least an hour before serving.

NB. As you finish the cucumbers, you can slice some more and continue to use the liquid for some time.

Whilst everyone has their own individual recipe, there are many similar versions

A Home by the Sea