backyard just before dawn

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The sounds are amazing. A just now a big mullet  jumped,and a few minutes ago a Great Blue Heron flew in and is now sitting on our dock making low grumbles. Meanwhile, the ducks, probably mallards or mottled, quack to each other, the redwing sings out his happy song, the grackles repeat and repeat their scratchy call, and the tiny palm warblers chip and chip as they hunt down bugs, who are for the most part silent, caught in the screen. The sky is now pinkening in the west, there are blue grey clouds and Lake Iona is still. Every few minutes someone lands on the lake with a whoosh, another fish jumps and more herons, like the tricolor squawk their arrival.  All the creatures are establishing their presence. I am clanging my bowl as I eat, grateful for fresh strawberries.WElainePhotog-1

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Soudough baking

Thanks to our son, I have Cali sourdough. I also have a scale, King Arthur flour, reverse osmosis water, a bowl scraper and a plastic container with a top. But most important, the combo cooker. And my Tartine Bread Book. I have baked maybe five times since the New Year. It comes out different every time, but good. Better than good, actually.

Here’s my question, to myself mostly: how come one loaf is the “good” one and the other one isn’t? It isn’t say, as good looking, is smaller, or less carmelized. I will admit it probably tastes the same.Image