Friday, September 17, 2004

Sourdough and composting

I started composting when we moved to our rental house -- the previous tenants had left a compost bin and I read about composting at the San Diego Zoo. Joy was happy because it gave us a good excuse to buy fruit and vegitables that we knew had a decent chance of going bad before we ate them. Coffee grounds, tea leaves and egg shells are supposed to be pretty good compost material, so it fit well with what I consume too.

On vacation to Idaho this summer, I took some sourdough starter to make pancakes and biscuits. Last Saturday I finally got a decent batch of bisuits. I think the starter might have died off a bit on the way home, but now it looks pretty good. I think I'll consider making bread soon.

Both of these things harness (or at least theoretically harness) organisms that would normally be considered harmful. Bacteria, worms and insects work together to break down the compost material so that I can spread it around our garden flowers. Bacteria and yeast work together to break down water and flour so that I can add it to dough to make it rise and add a bit of flavor. It's very satisfying.

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