Sunday, January 1, 2006

Sourdough Cornbread

 With a subtle tang and a softer texture  than regular cornbread, this is sure to be a hit around your campfire.

1 cup Sourdough Starter*
2 cups cornmeal
1 1/2 cups milk
4 teaspoons lemon juice
1/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1/4 lard, melted
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Mix water and lemon juice together and let sit a few minutes.  Preheat oven to 425 F. and grease a 10 inch ovenproof skillet or baking dish.

In a large bowl, combine the starter, cornmeal, milk mixture, sugar and eggs (beaten first).  Stir in the melted lard, salt and baking soda.  Bake 25-30 minutes.

Serve with butter and honey

*Sourdough Starter

This recipe is easy enough that you can start one over easily, and with the help of the potato ferments quite rapidly so you can make your bread just a day or two after you have started it.

1 package (or cake) active dry yeast
4 cups warm spring water
3 tablespoons sugar
4 cups unbleached all purpose flour

Dissolve the yeast in the warm water (about 3 minutes), then stir in the sugar and the flour. To help feed the fermenting yeast some cooks will add one potato, peeled and cut into quarters.  Cover with a clean town and let stand  8-12 hours in a warm place, free from drafts, stirring occasionally. Keep lightly covered and stored in the refrigerator until ready to use again.    If you do wish to "feed" the starter, rather than start over each time, replace used starter by adding equal parts flour and warm water with a couple teaspoons of sugar.  (i.e. for each two cups starter used, add in one cup flour, one cup warm water and the sugar).

Spaghetti Sauce for a Crowd

Makes about 18 cups sauce.

6 strips thick sliced applewood smoked bacon
3 pounds hamburger or Venison
1 pound hot (spicy) pork sausage
2 large onions diced
1 large green pepper, diced
1/2 pound sliced fresh mushrooms
8 cloves garlic, roasted and minced
1/4 good quality olive oil (I use some from Artesano's in Indianapolis)
1/4 cup flour
3 cans (28 ounces each) diced tomatoes
1 can tomato paste
1 cup water
1/2 cup white wine vinegar
1 1/2 Tablespoons Worcestershire Sauce
3 tablespoons raw honey
1 T. dried celery flakes
1 heaping T. dried oregano
1`heaping T dried basil
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon white pepper
dash of black pepper
1/4  teaspoon Scoville Brothers Rockin Red hot sauce
1 teaspoon celery salt
1 pinch cayenne pepper

In a large soup kettle, cook bacon over medium until crisp. Remove to paper towels. Cook meat in bacon drippings until meat is no longer pink. Drain all but about 1 T of the fat. Remove meat to keep warm.

In the same pan, saute the onions until caramelized, adding in the peppers, garlic and mushrooms in the last 5 minutes of cooking. Reduce heat and carefully stir in flour until well blended. Stir in tomatoes, tomato paste, water, wine vinegar, honey, Worcestershire sauce and seasonings. Crumble bacon into seasonings and return beef to the pan. Bring just to a boil, and simmer partially covered for 2 hours, stirring occasionally. Serve with pasta and if you like, some bowls of mozzarella, extra onions and black olives for garnish.