Fermentation

By , February 4, 2013

At present, our cabin is a fermentation center. We’ve got three major ferments underway.

Around Christmas, the sourdough starter reached an intensity best described as uncomfortable. We began a campaign to moderate it by preparing a starter for Aly to take back to college. Her reports on her subsequent culinary creations for her apartment mates have inspired me to get busy with our own. We’ve used the sourdough in one recipe or another just about every two or three days; our overpowering starter has mellowed to a healthy level of sourness. But, the ball has started rolling again, and more sourdough goodness awaits us in the near future.

In December, we marked the first anniversary of our renewed and successful winemaking effort, but for the last month or more we’ve been forced to focus solely on the later stages of batch tending. We have, for the moment, run out of gallon jugs in which to make new wine. However, a recent bottling opened up a jug, and happily, we’re back to tending primary fermentation once again.

The third ferment currently under way has to do with writing.

Lately, I’ve been intensly focused on a new project based on old posts from this blog. For a week or two I’ve been so occupied with it that I can barely eke out new essays to post.

Unfortunately, we had another period of no wind, accompanied by very low ceilings that restrict our solar charging to tenths of amphours each day. Our batteries—household, computer, and headlamp—slowly depleted to lowest reserve levels. I composed this post by hand on notepaper, wondering as I wrote it if and when I might have enough power to transcribe and post it!

Once the computer batteries ran out, the main writing project stalled until we got a charging wind Saturday night. Stalled, that is, except for the slow ferment of ideas as I was forced to ruminate on what and how I wrote, proper order and presentation, and myriad other issues that need to bubble, expand, and mature before the project can reach fruition.

Look here for the history of our family’s sourdough starter, and a recipe for starting your own.

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