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Sharry Miller
Valdez, Alaska
I'm a creative soul living life in Alaska.
Interests: I love trying new things and have played with fiber arts, quilting, fused glass, stained glass, lampworking, and a variety of other art forms. I'm also a budding adult athlete (after a childhood of inactivity) and indulge in bicycling, triathlon, hiking, skiing, and occaisonal attempts at running. I also enjoy reading nearly anything and writing about my experiences (hence this blog).
Recent Activity
Fine, fine, I confess: I've been a bad blog writer. It's been 18 days since my last post and I haven't told you anything about the last four recipes I've baked from Bernard Clayton's New Complete Book of Breads. Please forgive me. Honestly, while I'm still enjoying baking all the recipes, I start to wonder how much I can really say about baking water, flour, salt, and yeast. And then a recipe like Weissbrot Mit... Continue reading
Posted May 12, 2020 at Sharry Miller
Mumble, mumble years ago is right! I don’t remember said doughnuts, but I’ll take your word for it. Sounds good. We should arrange a retest opportunity.
Toggle Commented Apr 26, 2020 on Oil Spill Bread at Sharry Miller
Oil tankers loading at the Valdez Marine Terminal Dang, I didn't realize it had been almost a month since I last wrote. I'm such a slacker. I do have one excuse. For the past 12 days we've been out on our fishing boat working on the response to a small oil spill at the Valdez Marine Terminal. What that's meant is that we've been driving back and forth along a mile of shoreline dragging one... Continue reading
Posted Apr 24, 2020 at Sharry Miller
No Bernard Clayton's New Complete Book of Bread recipe today. Instead, since I'd offered to share my sourdough starter with a young friend, I thought I'd experiment with it. On the plus side, this means that you can access the recipe yourself without having to buy a baking tome. For some reason, I had scones on my brain this morning. I have a recipe I've used before and like, but since I had the sourdough... Continue reading
Posted Mar 28, 2020 at Sharry Miller
I was tempted to never move past Sister Virginia's Daily Loaf after making it a week or so ago. The loaves I made were as close to perfection as I ever hope to get. And I just realized, after going back to find the link to that post so I could included it here, that I never wrote about it. Oh, dear. I'm slipping already. So, a few quick words about Sister Virginia's Daily Loaf... Continue reading
Posted Mar 22, 2020 at Sharry Miller
For starters, let me be clear right up front that it's not about the yeast. My most recent bread failure, that is. I say "most recent" because it was by no means my first, and I'm equally sure it won't be my last. I speculated the other day that perhaps the reason I baked a brick was because my new jar of yeast was not viable. I have now demonstrated that the yeast was not... Continue reading
Posted Mar 13, 2020 at Sharry Miller
It is only right that I present a fair and unbiased view of my baking abilities, as difficult as that may be. Like all of us, I want to be seen as a success, but alas, that is not always the case. Yesterday, I baked a brick. Since I started this little bread baking adventure two months (!) ago, I've baked at least two dozen loaves of bread from nine of Bernard Clayton's recipes in... Continue reading
Posted Mar 11, 2020 at Sharry Miller
I had to embark on an odd, albeit short, research project last week. I was trying to figure out how the volume of dried hops compared to the volume of hops pellets. Hops are the flower buds of the female Humulus lupulus plant. Most of us know them as the ingredient in beer that makes it bitter. The "hoppier" a beer is, the more bitter it is. I'm not a fan of bitter things and... Continue reading
Posted Feb 28, 2020 at Sharry Miller
I miss bundt cakes. Are you old enough to remember these dessert staples from the 1970s and 80s? My dad had a real sweet tooth when I was growing up, so I baked a lot of cakes and cookies. Bundt cakes were one of the few we always made from mixes, and my favorite was a chocolate cake with coconut center and glaze. You'd put the chocolate cake batter in a bundt pan and layer... Continue reading
Posted Feb 19, 2020 at Sharry Miller
I just made the mistake of checking the stats for my blog. Based on the number of page views I've had over the past week or so, I'm writing these posts for the pleasure of the ether, but I will persevere. I'm having a masochistic sort of fun with this project, and it means I get to eat yummy bread. I felt a little less guilty with today's recipe than I did with the Frisian... Continue reading
Posted Feb 11, 2020 at Sharry Miller
You ever have one of those days where you feel like nothing you do is enough? Today was one of those days. I didn't do enough work on my paying job, but when I was spending time on that I felt guilty for not creating fused glass artwork for the two shows I have coming up this fall, and when I finally spent some time in my studio I felt guilty for not getting outside... Continue reading
Posted Feb 7, 2020 at Sharry Miller
Since yesterday's Scottish Buttermilk Bread didn't meet our bread needs for the week, and since I haven't used my sourdough sponge (starter) in a month, I decided to make some sourdough bread today. Actually, I made that decision late last night and added two cups of white flour and two cups of water to the cup of sponge I had in the refrigerator. It needed to sit on the counter overnight to get well activated... Continue reading
Posted Jan 26, 2020 at Sharry Miller
My adventures with Bernard Clayton's New Complete Book of Breads continued yesterday with the making of Scottish Buttermilk Bread. With this loaf I was forced to acknowledge that if I'm going to work my way through all of the recipes in the book, I'm going to make loaves that don't suit my needs, that is, aren't standard loaves of bread appropriate for toast, sandwiches, etc. Clayton describes Scottish Buttermilk Bread as being "closely akin to... Continue reading
Posted Jan 26, 2020 at Sharry Miller
I checked the clock and added time carefully before I tackled the next recipe in Bernard Clayton's New Complete Book of Breads. It was nearly 4:30 when I started, and since the recipe said the dough required five risings, I wasn't sure it would be done in time for dinner. It took my fingers and toes to calculate, but I decided all would be well if we didn't eat early. I was wrong. We finished... Continue reading
Posted Jan 18, 2020 at Sharry Miller
Thanks for reading, Irene. If your starter's not working, you might try refreshing it with 1c water and 1c flour every day for a week. Each day, reserve 1/2-1 c of the starter, add fresh water and flour, mix and let it sit overnight. Discard the rest of the starter that you're not saving. It might just need to be fed more. It's worth a try.
