Poah, that's been a long absence... Now I'm definitely happily married and will be writing more about our second go once I've got the photos - let me just just say it was w-o-n-d-e-r-f-u-l! (Meanwhile you can read about our first wedding here.)
After a long but oh-it-seemed-so-short stay, we had to kiss our families and friends good-bye and were off to Sydney. While living in this preparing-for-and-then-getting-married-bubble, one could forget that elsewhere life goes on, you're just too busy to notice. That's also true for the food blogging world - I've had a lot of catching up to do! Always amongst the first to check is Nora's Life's Smorgasbord. I had already eyed her lavender shortbread - full of envy, of course, as I always forget to look out for culinary lavender - no matter how often I've longingly read blog posts about the creative use of this herb.
This time I read loads of stuff about broad beans that sounded utterly appetizing. What's more, Nora said that the season for broad beans is almost over! That's why I decided to do something about it now instead of saving the recipe for later (which usually means much, much later) . Off I went to the shops to buy broad beans, mint, and pecorino, and made myself a simply wonderful dinner. Granted, the whole shelling business does take a while but on the other hand it lifted my spirits to do something elaborate just for myself. With my new/old husband away on a business trip, dinners aren't such an enjoyable thing - however, these broad beans totally made my evening!
PS: Nora provided three different recipes so no need for me to type it down again (I chose Maggie Beers' version with some lemon juice added and some garlic rubbed onto the sourdough bread after toasting - lovely!). I'd rather tell you about the sourdough bread that was just baking away when I read about how to use it for dinner..;-)
Light Rye Sourdough Bread
360g white sourdough, 100% hydration
300g bread flour
100g rye flour
100g wholewheat flour
1.5 tsp salt (or a little more than that)
1 tbsp whole caraway seeds
I used my breadmaker for mixing the dough and letting it rise. The first rising was about 3 hours (the bread maker provided some warmth during the first hour). At the end of the rising time, the dough had a bit more than doubled.
Take the dough out of the bread maker and turn onto a lightly floured work surface. I treated it to a round of stretch&fold (for a stronger texture) and then shaped it into a round loaf.
Place the loaf seam side-up into a floured proofing basket (or a bowl lined with a floured tea towel). Cover and let rise until well doubled in size. This took roughly 2.5 hours. To be sure, make a light dent into to the surface of the loaf. As soon as the dough doesn't spring back completely and still shows a little dent, the loaf is ready for baking.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven with a baking sheet or pizza stone to 220 degrees Celsius (I usually use the highest setting available as I will always lose some heat during steaming).
Carefully unmold the loaf onto a bread peel or an upturned baking sheet (covered with parchment paper or sprinkled with cornmeal). Slash in a criss-cross pattern.
Let the loaf glide onto the hot baking sheet/pizza stone and quickly shut the door. Open once more and splash a cup of water onto the bottom of the oven - be aware of the hot steam! Again, quickly shut the door to keep heat and moisture in.
Bake at 220 degrees Celsius for 30 minutes. Then change to 200 degrees fan-bake for a further 15 minutes. The fan will get the remaining moisture out of the oven for a crisper crust. If you want a thicker crust, bake a little longer at 220 degrees before changing to fan-bake.
Let the loaf cool completely on a rack before slicing.
Inspired by Dan Lepard's Barley and Rye Bread