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  1. Last year, before graduating and moving away from Berkeley, I collected two sourdough starters from bakeries that I loved and had special significance for me during my years there. I abided by the instructions for feeding and kept them alive for a few months, but after moving again, I had all but abandoned them in the back of the fridge. As expected, both seem to have the greyish appearance and a pool of liquid. I have read in a few places that it is possible to revive a starter after long periods of inactivity, but before I do that, I have two questions: 1. What would be the best procedure to bring them back to a healthy vibrant state? Should I just follow the instructions from each bakery for normal feeding until it appears back to normal, or is there a special treatment for neglected starters? 2. Once I have revived them, would they return back to their original states, or somehow be morphed into something different? Has anyone else had similar experience with reviving starters and remembers the qualities it had before and after?
  2. You really should conquer your fears and make the trip out to Berkeley Bowl as the place will win you over. I recently moved from Berkeley to Los Angeles and have been having a very very hard time finding suitable replacements for my Bay Area stops in almost every respect. Los Angeles, to me, just seems more style than substance. Whenever I find a place I think might be good, it just seems to have sub par product and lacking in "soul". I guess the trio of ACME, Berkeley Bowl, and the Cheeseboard may never quite be replaced until I find myself back in the Bay Area.
  3. The values I gave are the ones based on the book of the store I got the starter from (The Cheeseboard Collective Works) and thus I wanted to stick to the recommended protocol. However silly it sounds, my only concern is keeping their 30 year old Bay Area starter alive, the specific technique for doing so really matters not. I have another semi-Sourdough related question. Is it okay to let the bread rise in the same KitchenAid metal bowl you kneaded the dough in? I have heard that metal is not the best place to do such rising, however, some recipes make no mention of changing bowls.
  4. I have absolutely no experience with sourdough starters so this question may seem very simple to someone who knows better. I just acquired a starter for a local bakery and I followed their instructions of taking it out of the fridge, reserving about 1/4 cup, adding 1/2 cup lukewarm water and 2/3 cup bread flour and leaving it out for 48 hours. You repeat this and then immediately put it in the fridge. I tried making another jar of starter (to keep in another kitchen), but I guess my room today was a bit more warm that usual and when I came back from class I noticed the starter mix was bubbling much more than usual. Actually, it had grown to the top of the jar it was in (3/4 liter French jar). It deflated to the normal amount when I mixed it a bit with a spoon. So I am wondering if these 7 or 8 hours in a warmer than room temperature environment would in any way hurt the starter, or alter its nature? I am also wondering if I could just take some starter from the fridge and start anew? I just fed the other one a few days ago and the instructions are that I can keep it in the fridge for one month without feeding. I am wondering if it is too soon to re-feed?
  5. Sergio

    Menu maker game

    Johnny, the risotto sounds very good, do you think you could post the entire recipe?
  6. Being done with finals will be so liberating. I will do nothing these next few weeks but cook. Good luck with doing the same.
  7. Sergio


    Is there anywhere online that I can find these conversions?
  8. Sergio

    Best Teaching Cookbook

    "The New Making of a Cook: The Art, Techniques, And Science Of Good Cooking" by Madeleine Kamman This is a great tome (1200+ pages) which many recipes but a overall emphasis on the technique. Best of all: http://www.ecookbooks.com/products.html?re...ic=simplesearch
  9. Sergio

    The French Laundry 2006 -

    Sam, did you ever end up going to Bouchon and asking about the bread?
  10. Sergio

    The French Laundry 2006 -

    Next time can you go a bit earlier and spy with a notepad handy, or maybe a video camera? I really want to know how that bread is made. Is anyone who has tried it an expert baker able to reverse-engineer the roll?
  11. Sergio

    The French Laundry 2006 -

    Thanks for asking that, I have been meaning to do so for the last few weeks since I dined there. My fiancée is in love with the bread and has been bugging me to find out how to make it, or where to get it. I recently found a picture of it online: I also called them about the bread, and all the information I got was that it was a regular bread roll with Maldon sea salt on it. I vaguely remember the waiter mentioning something about an eggy dough akin to brioche, but I am not sure given that information I received on the phone. I really hope someone does have more information, as I would love to eat more of it.
  12. I recently purchased the Peugeot 9.5" Chateauneuf pepper mill (picture). The pepper mill is not grinding the way I expected it to, the pepper seems to only really be grinding some of the time, while the rest of the time is spent grinding with nothing in the chamber. I am using Penzey's Extra Bold peppercorns, and while Tellicherrys in particular are large, I don't think that should be a problem for a pepper mill of Peugeot's caliber. Is it just Penzey's Extra Bold, or have any other Peugeot owners had a problem with the large peppercorns? On a related note, how fast do you guys grind the pepper? Perhaps I am assaulting the poor pepper mill before it can reload. P.S. I am well aware that the Magnum happens to be king at the moment, however, I just cannot get past its looks, and that is why I choose the Peugeot.
  13. Sergio

    The French Laundry 2006 -

    I am insanely excited to be eating at the French Laundry for the first time on April 8th.
  14. Instead of posting an entirely new thread, I will temporarily hijack Monica's. I am looking for most well-rounded recipe software. I want have a database of my favorite recipes at hand, and the ability to print them out to be aesthetically pleasing. Out of all the options given on this and other threads, which tends to be the favorite among those who frequent eGullet?