*Update: If you’re up for participating in doughvember and you’re on twitter, tweet me and I’ll add you to the twitter list @saltyseattle/doughvember. You can follow along with other participants there as well as via hashtag #doughvember.
No blog is ever truly a food blog, is it? Sometimes life gets in the way and you have to share a little of your current situation- even if it’s really embarrassing- along with your recipe for Beef Wellington.
I have a big month planned. I’m headed to Santa Monica to speak at IFBC (you should come!) and to visit family and friends in the LA area. I’m also putting the finishing touches on a book proposal. I’ve upped my freelance writing work and have deadlines looming. Then there’s Thanksgiving and the promise I made to singlehandedly cook for 20+ people. Despite a jam-packed month, I also wanted to include a fun little project my beautiful co-host Nicole from Pinch My Salt and I are calling “Doughvember”. It’s a whole month dedicated to raising awareness about sourdough with the end goal being that those of us who participate will become better sourdough bakers. If you live in the US, imagine how good your rolls will be come Thanksgiving?
All that sounds busy but doable, right? I feel like every time I put just the right amount of stuff on my plate that I’ll be able to manage it with speedy efficiency, something new comes hurtling at me that I didn’t anticipate. That “something” in this case was a dance floor. One that my wrist came abruptly in contact with Saturday night, otherwise known as “Adult Halloween”.
Every year I try to grow up by putting my own Halloween desires aside and becoming one of those cupcake-baking, PTA-presiding uber-moms. So far I’ve failed. Adult Halloween falls on the nearest Saturday to real Halloween, which is October 31st. It’s a day to hire a babysitter, swath yourself in garbage bags laced together with sheep casings, and dance the night away.
It’s also a day to remember to eat more than one meal, which was my second mistake. My first mistake was commencing to drink prior to noon, and not stopping until I wound up in a pile of skeevy DNA on the dance floor of The Cuff. The Cuff is by far the best place to spend Adult Halloween in Seattle as all the gay-listers, bears, young-and-hungs, gaysians, and queens are out in full regalia. Since I’m a flame dame of the highest order, there is no place I’d rather be.
So there I was, teetering on my shearling Louboutins with nary a care in the world, when a pirouette went awry and my limbs went akimbo straight down to the dirty dregs of the unyielding floor. It was suggested that I was “break-dancing” in more ways than one. I promise I’m a better dancer than Elaine from Seinfeld, damn it!
Several x-rays confirmed a distal-radial fracture, and now I’m kitted out with a temporary cast until next week, at which time they’ll take more x-rays to determine whether I need surgery or if casting will do the trick. I’m trying to make the best of it, by adorning my cast with colorful sleeves made from cut up socks. I’ll post my cast creations on twitter and instagram (@saltyseattle) if you want to follow along.
Thus far the biggest obstacles have been cooking and writing. Do you have two hands and want to come learn how to be an adolescent boy trapped in the body of a 30-something year-old woman for the month? If so, I’ll teach you how to drink wine like water, cook food that would make a priest drop his pants, and write and speak with a filter so transparent most people say it isn’t there.
But I’m not giving up on sourdough. Nicole and I want to see all of you beautiful people in the kitchen hanging out with the good kind of wild yeast. Nicole has a tutorial on how to start your own yeast culture- it’s fun and easy, so get going on it now if you want to win fabulous prizes to-be-announced soon. In addition, I’ve decided to try and send my own sourdough starter to two lucky commentors on this post. If you want it and you live in the US where it has a chance of surviving the mail journey, just leave a note below saying so. I’m not sure how well it will travel as I’m not going to dehydrate it but send it as-is, however I’ll send it priority so it should arrive before it’s completely starving. I’ll choose (randomly) who to send it to by this Thursday the 3rd of November, and I’ll mail it out Friday, along with instructions on how to feed it. If you live in Seattle and want some sourdough starter, no need to enter the contest, just let me know and I’ll give you as much as you like.
There will be an interactive part of Doughvember as well- that’s where the prizes come in. If you have a blog, post sourdough successes and failures. Then send Nicole and I links to those posts for a chance to win some fun stuff. If you don’t have a blog but want to participate, you can send photos and descriptions and I’ll share them with the world via my blog.
As the month progresses we’ll provide more specifics on prizes and challenges, but for the time being, either start or rouse your wild yeast and get back to baking. We’d love to hear about baguettes, rolls, pancakes, waffles, and anything your sourdoughey heart desires. If you’re on twitter please use the hashtag #doughvember to chronicle your adventures in sourdough and to follow along with others.