Sitting on my kitchen window sill for the last three or four years is a jar with chopped apples in the bottom plus water plus a little sugar. Sitting in my garden is a solitary Cox apple tree that I bought for Sue as a Valentine present quite a lot of years earlier.
When the apples get picked in October, one gets chopped and added to the jar with a little more water and sugar. Within a week or two it’s fermenting nicely – there’s a healthy hiss when the jar is opened and a spurt of fine bubbles through the brew.
This week was apple bread week. I thought I’d left it too late to get a starter – already Sunday evening. But I went ahead and mixed some of the liquid from the jar to make a paste with flour. All Monday it looked pretty lifeless so I left it alone. Tuesday morning a few irregular bubbles and I stirred the hootch back in with the solids. Not much better Tuesday evening but I refreshed it anyway. Finally Wednesday morning it was bubbling like a fully payed up sourdough starter (although, of course it’s not). Refreshed that evening and Thursday morning. Sauteed chopped apples in butter, brought Westons Cloudy Scrumpy to the boil and cooled it again. Thursday evening mixed them into a dough of strong white and toasted barley flour. Baked Friday morning.
How much do you reckon that would be worth in Harrods Food Hall?