Toggle Commented Jan 19, 2020 on Baking Bread at Sharry Miller
As I type, a bowl of warm bread dough is rising in my oven. It is a miracle. Every loaf of bread is a miracle. A few years ago, I purchased Bernard Clayton's New Complete Book of Breads,revised and expanded, mind you. It has sat on my cookbook shelf, like most of my cookbooks, completely ignored. Occasionally I'd glance at it and think that I should methodically for my way through all of its 748... Continue reading
Posted Jan 12, 2020 at Sharry Miller
I totally understand that. Right now, I need to be spending more time on my computer and in my studio, but that sunshine keeps calling me. Oh, well, it will all balance out in the end.
Toggle Commented Aug 13, 2019 on Life Began at 37 at Sharry Miller
A whole year and more to get ready - plenty of time! If you want to be in shape for walking, you need to go walking on a regular basis. Do we need to set walking dates a few days per week?
Toggle Commented Aug 13, 2019 on Life Began at 37 at Sharry Miller
At some point in time as we chatted while hiking Crow Pass, I mentioned to Jenny that I hadn’t been active for all that many years. It was only as a middle-aged adult that I started being more athletic. I knew what event precipitated the whole odyssey, but I wasn’t sure exactly when. This evening, I was sorting through some old journals, which I really only keep when I’m traveling, and found the one for... Continue reading
Posted Aug 12, 2019 at Sharry Miller
After a completely sleepless night on the gravel near Icicle Creek, I was ready to be up at 5:00 and on the trail. With oatmeal and coffee to sustain us, Jenny and I were off before 7:00 to complete the last six miles to the Eagle River Nature Center and the end of the trail. Within half a mile we figured out that we could have had a comfy campsite at Heritage Falls. If we’d... Continue reading
Posted Aug 10, 2019 at Sharry Miller
Uncomfortable, hmmm? Would undies be better? Most of the log crossings we could use our poles to help balance, but we had to be quick on several because the logs wanted to sink and/or roll. Thanks for reading!
Good for you! That's what it's all about. I felt the same way about doing the storytelling event in May.
Toggle Commented Aug 10, 2019 on Year of Fear at Sharry Miller
“I saw the brush moving in the middle of the night and was sure it was a bear going after our food,” Jenny said after I’d pulled our intact food bags up from where she’d hung them off the side of the bridge over Turbid Creek. “I kept imagining that we were having a huge earthquake and the bridge got taken out. We were on opposite sides and couldn’t hear each other over the river.”... Continue reading
Posted Aug 9, 2019 at Sharry Miller
As Jenny Kelly and I posed for a photo by the Chugach National Forest sign at the Girdwood end of Crow Pass Trail at 10:00 on the morning of July 29, I was giddy with excitement and nerves. We were about to embark on an adventure that would accomplish two things for me: put a tick mark on my life bucket list and fulfill my July Year of Fear goal. The other end of the... Continue reading
Posted Aug 2, 2019 at Sharry Miller
I understand how the caribou feel. The madness that causes mid-summer herds to careen across the tundra and plunge into icy rivers. The drive to keep moving, moving to the point of starvation. I understand. ***** One of my Year of Fear goals has been to hike Crow Pass. The hike itself doesn't scare me, although any time I sleep in a tent in bear country I get a little nervous. No, what really makes... Continue reading
Posted Jul 20, 2019 at Sharry Miller