Saturday Tweets: Hoarder Barbie, Medieval Walking and a Collapsible Dinghy

The Rye Revolution

At last the rye revolution has arrived! We have nothing to lose but our fake supermarket rye loaves. I’m happy to say that the Los Angeles Bread Bakers is hosting a class with the rye expert, Stanley Ginsberg tomorrow, Saturday the 7th of October. There’s still space in the class if you’re interested. Head here to sign up. If you live elsewhere or can’t make it, Ginsberg has penned what I believe to be the definitive book on rye baking, The Rye Baker: Classic Breads from Europe and America. In the book Ginsberg covers every imaginable rye recipe from around the world, from loaves to crackers to scones.

Since it’s hard to find good rye loaf even in a big city, learning to bake your own rye really pays off. The unique chemistry of rye, especially when leavened with a sourdough starter, also means that a rye loaf stays fresh longer. Due to all that’s happened in the past year I’ve had to put baking on hold. When I get back into it I’m going to focus exclusively on rye.

111 Cardoons, Medlars and Hipster Toilets

On the podcast this week, Kelly and I read and respond to listener questions and comments about cardoons, medlars and Toto’s Eco Promenade toilet! Here’s some links to the topics we rap about:

If you’d like to leave a question for the Root Simple Podcast please call (213) 537-2591 or send an email to [email protected]. You can subscribe to our podcast in the iTunes store and on Stitcher. The theme music is by Dr. Frankenstein. Additional music by Rho. A downloadable version of this podcast is here.

What’s Buried in Your Backyard?

I hate digging. Around the Root Simple compound, if you dig deeper than six inches and you hit a layer of hard packed clay entwined with tree roots and chunks of concrete. At least my digging efforts yield the artifacts of previous inhabitants in addition to the raw material for adobe ovens.

While recovering from a bad cold this weekend I fell deep into the hole that is the Historic Glass Bottle Identification and Information Website created by a retired Bureau of Land Management Rangeland Management Specialist, Bill Lindsey. While the bulk of the internet consist of intemperate tweets and cats, it still has useful information like Lindsey’s bottle website which was created to, “assist archaeologists with the dating, identification and classification of historic bottles and bottle fragments located during cultural surveys and excavations.” You can lose a lot of hours on this site marveling at the design details and uses of old bottles. There’s a handy page for dating bottles, scans of antique bottle catalogs, and page after page of bottle types.

My unintended archaeological efforts have yielded no Spanish doubloons, viking graves or Anasazi ruins, but I have found lots of glassware, mostly broken milk bottles. I’ve also discovered what I think are cheap perfume bottles like the one above. If you know what this bottle contained please leave a comment. I suspect perfume, because this tiny bottle has a very narrow, flow restricting opening.

What have you found while digging on your homestead?

Saturday Tweets: Cactus Confit, Fissionable Poker and a Lion knight Riding a Unicorn